April 17 A Symbol of Life

Scripture Reading: Isaiah 1:18–21

Key Verse: 1 Peter 3:18

Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit.

Blood is not a pleasant topic for most people, and most of us are happy if we go a long time without seeing any. Unless you are in the medical profession or a related occupation, you probably do not deal with blood very often.

But in Jesus’ day, the presence of blood was a real part of daily life; in fact, it was a part of sacrificial worship in the temple. According to Mosaic Law, God required the blood of an unblemished animal as the atonement, or payment, for a person’s sin. The rules for slaying the animal and handling the blood were extremely complex, and only members of the priesthood were allowed to perform the ceremonies. Since the death of one animal did not pay for all sins, the system of sacrifice was continual.

What Jesus did on the cross, however, was a once-and-for-all blood sacrifice (1 Peter 3:18). No doubt that was a new and difficult concept for the disciples to grasp, and Jesus’ words at their last Passover meal together were critical for their understanding of what was about to happen.

Jesus shed physical blood for you. He was in agony, His flesh was torn for you, and He experienced temporary separation from the Father because of your sin. The next time you take Communion, think about His blood—not as a symbol of death but as a symbol of the new life that you have through His sacrifice.

Heavenly Father, thank You for the blood of Jesus, which is the symbol of life. Thank You for the new life I have because of Calvary.[1]

[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 112). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

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