29th March 2024

From Shadow to Reality

Passage: John 19:28-30, Matthew 5:48, Hebrews 10:1-14
Service Type:

Automatically Generated Transcript

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This morning our purpose is to be here to keep serious in our minds and to understand too remind ourselves again of the centrality, the center point of our faith which is about Jesus and His dying on the cross. I don't know whether you've noticed anything about the way the Gospels or four Gospels in their ways. Start off, and if you read a chapter it might take you into the introduction, and you read the second and third chapter, and you'll get a bit further for your reading along in the next chapters. And gradually as you progress through the Gospel, it seems as though every chapter takes you through a greater amount of time. In fact, the further you go through the Gospels, whether it is that you read the story from a little bit of each or whether you just take one Gospel, the same phenomenon hits you that somehow

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the speed of the narrative is slowing down, and you get to the last of the final chapters in each of the four Gospels. And it seems as though that progress of time slows down to the nearest top and you find yourself beneath the cross. It's part of how the Bible has been written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to take us to where is the centre-point of Christianity, and the centre-point, as the narrative gives explanation thereof in just how it's written, is to bring you to the cross and leave you standing there, some of the by-standers and Jesus, disciples, and some of the women and His mother were watching Him and quite a number of hours goes by in the narrative. And although there are some extra things thrown in, that generally speaking, the

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purpose of the Gospels is to take our attention to the center point of Christianity. It is when Jesus died. Now it's very interesting in going through through, usually on an Easter morning, we do something like go through the seven sayings of Jesus from the Cross, or we might talk about the different people who watched the event and some of whom changed their lives, like the thief who repented as different from the one who did not, and we find some way on Easter morning to understand why the cross is central. I had something happen to me lying in bed early one morning. Which gives me an illustration which at first sounding you may think why you using that illustration on such a sacred morning? But lying in bed I heard this terrible noise come down the

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street. I like listening to the neighbors cars and because of the height of our house we can hear different ones take off and we know he's a bit late this morning or, and you can hear a lot when your house is put up a bit and that accentuates that when this noisy clattering sound came down and I was feeling annoyed at my peaceful morning being shattered and it stopped with a very loud clunk outside our house and there was the noise I'd recognized of the bins being picked up and the bins are picked up and and all the rubbish is falling out into the back of it and then it takes off again. And I was feeling resentful because one of the things I sometimes do in the mornings is to think about my sermons and and get them in my head and

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And this noisy collection of rubbish was destroying the atmosphere, properly, for me. And I remembered at that moment going to a country, I won't tell you which one, but another country, where they don't have good sanitation. And the rubbish isn't picked up. And if you go for a morning walk you better be careful, because you might have to kick a dog out of the way, who comes to bite you if you walk too near the rubbish and suddenly you realize something very good in Australia

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is the sanitation collection because rubbish needs to be taken away. Now, in the story-line of the gospels, there are some people who, if you ask them what is the gospel that the Bible presents, they will tell you about Jesus' teaching or they will tell you about his great love for people in need, but all of which is good and true by the way. But there are folk who do not like what we are doing here this morning, or realise just

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how central is the teaching of the cross. But when I remember this other country where the rubbish is not collected and there's a stench, and there's a sense in which the streets that you might have thought you would for a walk. Don't feel very sanctified for your feet, very nice on your nose, very safe on your heels with those dogs, the ones that would crouch around the rubbish. Like in the Bible's story of Lazarus and the rich man, there's the hounds that are out there, and they're dangerous hounds. If you investigate historically about them, it's a very unwise Person who goes and tries to pat one of those dogs. Well it is because Jesus came for the purpose of completing the work of God to deal with the rubbish. The rubbish is not societal out throw from the kitchens or the meals or the toilets. The rubbish is the rubbish of our sin. We have

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here in this passage in the scriptures about Jesus's death. In this verse in John's Gospel, after this Jesus knowing that all was now finished. That word finished should register with us here at Salisbury who do come on Sunday mornings and we've been going through the beatitudes. For we've seen in the the teaching of Jesus that his purpose is not only to raise the standard expected of God for salvation, which he certainly did, not only to emphasise that the Father is perfect and that's why he keeps his standard of being perfect, but it is that the rubbish has to be collected in order for us to ever get near the kingdom of heaven. Now the kingdom of isn't just going to heaven at the end. The Kingdom of Heaven is the Kingdom on Earth

