.To return to work page.
The Body of Christ
Query for the Month
Next up-date: December 1st 2012 (God willing).
Previous "Queries" are available. Click here to access.
Some perpetual questions ....
Do you know the difference between the "love"
that is of Christianity
and the "love" that is of the world? Click here to find out!
Click on the link for a good book on the character of our God which you can download for free and share amongst your friends. It's called "Light through Darkness" and is one of the best books on this subject that I have ever read!
(when you get to the site just click "cancel" and it will let you in. Then click "order" to obtain a copy. )
In the meantime, try this site. And here's one where you can read it online.
Here's another great site on the character of God written in a way that's very easy to understand.
In this reply the old-fashioned words of the KJV have been modernised, and in some instances, the man-made punctuation has been altered for greater understanding. Some of the comments are adapted from books in my library. No recognition is given because they are not intended as authorities, but are used because they express my understanding clearly. All the ideas expressed in this article, right or wrong, are my own.
In this article the old-fashioned words of the KJV have been modernised, and in some instances, the man-made punctuation has been altered for greater understanding. Some of the comments are adapted from books in my library. No recognition is given because they are not intended as authorities, but are used because they express my understanding clearly. All the ideas expressed in these readings, right or wrong, are my own.
4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins. 5 Wherefore when He comes into the world, He said, ‘Sacrifice and offering You would not, but a body have You prepared Me: 6 in burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You have had no pleasure’ . . .
9 Then said He, ‘Lo, I come to do Your will, O God’. He takes away the first [the ceremonies], that He may establish the second [His real desire]. 10 By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Just what position does the sacrifice of “the body of Jesus Christ” have in the overall plan of salvation?
The really great mistake the Jews made was when they began to look upon the animal sacrifices as the reality instead of pictures! In other words, the majority of them were taught and thought that their salvation came through the offering of an animal substitute for their sinful lives. In this they were being lied to, and believed the lie. In the “spiritual” version they were told that if they couldn’t make it to the sanctuary/temple because it was locked up, in ruins, or because they were too far from it, that they only needed to look to the daily offering of a lamb “by faith” for their deliverance. As a result, God lost most of them, for that ceremonial had nothing to do with justification.
The really great mistake that professed Christians have made was when they began to look upon the human (animal) sacrifice as the reality instead of a picture!
In other words the majority of them have been, and are being, taught and think that their salvation comes through the offering of a Substitute for their sinful lives on the cross at Calvary. In this they are being lied to, and believing the lie. In the “spiritual” version they are being taught that the “Christians” of the Old Testament just had to look forward to the event of Calvary while all they have to do is to look back at it and believe! It is often called “Righteousness by faith” (this phrase is not in the Bible with that meaning) which means that their “righteousness” through Christ (right-doing) is not factual. This is a very clever counterfeit, in that it leaves the believer with what they think is “imputed” righteousness, a covering for their sinfulness, but it fails because it has no “imparted” infilling at all.
This is what is written once in the Bible; “For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith”. Galatians 5:5. This is what should be written; “For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness, by faith”.
As a consequence the majority in the Laodicean church period are described as not knowing that they “are wretched [desolate], and miserable [lost], and poor [in faith], and blind [in spiritual vision], and naked [spiritually defenceless]”! That is, they do not actually have on the robe of Christ’s righteousness which is given at conversion! God has told us in that text that we will not believe Him, choosing rather to believe our human leaders.
Thus it is written; “And when the King came in to see the guests [in the investigative judgment], He saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: and He said to him, ‘Friend, how came you in hither not having a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless [had no excuse]. Then said the King to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few are chosen’ [it’s a self-choice].” Matthew 22:11-14.
Maybe we should all re-read our Bible for ourselves to find out the real truth!
I am aware that the following statements may seem to be radical, but simply ask you to read the whole article before you make a judgment on it.
