What The Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ Does For The Believer
Pastor David L. Brown, Ph.D.
Letís begin by looking at the definition of the word blood. My dictionary defines blood as "the fluid which circulates through the arteries and veins of the human body, and of other animals, which is essential to the preservation of life."
Note the last phrase of that definition. Blood "is essential to the preservation of life." In Leviticus 17:11, the Lord told Moses, "For the life of the flesh is in the bloodÖ" You can live without an arm or a leg. You can live without a spleen. You can live without a kidney. But you cannot live without blood! Lack of blood is probably one of the key reasons George Washington died. Doctors heavily bled him three times I believe treating whatever illness he had. He was sick before they bled him. The loss of blood clearly hastened his death, for the life of the flesh is in the blood. Blood is intimately associated with physical life. The Hebrews of Old Testament times were prohibited from eating blood. Deuteronomy 12:23-24 says, "Only be sure that thou eat not the blood: for the blood is the life; and thou mayest not eat the life with the flesh. Thou shalt not eat it; thou shalt pour it upon the earth as water." This command stressed the value of life. Though death was ever-present, life was sacred. Life was not to be regarded cheaply.
Even when the Old Testament speaks of animal sacrifice and atonement, the sacredness of life is emphasized. I turn you attention to the complete verse we look at earlier -- "For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul" Leviticus 17:11. Animals were a vital part of a personís property. In Old Testament times wealth was measured by the size of a manís flocks and herds. It is clear that sin separated man from God and was costly. We know this, because when a person sinned, the best animal of the herd was selected and brought as an offering. The animalís throat was slit and the lifeís blood of the animal drained away. The blood sacrifice brought reconciliation with God, but at great cost. However, though the blood of millions of bulls, goats and lambs were shed by instruction of God, these offerings pictured or were a type of the one true offering for our sin, the blood of Jesus Christ. "The blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
With that explanation in mind, we are going to look at what the blood of Jesus Christ does for the believer.
The word justification means "to declare not guilty but righteous." Justification is God's declaration that those who trust Jesus Christ are perfectly righteous before Him. It is a legal concept, as when a judge gives a verdict. God is the great Judge. It is His law we have broken. Before I am saved, God declares that I am a condemned sinner. After I come to Christ, God declares that I am righteous because of what Christ did for me on Calvary. Romans 5:9 indicates that it is the blood of Christ that was shed on the cross that is responsible for our justification. It says, "Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him."
The blood of Jesus Christ justifies. It is the sole reason we are not guilty, but righteous before God.
There is a song in our hymnal titled Redeemed! The first stanza says, "Redeemed how I love to proclaim it, redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. Redeemed through his infinite mercy. His child and for ever I am." Is that true? How are we redeemed? And how are our sins forgiven? The answer is seen in Ephesians 1:7 "In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;"
Turn to 1 Peter 1:18-19 "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; 19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:"
Hebrews 9:12 "Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us."
The blood of Jesus Christ provides forgiveness of our sins and eternal redemption for believers
Before you are saved, you are separated from God. Sin separates us from God. Isaiah 59:2 tells us, "But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear." Further, before salvation, we are enemies of the Christ (Philippians 3:18). But the shed blood of Jesus Christ changes all that.
Ephesians 2:13-17 "But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. 14 For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; 15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; 16 And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: 17 And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh."
Colossians 1:20 "And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven."
The blood of Jesus Christ brings believers near to God and makes possible peace with God.
I have talked with many unsaved people over the years who claim they pray to God and God answers their prayers. While I will not doubt that they pray to God, I do take exception that God hears and answers their prayer for several reasons. The Apostle John says, "Now we know that God heareth not sinners:" John 9:31 Further, there is but one way into the presence of God that that is solely through His Son Jesus Christ (John 14:6; 1 Timothy 2:5). No Jesus, No access to God! You see, only a blood bought, born-again believer can enter into the presence of God. Thatís exactly what Hebrews 10:19 is telling us -- "Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of JesusÖ"
It is the blood of Jesus Christ that grants us access to God in prayer.
The noted Catholic theologian Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) did not believe in the total depravity of man. When Aquinas studied the fall of Adam and Eve, he concluded that though man's will was damaged by sin, man's intellect was undamaged by sin. Therefore, Aquinas taught "that man, out of his own resources, could search for, find, and classify truth." In other words manís mind and conscience were not tainted by sin. I disagree. Sin has affected every aspect of mankind. The mind and conscience of an unbeliever are defiled. Paul makes that clear in Titus 1:15 "Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled." Simply stated, the unsaved person cannot trust his conscience and mind to direct him to make right decisions. But, when a person gets saved, all that changes! Because of the blood of Jesus Christ our minds and consciences are cleansed and so we can think like Christ. Hebrews 9:14 says, "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?" (See 1 Corinthians 2:16).
Simply stated, the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses our mind and conscience so that we can discern right from wrong and think biblically.
One of my favorite songs is Nothing But The Blood of Jesus. We singÖ "What can wash away my sins? Nothing but the blood of Jesus!" Does the blood of Jesus really take care of our sin problem? The answer to that is an emphatic YES! For proof, just turn to Revelation 1:5-6 "And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, 6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen." In fact, according to 1 John 1:7 that I quoted earlier, "the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
The blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sins!
There is one final point I want to consider before we close.
Christian, let there be no doubt in you mind that the devil is your adversary! The Apostle Peter wrote, "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:" 1 Peter 5:8
So, what is the key to victory over our adversary, the Devil? Revelation
12:11 tells us, "And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the
word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death." Our
identification with Christ, through the blood is clearly our first line of defense in defeating
Satan. Thereís power in the blood of the Lamb!