SIN, the LAW of GOD, and  the BLOOD of CHRIST            SCROLL 2.pngSCROLL 2.pngSCROLL 2.pngSCROLL 2.pngSCROLL 2.png 

 

INTRODUCTION    The purpose of this account is to illustrate how Sin, the Law of God, and the Blood of Christ are all interrelated in the salvation of a soul.  Although the Law of God was not formally given to mankind until around 1500 BC (to Moses on Mount Sinai), the basis for that law has been in effect since creation itself [Romans 5:12-14], and will be in effect actually throughout all eternity.  Similarly, the atonement for sin (at least temporarily) reaches back to the time of Abel, but its manifestation will be in force throughout all eternity as well.  Lastly, the Blood of Christ which originated at Jesus' birth has eternal consequences in dealing both with Sin and the Law of God. 

SIN    Sin manifests itself as disobedience to God in whatsoever He commands us to do.  Briefly, sin

  • is unbelief  Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith.  Be not highminded but fear: Romans 11:20            
  • is all unrighteousness   All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death. I John 5:17
  • is the transgression of the Law  Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.  I John 3:4

By eating the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, Adam committed the first sin that produced at least six major consequences:

  • Physical death was imposed on all mankind - man could not live more than 1000 years - this is known as the First Death [ Genesis 2:16,17; II Peter 3:8 ]
  • Beginning with Cain, Adam passed on to all mankind the ability to freely choose - and thereby the ability to discern - between good and evil. This trait has led all mankind to be inescapably vulnerable to the Second DeathThis vulnerability to the Second Death forces man to make a decision to believe Christ and live eternally in Heaven, or ignore Christ and perish in the Lake of Fire forever.  [ Revelation 20:15 ]. See also The Nature of Man
  • Being thrust out and banned from the Garden of Eden into a life of toil for existence in an unfriendly environment  [ Genesis 3:17-19 ].
  • Given an independence from God that allowed him to freely choose between Good and Evil.  By the way, this is exactly what the forbidden fruit promised it would do  [Genesis 3:22 ].
  • Caused all creation and the ground to be cursed by God [ Genesis 3:17-18 ]
  • Relinquished control of Planet Earth over to Satan [ Ephesians 2:2; John 12:31; John 16:11 ]

The wages of sin is death  Romans 6:23a   The irrevocable sentencing of a soul to the Lake of Fire is the saddest event that we can imagine, but is as real as God Himself is real.  But the Word of God tells us that there is a way, and only one way, that will deliver a soul from being cast into the Lake of Fire.  First, however, we have to consider The Law, God's automatic enforcer of righteousness.

THE LAW    Most bible scholars define the Law as consisting of the Ten Commandments, the first five books of the bible, or both.   The Law was not given to man until God had delivered the children of Israel from Egypt and made them a nation sometime around 1500 BC. For the first two thousand years, God had pretty much allowed man to exercise his own free will, with the result that the earth was filled with violence at the time of the Great Flood; God judged it by the flood, sparing only righteous Noah and his family because Noah feared God and obeyed His command to build the Ark  [Hebrews 11:7].  And yet we know by the Word of God and through archeological findings that by four generations from the great flood the whole world had already fallen into gross idolatry, following Nimrod and helping him build his Tower of Babel.  God then divided the earth into the seven continents [see PANGAEA], but man still continued his ungodly deeds, such as the human sacrifices meant to appease false gods in the Aztec, Inca, and Mayan civilizations.

God created a formal form of worship and gave His Law to the Israelite nation, intending to create a nation of people that He could have a close association with, and that would constitute a nation of priests [Deuteronomy 14:2; I Peter 2:9-12].  The Law never replaced faith in God as a means of salvation, although many have believed that to be so.  Nevertheless, God considered the law to be a necessary instrument that would encourage righteousness by the people, for God decreed that any transgression of the Law would constitute sin [I John 3:4].   Briefly then, the Israelites were  committed to offer sacrifices - some blood sacrifices - that would temporarily cover their sin and satisfy a righteous and Holy God [for an expanded explanation of this, please see THE ARK OF THE COVENANT].    

