… but now He has appeared once at the end of the ages to put away sin by sacrificing Himself.
— Hebrews 9:26
In the cross of Christ we so clearly see one of the paradoxes of Christianity. For Christ is both High Priest and Sacrifice.
It is interesting that in both the tabernacle in the wilderness and again in the temple of Solomon, one could find beautiful furniture. There was the table for showbread; the altar of incense; the great seven-pronged candelabra. Within the Holy of Holies, was the Ark of the Covenant with the glorious gold-covered cherubim.
Nowhere, however, in either the tabernacle or the temple was any chair, bench, or pew to be found because the work of the priests was never done. Day after day the priests offered sacrifices for sin—sacrifices that had to be repeated continually—for it was not possible for the blood of bulls or the blood of goats to take away sin.
Yet Jesus of Nazareth offered one sacrifice for sins forever and then He sat down. His work was over. Not enough people understand that Christianity is not about “doing,” it is about “done.” Jesus declared “It is finished.” It is done. It is paid. It is accomplished. The atonement for our sins was paid in full—we cannot add to it.
The final evening sacrifice has been offered—perfect and complete, the fulfillment of the whole Old Testament sacrificial system. This is the sacrifice which is pleasing and acceptable to the Lord.
Question to ponder:
Why was Jesus the only One who could be a pleasing and acceptable sacrifice to the Lord?