Most of us agree that Jesus was in a different position from Gethsemane onwards. We rightly observe that it was not the physical pain that was the main feature of the cross, but that it centred on the emotional conflict. So what caused the difference? What was different from the previous thirty years of His life?
In Gethsemane the man Christ Jesus was suffering under the immense burden of sin. “And He was withdrawn from them about a stone's cast, and kneeled down, and prayed, saying, ‘Father, if You be willing, remove this cup from Me: nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done’. And there appeared an angel to Him from heaven, strengthening Him. And being in an agony He prayed more earnestly: and His sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground”. Luke 22:41-44.
But how did He get that burden? It is God who deals with sin, and it was God who put that weight on Him in the garden.
We teach that it was this burden that killed Him!
Therefore God killed Him!
But our understanding that God does not punish, hurt, or destroy His creatures or His creation, conflicts with this thought and we shy back from it.
But it WAS God who killed Him. It certainly wasn’t Satan although he thought he was doing so! It is written, and thought by many, “He was a murderer from the beginning . . .” (John 8:44), and he proved it by killing the matchless Son of God. That should really read, “He TRIED to kill . . .”
It wasn’t the Romans, nor the Jews, and ultimately not the physicality of the cross that caused His death. Nor can we die of an emotional broken heart, although we can of a physical one. But let’s think about this under the influence of the Spirit.
Jesus said, “Therefore does My Father love Me, because I lay down My life, that I might take it again. No man takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment [permission/agreement] have I received of My Father”. There was a division therefore again among the Jews for these sayings. And many of them said, ‘He has a devil, and is mad; why hear you Him?’ Others said, ‘These are not the words of him that has a devil. Can a devil open the eyes of the blind?’” John 10:17-21.
So there has been controversy over this fact from the beginning.
Jesus is God and He killed Himself, so it was God who killed Him!
How is this possible? Because our Saviour has had two natures since His incarnation and one of them, the Son of God caused the death of the other, the Son of man. It was the Son of God who deliberately opened the gates of sin and allowed them to flood onto the Son of man, for it was the Son of man who died on the cross. Deity did not die, for that is impossible.
That’s what He told Nicodemus. “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son OF MAN be lifted up” . . . John 3:14.
If, like the people in the wilderness, we “look”, we shall “live” even if it is a “brass serpent” that we are looking at. Numbers 21:8. If we accept Him on the cross, without knowing any better, that can work, for He is quick to take the opportunity of any belief in Him and His saving power.
But new light requires new acceptance.
After all, it is the Person who makes the exchange with us, not the symbol.
It is a living transaction, not just a legal one.
For that is what happens – an exchange of nature takes place, and the “sinner” becomes “Mrs. Christian”. “For He has made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him”. 2 Corinthians 5:21. Just as surely as He has our sinful nature, we have His perfect righteousness.
We may be a “sinning Christian” from time to time but the fundamental basis of salvation is the exchange of nature. It is as “Mrs. Christian” that we receive our TITLE to heaven. It is as “Mrs. Christian” that we learn (or practise) our FITNESS for it.
Paul wrote; “For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused [engaged] you to one Husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ”. 2 Corinthians 11:2. Engagement was considered the first part of the marriage in those days, but it was not the final ceremony. We could think of it as a Prince who falls in love with a commoner and who removes her from her poverty-stricken surroundings into His palace there to learn how to fit in with the royal court. They announce their intention to marry but are not married in the full sense, although they are living under the same roof and being with each other constantly while they wait for the final ceremony of the wedding. As we would understand, there are certain “restrictions” placed on their actions while they wait, but she wears the royal robes of a princess.
That’s why Joseph had in mind to “divorce” Mary by putting her “away” when he found out that she was pregnant. Matthew 1:19.
Therefore Peter wrote: “Grace and peace be multiplied to you through the knowledge of [experience with] God, and of Jesus our LORD, according as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of [experience with] Him that has called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given to us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped [died to] the corruption that is in the world through lust [the old man]. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge . . . [etc.]” 2 Peter 1:2-5.