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that is directed by Heaven, and so you'll find the little descriptors Kingdom of God and Kingdom of Heaven. Some people try and make them two different things but they're not. The Kingdom of Heaven is the Kingdom on Earth that was promised one day the Messiah would arrive and he would institute this kingdom ruled by God, by him being the Messiah, the leader. That person of course is Jesus. And the central event is, I've just been indicating to you, is the moment when he died on the cross and we're reading of that. After this, Jesus knowing that all was now finished, and I

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but I hope that word is finished – registers on you. Te Leos was translated in Matthew 5 when Jesus emphasised that it should be perfect just as the Father is perfect. Telaos. And after this, Jesus knowing that all was now finished. Now when you actually look at it and try and put it out on a piece of paper, the meanings of this word Telaos, it is finished. Completed. Paid in full if it's a debt. It's the idea of brought to completion. And what we've been learning Sunday by Sunday Sundays. Jesus raised the ask of God for what he wants of people to get into the Kingdom of Heaven. He asked it to be perfect like the Father. And so we've addressed the fact that none of us are perfect. We have a lot of rubbish

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to be removed. And what we saw in our beatitudes is that, that doing of the getting rid of rubbish is both what Jesus achieved by how he died for sin, but also for how we get sanctified along the way thereafter. The Christian journey, whether you're reading it in the novel such as Pilgrim's Progress or whether you're going from the teaching of the Scriptures like in the book of Ephesians and Colossians and Corinthians, in fact all the New Testament, it's about the fact But God doesn't only want us to come and say, yes, I'll be a Christian, but He wants us to start the Walk of Sanctification. So the little book of Thessalonians says, This is the will of God. I used to quote that verse a lot that God has got a will for you and that might be that

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you ought to be a football player, or it might be that you'll be a motor car racing driver or it might be that you'll be able to become an expert at scuba diving. are all things I thought I'd have a try and the most lofty one was might be I'll become a pilot then I found out I was colourblind but that anyway none of those like bees happened what I discovered is the Christian life God's will and that verse in Thessalonians this is the will of God even your holiness the word is to be sanctified could have been translated some versions do this is the will of God which is not even your sanctification. What happens after you come to Jesus and get forgiven? Then what is this verse about that says,

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knowing that all was finished, he said, to fulfil the Scripture I thirst, a jar full of sour wine stood there. So he put a sponge full of sour wine they did on the hyssop branch and put it up to his mouth. By the way they offered him sour wine twice, and this time He doesn't take it, later he does. But this forth says, and held it up to his mouth. And then next verse 30, and I had this entirely wrong in my youth misunderstanding it,

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it says when Jesus had received the wont wine, he said it is finished. And I was a young boy and always eating, and drinking, and wanting more. And I always thought that was saying Jesus had the editorial wind was up on the cross saying you know I finished, which was a stupid thing to think but just what small boys might do. But when you read it in the other Gospels, and I won't put the other verses up, but it's clear that he's probably not taking it now anyway, he does later. But this is not what his cry is about because the next little bit when Jesus had received this sour wine he said it

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is finished." But in the other gospels, they tell us there's a mighty shout that he does at the end of the three hours of darkness where he's suffering our sins and he gives an explanation last, it is finished – and that word finished is the same word coming from teleos. It's been perfected. It's been made complete. It's paid in full. What was Jesus talking about? The most immediate answer that of course which we celebrate this morning is that He was getting rid of the rubbish that He was finishing paying for our sins and He was telling the world and He was telling you that the dealing with your sins He has finished it's done it's paid in full there's nothing left to be done and the

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word that's used there is the same word we'll go now to another spot across in our passage for the verse of the day in Hebrews 10 verse 14 and we'll start at line, that's good, thank you. Every priest, talking about the Old Testament regime, the Old Covenant times, every priest stands daily at his service offering repeatedly the same sacrifices which can never take away sins. The form of the sacrifices and the old system was to teach them that sins have to be paid for and to be paid for they needed a substitute and they needed a confession but it says in the Book of Hebrews all of that rigmarole all of that ceremony all of that going to the temple and the deaths of those animals and the blood of the bulls and the goats can never take away sins. It's like the Old Testament system was like the

