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The Cross and The Sanctuary- Part 2

David Shin

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David Shin

Pastor, Hillside O'Malley Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Anchorage, AK

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  • October 18, 2014
    11:30 AM
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The Cross and The Sanctuary- Part 2

David Shin 

 

We said that John referred to JESUS as the Lamb of GOD who takes away sin. And you remember last week, we mentioned that the only way that the Jews would understand what John was talking about was through the paradigm or the framework or the lens of the sanctuary. You remember that from last week. We said that the lens for understanding what John was saying would have been impossible without the context of the sanctuary. The sanctuary service of the Lamb taking away sin was a common phenomenon in the 1500 years since the institution of the sacrificial service by Moses. 

 

The sinner would come into the sanctuary. The next passage is on the screen and this is what would happen when you committed sin in the times of the Old Testament prior to the coming of the Lamb of GOD, JESUS CHRIST - Leviticus chapter 4:32 – 35. And  in the Jews practiced this for hundreds of years. If he brings a lamb as his sin offering, he shall bring a female without blemish. Then he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering, and kill it as a sin offering at the place where they kill the burnt offering. The priest shall take some of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and pour out the remaining blood at the base of the altar. 

 

This is what happened in Old Testament times during the time of the Mosaic and Solomonic and Herod's Temple. The sinner would bring the offering, the lamb, into the sanctuary. He would put his hands on the head of that animal. He would confess all of his sins on to the animal. The wages of sin is death. It’s the lamb, now became the sin bearer, was taking away sin. This is a graphic illustration. This all pointed forward to JESUS. He with his own hand would slit the animal's throat from ear to ear and as that innocent lamb was dying, the priest would be there and catch the blood in a bowl. He would take the blood and do one of 2 things, he places it either on the horns of the altar or he would take it into the sanctuary and sprinkle it before the veil. The sin was being transferred; it was being taken away from the sinner to the lamb to the blood to the sanctuary. 

 

And here in the beginning of John's epistle, John the Baptist says “Behold the Lamb of GOD.”  The Lamb had come. The anti-typical Lamb had come. All of the types of the lamb had pointed forward to this moment and JESUS had come to take away the sin of the world. And we said last week that the only way to understand what JESUS did at the cross, in taking away sin, was in the framework of the sanctuary. The sanctuary is the interpretive key. We call this hermeneutical key, hermeneutical lens, the interpretive key, to understanding CHRIST. And because the Jews did not use this lens when they looked at JESUS, they misinterpreted and missed the purpose of the Messiah. If they were using the sanctuary hermeneutic, the sanctuary lens, they would have understood that JESUS is not coming as a king. HE's coming as a Lamb, as a Sacrifice – “Behold the Lamb of GOD who takes away the sin of the world.” The transfer of sin from us to the Lamb is only understood in the context of the sanctuary. This was to be the framework for understanding what CHRIST did at the cross. 

 

We come to today's passage. So if you read it, just a few moments ago. John 19:30. This is one of the 7 pronouncements that JESUS made at the cross. He said, it is what? “It is finished.” And bowing HIS head, HE gave up the spirit. Just as parenthetical note, some people have wondered what this means “to give up the spirit.” The word ‘spirit’ there is “pneuma” where we get the word pneumonia. It literally means “breath.” It is  the same root as pneumonia or pneumatic. It has to do with air. And if you were to read this literally, it's were to say, “HE gave up HIS breath.” Notice that JESUS here is actively giving up HIS breath. Someone is not taking it from HIM. And in John chapter 10 - JESUS says, I lay down my life and take it up again. JESUS laid down HIS life on the cross. HE made the decision and gave up HIS breath and died.

 

The point that I want to focus on this morning are the words “It is finished.” What does that mean? What are the implications of this statement? There are several things that happened when JESUS died on the cross. One of them is, the other gospel says that the temple veil was rent from top to bottom - meaning that the sacrificial services were no longer valid because JESUS had died. The real lamb of GOD had died. 

