The perfect high priest

Leviticus 21:16-20 tell us that no priest with any physical defect was allowed to make any offerings.

And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to Aaron, saying, None of your offspring throughout their generations who has a blemish may approach to offer the bread of his God. For no one who has a blemish shall draw near, a man blind or lame, or one who has a mutilated face or a limb too long, or a man who has an injured foot or an injured hand, or a hunchback or a dwarf or a man with a defect in his sight or an itching disease or scabs or crushed testicles.”

In Romans 15:4 Paul said,

For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction.

What can we learn from the fact that a priest had to be perfect to offer an acceptable sacrifice?  There is a very valuable lesson here if we interpret this in the light of two other truths that are taught in the Bible.

The first is that Jesus is our high priest.

Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Hebrews 4:14-16

He was acting in this capacity when he offered himself as a sacrifice to pay for our sins.

The second truth is all believers are members of his body.

For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.
Romans 12:4-5

If a Christian who had been part of this body were to lose his salvation it would mean in effect that Jesus would lose part of his spiritual body. This would mean that according to the Law he would be disqualified from making an offering that God would accept because his body was no longer perfect. His sacrifice on the cross would then be useless and no one could be saved as a result of it. So if one believer loses his salvation then all believers will lose their salvation.

I was raised in a home where the Bible was believed to be the word of God but I never received much instruction in what it taught. In reading it I came to the conclusion that salvation was obtained by a combination of faith and works and that a person could lose his salvation if he didn’t obey God completely. I attended a church which was liberal in its theology and didn’t always base its teaching on the Bible and so I never learned that what I believed wasn’t true.

While I was in high school I began listening to a radio program which taught the Bible. I learned the way of salvation and became a Christian. The program also taught me that it was impossible for me to lose my salvation but because of my background I found it difficult to believe this and I wavered back and forth between believing and disbelieving it.

I was studying the Bible during this time and I learned the Jesus was our high priest and that I was part of his body. In my studying I finally came to this passage in Leviticus. It was when I saw the connection between this and what I already knew that I was finally convinced that my salvation was secure and I didn’t have to worry about losing it.

Posted on November 20, 2011, in Bible study, salvation and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on The perfect high priest.

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