Ezekiel 22:1-31; Hebrews 10:8-17; Psalms 107:4-32; Proverbs 23:23
NT: “Every priest stands day after day ministering and offering the same sacrifices time after time, which can never take away sins. But this man, after offering one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God. He is now waiting until his enemies are made his footstool. For by one offering he has perfected forever those who are sanctified. The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. For after he says: This is the covenant I will make with them after those days, the Lord says, I will put my laws on their hearts and write them on their minds, and I will never again remember their sins and their lawless acts.” (Hebrews 10:11-17 CSB)
The sacrificial system established in the law was insufficient and could never complete the sanctification of God’s people. Christ’s sacrifice, however, was sufficient. After offering His life as the substitutionary sacrifice for our sin, He raised Himself from the dead and ascended to heaven. In heaven, Christ sat down at the right hand of God, showing that His work to secure mankind’s salvation and sanctification was complete. Christ now waits at the Father’s side for the fullness of time and the Father’s designated time for the day His vengeance to arrive.
By Christ’s offering of Himself, He has completed all that was required to secure our sanctification and make perfect forever those who are sanctified. Who are those who are sanctified? Those who have repented of their sin and believed on the completed work of Christ. When we repent of our sin and place our faith on Christ, we are sanctified (Acts 26:18). At that moment, we are sanctified (declared righteous and set apart as God’s), and begin a process of being ongoingly sanctified from glory to glory by the work of the Holy Spirit. We then, as sanctified saints in Christ, participate in the fulfillment of the prophecy given by Jeremiah over 2,500 years ago. We become the ones of the new covenant who have our sins forgiven and the word, will and ways of God written on our minds and on our hearts.
Psalms: “Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; he rescued them from their distress. He led them by the right path to go to a city where they could live… He brought them out of darkness and gloom and broke their chains apart… He sent his word and healed them; he rescued them from their traps. Let them give thanks to the Lord for his faithful love and his wondrous works for all humanity. Let them offer thanksgiving sacrifices and announce his works with shouts of joy.” (Psalms 107:6-7, 14, 20-22 CSB)
In this section of psalm 107, the psalmist described three types of distressed people: 1) those lost and wandering in the desolate wilderness and suffering from hunger and thirst (vs 4-5), 2) those who rebelled against God and found themselves bound in darkness (vs 10-11), and 3) fools (those who quarrel and mock) who were suffering affliction because of their iniquity and sins (vs 17-18). In all three scenarios, when the lost, the rebellious, and the foolish cried out to God, repented of their sin, and placed their faith in Him, He rescued them from their distress. The lost, He set on the right path. The rebellious, He broke their chains and freed them from darkness. The foolish, He filled them with wisdom from His word and rescued them from their traps. The lost, the rebellious, the foolish – they all describe us before Christ. We who have cried out to the Lord and been rescued from our sinful state – we of all people hold give thanks to the Lord for saving us, sanctifying us, and perfecting us forever in Him.
Prayer: Lord, I thank You for Your perfect sacrifice that has provided the way for me to be sanctified and perfected forever. Thank You, that when I cried out to You, repented of my sin, and placed my faith in You, You rescued me, set me on the right path, freed me from the kingdom of darkness, and filled me with Your wisdom from Your word, will and ways. In You, I have been made perfect. As I remain in You by faith, You will continue to perfect me into Your image. I am forever grateful. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.