Christmas, Jesus' Sacrifice, Uncategorized

Word Wednesday: The Birth of the Last Sin Offering/ Aphesis

 

 

“For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified. . . . Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin” (Hebrews 10:14,18).

 

Jesus put the priests out of a job. Sacrifices were no longer required after He came.

Unfortunately, I didn’t live during the days of sacrifices and burnt offerings, so my mind has a difficult time wrapping itself around such a feat. It’s kind of like not fully understanding how much I rely on electricity and running water until we go camping.

Camping is always good for me–though I prefer slow room service at the Holiday Inn.

Our Thanksgiving camping trip.
Our Thanksgiving camping trip.

This year we traveled on Thanksgiving day into the mountains of North Carolina away from my moderate beach weather to snow and ice. And, yes, we did this on purpose. It was cold. Sooo cold.

No internet (thus no Friday blog post), no running water because it froze in the lines. One had to walk to the bathrooms though thankfully there were bathrooms. And the six of us piled into the tiny camper to stay warm.

It’s moments like these when I realize just how much I have and how comfortable my bed is.

What would it take for me to fully comprehend what Jesus did for me?

 

It’s hard enough to believe that God sent HIS son to be born outside under the stars. . . on a camping trip too–sort of. There was no room in the inn.

I don’t fare well when I’m tired. If I would’ve been Mary, my aching swollen body contracting and threatening to birth a child, I would’ve demanded a room or thrown a temper-tantrum. I certainly wouldn’t have resembled the peaceful Mary in my nativity set.

Has it ever occurred to anyone how nothing about Jesus’ life and purpose was easy? Even HIS birth took place in hardship by our human standards.

But then again, maybe God just wanted HIS creation to witness Hope being born. Each star, named by God, held its breath as the Son of God arrived. Could creation itself imagine how this story of redemption would run its course? How it would end in death way before the Savior’s time?

Can we fathom such sacrifice?

For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified. . . . Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin” (Hebrews 10:14,18).

It’s amazing. HIS offering perfected us even though we’re still in process. We’re in the middle of the now and the not yet. We haven’t arrived, but we have.

The word “forgiveness” was translated from the Greek word aphesis. 

  • Aphesis: freedom, pardon, forgiveness, liberty. . . deliverance from service or captivity. 

We have been delivered from the captivity of selfishness. Isn’t that what sin is?

We have been delivered from the captivity of distrust of God. Isn’t that why Eve and Adam ate the fruit?

We are free even though we often put our chains back on during brief moments of relapse.

 

[tweetability]Only a pure act of selflessness and complete trust in God could redeem man for all eternity.[/tweetability]

 

And this feat could only be done by One who was both man and God. Creator in creation’s clothing. The mystery of the God man—not just God poured into flesh, but God with man limits, temptations, and fears.

The God-man, Jesus.

How do we thank HIM?

How will you commemorate Christmas differently this year knowing that the baby’s birth we celebrate was the birth of the last sin offering needed for all eternity?

Leave a comment to enter to win a Key Word Study Bible. Read Monday’s post for ways to enter multiple times.

Thankful for Jesus,

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9 thoughts on “Word Wednesday: The Birth of the Last Sin Offering/ Aphesis

  1. I am reminded how difficult it is to accept a gift without feeling that you have to give one in return. Jesus gave us a gift that is so undeserved but given with one thought in mind-us.
    Our return gift is our love and devotion to Him,which is a gift that makes a circle back to us. It is the time of year that reminds me of the sweetness of Jesus.

  2. I have been having visible and invisible temper tantrums for weeks now. Jesus sees all of them. I am soul weary as I hear the cries of my deeply depressed non believing son. I can’t heal him. I beg Jesus. Thanks for the reminder of why I still hope.

    1. Oh Patricia! I’m so sorry for your aching momma heart. Only the love of Jesus can heal him. Pray. Fast. Worship. I’ll be praying with you. Yes, we have hope because of Jesus. He is faithful and He loves your non believing son.

  3. I’m so glad you ventured out into the cold and camped in the mountains. God has much to show us in nature. I’m thankful your eyes were opened and your pen ready.

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