A Wholly Holy Offering
We are in debt to our eyeballs, y’all. Oh, I am not talking financially. There is a sin debt that we just could not pay. All of the sacrifices in the Old Testament system revealed our incessant need to have our sins covered. There needed to be an offering that would once and for all fulfill the righteous requirements of a Holy God. Christ is a wholly Holy offering on our behalf.
Bible Reading of the Day: Hebrew 10-12
“Since the law has only a shadow of the good things to come, and not the reality itself of those things, it can never perfect the worshipers by the same sacrifices they continually offer year after year. 2 Otherwise, wouldn’t they have stopped being offered, since the worshipers, purified once and for all, would no longer have any consciousness of sins? 3 But in the sacrifices there is a reminder of sins year after year. 4 For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.
A Wholly Holy Offering —The Perfect Sacrifice
5 Therefore, as he was coming into the world, he said: “You did not desire sacrifice and offering, but you prepared a body for me. 6 You did not delight in whole burnt offerings and sin offerings. 7 Then I said, “See—it is written about me in the scroll—I have come to do your will, God.” 8 After he says above, You did not desire or delight in sacrifices and offerings, whole burnt offerings and sin offerings (which are offered according to the law),
9 He then says, See, I have come to do your will. He takes away the first to establish the second. 10 By this will, we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all time. 11 Every priest stands day after day ministering and offering the same sacrifices time after time, which can never take away sins. 12 But this man, after offering one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God. 13 He is now waiting until his enemies are made his footstool. 14 For by one offering he has perfected forever those who are sanctified.
15 The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. For after he says: 16 This is the covenant I will make with them after those days, the Lord says, I will put my laws on their hearts and write them on their minds, 17 and I will never again remember their sins and their lawless acts. 18 Now where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer an offering for sin.”
A Wholly Holy Offering —A Whole Burnt Offering
This same word, “burnt offering” is the same word used in a familiar story from Genesis 22:
“Now it came about after these things, that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 2 He said, “Take now your son, your only son, whom you love, Isaac, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will tell you.” 3 So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him and Isaac his son; and he split wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. 4 On the third day Abraham raised his eyes and saw the place from a distance.
5 Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey, and I and the lad will go over there; and we will worship and return to you.” 6 Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son, and he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So the two of them walked on together. 7 Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, “My father!” And he said, “Here I am, my son.” And he said, “Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” 8 Abraham said, “God will provide for Himself the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” So the two of them walked on together.”
A Wholly Holy Offering —Olah
In a recent Hebrew word study I did of this passage, I found that:
A burnt offering is similar to other offerings in that a “part of every offering was burnt in the sacred fire, but this was wholly burnt, a ‘whole burnt offering.’ It was the most frequent form of sacrifice, and apparently the only one mentioned in the book of Genesis.”
The Hebrew word `olah (עֹלָה) means a sacrifice which is wholly burned. “The whole burnt-offering (beast or fowl) is entirely consumed and goes up in the flame of the altar to God expressing the ascent of the soul in worship. “A burnt offering is not burned alive, but one first sacrificed and then completely burnt before the LORD.” The nature of a burnt offering is that it is a “complete dedication of the offerers unto God.”
Strong’s concordance describes a whole burnt offering as a holocaust (as going up in smoke)—ascent, burnt offering (sacrifice), go up to.”
The term `olah (עֹלָה) is consistently used to describe a burnt offering that is wholly consumed. The definition “holocaust” was a grim term to consider. The offering is totally destroyed, burned up. But then the other word definitions are interesting—”to go up to”, “ascend” and “rise”. When something is burnt, it rises. As the ashes float through the air, one is reminded of death. Sin led to death. But a sacrifice offered by a perfect, Holy God, paid the penalty. There is hope in death, after all. Jesus rose.
A Wholly Holy Offering —A Perfect Atonement
Burnt offerings were to be made each day as an atonement for God’s people so they could be in His presence. “These burnt offerings are to be made each day from generation to generation. Offer them in the LORD’s presence at the Tabernacle entrance; there I will meet with you and speak with you” (Exodus 29:42, NLT).
But the word offering is a sacrifice—one that requires us to wholly participate. “According to Romans 12:1, the appropriate sacrifice made by the Christian “priest” is the offering of his or her own living human flesh (i.e., one’s life) to God. Paul therefore sets worship as the offering of a Christian’s own body to God.”
We see this in Romans 12:1-2
“Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”
This offering of ourselves back to the God Who offered Himself to us is whole – complete – and holy. It is not a passive, worldly faith that we so often see today. No, the One Who gave His all for us expects the same of us.
A Wholly Holy Offering —In Our Likeness
Doing a Greek word study on the type of sacrifice Christ was was also very revealing.
Christ was a sin offering on behalf of man, in the likeness of man bearing all of the sins of mankind, though no sin was found in Him. His purpose was to redeem mankind and set them free from the flesh and from bondage to sin. Though translations differ in the rendering of Christ’s sacrifice, the NASB beautifully states in Romans 8:3 that God sent “His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin”. The ESV, NIV and NET translations all said, “in the likeness of sinful flesh”. This understanding of Christ being a sin offering does not mean that Jesus took on our sin nature, but our physical flesh.
A Wholly Holy Offering —No more condemnation
Friends, Romans 8:1 reminds us that we are no longer condemned because of Christ’s perfect sacrifice on our behalf, but so many are not walking in this reality.
“Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. 3 For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4 so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. 5 5 For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.”
The Greek word “condemnation” (Katakrima – κατάκριμα) is a forensic term (as in 5:16, 18), denoting the removal of the curse (cf. Gal. 3:10) from those who are descendants of Adam.
Further, The word likeness (homoiōma – ὁμοίωμα) means a representation or almost to equality or identity. Christ came in the identity of man to give mankind His identity. The word likeness homoiōma means a representation or almost to equality or identity. Christ came in the identity of man to give mankind His identity.
A Wholly Holy Offering —Alive in Christ
The word homoiōma (likeness), then, denotes the full identity of the Son with sinful humanity, though he never sinned . . . God judicially condemned sin “in the flesh” by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh as a sin offering.”
Y’all, we have been handed down a curse. And it has been removed completely. But we still live in this fallen world. And so many Christians do not walk a victorious walk with Christ. Romans 6 sheds some light on this. We have to reckon ourselves dead to sin and alive in Christ:
“5 For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old [c]self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; 7 for he who has died is freed from sin.
8 Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, 9 knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, [f]is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him. 10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. 11 Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.”
You guys, do you realize what this means?
A Wholly Holy Offering —No Longer Under the Curse!
Man does not have to be under the curse anymore. The curse has been broken through the sin offering of God in the flesh, the God-man, Jesus Christ. Jesus fulfilled the law on behalf of man.
The law could not save. It could only inform man of the righteous standard of a Holy God. It revealed our need. Those in Christ now have the freedom to keep the law’s commands. We are free to follow God’s commands because we have died to sin and can walk in the Spirit.
You guys, there is just so much in here to unpack that we cannot cover it all, but in Hebrews 11, the hall of fame of faithful believers, we see that this life is lived by faith.
The Scripture of the day summarizes this life of faith.
Scripture of the Day: Hebrews 12:1-2
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. 2 We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.”
- Keep running, friends.
- Give yourself wholly and holy to God.
- He will complete the work that He has begun in us.
Day #294: It’s Time to Run Our Race
𝒱𝑒𝓇𝓈𝑒 𝑜𝒻 𝓉𝒽𝑒 𝒟𝒶𝓎: Hebrews 12:1-2
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