Summary: It seems that in the church today we hear less and less about the blood of Christ, why it was necessary for Him to die and what it means to our eternal destiny.
This past Thursday was the Fourth of July, Independence Day in the old US of A! Fireworks! Parades! A National Holiday! Independence from the will and domination of an earthly king!
But, what was the price of this freedom. The lives of countless people. The shedding of blood for the cause of freedom and we celebrate this freedom partly because freedom is worth celebrating and partly to honor the unimaginably high cost of the blood that was shed for the high cost of freedom. As the saying goes, “Freedom isn’t free.”
Blood was shed for your freedom and for mine.
When I was a young person going to church we sang many songs about the blood of Jesus, we heard many sermons about the blood of Jesus. We heard many testimonies were given about the blood of Jesus.
You don’t hear much about the blood of Jesus any more in some churches; it has become passé.
Why do you suppose it was so important then? (We’ll put off speculating why it isn’t considered so important today.)
In the OT book of Leviticus it specifies offerings for certain events and for specific sins; all of the sin offerings require the shedding of blood.
So, what kind of sins did we humans go and get ourselves involved in.
There’s a little listing found in
“There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to Him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes …
“feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.”
Just listen to this passage from
Romans 1:18-32 (NLT)
“But God shows His anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness. They know the truth about God because He has made it obvious to them.
“For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see His invisible qualities - His eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.
“Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship Him as God or even give Him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused.
“Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools. And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles.
“So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie.
“So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator Himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen. That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires.
“Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other.
“Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.
“Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, He abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done.
“Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip. They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful.
“They invent new ways of sinning, and they disobey their parents. They refuse to understand, break their promises, are heartless, and have no mercy.
“They know God’s justice requires that those who do these things deserve to die, yet they do them anyway. Worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too.”
That was written 2,000 years ago to the Christians who were living in the pagan Roman culture. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it. Sounds like current American culture.
What a horrible cesspool of filth and despair! Is there any escape??
Hebrews 9:22b (ESV) says,
“Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.”
Romans 6:23a says,
“For the wages of sin is death …”
Oh, no! We’re doomed! We are slaves to sin with no hope of escape and the end of sin is death! But, wait, there’s more ….
But Romans 6:23b says,
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
How was this gift purchased?
God did not create this gift like He created everything else from nothing.
God did not go to the salvation gift thrift store with a coupon and get it for free or steal it.