 

There are several things that happened and one of my favorite books, the Desire of Ages, 758 commenting on this phrase “It is finished” says that several things happened when JESUS died. And I quote, “JESUS did not yield up HIS life (notice the language here yield up HIS life) till HE had accomplished the work which HE came to do. And with HIS parting breath, HE exclaimed, “It is finished.” John 19:30. The battle had been won, praise GOD. His right hand and HIS holy arm had gotten HIM the victory. As Conqueror HE planted HIS banner on the eternal heights. Was there not joy among the angels? All heaven triumphed in the Saviour’s victory. Satan was (what does it say?) was defeated and knew that his kingdom was lost. 

 

So one of the implications is when JESUS died on the cross, salvation was assured, our dead was paid, and Satan knew that the end of the story was already written. JESUS won the war. We know that at the end of the Book of Revelation that this is going to turn out in GOD's favor. And that is because of the cross. When JESUS exclaimed the words it is finished, we know the end of the story. Praise GOD. GOD is going to win the war and Satan knew that it was over. It is finished. The fulfillment of all the messianic prophecies came to fruition in that moment when JESUS died on the cross.

 

Now, here's the question: if indeed JESUS said the words “it is finished” which HE did and this meant that everything had been accomplished, what year is it right now? 2014. We are right now over 2,000 years after JESUS said those words it is finished. Now if you're like me, it begs me to question I'm like what did that mean? If it's finished, why didn’t JESUS come much earlier? This is a long time. Just in the last century, we've had terrible wars - World War 1, World War 2, the Korean War, Vietnam, right now we are experiencing a time in earth's history with epidemics like Ebola and ISIS in the Middle East, our world is in a mess. People are dying every single day. And JESUS said it is finished. Something was accomplished at the cross; but here we are 2,000 years after the cross and this is the question I have. What is JESUS doing? If it was done at the cross and JESUS went to heaven, then what is the point of all this time that has transpired? And some people have said, “You know David, GOD is waiting for the Gospel to be preached in all the world” and that is true in a sense; but you remember in the 1st century, Paul wrote with his own finger or with his own pen. He said that the Gospel had been preached to every creature under heaven. In other words, the Gospel had been preached to all the world in the generation of the Apostles. Now, GOD is waiting for that moment, yes; but GOD could have come in the 1st century which leads us to this conclusion that in order for us to understand the term it is finished, there is something that we're missing if we say that everything was finished at the cross, because indeed something was finished but not everything was finished. Are you following, yes or no? Otherwise, GOD is just sitting up there watching all the suffering here on Earth when it was really finished at the cross. HE could have come a long time ago; but HE's not.

 

Now, this is where the question of our thesis comes to in our presentation today, you can see it there in your study guide. Our thesis/ question, this is what we're hoping to answer here today in our presentation: If it was finished at the cross, why are we still here 2000 years after the cross? And the answer really comes using the same lens that the Jews were supposed to use. We are to use - it's the sanctuary. 

 

When we look at the sanctuary, you will notice just from an elementary stand point of view that there are 3 compartments in the sanctuary. You have the courtyard, the outermost portion of the sanctuary. You have the Holy Place, the inner court, and then you have what is called the Most Holy Place. We see that when we look at the sanctuary, there are actually 3 different phases of CHRIST's ministry that are illustrated by these 3 compartments. How many? Three. CHRIST did something in the court. CHRIST did something in the Holy Place. And CHRIST is doing something in the Most Holy Place. This is the map that GOD gives us for us to understand what CHRIST has done, is doing, and will do. The sanctuary is all about JESUS, friends. In order to understand what JESUS has done, is doing, and will do, we must follow the sanctuary. Otherwise we're going to like the Jews misunderstand what the purpose of CHRIST is. We must follow JESUS wherever HE is in the process of salvation. This is the plan of salvation. It's a process. It's a plan. And this is the means - the sanctuary is, of how GOD deals with sin. And HE does it in 3 distinct phases. You can fill it out in your study guide. The sanctuary illustrates that there are (how many?) 3 phases in the plan of salvation. There are 3. The sanctuary illustrates that there are 3 phases in the plan of salvation - the courtyard phase, the Holy Place phase, and the Most Holy Place phase. 

