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  IYF_PH (khnam@goodnews.or.kr   
 2006-04-21 14:23:35, 4793 Hits, 404 Votes
  [03.20.2006] We Are Sanctified
By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, satdown on the right hand of God; From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that  e had said before, This is the covenant that I will make with t em after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts,  nd in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. (Hebrews 10:10-18)

Are You Inside the Scriptures?

Our mission trains many college students every year and sends them out to Africa as short-term missionaries. Most of our short-term missionaries think of Africa as a continent of jungles and savannas, where beasts roam freely. But when they arrive at a city like Nairobi, with wide boulevards and modern buildings, they are often surprised. The Africa they had imagined while in Korea is so different from the Africa they see when they arrive. In this way, Bible is much like Africa. What you think it is and what it actually is when you are inside of it are very different. Let us read chapter 10 from Paul's letter to the Hebrews. By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (Heb. 10:10) People read the Bible. They read the words. The words mean the same, whether read by people of faith or by people of no faith. The different is in the depth to which the words come upon the person's heart. The Bible says that we have been sanctified. If we enter inside these words of the Scriptures, we understand, "I have been sanctified." When what the Bible is saying and your heart become one, your heart comes to say, "I have been sanctified." But if your heart is not inside the words, you feel, "It says that I have been sanctified. How nice it would be if that were really true. I know that I still have sin in my heart." Although you do read the Bible, your heart is different from the heart of Jesus. You consider the words of the Bible to be good, your thoughts are different from those of Jesus. You are unable to say, "I am righteous. I am holy." You then resolve, "I am going to end all my bad habits and live holy beginning the New Year. I am going to live a clean life."

Passing the Baton to Jesus

Let's read this verse carefully. In Hebrews chapter 10, verse 10, does it say, "By the which will we are sanctified through our goodness and diligence?" It does not. It says, "... sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all." Christians who are not born again think that they become holy and go to heaven through the sanctification through being free from a lustful heart, through praying hard, and through reading the Bible. But that is not what the Bible says. Rather, it says that we are sanctified regardless of what we have or have not done, and that we are sanctified only through the works of Jesus. Sanctification has nothing to do with our determination, effort, or actions. I find this truly amazing. If we try to go to heaven through our dedication and hard work, we will fail, no matter what we do. We cannot become holy no matter how hard we try. You might say, "My faith is better than so-and-so's." You may be, but in front of God, that is worth nothing. All men have sinned. We cannot overcome the burden of sin, even if we never sin again. We have already failed. That is why Jesus came among us; to sanctify us. God does not look to us to bring about our holiness to enter heaven. For that, He has passed the baton to Jesus.

How Are We Sanctified?

The World Cup will begin in a few months. Soccer is played with 11 players to a team, but to create a team, the coach does not select only 11 players. The coach goes to a match with more than 20 players. That is because there are times during the course of a game when players need to be relieved. An athlete may become injured, or one who is not in top condition and tires easily may have to be removed. When that happens, one player comes out and another goes in. Suppose God were a soccer coach and man was not doing well in the match to go to heaven. God would make a substitution. "Hey, at this rate, you guys are never going to score. You, Ock Soo Park, you come out. I'm going to put Jesus in." Although man was playing hard, God saw that we had no chance at winning and therefore made a substitution. We are now off the pitch, sitting on the bench. Now, no matter how hard we run while off the pitch, it will have no affect on the score. We can run, kick a ball in the air, hit it with our head, whatever we do, we cannot affect the score. If Jesus, who entered the game, scores, it becomes our point. All we can do is cheer. "Wow! Jesus. Way to go!" How can we be sanctified? Do we become holy if we do not sin, if we pray hard, and if we live as good people? No, we do not. I'm sorry, folks, but since none of you is in the game, you are all off the pitch, no matter what you do, you cannot score. Only Jesus can score. That is why the only true faith is in saying, "Jesus, play well and score points. Your points are my points." What Jesus accomplishes becomes ours. Hebrews chapter 10, verse 10 tells us that becoming holy is not a function of what we do or do not do, but rather is a function of what Jesus did or did not do. Faith is not me doing something, but accepting what Jesus has done on my behalf. If I have nothing to do with Jesus, the crucifixion of Jesus has nothing to do with me. But if I have something to do with Jesus, the punishment Jesus received at the crucifixion is punishment for my sin. In the same way, faith is becoming sanctified through having all of our sins washed away by Jesus receiving the punishment for our sins.

