My husband and I have been living in the same house for over 15 years. It was just meant to be our starter home, but two kids and one dog later, it’s obviously stretched into far more! As I sit here on my sofa (like I do every morning), I’m staring at my dirty floors I just swept yesterday. Yes, YESTERDAY! It’s practically impossible to keep my house clean for a solid 24 hour time span. I guess four people and a shedding dog will do that. After 15 years, I have cleaned the very same spots in this house over and over and over and over and over again. If I do the calculations, I estimate that I’ve probably cleaned them 5,475 times (give or take)...and counting! That’s a whole lot of dust pan and vacuum use! Oh, to be able to clean ONCE and have done with it forever!
As impossible as this would be for my home, God has actually made it spiritually possible for people to experience this very thing. Hebrews tells us that the priests in the Old Testament had to offer sacrifices everyday to get clean - not to get a clean house, but a clean heart. EVERYDAY, they made sacrifices to take away their sins. Ugh, I can’t imagine.
But then Jesus entered the scene in the New Testament. And, boy, He didn’t mess around. He’s didn’t just take over as Priest, He also became the Sacrifice! And in one fell swoop, He handled Sin once and for all, so that the business of daily sacrifice could finally come to an end! And when He had done all this, He sat down because it was finished!
Ladies and gentlemen, if someone came to me and said that they could come in and clean my house once and I’d never have to pick up a broom or vacuum again, I would be a fool not to take them up on their offer! In the same way, Jesus is presenting this outrageous offer. Because He died once and for all, He can now clean our hearts, as well as our consciences, forever. It’s a deal only God could think of and a plan only God could make happen!
Under the old covenant, the priest stands and ministers before the altar day after day, offering the same sacrifices again and again, which can never take away sins. But our High Priest offered himself to God as a single sacrifice for sins, good for all time. Then he sat down in the place of honor at God’s right hand. There he waits until his enemies are humbled and made a footstool under his feet. For by that one offering he forever made perfect those who are being made holy.
And the Holy Spirit also testifies that this is so. For he says,
“This is the new covenant I will make with my people on that day, says the Lord:
I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds.”
Then he says, “I will never again remember their sins and lawless deeds.”
And when sins have been forgiven, there is no need to offer any more sacrifices.
And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven’s Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus. By his death, Jesus opened a new and life-giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place. And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house, let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water.
Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm,
for God can be trusted to keep his promise.
Hebrews 10:11-23 NLT