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Where the conscience is once cleansed from sins, it can never again be contaminated with sins. Proof: “He himself bore our sins in his body”; not part, but all of our sins (1 Peter 2:24 ESV). “He has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself” (Hebrews 9:26 ESV). Also, “the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7 ESV).
Certainly, we are to learn from such passages that each and every sin of all his people was “borne” and “put away” by him; and, if put away by him, salvation to his people is the inevitable result; for what is there to condemn us when all sin is put away? To say all our sin is not put away, is to deny the Bible; and to say that we can be lost, is to say we can be condemned when we are without sin.
Forever Cleansed by the Scapegoat
And when he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place and the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall present the live goat. And Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over it all the iniquities of the people of Israel, and all their transgressions, all their sins. And he shall put them on the head of the goat and send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a man who is in readiness. The goat shall bear all their iniquities on itself to a remote area, and he shall let the goat go free in the wilderness.Leviticus 16:20-22 ESV
None can doubt this being a type of our Savior, and in it we see every sin and transgression, by this ceremony, put away. Then may we not reasonably suppose that every sin of ours, great and small, in word, thought, or action; yes, every transgression of ours, over which the law has cognizance, were all laid upon the head of our Redeemer, and by him forever borne away? This thought is full of sweetness to every Christian.
Jesus bore all our sins, past, present, and future, and made complete satisfaction for them. How can you despair? What surer basis could our hope have, and what could so fill us with love to Christ, and so inspire us with obedience? No thought so encouraging as, “Jesus paid it all, all the debt I owe.”
Forever Cleansed by the Blood
Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, since the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have any consciousness of sins?Hebrews 10:2 ESV
If one’s conscience is cleansed from sins, then what? “They have no more conscience of sins”; thus showing that whatever is washed by the blood of Christ remains clean eternally. Again, “For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified” (Hebrews 10:14 ESV). Query: By what are they perfected? Answer: By the one offering. Query: How long shall this perfection last? Answer: For all time. Forever. The word “forever” may be used in a limited sense, in some places, but here it is used in its most extended sense.
Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean, but not every one of you.”John 13:10 ESV
Jesus is saying that His “bathing” of believers results in a permanent clean (“completely”) at the deepest places in the heart. It is internal; it symbolizes the changed nature. The cleaning of feet represents the remembrance of, and dependence on, what has already been accomplished. It is an external cleansing. Confession of day-to-day sins, after a one-time bathing, restores outward behavior into alignment with the inner reality, keeping fellowship with Jesus fully unhindered.
The Savior also speaks of permanence through the analogy of bread. “This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die” (John 6:50 ESV); “If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever” (John 6:51 ESV). “Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day” (John 6:54 ESV); with many more such sayings.
Now let us ask, what is the state of those who eat his flesh and drink his blood? They “have eternal life;” “They shall never perish;” “They shall live forever;” “I will raise him up at the last day.” If one of them could be lost, would the Savior’s words be true when he says, “I will raise him up at the last day?” or, “He shall never die?”
Let’s consider Paul’s words to be true. “They have no more conscience of sins.” “One offering forever perfects.” This is what the Holy Spirit testifies in every saint; he breathes the sweet words in our hearts that the offering of Jesus by means of his blood, has secured eternal redemption (Hebrews 9:12).
Is it possible that this eternal redemption could be overturned, or reversed, any day? Can we eat the flesh of our Savior today, and drink his blood, and tomorrow die and be lost? Is this what our Savior calls living forever? Is this eternal life? No, verily, such was not in his mind when he uttered these words; but he saw and well knew the safety of all who “taste that God is gracious” (1 Peter 2:3) and he spoke these words for their comfort.
This is post 4 in a series; you can read the previous post. This post started as the public domain works of J. H. Oliphant. While substantially the same in many ways, I modernized the language and added my thoughts to provide greater clarity for my readers.
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