The New Life Mission

Sermons

Subject 11 : The Tabernacle

[11-32] (Exodus 29:1-14) The Sin Offering To Consecrate The High Priest

(Exodus 29:1-14)
“And this is what you shall do to them to hallow them for ministering to Me as priests: Take one young bull and two rams without blemish, and unleavened bread, unleavened cakes mixed with oil, and unleavened wafers anointed with oil (you shall make them of wheat flour). You shall put them in one basket and bring them in the basket, with the bull and the two rams. And Aaron and his sons you shall bring to the door of the tabernacle of meeting, and you shall wash them with water. Then you shall take the garments, put the tunic on Aaron, and the robe of the ephod, the ephod, and the breastplate, and gird him with the intricately woven band of the ephod. You shall put the turban on his head, and put the holy crown on the turban. And you shall take the anointing oil, pour it on his head, and anoint him. Then you shall bring his sons and put tunics on them. And you shall gird them with sashes, Aaron and his sons, and put the hats on them. The priesthood shall be theirs for a perpetual statute. So you shall consecrate Aaron and his sons. You shall also have the bull brought before the tabernacle of meeting, and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands on the head of the bull. Then you shall kill the bull before the LORD, by the door of the tabernacle of meeting. You shall take some of the blood of the bull and put it on the horns of the altar with your finger, and pour all the blood beside the base of the altar. And you shall take all the fat that covers the entrails, the fatty lobe attached to the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat that is on them, and burn them on the altar. But the flesh of the bull, with its skin and its offal, you shall burn with fire outside the camp. It is a sin offering.”
 
 
Today we turn our attention to the consecration of the High Priest. Here God ordered Moses how to consecrate Aaron and his sons in detail. The word “to consecrate” in verse 9 means to sanctify, to prepare, to dedicate, to honor, or to treat as sacred. In other words, being consecrated means being sanctified by and dedicated to God. Therefore, “being consecrated as the High Priest” means “being set apart to be given the authority and duties of the High Priest.” God gave Aaron and his sons the right of the High Priest and the priesthood, which enabled them to render his people the remission of sins.
God commanded Moses to clothe Aaron with the garments of the High Priest and put the turban on his head, and his sons with tunics. Then for Aaron to be consecrated as the High Priest and his sons as the priests, they had to take a bull and two unblemished rams for their consecration. The most important duty of the High Priest was to offer the sin offerings on the Day of Atonement for the remission of sins of entire Israelites. And in order to do so, Aaron himself and his sons had to be cleansed of their own sins first of all, and that was why they had to offer the sin offering for themselves first on the day of his consecration.
What we must realize here is that even the High Priest had to lay his hands on the head of the sacrificial offerings before he killed them to offer their blood to God, all in accordance to the very sacrificial system He had established. For seven days, the High Priest had to give such offerings as the sin offering along with the burnt offerings, the wave offerings, and the heave offerings for his consecration.
Just like the offerings that were given for the High Priest himself and his household, he also had to lay his hands on the heads of the sacrificial animals to pass the Israelites’ sins onto them before killing them, and draw its blood. For the duty of ministering to God as the High Priest, he had to learn in detail how offerings should be given for the remission of his people’s sins. That the High Priest gave the sin offering to wash away his own sins first means that he was being trained on how to give offerings for his people—that is, by also laying his hands on the heads of the offerings, drawing its blood and putting this blood on the altar of burnt offering, and pouring the rest out on the ground.
Here, the High Priest had to remember that to pass his sins and his people’s sins on; he had to lay his hands on the head of the offerings. As Exodus 29:10-12 states, “You shall also have the bull brought before the tabernacle of meeting, and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands on the head of the bull. Then you shall kill the bull before the LORD, by the door of the tabernacle of meeting. You shall take some of the blood of the bull and put it on the horns of the altar with your finger, and pour all the blood beside the base of the altar.”