Even though the Israelites were commanded to keep the Law, God decreed that by the deeds of the law shall no flesh be justified (Galatians 2:16).  Nevertheless, God established (in time) a New Testament whereby Jesus would deal with the sin problem

And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.  Hebrews 9:15

The process by which sin is able to bring about death is the subject that now follows.

SIN and the LAW     Sin can bring forth death only by the Law ( as God has ordained it to be ) for the strength of sin is the  Law [ I Corinthians 15:56 ]; therefore, if the Law is kept, Sin cannot bring forth death. But we are unable to keep the Law when we exercise the ability to choose between good and evil (which trait has been passed on to us from Adam). Even before the foundation of the world, God knew that after He would create man, man would commit sin.  Jesus, by keeping the Law (because He did not sin), became an acceptable sacrifice to God the Father: ;and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all [Isaiah 53:6b].  And so, because it was  impossible for us to keep the Law, God sent Jesus to keep it for us 

For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.  Romans 8:3,4

For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.  John 1:17

In verse 17 we see the beginning of the gospel of Grace, and many people immediately relegate the law to not be of much consequence.  This is a very dangerous attitude to take.  As we will see below, the Law is very much alive and well and will be used by God to ultimately seal the doom of the Lost.  As concerning the nature of the Law itself, we learn that the Law is

  • Holy               Romans 7:12
  • Spiritual         Romans 7:14
  • Good              Romans 7:16
  • Righteous      Philippians 3:9

and as recorded by the Apostle Paul to Timothy

Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine; According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust.  I Timothy 1:9-11

Therefore, we understand that the Law is the enforcer of God's righteousness upon an unrighteous people, and is God's instrument of righteous judgment for the souls that will inhabit the Lake of Fire throughout all eternity.

From the LAW to the OATH   Under the Law, the nation of Israel was committed to bring sacrifices for their sin transgressions, and once a year on the Day of Atonement the High Priest would enter the Holiest with a blood offering for himself and for all the people.  This First Testament, which required the death of the testator (animals) foreshadowed the New Testament which God was to make with the nation of Israel.  The First Testament was conducted by the Levitical priesthood, but it was imperfect in that the priests would naturally die off and had to be replaced.  It was also imperfect in that the blood of bulls and goats could never take away sin [Hebrews 10:4].  But God had a better plan to handle sin, a perfect plan [see also THE VISION OF SIR LAUNFAL]:

Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.  Hebrews 6:19-20

This Melchisedec (whom some believe is the Lord Jesus Christ), the scriptures say

For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him;  To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace; Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually.  Hebrews 7:1-3

was the Order after which the Lord Jesus Christ became our Great High Priest who sits at the right hand of the Father, there making intercession for all believers who are continually being accused by Satan of breaking God's Law [Revelation 12:10].  Thus, God the Father declared by The Oath:

And inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest: (for those priests were made without an oath; but this with an oath by him that said unto him, The Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec:) By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament.  Hebrews 7:20-22

Therefore, Jesus completed the Act of Redemption for all believers' souls by the shedding of His blood on the cross of Calvary, resurrecting after three days and three nights in the heart of the earth [see RESURRECTION], and then entering the Heavenly Holiest by His blood to complete our justification for all eternity [see ARK OF THE COVENANT].

Although some contend [see [2] below] that it is not the blood of Christ which purchased our redemption, but that it was only by His death, this belief is gross heresy. Firstly, it is true that the New Testament required the death of the Testator, but that in itself is insufficient, for God has decreed that without the shedding of blood is no remission (of sin).  Secondly, Jesus' resurrection was absolutely essential in God's plan of salvation, for Jesus had to resurrect in order

  • to fulfill His own prophecy  [Luke 9:22; John 2:18,19]
  • to conquer Death and Hell for us [to destroy the devil who had the power of death]:

Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.  For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the nature of Abraham.  Hebrews 2:14-16

I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.  Revelation 1:18

  • to become our Great High Priest [Hebrews, Chapter 5; THE VISION OF SIR LAUNFAL]
  • to sit on the throne of David and rule for 1000 years  [Acts 2:29-31; Luke 1:32,33]
  • to be the Great Judge at the Great White Throne Judgment

Thirdly, the Apostle Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit wrote

And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain, ye are yet in your sins.  Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.  I Corinthians 15:17,18

Thus, not only did Christ have to resurrect, but He had to do so in order to be able to enter the Heavenly Holiest by His blood for our redemption.  Mr. Macarthur thus has to repudiate and disallow scripture which plainly teaches that Jesus' BLOOD is the purchase PRICE of our redemption.              

