November 5, 2021

November 5, 2021

November 5, 2021

John L. Grimm
Clergy
Appalachian District

Purified
Hebrews 9:15-24 (NRSV)

15 For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant.
16 In the case of a will,[a] it is necessary to prove the death of the one who made it, 17 because a will is in force only when somebody has died; it never takes effect while the one who made it is living. 18 This is why even the first covenant was not put into effect without blood. 19 When Moses had proclaimed every command of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people. 20 He said, “This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep.”[b] 21 In the same way, he sprinkled with the blood both the tabernacle and everything used in its ceremonies. 22 In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.
23 It was necessary, then, for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. 24 For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with human hands that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence.

Devotion

God wants us to be in his kingdom.  At first, he had a chosen people, Israel, to show the world how to live holy lives.  They failed to get beyond the requirements of the law, the first covenant.  However, from Israel came the One by whom this world could be justified.  Jesus inaugurated a second covenant.  The first covenant involved the blood of calves and goats to provide purification for the people of Israel. 
 
Now in the second covenant, it is Jesus’ blood that provides purification for us!
 
Yes, we need to be purified.  We need to be cleansed.
 
From what do we need purified?  It is from our sins that we receive purification through the blood of Jesus.  God even wants us to be cleansed to the depth of our being as our original sin is also forgiven.  Not only are human, even earthly things purified, but also heavenly things are purified because Christ Jesus is in the presence of God.
 
Sins?  What types of sinners are cleansed?  All sinners may be purified by Jesus’ blood.  We know what we do is not in agreement with the Word of God.  We know how we have injured others and ourselves by our thoughts, words, actions, and inactions.  We know how we have crushed others for our own benefit or pleasure.  We know how we have blocked others from experiencing the goodness of God.  We know when we have placed a stumbling block before the little ones by teaching ways that are contrary to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  All these sins and all of us sinners can be purified.
 
Jesus Christ is the better sacrifice for us and our sins.  Do we believe this truth?  Will we turn to Jesus and allow his blood to cleanse us?  This cleansing is what Jesus wants to do for us.  Jesus wants to speak on our behalf in the presence of God.  Would you believe that from the most inconsequential slight to the most horrendous rumor can be and is forgiven by Jesus?  Would you believe that it is the Son of God who wants to present you to God?  This truth is for all of us humans. 
 
God is calling all of us humans to be redeemed from our transgressions.  It is the Son of God who redeems us from our transgressions.  God wants us to be with himself, in his kingdom.  Would we believe in Jesus Christ, so he can get us cleansed for life with God?

Prayer

God, thank you for the forgiveness!  It is by Jesus’ blood that we receive your forgiveness for all sins.  As we wait for your kingdom to be fully on earth, guide us to live purified lives, free from transgressions.  May our will die so we may know your will, and live.  May we be found to be in Jesus’ name as he presents us to you now and forever more. Amen.