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It is recorded in, “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin” (Rom 8:3). From these verses we know that, in order to redeem us mankind from sin, the was nailed to the cross as mankind’s eternal sin offering. And since then, we all call Him the redeeming Lamb. But do you know the profound meaning behind this appellation?
To figure out this question, we should first know what sin offering means. Let’s look at Leviticus 4:27-31, “And if any one of the common people sin through ignorance, while he does somewhat against any of the commandments of Jehovah concerning things which ought not to be done, and be guilty; Or if his sin, which he has sinned, come to his knowledge: then he shall bring his offering, a kid of the goats, a female without blemish, for his sin which he has sinned. And he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering, and slay the sin offering in the place of the burnt offering. And the priest shall take of the blood thereof with his finger, and put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and shall pour out all the blood thereof at the bottom of the altar. And he shall take away all the fat thereof, as the fat is taken away from off the sacrifice of peace offerings; and the priest shall burn it on the altar for a sweet smell to Jehovah; and the priest shall make an atonement for him, and it shall be forgiven him,” and Leviticus 16:30-31, “For on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that you may be clean from all your sins before Jehovah. It shall be a sabbath of rest to you, and you shall afflict your souls, by a statute for ever.”
After the Israelites got out of Egypt, Jehovah God set forth laws through Moses for them to obey, and in this way led them to live on earth. Whoever could abide by these laws would gain God’s blessings. However, because of man’s corrupt nature, they were unable to uphold the law and thus faced the danger of being stoned to death. Only if they made sin offerings could they expiate their sins and avoid being condemned and sentenced to death by the laws. Anyone familiar with the Old Testament knows that in the Age of Law the tenth day of the seventh month was the day of atonement for the Israelites every year. At that feast, all the people had to offer the firstborn cattle and sheep without blemish upon the altar as sin offerings, in order that their uncleanness and transgressions in the year could be purified. From this we can see, in the Age of Law Jehovah God used the blood of cattle and sheep as the evidence of His cleansing man’s sins. Through the sin offerings they made, people at that time would no longer be condemned by the laws and instead were qualified to come before Jehovah God, praying to Him for His blessings and care.
However, at the end of the Age of Law, the people of Israel were increasingly unable to keep the laws and they committed more and more sins, to the extent that Jehovah God’s laws could no longer achieve the desired results in them. The Holy Spirit detested them because their hearts had become depraved without the slightest reverence toward God. In Isaiah 1:11-15, God said through the prophet Isaiah, “To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices to me? said Jehovah: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. When you come to appear before me, who has required this at your hand, to tread my courts? Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination to me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting. Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hates: they are a trouble to me; I am weary to bear them. And when you spread forth your hands, I will hide my eyes from you: yes, when you make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.”
From these verses we can see, the corruption of people at that time had reached a certain point, for which Jehovah God was angry with them and rebuked them. According to God’s righteousness, if they went on like this, they would die by God’s curses, and then the creation of humanity would have been for naught. At that time, the people of Israel were full of sins and lived amid sin from which they could not free themselves. So they earnestly prayed and cried out to God. Then God granted them a promise, a promise that the Israelites could receive an eternal sin offering. Therefore, because of the needs of corrupt mankind and also according to His management plan, God was incarnated among man as the redeeming Lamb to take on their sins and relieve them from the curses of the law. God long ago prophesied through the prophet Isaiah, “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and Jehovah has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he opens not his mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased Jehovah to bruise him; he has put him to grief: when you shall make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Jehovah shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he has poured out his soul to death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors” (Isa 53:6-12).
When God incarnate came to work, John the Baptist bore witness that the Lord Jesus was the redeeming Lamb, just as it says in John 1:29, “Behold the Lamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world.”
The Lord Jesus worked among man for three and a half years, during which time He healed the sick, cast out demons, performed miracles and wonders, and bestowed rich blessings upon mankind; He tolerated and forgave man, and in the end was crucified as the sin offering for mankind; He completed the work of redeeming mankind. It can be seen from the work of the Lord Jesus that, He saved those who lived under the law, and satisfied their wish of receiving an offering sufficient to atone for their sins. After His crucifixion, man no longer needed to make sin offerings and had only to accept the Lord Jesus as their Savior for their sins to be forgiven. In this way, the sins of man were no longer a barrier to his coming before God and were no longer the leverage by which Satan accused man. Because of this, the people of Israel, who had been living under the law, could walk away from the laws and were qualified to come before the Lord Jesus, praying for His pardon and grace, and thus mankind could continue to exist and have developed until this day. From all of this, we can appreciate that there is profound significance behind the Lord Jesus being called the redeeming Lamb.
