Hebrews 10:4 (ESV) -- For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.
I am 5 feet 9 inches tall. I like to claim that I’m 5 feet 10 inches tall, but it’s a stretch. At my peak athletic abilities, before age and a bad back caught up with me, I could jump and grab the rim of a basketball goal. My legs had some spring in them. That is not the case anymore.
Now imagine someone coming to me and saying my life depended on me dunking a basketball within the next six months. This is not possible. I could have six years to train and I’m not capable of dunking a basketball. It is impossible for me to scale that height. My life would end.
Our passage today reminds us of another impossibility. The Hebrew writer says, “For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.” Notice the language: impossible. The sacrificial system of the old covenant was a pointer. Sure, it was a temporary means of grace to provide a way for Israel to deal with their sins before God, but it did not remove sins. God chose to use the blood of bulls, goats, lambs, and birds to cover over sins. The sacrificial system allowed Israel to remain in right standing with the LORD. But they awaited a once and for all sacrifice.
This is why the work of Jesus is so vital to our understanding of salvation. The sacrificial system pointed to Him. His sacrifice removes sins. He absorbs the wrath of God for sins at the cross, paying for them in full. They are no more. The sins on the head of Christ are now buried. There is nowhere else to look or turn to. It is impossible to find salvation in any other place than the finished work of Jesus Christ.
Turn to Him today. Confess your sins, trust His sacrifice to cover you, and forfeit all attempts to appease God through some other means. Christ alone saves. It is impossible any other way.
Reflection & Journal:
- What was the purpose of the old covenant sacrificial system?
- Why was it insufficient to be the once and for all solution to sin?
- How is Jesus able to satisfy the wrath of God forever?
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