Some also rightly observe
that the death of the Son of man could have taken place “anywhere”, but then
make the assumption that it could have been “on the altar of burnt offering”
as one of those places, but He is only described in the Bible as the
Passover Lamb so that’s where He should have been in our minds, and that was
nowhere near the sanctuary. It is a human idea that the brass altar in the
courtyard was a symbol of where He died, but that altar was for burning, not
The killing place was separate to that – on the north side where the carcase was flayed and drained of its blood as in the plan of Ezekiel’s temple. “And he [an angel guide] brought me to the north gate, and measured it according to these measures . . . And the chambers and the entries thereof were by the posts of the gates, where they washed the burnt offering. And in the porch of the gate were two tables on this side, and two tables on that side, to slay thereon the burnt offering and the sin offering and the trespass offering”. Ezekiel 40:35-39.
It is because we, as a people, do not understand the sanctuary services that we make this mistake. The professed Christian world (aka the daughters of Babylon) have long taught that the atonement was made on the cross by the Son of God; that “merit” [a word that is not in my Bible] was obtained there; but this is wrong even though many want to believe it. It is a “sugar-coated pill” made so by Babylonian sentiments. The atonement that separates us from our sins forever is to be made on the Day of Atonement IN THE FUTURE and will be made for ALL spiritual Israel at the same time, not 4,000 years late for the Old Testament believers, and 2,000 years early before you and I were born!! (See note 1 for more on this.)
The story that Old Testament believers looked forward in faith and Christians look back to Calvary for salvation is a fabrication which sounds good but which is nonsense. It is NOW (at the moment of conversion) that we need Him and His “death”. It is at that moment that we need the “death” of our “old man” and an infilling with a “new man”. It is then that we need a real exchange of lives.
“But God commends His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now JUSTIFIED by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life [after that]”. Romans 5:8-10.
From my library:
As soon as there was sin, there was a Saviour. Christ knew that He would have to suffer, yet He became man’s substitute. As soon as Adam sinned, the Son of God presented Himself as surety [reality] for the human race, with just as much power to avert the doom pronounced upon the guilty [the second death] as when He died upon the cross of Calvary.
Think about that.
“And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat [the scapegoat], and confess over him ALL the iniquities of the children of Israel [the Son of God does this spiritually as well as literally on the day], and ALL their transgressions in ALL their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness: and the goat shall bear upon him ALL their iniquities to a land not inhabited: and he shall let go [free] the goat in the wilderness”. Leviticus 16:21-22.
From my library again:
“In the sin offerings presented during the year, a substitute had been accepted in the sinner’s stead; but the blood of the victim [the evidence of his death] had not made full atonement for the sin. It had only provided a means by which the sin was transferred to the sanctuary [or rather the officiating priest].
By the offering of blood, the sinner [the sinning Christian] acknowledged the authority of the law, confessed the guilt of his transgression, and expressed his faith in Him who was to take away the sin of the world [i.e. through the priest who was to make an atonement for him by eating the body of the offering, Leviticus 6:26.];
but he was not entirely released from the condemnation of the law.
[Then] on the Day of Atonement [at the end of the ceremonial year] the high priest, having taken an offering for the congregation, went into the most holy place with the [sinless] blood [of a goat] and sprinkled it upon the mercy seat, above the tables of the law. [Leviticus 16:15-17.]
Thus the claims of the law, which demanded the life of the sinner, were satisfied [note the imagery!]
Then [after that] in his character of mediator the priest took the sins upon himself, and, leaving the sanctuary, he bore with him the burden of Israel’s guilt. At the door of the tabernacle he laid his hands upon the head of the scapegoat [a picture of Satan] and confessed over him “all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat.” [ibid Verse 21.]
And as the goat bearing these sins was sent away, they were, with him, regarded as forever separated from the people. Such was the service performed “unto the example and shadow of heavenly things.” Hebrews 8:5.
