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“A Burning Question”

     Hello, I have a question about sacrifice.  I have read where the Israelites had to make sacrifices on certain days to atone for their sins.  I am also aware that the sacrifice of Jesus has made this unnecessary.  But I do not understand how taking the best portion of your livelihood and burning it would atone for your sins.  I also do not understand how Jesus' sacrifice atoned for all the sins of the world.

How does destroying the most precious things equal forgiveness from God?  How does Jesus’ perfect sacrifice save us?  What do these acts actually DO?

Sacrificially Stymied

Dear Sacrificially Stymied,

The Jewish sacrifices of bulls and goats never did atone for sins (Heb 10:4); all they did was teach that forgiveness from sin came with a cost.  God teaches us that when we sin, the wages of that sin are death (Rom 6:23).  The Jews learned that lesson by making sin offerings.  When the sinner laid their hand upon the head of the innocent animal, they symbolically transferred their sin to that beast (Lev 4:27-29).  However, animal blood never was enough to truly pay for sin.  It took the God’s Son’s blood to pay the price for our sin; only Deity’s blood was enough to cover the tremendous cost of sin (Heb 10:10).

Jesus had to sacrifice Himself to pay for our sins because God is both a merciful and a just God.  By personally paying the price for our sins, God showed Himself to be both just and the justifier of the faithful (Rom 3:25-26).  Like a father paying the price for his son’s mistakes, Jesus paid the price for our mistakes.