Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when this Priest [Yeshua] had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, He sat down at the right hand of God...by one sacrifice He has made perfect forever those who are being made holy. ~ Hebrews 10:11,12,14
We discussed this verse briefly at the women’s bible study this morning. We’re going to be reading through Destined to Reign by Joseph Prince together, and the verse is apparently mentioned in the introduction.
The first part is simple enough: the Torah lays out a system of animal sacrifice for the healing of sin. But even though sacrifices could help the symptoms of sin, they never touched the root – humans were sinners and could not escape that identity. We cannot be perfect. So the priests worked day after day at making us perfect, and their work was never done.
Yeshua, however, changed the game. He re-wrote our identity. When He had made His sacrifice, He sat down. He was done. There was no more work to do.
I like that image of Him sitting down, resting after a long day. A long three years, really, though come to think of it His notions of time probably don;t work that way anyway. A long episode.
And we too are always working and working and working to be better – more educated, more successful, more spiritual, whatever. And we don’t have to. Yeshua is resting, and we are to enter His rest. The work is done.
(This isn’t to say that we shouldn’t do the work before us, of course. But there’s no reason for all the stress and anxiety we put up with.)
The last part was actually the most interesting to me. When the Bible mentions the we are made perfect in Him, I tend to figure that’s on the cosmic time scale. We’re not perfect now, but we will be, or something along those lines.
But this leaves no room (well, not much) for such handwaving. He has made perfect forever those who are still being made holy. That means we are perfect now. We are not sinners. We may still sin, but our identity is no longer “sinner.”
I’m not used to thinking in those terms.
I’m used to thinking that an individual’s actions define who they are, but this is the other way around. Who I am is constant, as sure as who God is is constant. What I do may change, but I am perfect forever. I am already forgiven for any sin I commit.
He’s definitely *not* a tame lion.