The High Priest and his sons were commanded that they infallibly had to lay their hands on the head of the bull, their sacrificial offering. Because when Aaron the High Priest and his sons put their hands on the head of the sacrificial animal, all their sins were passed onto it. And because this sacrificial offering accepted the sins of the High Priest and his sons by their laying on of hands, it had to bleed and die. After this, the High Priest then drew its blood, put its blood on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and poured the rest out on the ground. He should take all the fat that covers the entrails, the fatty lobe attached to the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat that was on them, and then he burnt them on the altar.
In case of the sin offering for the atonement for sins of anyone of the common people who have committed sin unwittingly, he shall bring as his sin offering a kid of the goats, a female without blemish, for his sin that he has committed. “And he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering, and kill the sin offering at the place of the burnt offering. Then the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger, put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and pour all the remaining blood at the base of the altar. He shall remove all its fat, as fat is removed from the sacrifice of the peace offering; and the priest shall burn it on the altar for a sweet aroma to the LORD. So the priest shall make atonement for him, and it shall be forgiven him” (Leviticus 4:29-31).
This laying on of hands and the bloodshed of the offering constituted the essential elements of the sacrificial system set by God. Even before the foundation of the world, God set this plan in Jesus Christ to remit all our sins with the truth hidden in the blue, purple, and scarlet thread and the fine woven linen. God promised the people of Israel that He would meet them whenever they give Him the burnt offering. Exodus 29:42 states, “This shall be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations at the door of the tabernacle of meeting before the LORD, where I will meet you to speak with you.” The burnt offering that the priests gave every morning and evening is the offering to be given throughout generations even by us, the spiritual people of Israel who have received the remission of sin by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. God is telling us that He would meet us through these offerings.
 
 
What Is the Meaning of the Burnt Offering Given by the High Priest?
 
Because the sacrificial offering accepted all the iniquities of the sinners who laid their hands on its head, it had to die in their place and be condemned by being burnt. What God wants from us through the sin offering of the sacrificial system is for us to confess, “Because I have committed such and such sins before God, I must receive such condemnation of sin.” For us to wash away our sins, in accordance with God’s law of salvation, we must lay our hands on the head of our sacrificial offering, draw its blood, put this blood on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, pour the rest of the blood out on the ground, burn its flesh on the altar of burnt offering, and thereby receive the remission of sins according to the grace in the righteousness of God.
First, we must acknowledge before God all the sins that we have committed with both our hearts and acts. And we must recognize that we cannot avoid being condemned of these sins. But we cannot thank God enough for His perfect salvation. God so loved us that He gave His only begotten Son. Jesus Christ took all our sins through His baptism and atoned for all those sins with His death on the Cross in order that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
The sacrificial system requires that the offerings should be given through the laying on of hands and their bloodshed. This denotes the evidence of the faith that remits all our sins, and we must therefore believe in it. That every sinner laid his hands on the head of the sacrificial offering means the passing of his sins onto it. Even the High Priest also had to confess, “I have such sins before God, and I must be therefore put to death,” when he offered a sin offering. But by believing that God has given us the offering of atonement to deliver us from sin, and that God has enabled us to receive the remission of sin by believing in this offering, we can be saved.
God said, “I will meet you there.” He said this not only to the High Priest, but also to every common people, meaning that God would give the remission of sins to all of us and thereby make us His own people. How then does God meet us? Because God has the plan of salvation for us, He surely meets only those who give their sin offerings according to the sacrificial system which was established by Him. Because God knew very well that human beings are born sinners and that they are bound to sin as well, He wanted to wash away all our sins according to His mercy which is manifested in His sacrificial system of salvation, and thereby make us His own children. This was why God had established the sacrificial system through which countless people of Israel could pass their sins onto their offering of sacrifice as they laid their hands on its head.
The method by which the people of Israel passed their sins onto the sacrificial offerings was through the “laying on of hands” like this. The people of Israel broke the law of God countless times and committed all kinds of sins. But because they could pass all their iniquities onto their sacrificial offerings through this method of the “laying on of hands,” they were able to wash away all their sins. It was through this that God could dwell with those Israelites who believed in Him, become their God, make them His own people, lead them, and give them the blessings of Heaven as well as the blessings of the fatness of this earth. All these things could come true through their faith in the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle.