 Please hear MacArthur  at  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9470k9b2iVg

The BLOOD of CHRIST     In fulfilling the Law for man's sake, Christ imputed His Righteousness on all those who believe in Him, and this by entering the Heavenly Holiest by His blood [see THE ARK OF THE COVENANT and THE VISION OF SIR LAUNFAL] after He resurrected.  Therefore, our redemption is really two-fold, but some have not understood that Jesus' blood and His resurrection are inseparable and necessary requirements for our salvation.  Take, for example, the concern which the Apostle Paul expressed that if Christ did not resurrect, we of all men would be most miserable [I Corinthians 15:17-19].  Nevertheless, as will be shown in a diagram below, there can be no misunderstanding that the blood of Christ was the price of our redemption:

Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:  Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.  I Peter 1:18-21

Thus, from the blood sacrifice of Abel until Christ was crucified, all sin atonement was understood by the Israelites to be confirmed by the blood, as Moses interceded for the people with blood and set the example for the Levitical priesthood to conduct the Day of  Atonement worship [Exodus 24:8].

Some Christians may have wondered how Christ managed to pay man's eternal sin debt in just six hours on the cross of Calvary.  The answer lies in noting that Christ's blood is unlike ordinary human blood - it is human, Divine, and eternal.   As a human being, Jesus had human blood to sustain His physical life.  Upon His resurrection, however,  Jesus' blood became Divine, eternal, and incorruptible

As the Passover Lamb of God [see RESURRECTION], Jesus offered Himself up once [Hebrews 9:12; 24-26; I Peter 1:18-19] by His own blood (which has that eternal quality) that fulfills the Law eternally.  And, just as sin enjoins the Law to bring about judgment on behalf of sin, the Law likewise will not bring forth judgment when the Law is kept. The bible is not explicit as to the details of the means whereby Jesus applied His blood  to all the holy vessels in the Holiest of the Heavenly Tabernacle. We will consider this matter below, but first we consider some relevant scriptures:

  • Jesus entered the Heavenly Holiest by His own blood    Hebrews 9:11,12
  • High Priest could not enter the Holiest without blood.  Hebrews 9:6,7

Only the High Priest was allowed into the Holiest of the earthly tabernacle, and not without blood.  Thus, we see that this act did take place in Heaven, whereby the risen Jesus  entered the Heavenly Holiest by His own blood to complete His  Act of Redemption for us. 

The Cave Theory   There is, however, one theory as to how Jesus' blood was applied to the Ark of the Covenant by a crack in the ground under His cross that allowed His blood to drip down into a cave that (supposedly) held the Ark of the Covenant [1].   The Cave Theory violates scripture because

  • Jesus entered the Heavenly Holiest [in Heaven, not on earth] by His blood [Hebrews 9:11.,12].  While hanging on the cross, Jesus was not entering into any Holiest; when He died, He went directly to Paradise, in the center of the earth [RESURRECTION].  After He resurrected, He still did not go to Heaven until early Sunday morning.
  • The greatest heaveNly ACT OF ETERNAL ATONEMENT was when Jesus went into the Heavenly Holiest by His blood, wearing the attire of the Jewish High Priest, complete with the breastplate containing the 12 stones for the 12 tribes of the nation of Israel.  This greatest of all spiritual acts [see THE VISION OF SIR LAUNFAL] would not have been a fortuitous act of happenstance, as portrayed by Ron Wyatt [1], but was no doubt witnessed by the entire heavenly angelic host with Jesus receiving the accolades due to the great conquering King of Salem, the Redeemer of all believers in God.  Jesus' triumphant entrance into the Holiest was the culmination - the final act of Redemption that secured our home in Heaven with Him. And thus, In spite of John Macarthur's contentions [2], it was Jesus' blood that purchased our souls in this final ACT OF ETERNAL ATONEMENT.
  • If Jesus' blood had dripped? into the Ark of the Covenant in a cave under the cross of Calvary, then where is the sin atonement for all the New Testament believers?  If events were as Ron Wyatt  says, then all New Testament believers have died, are dying, and will die in their sins without a Redeemer.  Please see THE ARK OF THE COVENANT  on this site for an explanation of the redemption of both Old and New Testament believers.
  • Finally, Ron Wyatt  completely ignores the scripture relating to the final ACT OF ETERNAL ATONEMENT.  Revelation 22:19 warns against subtracting from the Word of God. 