God’s words say, “In order to complete His work and rescue humanity from misery, He had to be condemned by man, and bear the sins of all mankind. The extent of the suffering He went through cannot possibly be fathomed or appreciated by ordinary people. What does this suffering represent? It represents God’sto humankind. It stands for the humiliation He suffered and the price He paid for man’s salvation, to redeem their sins, and to complete this stage of His work. It also means man would be redeemed from the cross by God. This is a price paid in blood, in life, a price created beings cannot afford.”
“Even though He Himself knew that the responsibility He needed to take on in the flesh was so immense, and how cruel the pain He would face would be, when He saw mankind helpless in sin, when He saw the wretchedness of their lives and their feeble struggles under the law, He felt more and more grief, and became more and more anxious to save mankind from sin. No matter what kind of difficulties He would face or what kind of pain He would suffer, He became more and more resolute to redeem mankind living in sin. During this process, you could say that the Lord Jesus began to understand more and more clearly the work He needed to do and what He had been entrusted with. He also became increasingly eager to complete the work He was to take on—to take on all of mankind’s sins, to atone for mankind so that they no longer lived in sin and God would be able to forget man’s sins because of the sin offering, allowing Him to further His work of saving mankind. It could be said that in the Lord Jesus’ heart, He was willing to offer Himself up for mankind, to sacrifice Himself. He was also willing to act as a sin offering, to be nailed to the cross, and He was eager to complete this work. When He saw the miserable conditions of human’s lives, He wanted even more to fulfill His mission as quickly as possible, without the delay of a single minute or second. When He had such a feeling of urgency, He was not thinking of how great His own pain would be, nor did He think any longer of how much humiliation He would have to endure—He held just one conviction in His heart: As long as He offered up Himself, as long as He was nailed to the cross as a sin offering, God’s will would be carried out and He would be able to commence new work. Mankind’s lives in sin, their state of existing in sin would be completely changed. His conviction and what He was determined to do were related to saving man, and He had only one objective: to do God’s will, so that He could successfully begin the next stage in His work.”
From these two passages of words, we can even more feel God’s true love for us mankind. The supreme God, the Creator and Master of heavens and earth and all things, became an ordinary and normal person, humbly hidden in the flesh. He had to take on work an ordinary person cannot handle, while also endure suffering that ordinary people cannot withstand. From when the Lord Jesus officially began fulfilling His ministry to the time of His being crucified, He suffered humiliation and pain in the extreme and endured the rejection and condemnation of corrupt mankind. God is holy, yet He had to live together with filthy and corrupt mankind—the suffering He endured was too great! The Lord Jesus clearly knew that the path of the cross was fraught with hardships and that He would suffer great pain both physically and spiritually. But for the sake of redeeming all mankind, He willingly offered Himself up as a sin offering and was nailed to the cross for mankind. From the redemption work of the Lord Jesus, we can come to a better understanding of the appellation “the redeeming Lamb.” Besides, the Lord Jesus’ love for mankind is not only that He redeemed mankind from sin as a sin offering, but also that He will come again in the last days to bestow upon people more truths and do the work of judgment and chastisement, through which He will completely rid us of our sins and release us from the bondage of sin. The Bible says, “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come” (Jhn 16:12-13). “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God” (1 Pe 4:17). “Who are kept by the power of God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time” (1 Pe 1:5). From this we can see that the Lord Jesus has prepared a greater salvation for us in the last days, which is that He will come back to continue the work of saving man, expressing the truth to thoroughly save us from corruption. This is because though we have been redeemed by the Lord Jesus and had our sins absolved, our sinful nature still remains and we are still slaves to the cycle of sinning in the daytime and confessing them at night. Therefore, when the Lord Jesus comes back, He will continue saving us. Isn’t God’s love for us too great and deep?
Dear brothers and sisters, I’m sure that through such communication, we have all understood why we call the Lord Jesus the redeeming Lamb as well as the significance behind this appellation. I believe every one of you, just like me, is looking forward to the Lord’s returning to fully save us from the degenerate life of sinning by day and confessing by night, so that we can be thoroughly cleansed and changed and enter into the kingdom of heaven with God.
