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Gospel of God → The Prophesied Messiah → The Problem of Sin 

by Bill Wong

 

 

 

The Problem of Sin

 

The terrible result of sin is death. Since the fall of Adam and Eve in sin, all humanity has been engulfed in sin and death.

 

Genesis 2:

16   And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat;

17   but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."   (NKJV)

 

 

The Tanakh shows us from the very first sin that our sins can be covered by the death of another in place of the sinner. Adam and Eve did not immediately die. Innocent animals died as a result of Adam and Eve’s sin, and their skins were used to cover them:

 

Genesis 3:

20   And Adam called his wife's name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.

21   To Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.   (AKJV)

 

 

The Tanakh teaches that life is in the blood and the penalty of sin is the shedding of blood – death. The wages of sin is death. If our sin is not paid for by our death, then it must be paid by the death of a suitable and pure replacement. In the Book of Leviticus we are shown that atonement for our sins can be made by the shedding of blood of a substitute:

 

Leviticus 17:

11   'For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls;

     for it is the blood by reason of the life that makes atonement.'   (NASB)

 

 

This truth of atonement for sins is so important, that God has made it an annual holy day. On this holy day which comes only once a year, the High Priest makes atonement for the sins of all the people:

 

Leviticus 16:

29   And this shall be a statute for ever to you: that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month,

     you shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojournes among you:

30   For on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that you may be clean from

     all your sins before the LORD.   (AKJV)

 

Leviticus 23:

26   And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,

27   Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation to you;

     and you shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire to the LORD.

28   And you shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement,

     to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God.   (NKJV)

 

 

Jews today recognize the Day of Atonement as the most somber of the holy days.

 

The entire sacrificial system was put in place by God to show us how serious sin is to Him and to show us that the penalty of sin is death, which can only be paid for by our own deaths or the shedding of blood of an innocent and unblemished substitute.

 

But the sacrificial system only points to something greater, because we cannot make atonement sacrifices forever. Making sacrifices forever only means that sin and death will last just as long to require the atonement. This cannot be. God made things perfect and He said it was good. To bring us back to this state before sin and death entered His creation, means sin and death must be destroyed. This means there must be an atonement that can eternally satisfy the penalty of sin and death.

 

To avoid the implications of the sacrificial system’s logic and principles which point to the fact that only an atonement powerful enough with eternal results can truly rid us of sin and death eternally, many Jews state that God does not need to follow His own law of the life in the blood makes atonement. Instead, they say things like prayers can make atonement for sin or what the High Priest does on the Day of Atonement is not for sin, etc. This, of course, directly contradicts what God said in Leviticus 17:11 which we just read : it is the blood which makes atonement, because it alone is life.

 

This argument is made plainly to avoid the idea of a suffering Messiah who atones for the sins of mankind forever, since the argument clearly goes against the Tanakh’s instructions on atonement and what is done in practice when the Temples existed.

 

This can be said, because it is only the act of trying to disprove Jesus as the Messiah that can explain why Jews are willing to even attack the integrity of God Himself by saying God is capricious and has created the sacrificial system as an act of whimsy which is suddenly of no importance.

 

Also, it is only the act of trying to disprove Jesus as the Messiah that makes Jews contradict what is in their hearts : they know the importance of the Temple, the priesthood and the sacrifices, and earnestly long for it again.

 

So this argument of God ignoring His law of atonement sacrifice is hypocritical and self-contradictory, and we come full circle to where we were before: sin and death must be remedied forever and God’s sacrificial system provides the answer. The atoning blood of only the most suitable sacrifice can eternally pay the penalty of sin and death. It is not a “human sacrifice”, but it is the supreme act of altruistic love; the same way a father would die himself in order for his children to live.

 

 

 

Please see next articles in the Prophesied Messiah series: The Messiah is more than a mere man

 

 

Link to the Prophesied Messiah articles outline