    [1]   http://www.bibleplus.org/discoveries/arkintro.htm

    [2]   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9470k9b2iVg  [ video of MacArthur's defense ]

Note on Jesus' Death    Apparently, Mr. Macarthur is confused as to what salvation really is.  The Lord Jesus had to die - and resurrect - in order to pay the penalty of physical death which He Himself had imposed upon mankind

And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.  Genesis 2:16,17

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.  Hebrews 2:9

and then overcome this physical death sentence by resurrecting with an immortal, eternal body of flesh and bone.  It should be pointed out that Jesus' resurrection applies to both the saved and the lost, for the lost will also be resurrected for sentencing at the Great White Throne Judgment.  The efficacy of Jesus' death and resurrection applies to both saved and lost - there is no distinction.  Jesus' blood enables the saved to go to Heaven and condemns the lost to the Lake of Fire.  An altogether different matter is the degree of punishment which the Lord Jesus endured as being somehow sufficient to satisfy the Father for the sin of the world - that is a matter which no man can even begin to address ]

An Alternate Theory   I propose an alternate theory that might explain how the Act of Atonement was accomplished.  First of all, Jesus had no way of collecting His blood, and there is no scriptural record that tells us that anybody else did such an act.  When His body was taken by Joseph of Arimathaea, there was not enough time for complete purification (i.e., removal of His blood) before even; thus, it is reasonable to conclude that when Jesus arose that He still had some of His blood on Him.  But His blood is incorruptible, Divine, and Holy, and the amazing thing is, this blood was, and still is, alive!!  Dead blood cannot atone for eternal sin - if this was so, then the animal sacrifices before Christ might have accomplished the atoning.   Because Christ had not yet gone to Heaven after His resurrection

Jesus saith unto her, Mary, She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rab-boni; which is to say, Master.  Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God. John 20:16,17

As our Great High Priest on His way to the Heavenly Holiest with His blood, Jesus could not be defiled by the touch of sinful flesh.  This is why Jesus told Mary what He did, that she should not touch Him, for at that moment He was the Great High Priest about to ascend to the Father, put on the Jewish High Priest attire, complete with the 12 stones for the 12 tribes of Israel on the breastplate.

After donning the apparel of the Jewish High Priest, our Lord Jesus entered into the Heavenly Holiest, overshadowed that holy place, and proceeded to supernaturally transfer His blood onto all the vessels of the Holiest, thoroughly encasing them for security's sake.  And this event was no doubt witnessed by all the Heavenly Host with shouts of acclamation and praise for the worthy Lamb of God, performing the final act of eternal atonement for all believers, i.e., the completing act to God's marvelous plan of salvation for mankind. 

The Eternal Atonement       Earlier, I pointed out the relationship between Sin and The Law.  In the diagram below, we see that all believers' sins are encased by The Law [The Ten Commandments], so long as The Law is kept.  Because Jesus did keep The Law, His holy blood encases The Law itself, and ensures that sin cannot escape, i.e., cannot bring forth death by The Law, for Christ is the end of The Law by His blood [ Romans 10:4 ].  It should be obvious that this arrangement is an eternal arrangement, and that the LAW enjoins Jesus' Blood, and vice-versa, to bring eternal and everlasting atonement for our sins. In the following diagram we see that the Believers' Sins are held under The LAW - within the Ark of the Covenant/Testament.  And encasing the Ark itself is the Holy, Eternal Blood of Christ, which prevents any fracturing of the Law that would enable Sin to bring forth Death upon Believers. 

