Speaking the Truth in Love

Into the Presence of God

Image result for high priest AtonementOn the Day of Atonement, the tenth day of the seventh Jewish month, Israel’s high priest entered the inner sanctum of the temple. In his hands was a golden censer filled with coals. The sweet incense burning on them filled the most holy place with fragrant smoke. The high priest also carried blood into the sanctuary. He sprinkled the blood of a bull in the holy place to make atonement for his own sins, and the blood of a goat to atone for the sins of the people he represented.

These solemn rituals foreshadow the atoning work of Christ. The Bible says that “since we have confidence to enter the sanctuary by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way which he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, and since we have a great high priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water” (Heb. 10:19-22). Understood in its context, this passage is a beautiful promise.

Israel’s high priest entered the earthly sanctuary to offer the blood of the bull and goat, but the death of an animal was an inadequate penalty for sin (Heb. 10:4). The great high priest Jesus, after staining the cross-altar with his own blood, entered into the true sanctuary—into heaven itself—symbolically bearing that blood. This precious offering at last satisfied the demands of God’s just nature.

The curtain separating men from God is torn open. Everyone who trusts and obeys Christ will follow the true High Priest into the heavenly sanctuary, into the very presence of God!Image result for vail torn open

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