 

Now, I will point out this morning very quickly that our evangelical friends have a beautiful understanding, in many respects, of what happened in the courtyard. I believe in Justification by Faith. I praise GOD for forgiveness; but JESUS right now is not hanging on the cross, friends. JESUS has moved on to another portion of ministry. Now HE's applying the benefits of what take took place on the cross; but JESUS has moved on and we must follow CHRIST from the court to the Holy Place to the Most Holy Place.  And you'll see the courtyard experience – Leviticus 4: 32 – 35. We read this earlier but I want to note a few things here. “If he brings a lamb as a sin offering, then he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering and kill it as a sin offering at the place where they killed the (what does it say?) burnt offering.” You will note that the lamb was slain at what article of furniture? The altar of burnt offering. That is where the lamb was slain. So if you put it in the context of the sanctuary, what part of the sanctuary did JESUS accomplish when HE died on the cross? The altar burnt offering which is in the courtyard. JESUS finished phase 1 of the plan of salvation.

 

Now, I want you to remember that if JESUS does not die on the cross, the rest of the phases of the sanctuary do not happen. The cross is foundational. In other words, if the lamb is not slain, the plan of salvation is over. It doesn't happen. So this is not to negate what happened on the cross; but the rest of the process of the plan is applying the blood of the Lamb. There is no blood, there is no mediation, there is no intercession, and there is no cleansing of sin. Phase 1 is vital because none of the other phases take place. It took place in the courtyard. When JESUS died on the cross, HE completed, praise GOD, the sacrifice (Where?) in the court yard. This is what HE finished on the cross when he exclaimed those words it is finished. And HE died as our sacrifice. JESUS paid it all. Our debt was paid. Salvation was assured. That moment became a pivotal foundational moment in human history; but it was phase 1 in the process of the plan of salvation.

 

Now, this is the question. What compartment of the sanctuary did JESUS enter upon HIS ascension? Now, if you're following the structure of the sanctuary, you would come to the logical conclusion that the next part is the Holy Place. So JESUS transitions from the courtyard, HE dies and goes to heaven then HE enters another phase of ministry in the Holy Place. Now, how do we know that? Revelation 1: 13 to 18. This is after the resurrection. Remember John is on the island of Patmos shortly after the resurrection of JESUS CHRIST. This is after AD31. This is after the ascension of JESUS and HE sees a vision in heaven of JESUS. 

 

And notice the location of JESUS in Revelation chapter 1 verses 12 through 18. ”Then I looked to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw (what does it say?) 7 golden lampstands, and in the midst of the 7 lamp stands, One like the Son of Man clothed with a garment down to HIS feet and girded about the chest with a golden band… “Do not be afraid, (said the Man) I am the First and the Last. I am HE who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore…” 

 

Who is the person that lives and was dead? It's JESUS CHRIST. So here John sees a picture of JESUS and He is standing in the midst of what? The candlesticks which is in what compartment of the sanctuary in the Holy Place. So you see that JESUS has moved at the time of John from the courtyard from being the Lamb to our High Priest and HE's standing in the midst of the candlesticks. There is a transition. Now, JESUS has moved after AD31 from the courtyard to the Holy Place. And this gives us an understanding as to what JESUS did upon HIS ascension. We have to look at the map. Otherwise, we're lost when it comes to understanding what JESUS has done, is doing and will do. We see it right here. JESUS has moved from the courtyard to the Holy Place where HE is interceding on our behalf as our High Priests. 

