Friday, 17 May 2019
Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate. Hebrews 13:12
The word “Therefore” is given based on what was said in the preceding verse. The bodies of the animals which were given for sin were “burned outside the camp.” That was given to show that the sins had been taken away from the people, outside of the area where God dwelt in the holy city and were thus removed from them. When the animal was burned, the sins were symbolically completely removed and could not be brought back to memory and counted against the people again. The rising of the smoke symbolized this.
Israel was considered God’s holy people. He dwelt in their presence, and anything which defiled was to be removed from that glorious presence. This was accomplished in this way as a picture of what Christ would do in reality. It didn’t actually accomplish this, but it was granted to the people as a temporary institution until Christ came to fulfill the types and shadows. In that, their faith looked forward to the coming work of Messiah; our faith looks back to what He has accomplished.
In fulfillment of this particular picture, the author then says, “Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate.” This is recorded in the gospels, such as –
“Now as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name. Him they compelled to bear His cross. 33 And when they had come to a place called Golgotha, that is to say, Place of a Skull, 34 they gave Him sour wine mingled with gall to drink. But when He had tasted it, He would not drink.” Matthew 27:32-34
“Then many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin.” John 19:20
Even this seemingly obscure precept from the Law of Moses was fulfilled exactingly by Jesus. He was taken outside the city, bearing the sins of the world upon Himself, and away from the Presence which was in the temple. The typology was fulfilled, and the true forgiveness which Israel only anticipated under the Law of Moses was realized.
Life application: What was said in Hebrews 9 should be recalled in this verse. Christ entered the more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, and He did it not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood. In this, we were told that He obtained for us eternal redemption.
Jesus’ blood was presented in the true Most Holy Place, proving His death. However, His body suffered outside the city gate as a symbol that it was unclean because of receiving our sins; it was removed from the people. Consider this as you contemplate the words of 2 Corinthians 5:21 –
“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
Think on the significance of what occurred and how far God went to reconcile us to Himself. If you fully grasp what happened, how can you not devote your very self to honoring and giving glory – forever – to this One who loves you so much? The Creator of the vastness of the universe sent His Son to become sin so that You might become the righteousness of God in Him – simply unimaginable!
O God, thank You for Jesus. Amen.