Rapture in the air is not in accordance with Jesus’ words. What is the meaning of rapture? Through fellowship, she understood that the true meaning of rapture is to follow God’s footsteps.
By Zhang Yan Now is the end of the last days when the prophecies of the Lord Jesus’ return have all come true, and we expect to be taken into God’s kingdom and obtain eternal life more eagerly, because the Lord Jesus once said, “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God stays on him” (John 3:36). All these years we have been repenting our sins, preaching the gospel, and bearing fruits, just as the Lord Jesus asked. Thus, we all feel ourselves most approved by God, and that as long as we hold on to the Lord Jesus’ way, we will surely obtain eternal life. Then, is the opinion, after all, in accordance with God’s will? Regarding this question, let’s think back on what the Lord Jesus did in the Age of Grace.At that time, the Lord Jesus incarnate came among us mankind and brought forth the gospel of the kingdom of heaven, saying, “Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17). From the Lord’s word, we clearly know that what He brought man was the way of confession and repentance. And, in addition to these teachings, He also gave all his mercy and love to His followers, bestowed sufficient grace upon man, healed the sick, cast out demons, raised the dead…, until eventually He was nailed to the cross for redeeming mankind, thus completing the work of redemption. However, in spite of having received forgiveness of sins from the Lord, we man still live in the vicious cycle of committing and confessing sins. We can still express these corrupt dispositions anywhere and anytime, such as greed, selfishness, arrogance, deceit, and so on, so that we commit sins at any time and any place. For instance, when we labor hard for the Lord for years, we feel we have the capital to flaunt ourselves. Meanwhile, we all enjoy being in a lofty position to have others worship us, and always exalt and testify ourselves. Isn’t this the behavior of our arrogant nature? Such substance is exactly the substance of the Pharisees, with which we always talk big, try every means to be exalted and admired by others in sermons. Not only this, we also have treacherous nature. So, in order to secure our fame and status, we usually act one way in public and another in private, and unwittingly tell lies to deceive and blind man on sundry occasions so as to satisfy our personal desires. This proves that our sinful nature is still deeply rooted within us and thus we can still sin and resist God, that is, we have yet to achieve eternal life, since those who have eternal life are someone whose sins have been cleansed. God’s kingdom is holy, and only those who have been purified are worthy to enter His kingdom. How can we, who often sin, be qualified to enter it? The Lord Jesus never said that man could enter the kingdom of heaven with his sinful nature; while we often absurdly think that as long as we labor, sacrifice for the Lord, and keep the Lord’s name at all times, we will enter it and gain eternal life. However, never have we realized that only pursuing to be purified by the Lord and thereby being thoroughly cleansed is the precondition of being approved by the Lord and raptured into the kingdom of heaven. The Lord Jesus said clearly, “Truly, truly, I say to you, Whoever commits sin is the servant of sin. And the servant stays not in the house for ever: but the Son stays ever” (John 8:34-35). He also demanded, “And said, Truly I say to you, Except you be converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3). The Lord Jesus told us plainly that if we man don’t become as simple and honest as children, and don’t break away from sin to be purified, we won’t be able to enter the kingdom of heaven or obtain eternal life. Then, how will the Lord Jesus’ promise that we will have eternal life be accomplished since we still often commit sins now and have yet to obtain eternal life? When studying the Bible carefully, I read the words of the Lord Jesus, “And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. He that rejects me, and receives not my words, has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:47-48). “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come” (John 16:12-13). Also, I saw some man’s words of enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, “So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and to them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin to salvation” (Hebrews 9:28). “Who are kept by the power of God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time” (1 Peter 1:5). From the above verses, we know that when the Lord Jesus was first incarnated to do the work of redemption, He took on all the sins of man as the sin offering and thereby redeemed man from the law, so that man would be no longer condemned or cursed by the law and had the qualification and opportunity to come before God to get close, pray, confess, and repent to Him. Nevertheless, we man haven’t gotten free from our sinful nature and can’t enter God’s kingdom yet. Therefore, in the last days the Lord Jesus will come again, express more truths, and do a stage of work of thoroughly judging, purifying, and saving man, in order to solve our sinful nature and have our corrupt disposition completely cleansed and transformed, through which we can obtain eternal life. The Lord Jesus once said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give to