 

Hebrews 9: 11 - 12 gives the imagery here – “but when CHRIST came as (what does it say?) as High Priest (this is sanctuary language) of the good things that have come to be passing through the greater and more to perfect tabernacle, not made by hands…” Here Paul is saying that JESUS has entered into a sanctuary, implied in heaven not made with human hands. This is not Moses’ or Solomon's or Herod's temple. This is not made with human hands. He is our High Priest in heaven, that is not belonging to this creation… He has entered once and for all into the (where?) into the sanctuary. Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with his (What?) own blood, thus, obtaining eternal redemption. Here is the imagery. Here Paul is stating that the sanctuary is not the only hermeneutical key that we're supposed to use for being the Lamb of GOD, it is the lens we are to use to follow JESUS into the sanctuary. In order to understand CHRIST, we must understand the sanctuary. JESUS takes HIS own blood as our High Priest into the sanctuary in heaven. This is what HE did upon his ascension according to Paul. This is New Testament. Paul using the same hermeneutical key, the lens, to help unlock what CHRIST did upon HIS ascension. 

 

When CHRIST went to heaven, in your study guide, HE entered the Holy Place in the sanctuary to continue in the plan of salvation. HE went to Phase 2 to continue in the plain. What is HE doing there in this process? In the courtyard, as the Lamb of GOD, JESUS paid the penalty for sin. The wages of sin is death. JESUS became our sin bearear. The penalty for sin was paid. 

 

Now, let's say that I have a gambling addiction, I don't; but, let's see I do, just so you don't misunderstand me, this is for the sake of illustration. Lindsay said, “Sure.” All right. Now, let's say, I have a gambling addiction and I have racked up quite a debt because of my gambling. I can't help myself. Suddenly, I get called in front of the judge, the judge says, “David Shin, you owe 50,000 dollars because of gambling, you need to pay your debt or else you're going to suffer the consequences.” I am under condemnation. I am a debtor. I owe $50,000.00. Someone comes in and says, “I have $50,000.00. I'm going to pay your debt free, no strings attached. You just need to ask me, “Sir, can you pay my debt?” So, he pays the debt, zeroed out, I stand before that judge just as if I have never owed a penny, justified right? Praise GOD. So, I walk out of the courtroom, “Oh, praise the Lord, man, I just zeroed out. This guy paid my debt. “But there's a problem, I still have a gambling addiction. You following me yes or no? Now, unless this guy is going to continue to pay my debt, now, listen in this situation, he is going to continue to be my debt because he's a billionaire and every time I owe it, he's going to pay it. But at some point, this guy's going to be like, “Hey, have you ever thought about getting some help,” right? I mean you're in your every day. OK. Now he gladly pays it but he's like he wants to get me out of my addiction. All right?

 

So, this is the other part. The Holy Place frees us from the what? From the power of sin. So, as it is as if someone comes along and says, “You know what David, you've got a gambling addiction, now that debt's been paid. Now, I want to come along and give you the victory over gambling so you don't have to get called into court every single week. Now, this is the beauty of the Gospel, friends. Not only does GOD clear your past, HE says, look your debt is paid – justification. You stand before GOD as if you've never sin instantaneously. You can go to GOD, say, “LORD, I'm in debt. I'm a sinner. I need your grace. – Justified. But GOD says, “Look, I want to do even more for you. I want to bring you to the place where you have JESUS’ love in your heart written by GOD Himself so much to give you the victory over that addiction in your life. Can you say Amen? So by the grace of GOD, I can go to that person that is struggling with immorality and say, “GOD paid it all.” But in phase 2, HE wants to give you the victory. I can go to that heroin addict and say, “Look, JESUS forgives you for all of the past but HE wants to give you power in the present. You can kick that heroin addiction because we serve a GOD that is big. We serve a GOD that can create just by speaking the word and HE gives you as our High Priest in the Holy Place power over that addiction in your life. And the beauty of this is that both justification - the penalty of sin, and sanctification is by faith. 

 

Let me say that again. Both of them is by faith -Righteousness by faith. Imputed righteousness, the penalty of sin, imparted righteousness, both of them are by faith. JESUS gives HIS life on your account in the present to give you the victory over whatever habit, whatever addiction that you may have in this life. Amen.