All such facets of the sacrificial system of the Tabernacle were set by God beforehand, and the people of Israel could be washed from all their sins by laying their hands on the head of their sacrifice and thereby pass all their sins onto it according to the method set by God. Because God enabled all those who came to Him by believing in the power of the laying on of hands and the bloodshed established by Him to be washed from their sins, those who believed in this Truth could walk with the holy God. Without the offering that was given with both the laying on of hands and bloodshed, God could not dwell with the people of Israel. Regardless of how insufficient the Israelites were and how many sins they had committed, God could however dwell with them because of this God-given law of salvation constituted by the lawful sacrifice—the laying on of hands on the head of the sin offering and its bloodshed. Therefore, we must all realize and believe that the salvation from sin permitted to us by God is made of both the laying of hands on the head of the sacrificial offering and its bloodshed.
The priests had to give burnt offerings every morning and evening. They had to do this because after giving a burnt offering in the morning for their sins, they went on to commit many more sins during the day, and so it was necessary to pass their sins and wash them again by giving another sacrificial offering in the evening. The burnt offerings that were given everyday reminded the Israelites of the faith that remembers and believes that Jesus would come to this earth, take upon the sins of the world by being baptized by John the Baptist, die on the Cross, and thereby blot out all the sins of the whole world. Likewise, we must all give the offering of faith every morning and evening, for we continue to sin ceaselessly throughout the day. This offering of faith that was given in the time of the Old Testament is the same as being washed of all the uncleanness of the heart in the New Testament’s time by believing in the baptism that Jesus received from John the Baptist and in His bloodshed.
God the Father meets us when He finds this faith in our hearts that believes that Jesus our Savior has remitted all our sins away. In accordance with the sacrificial system of the Old Testament, Jesus Christ came to this earth in His time and accepted all our sins by being baptized by John the Baptist at the beginning of the New Testament era (Matthew 3:15). This is why Jesus said, “And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force” (Matthew 11:12). By believing in this gospel Truth, we could be freed from all our sins and be cleansed from them perfectly.
Regardless of the fact that Jesus Christ came to this earth, people have been committing countless sins, and we Christians, both before and after knowing Jesus Christ, have also been committing innumerable sins. But Jesus Christ came to this earth, and with the baptism that He received from John the Baptist and His bloodshed on the Cross, He has washed away all the sins of the world. Hence, when God said that He would meet the people of Israel through the burnt offering, it means that God would meet those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. God loves those who thus believe that He has truly eradicated all their sins with the blue, purple, and scarlet thread. But He certainly does not love those who reject this Truth.
In this age of the New Testament, it is by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that we can meet God. In the Old Testament’s time, it was by believing in the Truth manifested in the blue, purple, and scarlet thread and the fine woven linen that one could receive the remission of sins. The laying on of hands and the bloodshed—the union of these two concepts constitutes one perfect gospel. The Old Testament prophesied God’s perfect salvation in detail, and the New Testament is the fulfillment of those prophecies and the completion of the promised gospel. Therefore, Hebrews 1:1-2 states, “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, as in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds.”
Jesus is the King of kings and the Almighty God, but this God came to this earth incarnated into the flesh of man, was baptized, died on the Cross, rose again from the dead, and has thereby washed away all our sins and saved us from all the condemnation of sin. By believing in this gospel with which God has made us righteous, we can become whole. It has now become possible for us to receive the remission of our sins, which we had sought after so earnestly. We have wanted to wash away all our sins so desperately, and God has remitted them once for all through the sacrificial system of the laying on of hands and the bloodshed—that is, through the baptism of Jesus and His bloodshed on the Cross, the actual substance of the gospel of the water and the Spirit (1 John 5:6-8). It is when we believe that God has remitted all our sins perfectly that He makes us His own people and meets us.
  
 
The Importance of the Laying on of Hands
 
Leviticus 1:1-4 say, “Now the LORD called to Moses, and spoke to him from the tabernacle of meeting, saying, ‘Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘When any one of you brings an offering to the LORD, you shall bring your offering of the livestock—of the herd and of the flock. If his offering is a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish; he shall offer it of his own free will at the door of the tabernacle of meeting before the LORD. Then he shall put his hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it will be accepted on his behalf to make atonement for him.’”
