During Jesus’ last Passover celebration, at which He announced that one of those closest to Him sharing its communion would betray Him, He imparted a much fuller meaning to the cups of wine that were shared as part of the meal, which were already a reminder of how the Lord brought the Jews out from under the burdens of the Egyptians and delivered them from their bondage, corresponding to the four “I wills” of Exo 6:6-7. These were a type of how Jesus would bring His people out from under the burdens of the world (cf. Mat 11:28-30) and deliver them from their bondage to sin (Joh 8:34-36, Rom 6:6-7). The third cup, the cup of blessing, shared after the meal, recalled the Lord’s promise to redeem His people with an outstretched arm and with great judgments, and appropriately became the basis for the Lord’s Supper. For it was by Jesus’ outstretched arms on the cross bearing our judgments that we are redeemed. What did Jesus bid His disciples to do in regard to this cup, and why? See Mat 26:27-28. How many of them did He bid to drink from the cup? What do His words bidding them all to drink from it indicate about His desire that they all be in covenant with Him? Was it just the few apostles, or even just those of the Jewish nation that He desired to enter into covenant with Him to receive forgiveness for their sins and be saved? See Mat 26:28, 20:28; cf. Isa 49:6, Luk 14:23, 1Ti 2:4, Tit 2:11, 2Pe 3:9. What do His words indicate about the Roman Catholic practice from the 15th to the 20th centuries of withholding the cup from the laity?
Recall that a covenant is a solemn agreement of binding force enacted with a blood sacrifice that makes it inviolable by signifying the death of those who enter into it so that, like a will or testament, it cannot be changed; cf. Heb 9:16-17. What covenant was very much in the mind of both Jesus and His twelve disciples, and indeed all Jews especially during the Passover celebration, that the Lord had entered into with the twelve tribes of Israel after delivering them from their bondage in Egypt? See Exo 24:4-8. To what specifically was Jesus alluding when He specified that the cup that they were to drink from was “My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins”? See Jer 31:31-34; cf. Heb 8:6-13, 9:6-7,11-17. How is this understanding reflected in the accounts of the Lord’s Supper recorded by both Luke and Paul? See Luk 22:20, 1Co 11:25.
What is the relationship between Jesus’ sacrifice and our redemption, forgiveness and receiving an inheritance per the terms of the covenant/will that was effected by His death? See again Heb 9:15, and notice from what His death redeems us; cf. Gal 3:10,13. What does Heb 9:15 also say that those who have been called may receive as a result of His death? What exactly is the promise of the eternal inheritance that we receive as a result of Christ’s death? See Gal 3:14; cf. Joh 16:7, Eph 1:13-14. As redemption bespeaks a state of slavery, from what slavery is it that Christ redeems us? See Joh 8:34, Rom 6:6-7,16-22. What is the relationship between the Spirit we inherit as a consequence of Christ’s death and His redemption of us from our slavery to sin? See Jer 31:33, Eze 36:26-27, Rom 8:1-4, 2Co 3:2-6. In what way then is the Holy Spirit who writes God’s law upon our hearts to deliver us from sin not just an inheritance in Itself, but also the pledge of an eternal inheritance (Eph 1:14, Heb 9:15)? See Rom 8:14-17, Gal 3:29-4:7. Do we understand that all of God’s eternal blessings that He has promised and will compound to us throughout the ages as His heirs come to us only through righteousness and holiness, but the only way we are able to walk in righteousness to inherit such things is if we are born again of His Holy Spirit to be led by the Spirit who writes the requirement of the law upon our hearts? Cf. Rom 7:12, 8:4,14. In this light, what is the significance that when Jesus speaks of His blood that is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins, it is the same word used for the Holy Spirit that is poured out (NAS = poured forth) upon believers for their washing and regeneration? See Act 2:17-18,33, 10:45, Rom 5:5, Tit 3:5-6. Again, what does this remind us about the Holy Spirit of Christ that is poured out for our salvation being a spirit of sacrifice to lead us in the way of the cross in laying down our lives, so that like Christ, we may take them up again unto eternal life? Cf. Mat 16:24-25.
The Atonement of Christ's Blood: Understanding How the Blood of Christ Saves and Reconciles us to God
- What is the relationship between Jesus’ sacrifice and our redemption, forgiveness and receiving an inheritance per the terms of the covenant / will that was effected by His death?
- From what, and to what, are we saved? Is it Jesus’ death alone that saves us? What part does His resurrection have in our salvation?
- Does the justice of God demand the satisfaction of blood before He will forgive, similar to what pagans throughout history have believed?
- What was the purpose of the Old Testament sacrifices?
- Does blood alone atone for sin?
- How does Christ’s death render powerless the devil?
- To whom was Christ’s life given as a ransom? From what are we ransomed?
- Why did Jesus not only die, but suffer and die? If all that was necessary was His shed blood, why didn’t God sovereignly ordain a more merciful death for His own dear Son?
- What is the relationship between a will or testament, and a covenant? What was willed to Jesus as an inheritance from His Father, and what was willed to us through the new testament in His blood?