So in the end, it is the devil who bears the guilt (and death) of the sins which have been transferred to the sanctuary! Is he therefore our saviour? Not so, because that is only a transfer, not a penalty payment. It is a returning to him of that which rightly belongs to him.
But the atonement that separates us from our sinful nature is made outside of the tabernacle in the homes of the people “on the fourteenth day of the first month”, that is, “from the foundation of the world”, or the beginning of the new life. Exodus 12:1-6; Revelation 13:8.
That which is taught in Babylonia is totally Pagan in that it posits a penalty and a payment to satisfy an angry god. Sure, it sounds good wrapped in Babylonian “sugar” but it is none the less baptised Paganism. This is what came to be believed in the professed Christian church about the middle of the sixth century (c. 538AD). It leads to the “payment and reward” system so loved in the churches today. “If I do something for You, then You should do something for me”.
In actual fact, to portray the obtaining of forgiveness for an action of sin subsequent to conversion in the ceremonial system, the believing penitent in the Old Testament brought a GOAT, a FEMALE goat, to the sanctuary courtyard and confessed his or her sin over the head of that animal, asking for forgiveness.
The “old life” does not receive forgiveness, it “dies” and is replaced. That is, we are “born again” the second time to a new start. Thus it is written, “For if we have been planted together in the likeness of His death, we shall be also in the likeness of His resurrection: knowing this, that our “old man” is crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is “dead” is freed from [inward] sin”. Romans 6:5-7.
But this is the law (ritual) of forgiveness: “And if any one of the common people sin through ignorance, while he [she] does somewhat against any of the commandments of the LORD concerning things which ought not to be done, and be guilty; or if his [her] sin, which he [she] has sinned, come to his [her] knowledge: then he [she] shall bring his [her] offering, a kid of the goats, a female without blemish, for his [her] sin which he [she] has sinned. And he [she] shall lay his hand upon the head of the sin offering [confessing THAT sin, Leviticus 5:5], and slay the sin offering in the place of the burnt offering [on the north side of the courtyard]”. Leviticus 4:27-29.
It was only because of the hardness of the hearts of the male Israelites that females were eventually excluded from the courtyard, for God has no gender discrimination. “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you be Christ's, then are you Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise”. Galatians 3:27-29. (See also Matthew 19:8; Leviticus 12:6-8 and Leviticus 15:25-30.) We can always read “she” where we find “he” in the law!
If he did not have a goat then the offerer could bring a lamb, a FEMALE lamb, in its place, but it was second choice. Verse 32. The priest then sprinkled some of the blood (the evidence of the penitent’s “death”, not Christ’s) on the horns of the brass altar, threw the rest down the drain, and burnt the fat on the altar. After that the priest ceremonially ate a portion of the animal’s flesh thus taking the sin into himself.
Why a female goat? Because we come to God the Father as the “wife” of Christ.
And what do we confess? “And it shall be, when he shall be guilty in one of these things, that he shall confess that he has sinned IN THAT thing: and he shall bring his trespass offering to the LORD for his sin which he has sinned, a female from the flock, a lamb or a kid of the goats, for a sin offering; and the priest shall make an atonement for him concerning his sin”. Leviticus 5:5-6.
Here’s another thought from my library:
True confession is always of a specific character, and acknowledges particular sins. They may be of such a nature as to be brought before God only; they may be wrongs that should be confessed to individuals who have suffered injury through them; or they may be of a public character, and should then be as publicly confessed.
But all confession should be definite and to the point, acknowledging the very sins of which you are guilty.
This point too, is often overlooked in the Babylonian system. Regularly there it is a general statement which is considered sufficient to cover the sin, or even just “I am a sinner, please forgive me”. But the sinful “state” was dealt with at conversion (the beginning of the marriage), after that it is forgiveness for a specific “action” that is required.
And there is another thing associated with the real confession of sin.