Pay attention to verse 4 here that says, “Then he shall put his hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it will be accepted on his behalf to make atonement for him.” In other words, God would accept the offering in pleasure when a sinner offered his burnt offering after laying his hands on the head of it. On whose head were the sinner’s hands to be laid on? It was the head of the sacrificial offering. Only by this method, God promised to blot out the sins of the people of Israel. So in the Old Testament it was on the head of the sacrificial offering that hands were laid, but what about the New Testament? Who is the true offering of sacrifice in the New Testament’s time? It is none other than Jesus Christ the Savior of all humankind. Jesus Christ is the one and only offering of sacrifice for blotting out the sins of the entire humankind. It is because of one man that all became sinners, and it is also because of the very Jesus Christ that all human beings can be cleansed of all their sins and receive eternal life.
By faith, we must lay our hands on Jesus’ head and pass all our sins onto Him. In other words, we must put our hands on His head in true faith so that God would accept this offering of sacrifice in pleasure. Jesus said in Matthew 11:12 that only the violent could take His Kingdom by force. Because the laying on of hands enables us to pass all our sins onto the offering of sacrifice, God accepts in pleasure this sacrifice of faith. Because John the Baptist laid his hands on the head of Jesus Christ and passed all the sins of humankind onto Him, God has enabled everyone to be washed from sin and delivered them from the condemnation of sin when they believe wholeheartedly in both His baptism and His vicarious death on the Cross. It is by believing in the baptism Jesus Christ received that we can pass all our sins onto Him.
God had given the Israelites the sacrificial system, and it foreshadowed the eternal sacrifice offered by Jesus Christ with His own body. In other words, Jesus Christ has completed the law of salvation promised in this sacrificial system with His baptism and His blood of the Cross. Out of His endless love for us, God has saved us by giving us Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son. Now is the time for everyone to be saved by believing in the baptism of Jesus Christ and His bloodshed on the Cross.
The Omniscient God planned His perfect salvation for sinners even before the creation, and fulfilled it correctly according to His timetable. It was in accordance to this plan of salvation that John the Baptist was born six months prior to Jesus. John the Baptist was the greatest of all mankind. As Jesus Himself said, “Among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist” (Matthew 11:11), John the Baptist, in other words, was the representative of mankind. John the Baptist was a servant of God who was greater than even Moses, Elijah, and the Prophet Isaiah. Many people consider John the Baptist only as someone who lived an ascetic life in the wilderness. But he was in fact sent to be the representative of all mankind by God. John the Baptist was indeed the greatest of all the people of this world. He came from the household of Aaron the High Priest (Luke 1:5-7). As kings were born from the royal family, John the Baptist, the last High Priest, was also born from the household of Aaron the first High Priest, and as the representative of mankind, he baptized Jesus in the Jordan River to pass the sins of mankind onto Him. John the Baptist is the greatest of all on this earth. But there are some people who question this, as if determining themselves not to believe, asking, “Where in the Bible does it say that John the Baptist is the High Priest?”
Let me answer them by demonstrating clearly that John the Baptist is indeed the representative of all mankind and the High Priest, for this is all written in the Word of God: “For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if you are willing to receive it, he is Elijah who is to come” (Matthew 11:13-14). God had promised to send Elijah in Malachi 4:5. And Jesus Himself said that this Elijah who is to come is none other than John the Baptist. It was because John the Baptist was born as a descendant of Aaron that he fulfilled the role of the High Priest.
In the Old Testament, when a sinner passed his sins by laying his hands on the head of the sacrificial offering, the offering then was put to death by shedding its blood and burnt by fire. Anyone who sought to be remitted from his sins had to put his hands on the head of the sacrificial offering without fail to pass his sins onto it. When people laid their hands on the head of the sacrificial offering, it meant that their sins were passed onto it. And, on the Day of Atonement, Aaron the High Priest had to lay his hands on the head of the scapegoat to pass all the yearly sins of the Israelites onto it. Here also, the laying on of hands was indispensible, and it means, spiritually speaking, the transfer of sin. John the Baptist passed all our sins onto Jesus through His baptism, and through this baptism Jesus accepted all the sins of the world and then shed His blood on the Cross. By being baptized by John the Baptist and thereby taking upon all our sins, and by shedding His blood on the Cross and rising again from the dead, Jesus Christ has become our perfect Savior.
