We have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
In Hebrews 10, the writer described three features of the new covenant. First, it offers sanctification. Verse 10 says, “By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” Sanctified means “set apart.” Under the new covenant, God has set you apart for a special purpose. When you trust in Christ as your Savior, God begins a process of sanctifying you, of making you more and more like His Son, Jesus Christ. Everything in your life is working together to make you like Jesus Christ. The hard things that take you by surprise in your life, they are not an accident; they are all part of God’s perfect plan for you.
Second, the new covenant offers permanent forgiveness. Hebrews 10:11-14 says, “Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time onward until His enemies be made a footstool for His feet. For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified.” In the Levitical system, there were hundreds of priests going into the temple day after day offering sacrifices for sin. And it is said during Passover, there were so many animals being slaughtered that there was a river of blood flowing from the temple down into the Kidron Valley. Yet that river of blood never took away one sin. Only the blood of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, could accomplish that.
Finally, the new covenant offers access to God. Hebrews 10:15-16 says, “The Holy Spirit also testifies to us; for after saying, ‘This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws upon their heart, and on their mind I will write them.’” Under the old agreement, people obeyed God because some stone tablets had God’s commandments written on them. But under the new covenant, God changes our hearts; He puts His Law in our hearts so that we want to obey Him. Look at verses 17-18: “‘Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.’ Now where there is forgiveness of these things, there is no longer any offering for sin.” The new covenant removes forever the sin barrier between God and us.
Any religion worth its salt answers the question, “How can I have a relationship with God, both now and throughout eternity? How can I, a sinful person, have any hope of having a relationship with a holy and perfect God?” Every other religion in the world answers that question with the word D-O. Do this, and you might have a relationship with God one day. Christianity is the only religion in the world that says the access code is spelled D-O-N-E. It is not what we do for God; it is what God has done for us by sending that once-for-all sacrifice for our sins. Praise be to God for His incomparable gift of the Lord Jesus Christ. That is what the new covenant is all about.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Why The Old Way Is The Wrong Way To God” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2018.
Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.