 

Last phase, the Most Holy Place, HE frees you from the presence of sin. The presence of sin, all of the effects of sin. I'm short because of sin, friends. It's the effects of sin. That's all right. I'm going to be tall one day when I get to heaven. So, all of the effects of sin are going to be taken away. We die because of the effects of sin. You know, we lose our hair because of the effects of sin. All of the degeneration of the human race is because of the effects of sin. And in the final work of glorification, GOD is going to remove every single stain of sin of the effects of sin on planet earth. GOD has a process. HE has a plan and it's illustrated in the sanctuary. The courtyard - JESUS is the Lamb that takes away the penalty of sin. JESUS as our High Priest takes away the power of sin. JESUS in the final work of glorification takes away the presence of sin. Can you say, amen? We serve a wonderful GOD. And all of this is grace. All of these by faith in what JESUS can do. 

 

I want to read the statement from the book the great Desire of Ages noting the concept of the great controversy. I want to read this. There are issues in the great controversy that we need to recognize. Desire of Ages 761 - In the opening of the great controversy, (Remember there’s a great controversy in heaven between Lucifer and GOD. This controversy went from heaven to earth.) Satan had declared that the law of GOD could not be obeyed, that justice was inconsistent with mercy, and that, should the law be broken, it would be impossible for the sinner to be pardoned... When men broke the law of GOD, and defied HIS will, Satan exulted. It was proved, he declared, that the law could not be obeyed, man could not be forgiven. There was a battle in heaven and this battle had to do with etiology. Satan said he had a better way and he attacked the very government of GOD and the foundation of the government of GOD was the very transcript of HIS character, it was the law of GOD. The foundation of GOD's law is love. If you love your neighbor, you're not going to kill him. You're not going to steal from him. The foundation of the law is love. And Lucifer had this accusation against GOD. He says, “You know what, that law which is the foundation of your very government, no one can keep it. It is too exacting. It is impossible for anyone to keep the law. And when Adam and Eve fell, he said, “Ha, it proves my point that your creation on earth cannot keep the Law of GOD.” This was the argument that Satan used in the great controversy. The sanctuary is a response to this argument.

 

She goes on in the chapter in the Desire of Ages entitled, “It is finished.”- The law requires righteousness, - a righteous life, a perfect character; and this man has not to give. He cannot meet the claims of GOD's holy law. But CHRIST, coming to earth as man, lived a holy life, and developed a (What?) perfect character. These HE offers as a free (What? Free) gift to all who will receive them. His life stands for the life of men. This is the beauty of the gospel- that the perfect life that JESUS lived when you accept HIM as SAVIOUR and LORD stands in your place. Thus they have the remission of sins that are passed through the forbearance of GOD. But she goes on, more than this, GOD says, “Look, MY life stands for your life.” So when GOD looks at you when you're justified, HE does not see you, HE sees the righteousness of JESUS CHRIST. That's the beauty of the Gospel. 

 

She goes on- More than this, CHRIST imbues men with the attributes of GOD. HE builds up the human character after the similar to that of the divine character, a goodly fabric of spiritual strength and beauty. Thus the very righteousness of the law is fulfilled in the believer in CHRIST.

 

We've heard this analogy of the robe of righteousness that is justification. When you come to CHRIST as a sinner, HE says, “Look, take MY robe, it's a free gift.” HE covers you with that robe of righteousness, that is, justification. HIS imputed righteousness. But HE goes on. HE says, “I'm not only going to cover you, I'm going to work in you and fill you with MY Spirit.” So that the righteousness of CHRIST might be reproduced in our character as well by faith. If any man be in CHRIST, HE is a new creation. GOD does not only cover, HE transforms, friends. And that's the beauty of the Gospel. So that in the argument of the great controversy that the law of GOD cannot be kept, GOD says, “Yes, man cannot keep the law in HIS own strength; but if they depend on ME by faith, I will work in and through them, so I will write MY law in their hearts and bring them back into harmony with ME. That is the beauty of the Gospel, friends. There is wonderful grace at the cross of CHRIST. 

