Thursday, April 09, 2009

...and He shall save His people from their sins

"But He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, SAT DOWN AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD," -Hebrews 10:12

"And you shall call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sins" (Matt. 1:21). The preeminent purpose for "the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us" (John 1:14) was that through the Lord's virgin birth, sinless life, His once for all propitiatory sacrifice for our sins, and His bodily resurrection from the grave - that He would satisfy God's holiness and justice and redeem a people for His own glory to worship Him forever in unbroken fellowship throughout all eternity (cf, Roms. 9:23).

This is the powerful reality of "Immanuel, God with us." With much joy and praise, the blessed hope of any regenerated child of God is that the guilt, penalty, and eternal wrath that burns against every sin that would ever be committed by every one that would ever believe, was forever dealt with in Christ at Calvary. All the sins of His own has already been forgiven and paid in full in the complete atoning work of Jesus Christ the Lord on the cross. "By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all" (Hebrews 10:10). Hebrews 7:27 profoundly says, "who died for the sins of the people, because this He died once of all when He offered up Himself." This concept of one sacrifice for every sin was completely foreign to the Jewish mind who was reliant on the law and the works of the law to appease his guilt and shame and make him whole in the eyes of God.

The priests were constantly offering sacrifices for peoples transgres­sions even their own sins (Hebrews. 5:1-3). Grain offerings, peace offerings, burnt offerings, guilt offerings, sin offerings, ceremonies, feast days, rituals, law-keeping... and on and on it went. It never stopped--it never ended.

In the holy of holies, where only the high priest in the Aaronic Levitical line could enter, there was never a chair for the him to sit and rest. Why? It was a vivid reminder that his work for "atoning for sins", was never finished. What a contrast is the High Priestly work of our Lord Jesus Christ. Hebrews 10:12 says, "but He [Jesus], having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God." He sat down as a sign of honor (Philippians 2:11); rule (1 Peter 3:22); rest (Hebrews. 10:10-12); and intercession (Romans 8:34). Jesus did not say on the cross, "I am finished,” but He proclaimed, "It is finished!" He could make this bold statement because the task had been completed and accomplished... finished.

People are looking for peace today to deaden the pain of an empty life--aren't they? They are looking to outside influences that artificially create escapes from our daily ills. But true peace comes from the transformation through the gospel of Jesus Christ that authentically changes our lives forever. Romans 5:1-2 brings this truth into reality, "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exalt in hope of the glory of God." There are three great promises that all those in Christ Jesus possess because we have been justified by our Lord Jesus Christ: 1. we have peace with God; 2. we stand in grace; and, 3. we exalt in hope of the glory of God.

John 3:36 says these penetrating words, "He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on Him." Jesus not only bore all of our sin at Calvary, but took all the fury of God's wrath against sin that sinful man deserves. Those who place their trust in Christ for salvation are no longer God's enemies, but are at peace with God. Ephesians 2:14 reassures this by saying that "He Himself is our peace." But what about the plague of sin I wrestle with every day? Paul further says that we stand in grace.

The standing he talks about here is an immovable, secure, and permanent standing - not in our own goodness, but a standing in God's grace! Not only are we saved by Him, but we are kept by Him! Spurgeon used to say it this way, "Our finite sin can never exhaust His infinite grace!" Grace doesn't wink at sin and doesn't condone sin "for the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say "No" to ungodli­ness and worldly passions, and to live self controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age" (Titus 2:11-12 NIV emphasis added). As He is our peace, and the One, who equips us to stand in grace, Jesus Christ is the sole reason and future expectation of the believer for.

(1 Timothy 1:1). Paul reassures this reality when he says in Colossians 1:27, "Christ in you, the hope of glory." Philippians 3:21, "who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself." (Emphasis added). What a wonderful hope that as Christians we can have a triumphant rejoicing confidence in God! (Philippians 1:6; 3:3; 1 Peter 5:4) "Whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified" (Romans 8:30 emphasis added). Scripture furnished the believer nothing but wonderful hope for all who place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ for their salvation. Hope in: His calling (Ephesians 1:18); the gospel (Colossians 1:23); heaven (Colossians 1:5); salvation (1 Thessalonians 5:8); eternal life (Titus 3:5); a living hope (1 Peter 1:3); righteousness (Galatians 5:5); rejoicing (Romans 12:12); God (Psalm 38:15); the Lord Jesus (Philippians 2:19); and yes, the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27)!

Because Jesus Christ stood in our place at Calvary you have the surety that no one can bring a charge against God's elect! (Romans 8:33) This means that you can never lose your salvation - you are secure in Him for eternity! You were "sealed with the Holy Spirit" (Ephesians 1:13-14). Listen afresh to these words of Paul, "there is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus" (Romans 8:1), and "nothing can separate you from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus the Lord!" (Romans 8:39). Since we have died once to the penalty of sin - we have peace with God; since we die daily to the power of sin - we stand in grace; and someday we will be free from the presence of sin - because He is our hope of glory! He is our justification; our sanctifica­tion; our sanctification; our glorification! (1 Corinthians 1:30). He has died once for all time...for every time so rest completely in the finished work He accomplished at Calvary.

*"The Death of Death in the Death of Christ" by John Owen;
*"The Christian Life" by Sinclair B. Ferguson;
*"Christ's Doctrine of the Atonement" by George Smeaton;
*"The Apostle's Doctrine of the Atonement" by George Smeaton;
*"Putting Amazing Back in Grace" by Michael Horton.


1. Have you ever felt like something you did "broke the Lord's heart?”

2. How does the once for all sacrifice of Jesus deliver you from past, present, and future sins?

3. How does this give you peace and rest?

4. Read through chapters 6, 8, 10 and 17 of the Gospel of John. Write down all ways Jesus teaches that our salvation is eternally secure in Him.

5. How does our redemption in the Lord encourage you to want to grow in Christlikeness? (Read 2 Peter 1:3-11).

6. Do you ever find yourself doubting your salvation? Your salvation can never be lost, but maybe there is the need to reaffirm your assurance in Christ by confessing any sins you have not repented from and trust in the promise of 1 John 1:9. Ponder these Scriptures: Romans 5; Romans 8; Ephesians 1-2; John 17; John 6:39, 18:9; Hebrews 1:1-3; Hebrews 9-10.


Carla Rolfe said...


boy how I wish I would have had access to material like this when I was first saved. This is great stuff.

I especially appreciate the extra resources given and the life application questions.

Thanks for this today.

Phillip Fletcher said...


Thank you for exalting the work of God in Christ today. Thank God that we stand in grace today and one day we shall stand in glory!


SJ Camp said...

Born of a Virgin; lived a sinless life; fulfilled the law and all righteousness; bore the sins of the elect; took our guilt and scorned the shame; was our propitiation in satisfying God and taking His wrath we deserved; rose bodily three days later; and lives to make intercesstion for His people.

What a wonderful, merciful Savior!

Daniel said...

oh the rest we have in the arms of the Savior, the blessing we have through His good work on the cross, the atonement of our sins. thanks for writing this steve. and thank you Jesus for bearing my sins at calvary.

SJ Camp said...


Michele Rayburn said...

Since we have died once to the penalty of sin - we have peace with God; since we die daily to the power of sin - we stand in grace; and someday [when we are present with the Lord] we will be free from the presence of sin...

Those are good thoughts to meditate on.

He has died once for all time...for every time so rest completely in the finished work He accomplished at Calvary.

Sometimes we as Christians live as if it isn't "finished". We live as if our sins are not forgiven, past, present and future. And we find ourselves trying to earn God's favor each day.

But we stand in grace, in a permanent state of forgiveness, precisely because "It is finished."