The people of Israel also gave their offering to God by laying their hands on its head in this way. When the people of Israel sinned against God and thereby became sinners, they had to pass their sins onto their offerings by putting their hands on the head of the animals in order to give their sin offerings to God properly. God accepted in pleasure the lawful offering that was burnt with fire after hands were laid on its head and it was killed. It was because the people of Israel had given Him this lawful offering of sacrifice by passing their sins through the laying on of their hands on its head and that God met them. It was because the sacrificial offering had accepted their sins through the laying on of hands and was vicariously condemned for their sins that God met those who came to Him by believing in the grace of God implicated in this offering. That’s why God was so pleased to accept such sacrificial animals. He is so merciful that He cannot bear anyone to be sent to hell
Like this, what cleanse us from all our sins are both the baptism that Jesus Christ received and His blood of the Cross. It was because Jesus Christ took upon all our sins by being baptized by John the Baptist in order to blot out the sins of the world that He could die on the Cross and bear the righteous condemnation for our sins. It was because Jesus was baptized to take upon all our sins and bore the righteous punishment of the Cross that He could deliver and free us from sin. Therefore, by believing in His baptism and the sacrifice of His bloodshed, we can now be born again as the righteous and meet Jesus Christ. By believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, through Jesus’ righteous acts, in short, we can all meet the holy God. Jesus Christ has become the everlasting Savior of those of us who believe in this Truth.
We must indeed meet the holy God. By believing in Jesus Christ the Savior who came by the blue, purple, and scarlet thread, we can meet God by faith. Those who seek to meet God must hear His Word and believe in the God-given sacrificial system that consists of both the laying on of hands and the bloodshed. If they cannot quite understand it fully with their own carnal thoughts and have even the slightest doubt about this, they must open the Word of God and confirm it for themselves. And they must believe what the Word of God says is right.
We must not believe in God with our own thoughts. Instead, we must stand firm on God’s Word of truth, and based on this Word, we must discern the other gospels from this genuine gospel. We must not insist on our thoughts alone, relying on our own understanding and learning. None of your own thoughts can ever be right. Human beings are so weak, so stubborn, and so hardened before God that they are inclined to front their own righteousness and thoughts first and leave the Word of God behind. Opening our hearts before God and believing in His Word is the real way to life and blessings.
When the High Priest gave a bull as his sin offering for being consecrated, God told him to take all its fat that covered the entrails, the fatty lobe attached to the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat that was on them, and burn them on the altar, while the flesh of the bull, with its skin and its offal, were to be burnt with fire outside the camp. The High Priest gave the offering just as God had commanded Moses. When the burnt offering was given, the High Priest also brought a ram without blemish as the offering of sacrifice and laid his hands on its head. For himself and his household, morning and evening the High Priest and his sons laid their hands on the head of such an offering, cut its throat and drew its blood, and put this blood on the horns of the altar of burnt offering. They then burnt all its unclean parts such as its offal and its head outside the camp, but the carved pieces were burnt on the altar of burnt offering. The burnt offering that was given during the consecration of the High Priest was also offered in this way.
In particular, during the consecration of the High Priest, all the fat of the sacrificial offering had to be burnt to God. That God was pleased with the aroma of the fat of the sacrificial offering manifests itself that it certainly is according to His Word and the sacrificial system set by Him that God makes us be born again. The fat here, in other words, manifests God the Holy Spirit. God has given us the sacrificial system, and He has made us, in accordance with this sacrificial system; by putting our hands on the head of the sacrificial offering, killing it, and offering it to Him by burning its flesh on the altar of burnt offering. Only when the sacrificial offering was given according to the sacrificial system set by God like this and with faith in Him did God accept it in pleasure.