them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand” (John 10:27-28). “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God stays on him” (John 3:36). We all know that what the Lord Jesus did during the Age of Grace was the redemptive work, and what He preached was the way of repentance. The Lord Jesus is Christ, God Himself, and eternal life. It’s just that only when He comes again, which is to say, the Spirit of truth comes, can the way of eternal life be given to man. Those wise virgins who can recognize the Lord’s voice will obtain it, just as the Lord Jesus said, “And I give to them eternal life; and they shall never perish.” Obviously, when He comes again, He will, still in the image of the incarnate Son of man, bestow life upon man through expressing the truth. God says, “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life.” Provided that we merely hold on to the Lord Jesus’ way of repentance yet don’t accept all the truths brought by the returned Lord, then we can’t be called believers in the Son, much less can we obtain eternal life. Instead, only when we believe in the incarnate Son of man in the last days, moreover, accept all the truths expressed by Him, and receive the judgment and purification of these truths to gain life, can our faith accord with the Lord Jesus’ word, and can the meaning of our belief in the Son be complete. Also, this is the only way for us to obtain eternal life and to be raptured into the kingdom of heaven in the last days. All the enlightenment, illumination, and glory be to God! Recommended: To Gain Eternal Life, You Must Know the Source of It Can We Gain the Way of Eternal Life by Believing in Almighty God? Christ of the Last Days Brings the Way of Eternal Life
By Kally Pastors and elders always tell us that all the words in the Bible are God’s words and that the Bible is given by inspiration of God. As the Bible says, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God” (2 Timothy 3:16). So, we have been holding the belief that everything in the Bible is the word of God. But today, when studying the Bible together with Sister Qi, I gained a new knowledge of this notion. When we read several passages of the scriptures, Sister Qi said that there are not only the words of God but also the words of man, of the serpent, of Satan, and of an ass in the Bible. And then she showed the following verses to me. Genesis 3:1: “And he said to the woman, Yes, has God said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” This is what the serpent said to Eve. Job 2:2: “And Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.” This is what Satan said to God. Numbers 22:30: “And the ass said to Balaam, Am not I your ass, on which you have ridden ever since I was your to this day? was I ever wont to do so to you?” This is what an ass said to his master. After reading these verses, I couldn’t help but feel confused in my heart: Right, these are not the words of God but are the words of Satan, of the serpent, and of an ass. Then why did Paul say that all scripture is given by God? Why do the pastors and elders say that everything in the Bible is God’s word? Sister Qi seemed to have read my mind and then shared some knowledge with me. She said, “In fact, in the Bible, we find that God never said that everything in the Bible is His word, nor did the Holy Spirit testify it. The saying ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God’ only represents Paul’s personal knowledge instead of God’s will. And the belief pastors and elders hold is just based on the words of Paul, not God. We believers in God should view everything according to God’s words.” Hearing this, I nodded my agreement. She then said, “Now we understand that not all the words in the Bible are God’s words. Then, what parts of the Bible are God’s words? I think it’s necessary for us to clarify this issue.” Thereupon, we continued the discussion. Sister Qi went on, “In the Bible, only the words spoken by Jehovah God, the words Jehovah God instructed Moses to say, the words God asked the prophets to convey, the words said by the Lord Jesus, and the prophecies God revealed to John in Revelation are God’s words; apart from these, the biographies of man and letters of apostles are all man’s words. They only represent their personal experiences and knowledge, not God’s words, and moreover cannot be said to be the word of God. “Let’s take a look at all the words that God enlightened the prophets. To differentiate God’s words from prophets’ words, the words of God conveyed by the prophets are always first marked ‘the LORD has spoken’ or ‘thus said the LORD’ according to God’s will. For example, Exodus 16:23: ‘And he said to them, This is that which the LORD has said …’; Ezekiel 5:8: ‘Therefore thus said the Lord GOD …’; and Jeremiah 7:20: ‘Therefore thus said the Lord GOD …’ etc. Aren’t these all facts? Are you able to accept this?” I nodded and answered, “Yes, I can.” Thank the Lord! Today, I have obtained these gains from studying the Bible together with Sister Qi. Well, brothers and sisters in the Lord, have you also understood these? If you want to know more about the mysteries of the Bible, read more on our God and the Bible page, or in the following articles. Does Believing in the Lord Means to Believe in the Bible What Kind of Book Is the Bible? Who Wrote the Bible?
The Lord Jesus did forgive our sins, but we are still living in a circle of sinning and confessing. Then how can we enter the kingdom of heaven without being purified?