We have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
The Bible tells us that Jesus drew his final breath at three o’clock in the afternoon (Luke 23:4446). That was an important time in Jerusalem, for it was the time of the afternoon sacrifice, and because it was Passover week, the Passover lambs were being sacrificed at the Temple.
It was customary also for the priest to blow a horn at the time of the sacrifice—a ram’s horn, called a shofar. So at the same time when Jesus breathed his last, the shofar could be heard. At the sound of the horn, people would stop what they were doing and fall silent for a few moments. And in that time of silence Jesus died.
As the Passover lambs were being sacrificed in the Temple, the Lamb of God was being sacrificed on the cross. In God’s plan, never again would an afternoon sacrifice be needed. This was just as John the Baptist had prophesied: “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Through Jesus’ one sacrifice, all who believe are forgiven and made holy forever.
To make sure Jesus was dead, a soldier jammed his spear into Jesus’ side, “bringing a sudden flow of blood and water” (John 19:34). That blood was the blood of forgiveness for you and me—and for all who trust in Christ alone for their salvation.
O God, thank you for the sacrifice of your Son, the Lamb of God. Through his one sacrifice, I have been made clean and holy, fit for eternal life with you. Amen.
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