Exodus 29:10 says, “Aaron and his sons shall put their hands on the head of the bull.” This was God’s command. Moreover, of the garments that the High Priest wore during his consecration, the ephod had to be woven of five threads without fail—that is, it had to be woven of gold, blue, purple, and scarlet thread and fine woven linen. The gold thread here speaks of faith. The blue thread refers to the baptism that Jesus Christ received, which is the same as the Old Testament’s laying on of hands; the purple thread tells us that Jesus is the Son of God, God Himself and the Savior; and the scarlet thread refers to the sacrifice that Jesus Christ made; and the fine woven linen refers to the Word of God that has made us sinless. The golden thread manifests the faith that believes that God has remitted all our sins and turned our hearts as white as snow. We must have this faith, believing that God has blotted out our sins with the baptism of Jesus and the blood of the Cross. We must believe in Jesus Christ exactly according to what God has told us all, according to how He has blotted out all our sins. We must believe in God according to how God set the sacrificial system of salvation, and how He has blotted out all our sins through Jesus Christ who has completed the sacrificial system.
Many people say, “Why don’t you believe in Him just like this? Why are you so picky? Maybe it’s because you have a detail-oriented personality and you like to be certain all the time, but my personality is all around, and so I believe both two conflicting opinions can be right at the same time. Does God accept only people who believe like you? If I say that I somehow believe in God, should this faith not be enough in itself?” If you believe like this, God will not be pleased with you. He is the God of truth. God has not saved us in such a wobbly and uncertain way. God is the extremely bright light whose Word is like a sharp, double-edged sword. He judges with the Urim and the Thummim, which mean that He has saved us with light and perfection.
God is more precise than even the most advanced microscope that can recognize and discern the smallest of all measurements from one another. He is not someone who approves our salvation when we believe in whatever way we like to. Because God is the truth, He knows everything, from our hidden thoughts to our temporary feelings, from the sins that are in our hearts to our acts, from the sins that we committed before to the sins that we are committing now and the sins that we will commit in the future, hidden and revealed alike. This is why God has determined that He would surely remit all such sins away with both the laying on of hands and the blood of the sacrifice, and this is why we must certainly believe in God’s salvation according to the sacrificial system set by God.
The Lord said that we should put our hands on the head of the sacrificial offering, and that He would then accept it in pleasure. When a sinner lays his hands on the head of the sacrificial offering, he must then kill this offering and put its blood on the horns of the altar of burnt offering. Here, putting the blood of the offering on the horns speaks of the blotting out of the sins that are recorded in the Book of Judgment (Revelation 20:12-15). After this, the rest of the blood is poured out on the ground. This means that his heart is washed from sin.
For you and I, Jesus Christ was baptized, died on the Cross, rose again from the dead, and has thereby saved us all. The High Priest also had the same faith as ours. The faith that you and I have in this present age is absolutely no different from the faith that the High Priest had. For the High Priest, too, it was by his faith in the truth manifested in the blue, purple, and scarlet thread that he could fulfill his priestly duties, and it is by this same faith that you and I have also become righteous. It is because we have received the remission of sins by this faith that believes in the salvation given to us by God that we can now meet Him, ask for His help, lead our lives as His own people, and spread the gospel to sinners as we fulfill our priestly duties.
 
 
Earthly High Priests and the Sacrificial System Were Set by God
 
The High Priest and the sacrificial system were set by God. Hence, the earthly High Priest did what God commanded him to do, and by doing so he fulfilled his priestly duties to remit the sins of his people. How did Jesus Christ the Son of God then blot out all our sins as the High Priest of Heaven? Instead of using an earthly sacrificial offering, He took His own unblemished body as the sacrificial offering and put all our sins onto it. Jesus took upon the sins of mankind by being baptized by John the Baptist, shed His blood and died on the Cross, rose from the dead again, and has thereby saved us from all the sins of the world. How amazing is this love, and how marvelous is this salvation!
Can you do this? For the sake of someone else, can you take upon this person’s sins and be crucified to death in his place? Impossible! Moreover, your body cannot be qualified as a lawful offering, for it is not without blemish. There are, of course, some people who have done righteous things for a greater cause than themselves—for their nation for instance. But though there may be some who can do this, everything done by human beings is all but futile, for they cannot even solve the problem of their own sins, far less save others from sin. There is no one else who can save mankind from sin but Jesus Christ the Holy Son of God. The Bible tells us that there is no other name under Heaven given to us by which we can be saved but Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12).
