We have been sanctified... once for all.
Hebrews 10:1-17 from the Daily reading in the One Year Bible
For the Law, since it has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the very form of things, can never, by the same sacrifices which they offer continually year by year, make perfect those who draw near. 2 Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, because the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have had consciousness of sins? 3 But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins year by year. 4 For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. 5 Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says,
“Sacrifice and offering
You have not desired, But a body You have prepared for Me;
6 In whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You have taken no pleasure. 7 “Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come (In the scroll of the book it is written of Me) To do Your will, O God.’”
8 After saying above, “Sacrifices and offerings and whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You have not desired, nor have You taken pleasure in them” (which are offered according to the Law), 9 then He said, “Behold, I have come to do Your will.” He takes away the first in order to establish the second. 10 By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
11 Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; 12 but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God, 13 waiting from that time onward until His enemies be made a footstool for His feet. 14 For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified. 15 And the Holy Spirit also testifies to us; for after saying,
16 “This is the covenant that I will make with them After those days, says the Lord:
I will put My laws upon their heart, And on their mind I will write them,”
He then says, 17 “And their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.”
In today’s text it says: For the Law, since it has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the very form of things, can never, by the same sacrifices which they offer continually year by year, make perfect those who draw near. Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, because the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have had consciousness of sins? This makes it seem almost as if we, because we are cleansed by the blood of Christ’s sacrifice, should not have consciousness of sins. It though is not that we are unaware of sin, but rather, having been cleansed by the sacrifice of Christ, we should have no desire to sin. 1 John 1:5-10 says: This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us. The text says: We have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Again, it speaks as though the work of sanctification is complete, that because of the sacrifice of Christ sin no longer exists in us. Yet what John says is that if we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.
Which one is true? Is our sanctification complete? Do we no longer even need to be conscious of our decisions or actions because we have been cleansed by the once for all sacrifice of Christ? Or, as John suggests, must we confess our sins? Is it through confession that we are forgiven, cleansed and sanctified? As with much of the truth of God, it really is not one or the other but both. In Luke 23:34, when He was on the cross, Jesus said: "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing." In John 19:30 He said: “It is finished!” So, we are forgiven, even of the sins we are unaware of. Our forgiveness is finished, complete in and by the sacrifice of Christ on the cross. There is nothing we need to do to add to what Christ has done for us. We are forgiven and sanctified by the finished work of the cross. The Father in heaven sees us as cleansed. The text says: “And their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.” In Matthew 6:9-13 Jesus taught us to pray saying: ‘Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. ‘Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. ‘Give us this day our daily bread. ‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. ‘And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’ Our forgiveness and our sanctification is complete in heaven. We though still live in this earthly realm, in these earthly bodies, where there is still sin. We are to pray that it would be on earth as it is in heaven; that the realities of the kingdom of heaven would be here on earth. One of those realities is that we would walk on earth, in the sanctification from sin that already exists in heaven. We are both to pray for that and also be part of the answer to that prayer.
In Matthew 4:17 Jesus says: "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." The kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of earth are not separated by a great distance. They coexist. Heaven is not a distant or future location for us. We are to live in both the kingdom of heaven and earth. In John 4:24 Jesus says: “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” Heaven is a spiritual realm. We are both spirit and body. We coexist in heaven and on earth. In John 16:5-13 Jesus says: “But now Igo away to Him who sent Me, and none of you asks Me, ‘Where are You going? ’But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more;of judgment, becausethe ruler of this world is judged. I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He,the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth.” The Holy Spirit is our link between this physical world and the kingdom of heaven. He will convict us of sin and righteousness so that we can coexist, so that in us and through us, the kingdom of heaven and the will of God will be done on earth.
‘Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. ‘Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. ‘Give us this day our daily bread. ‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. ‘And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’ Thank You for the conviction of the Holy Spirit. I confess that I have sinned. Thank You that I am fully sanctified in Christ. Through the Holy Spirit, may I walk in Your righteousness on earth. Amen.