Moses Did Not Know the Burnt-Offering

Now let's go on to verse 11 And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: These words concern the Old Testament. God led Moses to the top of Mt. Sinai. Moses stayed there for 40 days while God showed him the tabernacle. Then God handed Moses two tables of stone that bore the Ten Commandments. When Moses came down from the mountain with the tables in hand, the Israelites who met him at the bottom had fashioned a golden calf and said that it was the god that had led them out of Egypt. The first commandment, "Thou shalt have no other gods before me," and the second commandment, "Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image," had been broken. Upon seeing this, Moses threw down and broke the two stone tables. When Moses brought down the law, the Israelites were already breaking it. Sin was not imputed when there was no law, but all of the Israelites became sinners as the law came down. Before, they had not been condemned, even though they had made idols, but as the law came down, they were condemned by the law. It was unfortunate that Moses did not know how to have that sin forgiven. Moses was frustrated. He, along with those who came when he said, "Who is on the Lord's side? Let him come unto me," put 3,000 men to the sword. This happens in Exodus chapter 32. He would not have done this had he known how to cleanse their sin. He killed them all because he did not know. The Book of Leviticus follows the Book of Exodus. Leviticus chapter 4 talks about receiving the forgiveness of sin. It talks about the various methods of forgiveness when a priest sins, when an entire congregation sins, when a ruler sins, and when a common person sins. What kind of a sin was it when the Israelites made the idol of a golden calf? It was the sin of a congregation. And if the whole congregation of Israel sin through ignorance, and the thing be hid from the eyes of the assembly, and they have done somewhat against any of the commandments of the Lord concerning things which should not be done, and are guilty; when the sin which they have sinned against it is known, then the congregation shall offer a young bullock for the sin, ... and the priest shall make an atonement for them, and it shall be forgiven them. (Lev. 4:13-20) If a bullock is given as an offering before God when a congregation sins, then that sin is forgiven. The Bible says, "It shall be forgiven them." But the Israelites in Exodus 32 did not know about this offering. Had they known, everything could have ended with the sacrifice of a bullock as an offering. Because they did not know, 3,000 men were killed. It is the same today. When you commit a sin of theft, adultery, or lying, you will be clean as if you had never committed that sin if you know how to have it forgiven. If, on the other hand, you do not know, you will torture yourself needlessly, wallowing in guilt and suffering.

Destroying Offerings that Cannot Make You Whole

In the Old Testament, if the sin offerings were made according to the directions in Leviticus chapter 4, the sins of the Israelites were forgiven. They were forgiven because that was God's promise. One is justified if his sins are forgiven. He becomes righteous. The problem for the Israelites was what one had to do if he sinned again, after receiving forgiveness of his sins. He would again become a sinner. He would then have to kill another lamb and give another offering. The people of the Old Testament had to kill lambs every day because every day they sinned. A person who has received forgiveness of his sins thought, perhaps, "Whew, I'mbarely making ends meet, but I had to buy and give another lamb for an offering this month to wash away my sin. Still, I am happy. I am righteous! Now, I'm not going to sin again!" But could he do as he says? He went and sinned again and had to sacrifice another lamb. Eventually he gave upon on the offerings, saying, "Heck, I'm gonna sin anyway, no matter how many offerings I give." He then became a seller of sheep and cows at the temple, a corrupt person. God sent Jesus because by the offering of lambs people could be forgiven only their sins the offerings were given for. The death of Jesus has the power to forgive us of all sins for all time. We sin every day. Were we to offer up a lamb for each of our sins, there would be no end to making offerings. God does not want us to give such offerings but He wants an offering that can bring us eternal forgiveness. Above, when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt-offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law; (Hebrews 10:8) Hebrews chapter 10, verse 8 says that God does not want sacrifice or burnt-offerings. That is because even if people were to be cleansed through such offerings, they would become sinners again if they sin. Offerings of lambs or bullocks may bring us forgiveness from our sins, but they cannot perfect us. Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. (Hebrews 10:9) The "I," here, represents Jesus. The first is the offerings of sheep and cows. The second is talking about the offering through the death of Jesus on the cross. The offering of sheep and cows cannot wash our sins away eternally, but the blood of Jesus Christ has the power to forgive all sins of the world in a single stroke. Hebrews chapter 10, verse 10 says, by the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. "Once" means there is no second or third time. All has been finished at once. That is why it is nonsense to say, "We again crucified Jesus." With the cross of Jesus, once is enough. Through this "once," all of our sins have been forgiven.

