When Jesus died, the veil of the temple was torn in two to reflect the rending of His own flesh that like an ignoble jar of clay had concealed the hidden glory of God; cf. Jdg 7:16,19, 2Co 4:6-7. As He yielded up His Spirit that the Jews would not have fill their temple, the glory of its departure so affected the Gentile Roman centurion standing right in front of Him that He exclaimed, “Truly this man was the Son of God!” (Mar 15:39). At the same time the torn veil of the temple revealed that the glory of the Lord’s presence had departed from it, never to return, leaving it desolate; cf. Mat 23:38. Christ’s death established a new and better covenant in His own blood so the old covenant would now in short order become obsolete and disappear, and along with it the temple made with hands and its service; Mar 14:58, Heb 8:13. But in three days God would build without hands a new and even more glorious temple by returning His Spirit of life to Jesus and raising Him from the dead. He would then pour out that Spirit upon the foolish, weak and base things of the world to create an increasingly radiant and holy temple of living, uncut stones, not hewn by the iron tools of men (Deut 27:5) but by His Spirit, that would reveal His hidden glory to the whole world. Such is the Church, betrothed to Him as His Bride, whose glory is also veiled as in an earthen vessel, a concealed mystery into which even angels long to look and to which the Christian woman’s head-covering bears witness; cf. 1Pe 1:10-12, 1Co 11:10, 2Co 4:6-10.
What does Scripture say was the veil that screened people from seeing the glory of God in His holy temple? See Heb 10:19-20. In what sense was Jesus’ flesh a veil that concealed the hidden glory of His heavenly Father? Cf. Joh 1:14, 14:7-9, Col 1:15, Heb 1:3. Why exactly is God’s glory concealed? Is it concealed because of our sin? Is it concealed because the nature of His glory is not what we perceive as glorious, especially because of our corrupted nature? Is it concealed because by His nature God does not flaunt His glory to exalt Himself over others as people do? Because God’s glory is concealed for various reasons, does that mean that it is completely hidden and He is unwilling to reveal it and even share it with others? See Isa 49:3, 66:18-19, Joh 17:24, Rom 5:1-2, 8:18,21, 1Pe 4:13-14, 5:1,10. Rather, is not such glory meant to be revealed in its appropriate time and place to those in an intimate relationship for whom it is reserved, as a wife to her husband, a husband to his wife, and a father to his children?
In addition to concealing God’s hidden glory for it to be revealed at the appropriate time to those prepared to partake of it, for what additional purpose did the veil serve before that time? See Exo 40:3,21. Why was a veil necessary to screen off the ark of the covenant and create a separation between the people and the Lord’s presence? See Lev 10:1-3, 16:1-2,12-13, Num 20:12; cf. Isa 59:2. As the very nature of sin is deception and our sin blinds us to the holy nature of God, in what way did the veil not only protect sinful men from being consumed by His presence, but also communicate that He is not like us? Cf. Psa 50:21. At the same time, in what way did a veil, as opposed to an impenetrable wall, communicate that the separation was not absolute, but offered the hope that in some way we might be reformed or regenerated (i.e., born again) with a new nature no longer marred by sin that would allow us to enter within the veil to behold His glory without being destroyed by it? Cf. Heb 9:6-8, Deut 32:36, Dan 12:7. Who do we now know is our hope to enter within that veil, and what is the new and living way that He inaugurated for us to do so? See Heb 6:19, 10:19-22, Mat 16:24-25, Joh 12:24-26, 14:6. Do we understand that the veil that separates us from God and conceals His hidden glory is our own flesh, stained by sin, and that veil is only torn for us to enter into His presence by following Christ in the way inaugurated by His flesh and dying to our own self-will? See 1Pe 4:1-2. In what way then is death itself, which our self-will fears, the great veil that conceals from us the way into the hidden glory of God? See Isa 25:6-9. Do we understand that it is exactly by following Christ in the way of the cross and surrendering ourselves to death, trusting that God will raise us from the dead, that death itself is abolished, swallowed up in victory, and the veil is removed? Cf. 1Co 15:26,54-55, 2Co 3:14-16. Behold the mystery of the gospel of life through death and its hidden glory of dying to self to humbly serve others, which is the true glory of God, and that is only revealed to those lacking the wisdom of the world to believe the foolishness of the message preached, but concealed from the proud who will not humble themselves to follow Jesus in the way of the cross.
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?