Summary: This sermon is designed to give the hearer a deeper understanding and appreciation for the incarnation of Jesus Christ.
The Seated Savior
Surely the Father would be pleased if we use the Sunday after the celebration of the incarnation to reflect on the accomplishments of our Savior.
Hebrews 10 contains the words of Jesus at the time of His incarnation…
Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: Heb. 10:5
My prayer is that you leave here today with a greater understanding and a deeper appreciation for the incarnation of the Lord Jesus Christ.
I. The problem addressed by the incarnation vs.6-8
Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening. And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it.
Every sacrificial lamb was a type, a shadow pointing ahead to the reality of the Lamb of God…
The problem God had, was that the animal sacrifices were never adequate to take away sin. They couldn’t bring about His just approval or satisfaction.
Christ was sent into the world to address that problem! He came to deal with the guilt of mankind.
Jesus came to do his Father’s will so that He could be, “well pleased,” not only with Jesus, but also with YOU! The Father made His Son’s soul an offering for sin; …
Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Isaiah 53:10-11
Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
II. The purpose for the incarnation vs.5-10
When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished (telew) and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost. John 19:30
Warren Wiersbe explains to us how profound the use of this word was: The word tetelestai is unfamiliar to us, but it was used by various people in everyday life in those days. A servant would use it when reporting , "I have completed the work assigned to me" (see John 17:4). When a priest examined an animal sacrifice and found it faultless, this word would apply. Jesus, of course, is the perfect Lamb of God, without spot or blemish. When an artist completed a picture, or a writer a manuscript, he or she might say, "It is finished" The death of Jesus on the cross "completes the picture" that God had been painting, the story that He had been writing, for centuries. Because of the cross, we understand the ceremonies and prophecies in the Old Testament. Perhaps the most meaningful meaning of tetelestia was that used by the merchants: "The debt is paid in full" When He gave Himself on the cross, Jesus fully met the righteous demands of a holy law; He paid our debt in full. None of the Old Testament sacrifices could take away sins; their blood only covered sin. But the Lamb of God shed his blood, and that blood can take away the sins of the world !
III. The past reminders of the need for the incarnation vs.11
Work, work, work = the treadmill of ineffective ritual!
IV. The perfection of the incarnation vs.12-25
A. His position vs.12
The Tabernacle and later the Temple had many furnishings… incense altar, laver, lamp, censers, the ark and various implements and tools, but NO CHAIR!
The work of the priests was never finished!
It is still so with Roman Catholicism today…
“In the Eucharist Christ gives up the very body which he gave up for us on the cross, the very blood which he poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. The Eucharist is thus a sacrifice because it re-presents (makes present) the sacrifice of the cross,.. the same Christ who offered himself once in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross is contained and offered in an unbloody manner… this sacrifice is truly propitiatory.” P.344Catachism of the Catholic church, 2000