 

 

                                                                                 ARKANDBLOOD.png

 

                                                                            BELIEVERS' SINS UNDER THE LAW AND THE BLOOD OF CHRIST

 

SUMMARY      The matter is two-fold:  one is what does one have to do to be saved, and the second is how does God save him.  The Philippian jailer asked the Apostle Paul and Silas, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved", to which Paul answered "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house." [ Acts 16:30,31 ]  The jailer was not told how he was going to be saved, only what he must do to be saved.  The lost sinner's part is to believe, God's part is to do, and God accomplishes the do part by accepting the blood of Christ as payment in full  for the lost sinner's sin debt.  And to say that the blood of Christ does not save a soul from Hell is to deny not only the power of God to save, but it also denies God's own proclamation and decree that Christ's blood will save [ I Peter 1:18,19 ].  The scriptures could not be any plainer.  As our Great High Priest:

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.  Hebrews 2:9

This, of course, speaks of the second death, for the first death is still in effect; Jesus took on Himself the sins of all believers (He was made sin for us), nailing them to the cross and thereby obtaining our eternal salvation [ Colossians 2:13,14 ].  It is an absolutely marvelous plan of God that wrought our salvation.

When the Lord Jesus ascended to Heaven the Sunday morning after His resurrection, He took all the souls who had been imprisoned in Paradise in the heart of the earth

Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.   (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?  He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)  Ephesians 4:8-10

For three days and three nights, the Lord Jesus preached to these souls, telling them of the complete plan of salvation which would culminate by His resurrection and ascension to the Father with His blood - the price of redemption for all mankind.  These old testament believers had been imprisoned for centuries, all the way back to Abel, and no doubt Abraham, Isaac, and Israel rejoiced exceedingly upon seeing their promised Messiah in their midst.  And this rejoicing no doubt grew exceedingly greater when they saw Him disappear to go topside, resurrect bodily, and then return back to them almost immediately !!

Why were all these old testament believers in the heart of the earth and not in Heaven for all those centuries?  The answer lies in the fact that - because their sins had not been fully atoned for - they could not enter into the presence of God.  They could only now ascend into Heaven because the Lord Jesus had finally paid the full price of their redemption with His blood. Note, however, that these imprisoned souls are still in their spiritual bodies, for they have not resurrected as yet. This is clearly shown in

And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.   Matthew   27:52,53

where it explicitly states that "the graves were opened".  Resurrected bodies do not require their graves to be opened.  If one ponders the possibility that these Old Testament saints really did resurrect, these resurrected beings would have completely upstaged the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Himself!  Secondly, the graves were opened by God Himself, and they were likewise closed by God again as these resuscitated beings' bodies were returned to their graves and their spirits returned again into Paradise in the heart of the earth. Moreover, the scriptures declare

Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day.   Acts 2:29

If any Old Testament saint would have resurrected, certainly king David would have been. No, as of today, only the Lord Jesus truly has a resurrected body.

But the best was yet to come, for as of that time, none of these sequestered saints had seen Heaven.  It would be very hard for anyone to convince me that these saints did not accompany the Lord Jesus to Heaven on His trip with His blood because they were about to witness the greatest event to ever happen in Heaven - the Lord Jesus entering the holiest in the heavenly tabernacle with the complete attire of the Jewish High Priest, including the precious jewels on His breastplate.  Certainly the heavenly host of angels and all the saints just transported from the center of the earth to Heaven itself sounded such acclamation and praise that if SETI had been around at that time no doubt it would have recorded it !!  Perhaps acclamation similar to the following scripture described the event

And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders:  and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand,  and thousands of  thousands;  Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.   Revelation 5:11,12

This is the greatest event to ever happen in Heaven because without this event we would simply cease to exist, as there would have been no atonement/forgiveness of sin possible. The immensity of the burden the Lord Jesus underwent as He prayed in the garden on the night He was arrested should be abundantly clear. No doubt His mind was on the imprisoned souls in the center of the earth that were depending on Him going to the cross to fulfill His redemptive plan. Not only would all these imprisoned souls never see daylight again, but they would automatically be lost forever, since the blood of animals was never designed to provide eternal salvation.  Only the sinless, spotless, eternal blood of Christ would do - that is why the Lord Jesus had to go to the cross.  The great English poet James Russell Lowell - in a portion of his famous The Vision of Sir Launfal - proclaims what Christ accomplished

As Sir Launfal mused with a downcast face,
A light shone round about the place;
The leper no longer crouched at his side,
But stood before him glorified,
Shining and tall and fair and straight
As the pillar that stood by the Beautiful Gate,–
Himself the Gate whereby men can
Enter the temple of God in Man.       james russell lowell

 

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