The guilt and consequence of it has to be transferred to Another.
“Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying, This is the law of the sin offering: In the place where the burnt offering is killed shall the sin offering be killed before the LORD: it is most holy [dangerous]. The priest that offers it for sin shall eat it [and thereby take in the guilt of the sin]: in the [a] holy place shall it be eaten, in the court of the tabernacle of the congregation . . . All the males among the priests shall eat thereof: it is most holy [very dangerous]. And no sin offering, whereof any of the blood is brought into the tabernacle of the congregation to reconcile withal in the holy place [the first apartment], shall be eaten: it shall be burnt in the fire [outside the camp]”. Leviticus 6:25-30; 4:11-12.
There were rooms in the temple for this eating ceremony, but they are not mentioned in the sanctuary picture, so I presume they just set aside a certain area for this ritual on the north side. While all the priests could eat of the offering, it was the officiating one who was the most important.
In the same manner, a “ruler” or leader in Israel was to bring “a [male] kid of the goats” for forgiveness of an action of sin, but no provision was made for it to be a lamb. Leviticus 4:23. As our query text says, it was by virtue of the blood of bulls and goats that sin was dealt with in the ceremonial services, and there is no mention made there of a lamb. Occasionally it was a ram as in the trespass offering (Leviticus 5:17-18), but we should note that none of the sin offering blood for the common person or ruler ever entered into the sanctuary building, but that’s the subject of another study.
One day, when we as a people actually read the law on the sacrifices, we will have a much different and greater understanding of the sacrifice of the Son of God.
The twenty-four hour “burnt” offering of the daily service on the brass altar did not have any sin confessed over it at any time because it was not a sin offering but a “burnt” offering of dedication and typifies, not the death of God’s lamb for our salvation, but the dedication of His/our life to our/His service. (It has a double application.) This is the first offering mentioned in the book of the law (Leviticus 1:1-4), and is entirely voluntary, while the various required sin offerings are not mentioned until Leviticus chapter four onwards!
It is not a matter of “merit” paying the penalty.
In true Christianity there is no imposed penalty – only a solution.
Let’s consider this point for a moment: If there is a “penalty” for sin then who set that up? It is often stated in misunderstanding that “the broken law demands a death” but the “law” is not a person and cannot “demand” anything, or be “satisfied” by such a payment. If the law is God’s law, then it must be God who is demanding the penalty, and we know how silly that is!
However, it is not the MANNER of the death of the Son of man, but the EFFECT of it we should consider. Jesus, the Son of man, did not die the death of sinners at Calvary because He was resurrected on the third day, showing that He died the death of Christians. He was “asleep” from 3pm Friday until early Sunday morning and therefore He did not suffer any of the effects of the Lake of Fire.
To die the second death, the death of sinners, requires a permanent separation from life – a permanent separation from the God of life – and that’s what the Son of God did. He and His Father had made an agreement that if necessary, they would separate from each other in a way we cannot comprehend, but can have a faint conception of. And this would be an eternal sacrifice. He left His Father and “married” us! Genesis 2:24. But that’s another study too!
It was not six hours on the cross, not eighteen hours of emotional turmoil, not three days in the heart of the earth, and not even thirty years of human living which brings us salvation. And it’s not 6,000 years of sin bearing either! That is only achieved by an everlasting sacrifice.
In taking our human nature, the Saviour has bound Himself to us by a tie that is never to be broken. Through the eternal ages He is linked with us. In itself, this is a picture of Him taking our “old natures” too, for He will forever bear the marks of the crucifixion on His hands and feet to remind us of this! After the resurrection when He appeared to the disciples, “Then said He to Thomas, Reach hither your finger, and behold My hands; and reach hither your hand, and thrust it into My side: and be not faithless, but believing”. John 20:27.
“God so loved the world, that He GAVE His only-begotten Son.” John 3:16.
