February 05, 2007

Perfect Forever

For about the past two years that we have been living in Sioux Center, David and I have hosted a Bible study. First it was with a group of our friends, now it is a group of college students who have become our friends. I love hosting this Bible study. It gives me something to do every Friday night. It gives me a reason to clean the apartment, and gives me people to “spoil” to my hearts content :)

For the past year we have been working through a commentary on the book of Hebrews. For me, most of the time I participate in a Bible study, I enjoy it, but I don’t feel like I learn a lot that I didn’t already know, or think I knew ;).

This past Friday I feel like God broke through a wall that I have not been able to get through, no matter how hard I tried.

Here is a piece from my journal that I wrote on Saturday morning:

“Dear Daddy, Thank you for being so big. Thank you for the lessons you taught me, or made me know last night. I am flying high. Last night at Bible study we read the passage in Hebrews as usual and my thought was, ‘I’m starting to get it now, and it is very cool!’ Jesus’ death is the real deal, where as the blood offerings and sacrifices given before Jesus were just a shadow of his offering.

“I loved the first verse in particular. ‘The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming - not the reality themselves’ (Heb 10:1a) My though was, how cool, I get it. Just as Melchizedek was a high Priest before Jesus, and the Levitical high priests were a shadow of Jesus, and the temple just a shadow of what is in Heaven, and the blood offerings just a shadow of Jesus’ offering, so the law too is only a shadow of what is to come.

“But, it doesn’t talk about how it is the shadow of what is to come, like the tabernacle is to the temple in heaven, but it says the law is a shadow of what is to come ‘For this reason it can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship.’ (Heb 10:1b) So really, the law is not the shadow so much as the sacrifices are the shadow. They cannot make us perfect, and that is where they are the shadow. This is the good part from the commentary last night.

“Well, I don’t think I can quote from him (Hywel R Jones, author of Let’s Study Hebrews, through the Banner of Truth Trust) on this one, it won’t make so much sense, but he said that verse 2 ‘If it could, would they not have stopped being offered? For the worshipers would have been cleansed once for all, and would no longer have felt guilt for their sins.’ It is not the old sacrifices that are able to do this. Over and over and over again the Israelites came to sacrifice at the temple because of their sins, but never left them guilt free. Maybe for past sins, but not for future ones too, that is why they did it year after year after year. To continually be cleansed for their sins.

“And then the commentary draws attention to verse 10 ‘And by that will {the will of Jesus to become the sacrifice for us} we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.’ Note the words ‘been made holy once for all.’ Then to verse 14 ‘because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.’ and for good measure, verse 17 ‘Then he adds “Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.”’

“What the law and sacrifices were unable to do, Jesus did! He has cleansed me, forgave me of my sins and lawlessness and I am PERFECT FOREVER in God’s eyes. I am not the worldly perfect, but I finally see that I AM perfect in God’s sight because of Jesus. Yes, I sin, but ‘Jesus died for that too’ as David says so often to me. “Jesus died for that too!’ I AM PERFECT… Forever! Hallelujah Amen!”

What an exciting truth to learn! To know with my heart and not just my mind. God has made me perfect forever! Praise be to HIs name!

in Christ Rita

Comment~ permanent link ~ • Category: [News / Rita]

© 2005-2007 David and Rita Hjelle