Christ’s Death Perfects The Sanctified

“We have no sufficient strength of our own... All our sufficiency is of God... We should stir up ourselves to resist temptations in a reliance upon God’s all-sufficiency and the omnipotence of his might.” (Matthew Henry) … More

Perfection

This passage offers the answer concerning the inadequacy of the sacrifices offered by the priests (vv. 1-4). We also see the sufficiency of the sacrifice offered by Christ. These verses refer to the daily sacrifices on the annual Day of Atonement. There simply is no animal sacrifice imaginable that can ever take away sins. The priests “stand” to offer sacrifices day after day, time after time; they never sit down in either the tabernacle or the temple. This shows that their work is never through. Jesus, on the other hand, offered only one sacrifice that was effective “for all time.” The words “for all time” are the same that are translated “continually” in verse 1, where it was said that the priests offer sacrifices “continually.” Only Christ’s sacrifice has an everlasting, effect. In contrast to the priests, who stand, Christ “sat down at the right hand of God,” indicating that His work was through.

Beginning with the word “for,” (v. 14) it explains why no further offering for sin is necessary. It is because Christ’s offering was completely effective. By Christ’s singular offering “He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified”, or literally, those who are being sanctified. The word translated “perfection” has to do with fulfillment of purpose. Since Christ has perfected us, He has qualified us by cleansing us from sin. Jesus guarantees eternal perfection for us.

If Christ has offered up one sacrifice for sins for all time, if He has sat down because there’s no more work to be done, that means we can take a seat as well. We don’t have to be like the priests, offering up ineffective sacrifices day after day, year after year. We can stop trying to kill off the sinful parts of us in the hope that God might be satisfied. We can stop trying to pull ourselves together. We can stop punishing ourselves, and stop asking God to help us in an effort to be adequate before Him.

Application

When I trusted Christ He made me completely right with the Father. My daily relationship with Him will lead me to follow Him in willing obedience and service. He is pleased with my service but I can not be saved by my good works. I can rest in the completed work of Christ and stop trying to work to satisfy Him.

Hebrews 10:11-18 (English Standard Version)

And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified. And the Holy Spirit also bears witness to us; for after saying, "This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws on their hearts, and write them on their minds," then he adds, "I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more." Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin.

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