Summary: Jesus came that we may have an open door to the throne of our Father in Heaven. He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Now we need not a temple in Jerusalem or Mt. Gerazim. We are his temple and we must worship him in Spirit and in Truth.
The Way is Given
Sunday, March 27, 2016 – Easter
The Sabbath was dawning over Israel but there was a sadness that filled the hearts of many on this day. According to the Law of Moses, this was to be a day of rest from their labors and a time of being refreshed and getting prepared for the week that would follow. But on this day there was anything but rest for those who had known and loved Jesus of Nazareth.
Before the Sabbath had begun, on Thursday night, at an illegal, mock trial, Jesus had been condemned. He had been beaten mercilessly by the Romans at Pilate’s hall, and then forced to carry his cross to the hill of the skull outside of the city of Jerusalem. There, on Friday evening, Jesus had been crucified like a common criminal as the religious leaders of Israel, and many others looked upon him and laughed at his suffering.
For six long hours, from 9 am until 3 pm, Jesus hung on the cross. During that time the sky grew dark, storm clouds gathered and the lightning flashed. Even the very ground beneath Jerusalem trembled that day as the Son of God, the Creator who had spoken all things into existence, laid down his life, and willingly shed his blood so that all things could be redeemed back to God.
Satan thought he had won, but he was soon to discover that he was utterly defeated, because Jesus did not die when his body drew its last breath. At that last terrible moment, after all he had suffered, Jesus simply said, “It is finished”, and his spirit left his body to go and complete the work that had to be done in the grave. The price of our redemption was paid in full! Jesus paid it all!
At the instant that Jesus spoke those words, there was a sound that came from the Holy Place of the temple that was unmistakable. It was the sound of the tearing of cloth as the veil of the temple; that huge, thick veil that had kept men from entering into the presence of God before the Ark of Convenant was ripped in two from top to bottom, allowing anyone to walk in unrestricted.
Jesus had said in John 14:6, "… I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
Therefore, through his death, the Way was opened to enter into the presence of God without all of the ceremonial cleansings and rituals of the Law of Moses. Jesus’ own sacrifice had fulfilled every requirement of the Law.
• No more would any man have to offer blood sacrifices, or burn flesh upon the Brazen Altar, or wash at the Laver of Water.
• No more would only a specified and specially prepared few men be the only ones who could enter into the very presence of the glory of God.
• The Menorah, or the Golden Candlestick would not have to be tended to in order for the light to shine.
• The Showbread would no longer required, and even the Altar of Incense would no longer be needed.
All of these things were but types and shadows of Jesus Christ, pointing toward this day when Jesus would come and give his life and then fulfill all that these things were meant to teach us.
Jesus had said in John 4:23-24, "But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth."
The worship of God through the rituals of the ceremonial law was only for a time so that Israel, and the world, could be shown just what God the Father demanded as true worship, obedience and sacrifice for sin.
But all of the sacrifices of bulls and goats, doves and sheep, could not fulfill the demand of the shedding of perfect blood for the cleansing of sin. They could only push those sins ahead, allowing God to bless the people in spite of their sin, until the day would come when that perfect sacrifice of blood could be found acceptable according to the absolute holiness of God.
The only way that perfect blood could be offered was for God to offer it himself. For this purpose, Jesus had come into this world!
The Way had been made for true worship of God to be made from the heart of each man, woman and child. We are given a Way to live in the presence of God all of the time, and can call upon him in any hour, and under every circumstance. Our God does not sleep, nor does he grow weary, but his ears are always open to hear our prayers, and his eyes are ever watching over us as he tries to show his everlasting love to us.