If We Sin Willfully After We Have Received the Truth

Now let's talk about verse 26. For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more offering for sins, Many people are very much tied to these words. Sinning willfully means sinning knowingly and with intent. Before receiving salvation, I heard a sermon from a pastor who said, "If you sin knowingly, that sin cannot be forgiven." Upon hearing that, I thought, "I will end up going to hell!" Later I found out that this was not true. All people sin knowing. That is the nature of sin. Since it says that there is no more offering for sins committed knowingly, if sins committed knowingly cannot be forgiven, we would all be relegated to hell. But there is a condition in these words. It says, "after that we have received the knowledge of the truth." What is the truth? Jesus was crucified and forgave all our sins. What does it mean to sin knowinglyafter understanding this? Saying that we are still sinners. It is saying that the death of Jesus has not forgiven my sins.Jesus was not crucified for His sins, but for ours. He saved us from all our sins through His crucifixion. All of our sins have been washed away. But if you say, "Jesus was crucified for all of my sins," but say, "Iam a sinner," then what will wash away these sins? There is no other way because only the blood of Jesus shed on the cross can wash away our sins. The words of the Bible that say that all of our sins have been washed as white as snow through the crucifixion of Jesus arethe truth of God, but the devil puts a different thought in us. He says, "Jesus was crucified but you are a sinner because you sin every day." In this way we are deceived. If we receive the word of God, we say, "I committed many sins, but all of my sins have been washed through the blood of Jesus and I no longer have sin!" and we would have the same heart as God. On the contrary, if we listen to Satan's voice, we say, "Yes, Jesus died on the cross, but I still have sin. How can a person say he has no sin? We are all sinners!" People who hear the voice of Satan ask daily for the forgiveness of their sins, but God says that the work of forgiving sins is already completed. Saying that there is a way to have our sins washed away, other than by the blood of Jesus on the cross, is heresy. It is a lie to be damned. If my sins were not washed clean, even though Jesus was crucified, there could be no other offering for sin. Sins not washed by the blood of Jesus cannot be washed. To say otherwise is to deny and to go against Jesus.

Sin Once Punished Cannot Be Punished Again

If a person's sins are washed by the blood of Jesus, then they are washed, and if they are not washed, then they are eternally unwashed. To say that there is no more offering to be made for sin means that the only redemption for our sin is the offering of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Many of the practices of making offerings in the Old Testament were set aside before Jesus came, and all of those offeringsended with Jesus. In reality, all of our sins have been washed away and they are no more, but Satan leads us to think that our sins remain. There are people who have morbid suspicions of their spouses' chastity. This is a poisonous thought planted in the minds of people by Satan to destroy the family. Although it is not true, one feels as though his or her spouse is doing something unclean.When I lived in Daegu, the city police commissioner lived across the street from me. He and his wife fought all thetime. Because he was the police commissioner, in the course of his work he would often come into contact with women who lived impure lives. In seeing how these women behaved, he came to think that his wife was going around doing unclean things as well. That was why they often fought. When asked if he was sure his wife was doing such things, he would say that he was so sure that he did not need to look into it. Even though there was no proof, he was absolutely certain that his wife was misbehaving. Of course, not all people harbor such suspicions about their spouse, but there are people who are suspicious about their sins remaining. They are unable to free themselves from this thought. Although Jesus forgave their sins, although that is what the Bible tells us, they believe that their sins remain. That is being suspicious of God's Word. Long ago, we used charcoal for fuel in our homes. New charcoal looks just like spent charcoal, so how can you tell them apart? New charcoal will burn, whereas spent charcoal will not light, no matter how much you try. In the same way, our sinscannot be punished because they have already been punished. All punishment for my sins was meted out on the cross. All of my sins have been washed away. They can no longer be condemned, nor can they be punished. Still, however, Satan makes you feel as though you have sin. Saying that you have sin even though you know the truth that your sins have been forgiven is the willful sin of going against the cross of Jesus. I am so happy to be able to give sermons like this. Are you not happy to know that this is what the Bible says? We have long lived tied to sin, but these words have made us free from sin. These words cleansed us of all sin. We have memories of our sin, but in truth, we do not have sin. The sins that we remember were punished on the cross. Just as spent charcoal can no longer light, sin once punished cannot be punished again. We have been redeemed for eternity. This is why we are forever holy. I praise the Lord.

9 Articles 1 of 1 Pages
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