By the way, would there be any strong willed person among you who thinks that, “I am able to do this. I am able to dedicate myself fully to someone else, and further, am able to sacrifice myself for someone else”? Such a sacrifice and dedication may be appreciated among the mortals, but in the passing of time and as things improve, such a virtuous work will eventually all be forgotten. Hebrews 13:9 tells us, “It is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them.” What enrichments and benefits do our hearts have come to receive from God? It is God’s love of salvation that immerses and fills our hearts with His grace. Being helped physically by another human being is nothing for our eternal lives. When we are comfortable once again, we are all prone to forget about such assistance.
Socrates, Confucius, and Siddhartha have been hailed as the greatest sages of the world. However, can these sages ever be your Savior? Can Siddhartha cleanse you from sins? None of them can. Who can then be the Savior of mankind, when no human being can even solve a single one of his or her own sins away? Even the High Priest could not blot out the sins of his people on his own accord. The sins of the people of Israel could be washed away only when they had faith in the God-given sacrificial system and received the remission of their sins by giving their offering to Him according to this sacrificial system—that is, by passing their sins onto their offering by laying their hands on its head, putting the blood of this sacrifice on the horns of the altar of burnt offering and pouring the remnant out on the ground, and burning its fat on the altar of burnt offering.
To be remitted of a year’s worth of sins, on the 10th day of the seventh month, the High Priest had to lay his hands on the head of the sacrificial offering before God and thereby pass the sins onto it, take its blood into the Most Holy, and sprinkle it on the east of the mercy seat—that is, toward the direction from which he had entered. When he sprinkled the blood for seven times, the golden bells that were hanging at the hem of his blue robe rang out. (These golden bells were hanging between the pomegranates woven of blue, purple, and scarlet thread.) The elegant sound of these golden bells was heard whenever he walked or sprinkled the blood. This is none other than the gospel. This sound implies the Good News, the powerful gospel that has blotted out all our sins. Just as the High Priest could bring the remission of sins to his people not by giving any offering on his own accord but only by giving it according to the statute God had established, in the age of the New Testament, Jesus Christ has saved you and me from all our sins by coming to this earth, being baptized, dying on the Cross, and rising from the dead again, all according to the same statute. Jesus Christ could also make us righteous only when He fulfilled his works according to the law of salvation that He Himself had set.
Whoever wants to be truly born again can receive the remission of their sins, only if they are agreeable, pleasant and like to hear the Word of God with an open-minded disposition, that is, like the ‘Berean’ spirit. Those who are disagreeable cannot believe in this Truth and cannot receive the remission of their sin no matter how many times the Word of God is preached to them; they are the most foolish. How can anyone not believe in the Word just as it is spoken by God? How far can human knowledge really reach? It falls far short of the wisdom of the Word of God. Even so, they continue to boast of their own achievements and refuse to believe in the Word of God. It would be hard to find someone as foolish as these people.
Brothers and sisters, the world is rapidly changing. Technology also develops so rapidly that human cloning is said to be almost possible technically. Atheism is also widely prevailing, and the era of religion is now passing. However, even though this world will become even more confusing and harsh, we the born-again cannot help but minister faithfully to God as His royal priests. Now, the gospel of the water and the Spirit is spreading all over the world more rapidly, regardless of the sweeping tide of ungodliness. We are the only ones who can go against the current of the times.
I believe that the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the salvation according to the sacrificial system given by God, will blossom and bloom even more and be spread throughout the whole world in the near future. We the priests of today will pray for ourselves and all the souls of the whole world and continue to lead our lives by testifying this gospel. I believe that when we live by faith, we will become the ones who walk with God and achieve even greater works of the spreading of the gospel. When we search for and fulfill such works that please God in these end times, I believe that the works of the gospel will progress even further to every nook and corner of this world, as the sweet scent of flowers spreads along with a gentle breeze.
I give all my thanks to God for consecrating us as the priests to minister to Him and counting us in His ministries.