 

 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 

1st John 2:1, 2- “My dear children, I write this that you will not sin. (GOD hates sin. HE died so that we might not sin. And this is the trajectory. This is what GOD list before us, but I'm so glad there is the next verse.) but if anyone does sin, we have One who speaks to the FATHER in our defense, JESUS CHRIST the righteous ONE. HE is the atoning sacrifice for our sins and not for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.” Here's grace in the process where GOD makes you more like JESUS. If we stumble and when we stumble, GOD says, “Look, I'm here to pick you back up.” JESUS died. HE is the Lamb of GOD who takes away the sins of the world. And HE says continue to walk with me because there is grace all along the way.

 

I wanna invite you to stand with me as we prepare to close this morning. Every head bowed and eyes closed. I praise GOD for the Lamb of GOD who takes away the sins of the world and I want to make a specific appeal here this morning. If there is someone here, and you know in your heart of hearts that if you were to die tonight you would not be saved. You don't have the assurance of salvation. I want to encourage you to not leave this sanctuary today without knowing that you are saved. The Bible says that we can know. We have to accept JESUS as our SAVIOUR and you can do that right now with the symbolized raising of hand. Is there someone here today that wants to say, “LORD, I want to be saved. I want to accept YOU as SAVIOUR.” I want invite YOU to raise your hand this morning. Is there someone here that wants to say?... GOD bless you in the back. There's someone else? GOD bless you. Someone else? GOD bless you. Someone else? Eternal decisions are being made today. Someone that wants to say, “I don't know if I'm going to be saved; but I want to walk out of this room...” GOD bless you. “With the assurance of salvation.” GOD bless you. GOD bless you. GOD bless you in the back. GOD bless you. Don't walk out of this room without that assurance. JESUS paid it all. GOD bless you. HE's already paid the price. HE's already paid the debt on Calvary. You just have to accept that reality and it can be credited to your account right now. Won't you accept HIM today? Is there's someone else? 

 

My 2nd appeal is this: perhaps you've accepted JESUS as your SAVIOUR, perhaps you've even been baptized, but there's something in your life that you need the victory over. You believe in GOD's provision of the penalty of sin; but there is an aspect of your life, perhaps you've been hanging on, perhaps it's been a challenge, perhaps it's been in your family for years, but there is an area of your life that you've been struggling with and you want to say, “LORD, I can't do this on my own. Please, I want to accept your imparted righteousness, the power to overcome in my life for this area of my life.” I want to you to come forward for special prayer at this time. You want to say, “All to JESUS, I surrender.” GOD bless you. “All to HIM, I freely give.” And you want to lay this area before CHRIST on the altar and say, “LORD, I can't do this on my own, please help me. “ And JESUS, our Advocate in the heavenly sanctuary, will give you the strength to do what's impossible for you to do on your own. GOD bless you. GOD bless you. JESUS saves, saves us from the penalty and the power of sin and you're coming forward saying, “LORD, I need help. I can't do this of my own power. 

 

Let’s pray together.

 

Our FATHER in heaven, we thank YOU that JESUS is the Lamb of GOD who takes away the sins of the world. We thank YOU that upon YOUR resurrection, YOU ascended into the Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary to be our Advocate to apply the benefits of the Lamb on our behalf. We thank YOU that YOU save us not only from the penalty of sin, YOU save us from the power of sin. I pray that YOU bless every single person that's come forward today. LORD, we have an area of our life that we want to surrender to you. LORD, nothing is too hard for GOD. We recognize that YOU can speak the word and it will be done and that's what we're asking today. We ask that YOU would create in us a clean heart and renew a right spirit within us. Do for us what we are incapable of doing for ourselves. Help us by YOUR grace to depend on JESUS because it's only by the blood that we can have freedom from sin. So bless every person, cover us all with YOUR robe of righteousness. Fill us with your imparted righteousness. Free us from the power of sin today. We asked in JESUS' name and for HIS sake. Amen. 

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