He gave Him not only to bear our sins, and to die as our sacrifice; He gave Him forever to us. To assure us of His immutable counsel of peace, God gave His only-begotten Son to become one of the human family, forever to retain His human nature. This is the pledge that God will fulfil His word.
“Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder.” God has adopted human nature in the person of His Son, and has carried the same into the highest heaven. It is the “Son of man” who shares the throne of the universe. It is the “Son of man” whose name shall be called, “Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6. The “I AM” is the Daysman between God and humanity, laying His hand upon both.
He who is “holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners,” is not ashamed to call us brethren. Hebrews 7:26; 2:11. In Christ the family of earth and the family of heaven are bound together. Christ glorified is our brother.
Heaven is enshrined in humanity, and humanity is enfolded in the bosom of Infinite Love.
So the Son of man died as an example for Christians who sin, while the Son of God “died” for us to become Christians in an exchange of natures. And that latter “death” was not at the cross or Gethsemane, but commenced in the Garden of Eden and is continuing today as sinners are converted. It was not the payment of a penalty, but is the gift of a loving Creator, and it was, and is, the “second” death.
We should mention that the apostle Paul uses “the cross” as a brief form (i.e. an abbreviation) and that’s what we need to consider as we read our Bibles if we wish to see the truth of justification, just as we do regarding the character of God.
Our text says that “we are SANCTIFIED through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all” and therefore this exchange is a once-in-a-lifetime change which leads to the good behaviour shown in His life on earth.
There are grand truths, long hidden under the rubbish of error, that are to be revealed to the people. The doctrine of justification by faith has been lost sight of by many who have professed to believe the third angel’s message.
The “holiness” people in the church have gone to great extremes on this point.
With great zeal they have taught, “Only believe in Christ, and be saved; but away with the law [of ceremonies] of God.” This is not the teaching of the Word of God. There is no foundation for such a faith. This is not the precious gem of truth that God has given to His people for this time. This doctrine misleads honest souls.
The light from the Word of God reveals the fact that the lessons from the ceremonies of the law must be proclaimed. We don’t need to keep the ceremonies, but we do need to see what they mean to us as Christians. Christ must be lifted up, because He is a Saviour who forgives transgression, iniquity, and sin, but will by no means clear the guilty and unrepentant soul.
We should now be able to see that the "body of Christ" is one of the pictures that God has used throughout history in order to turn our eyes to Jesus, the "author and finisher" of our faith. Then we need to listen to the Spirit and look further than the picture of the Son of man to the reality which is what the Son of God has done.
Because of the lack of this we have mixed up the doctrines of justification by faith and living by faith in our minds, we are confused. Justification (just as if we have not sinned) is given as a gift when we “die” with Christ the Son of God and are reborn to a new life with Him, and righteousness (right doing) is something we do as we walk with Him in sanctification.
The difference was opposed in 1888, and masterly efforts have been made since then through opposition and denunciation by the formal church leaders, whose attitude is of a character to discourage integrity and faithfulness and good works and support entertainment in the form of religious activity.
And the result is just as it was in Christ’s day – a church in the Laodicean condition.
Who wants to add (or subtract!) from these thoughts? I won't argue as I have stated,
but I will publish your Scriptures so that we may review all the words of God on the subject.
Next query. To be discussed from December 1st 2012,
Next month's query will be in form of a dialogue between a questioner and myself on the subject of the transfer of sin from the penitent to the sanctuary.
Like to E-mail me and give me your thoughts on this subject?
Send in your thought on this current query.
I don’t normally refer to the “fathers” (aka tradition) for any verification of the truth, but Crozier’s article of 1846 met this idea head on (among other things), so I have attached a small portion of it taken from our publication of the Daystar with our added paraphrases.
Daystar Extra, pages 55-57, by O.R.L. Crozier (All emphasis is in the original.)
But again, they say the atonement was made and finished on Calvary, when the Lamb of God expired. So men have taught us, and so the churches and world believe; but it is none the more true or sacred on that account, if unsupported by Divine authority. Perhaps few or none who hold that opinion have ever tested the foundation on which it rests.
1. If the atonement was made on Calvary, by whom was it made?
The making of the atonement is the work of a Priest, but who officiated on Calvary? – Roman soldiers and wicked Jews.
2. The slaying of the victim was not making the atonement:
the sinner slew the victim, Leviticus 4:1-4, 13-15 etc., after that the Priest took the blood and made the atonement. Leviticus 4:5-12, 16-21.
3. Christ was the appointed High priest to make the atonement, and he certainly could not have acted in that capacity till after his resurrection, and we have no record of his doing any thing on earth after his resurrection, which could be called the atonement.
4. The atonement was made in the Sanctuary, but Calvary was not such a place.
5. He could not, according to Hebrews 8:4, make the atonement while on earth. “If he were on earth, he should not be a Priest.” The Levitical was the earthly priesthood, the Divine, the heavenly.
6. Therefore, he did not begin the work of making the atonement, whatever the nature of that work may be, till after his ascension, when by his own blood he entered his heavenly Sanctuary for us.
[Paraphrase] It is said that the atonement was made and finished at Calvary. This has no support in the Mosaic law.
¨ Who makes the atonement? The high priest. Who was in charge at Calvary? Romans and wicked Jews.
¨ The death was not the atonement. It was after the death that the high priest took the blood and made the atonement.
¨ Christ is the High Priest and He could not have made the atonement until after His resurrection.
¨ The atonement is made in the sanctuary in Jerusalem, but Calvary was not that place (being outside the gate).
¨ Christ could not make the atonement while on earth for He was not a priest while on earth.
¨ Therefore He could not make the atonement until after His ascension.
Let us now examine a few texts that appear to speak of the atonement as passed. Romans 5:11; “By whom we have now received the atonement,” (margin, reconciliation). This passage clearly shows a present possession of the atonement at that time the apostle wrote; but it by no means proves that the entire atonement was then in the past.
When the Saviour was about to be taken up from his apostles, he “commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father,” which came on the day of Pentecost when they were all “baptized with the Holy Ghost.” Christ had entered his Father’s house, the Sanctuary, as High Priest, and began his intercession for his people by “praying the Father” for “another Comforter,” John 14:15, “and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost,” Acts 2:33, he shed it down upon his waiting apostles. Then, in compliance with their commission, Peter, at the third hour of the day began to preach, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins,” Acts 2:38. This word remission, signifies forgiveness, pardon or more literally sending away of sins.
Now put by the side of this
text another on this point from his discourse at the ninth hour of the same
day, Acts 3:19, “Repent ye therefore; and be converted that your sins may
be blotted out when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of
the Lord.” Here he exhorts to repentance and conversion (turning away
from sins); for what purpose? “That your sins may be
(future) blotted out.”
Every one can see that the blotting out of sins does not take place at repentance and conversion; but follows, and must of necessity be preceded by them. Repentance, conversion, and baptism had then become imperative duties in the present tense; and when performed, those doing them “washed away” (Acts 22:16) remitted or sent away from them their sins. (Acts 2:28); and of course are forgiven and have “received the atonement;” but they had not received it entire at that time, because their sins were not yet blotted out.
How far then had they advanced in the reconciling process?
Just so far as the individual under the law had when he had confessed his sin, brought his victim to the door of the tabernacle, laid his hand upon it and slain it, and the priest had with its blood entered the Holy and sprinkled it before the veil and upon the altar and thus made an atonement for him, and he was forgiven. [See Appendix A, page 89.] Only that was the type, and this the reality.
You may note that the misunderstanding regarding the placing of the blood of the sin offering is in this article. It was then, and has been since, accepted without question by nearly all those who claim to teach about the sanctuary, yet it is not true. The only blood to enter the holy place in the daily services was the blood of a bullock for a priest, or for the whole congregation. BACK