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rubbish cars but they come and stop and do nothing and keep driving, but makes you feel at least something's happening. But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins. He sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time until his enemy shall be made a footstool for his feet. For a single offering he has perfected, and guess which word that is. I've been deliberately wanting to teach our congregation words from the Greek, until they asked is the one that I was picking on in the Beatitudes, and here it is turning up again, and here the translators have chosen to use the word perfected. He's brought to an end. He's made complete. He said it's paid in full. He's done all that is necessary, and getting ready for this sermon I saw because I've always known for some time now that Jesus on the cross was

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finalizing our account for our sins there'd be nothing left to pay' that's why you don't get anywhere by your works he's done it all. And when you're a father you know in the family and you go out for dinner you have to be aware that when your wife talks you into going up for dinner with all the family that you have to take your wallet. Sometimes I wonder whether I should get converge can you still do you I sometimes wonder whether I should dodge taking the wallet and see what happens then but no it's the job of the father to pay for the whole lot and Jesus came to be a sacrifice for all sins and when he had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins he sat down at the right hand of God and the sitting down there are times when people see in a vision like

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Stephen did Jesus standing up ready to come and judge the people stoning him! But here the idea is of his sitting down at the right hand of God as it's a finished deal a finished deal! I, later, my heart this morning to tell you that God is wanting you to know at the heart of Christianity is one great event that the Gospel storyline takes you quickly to awe but then slows down and stops and leaves you looking up at the sacrifice of Jesus, telling of those sensual three hours of darkness at the end of which he's been suffering the condemnation of our sins. All through the darkness he's been suffering spiritually. He's gonna die physically later and it'll be a total death and experienced by him, but he's been suffering spiritually. The separation

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from the father and a previous cry he made at that darkness time maybe nearer the end of it but he says, My God, My God! how thou hast forsaken me, or in translations. My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?' Because that was the price He had to pay, forsaken by God. The Father, remember, there's the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, three persons in one God, and Jesus was the second person, eternally. He's always the Son of God, but He took on humanity and became the God man that he might qualify which is why he kept the law perfectly and was sinless and spotless and just like the Old Testament sacrifices had to be a lamb without blemish or without spot and the Hebrew words in the Old Testament for that is the same as the descriptors for Jesus

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eventually that he would be without blemish I won't find all the verses to but what a study that is! When you study of Jesus going to the cross and see that he had to be without blemish and without spot and in the Greek equivalent for those things is our word perfect! I want you to know! I want you to know that his sacrifice was a part of your sanctification. It was the underlying of why, after you've come to Christ and been justified, that you then have been gradually getting sanctified. And if there's, as I told on Sunday last, if there's some things going wrong every now and then, it might well be that God has designed them, in order to get you to face some issue because he's so intent on your sanctification. But that sanctification is that which he addressed in once and for all, dealing with the rubbish

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What the great joy is, that when we as Christian sometimes slip up or sometimes from the flesh that's walking by your sinful human nature that you still have got the problem with, and out comes something that's not very Christian like. By the way that flesh never gets any better. I'm not talking about underneath your skin is the meat. I'm talking about your humanity, that's the evil part. the only answer to the flesh is to walk after the Spirit for if you walk after the Spirit you won't fulfill the strong desires of the flesh and the fruit of the spirit love joy peace that list will come out of you instead but as we learn how to give over to that process we gradually become sanctified and that's

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the will of God for you. But part of being able to see that sanctification is when by faith you accept that your forgiveness is not just, or, well, the past has been bad and we won't look at that, says God, no that's not why His forgiveness is. His forgiveness is that He has dealt with the rubbish, They had done, they're finished. The punishment is complete and the sanctification by his death on your behalf is total. And the other translation of that word to Celestai that Jesus actually cried when he said it is finished. He's talking about it's a finalized account and for the first time preparing for this sermon I realized, yes he's talking about our sins is what I previously always understood. But it's also he's talking about what this Book of Hebrews keeps on

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talking about the whole Jewish account of how they had the Old Covenant and the law. The law was set to set a standard, God's standard and it was said with requirements to go to the temple and for there to be sacrifices to teach us that it's going to take a sacrifice, but what the Book of Hebrews says, let's go to our next Hebrews first and I hope it's the right one I have a list and if we I think chapter 10 will do and verses 1 to 4 and okay so here we have for since the law has but a shadow or the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities. You're listening. Don't rely on the Old Testament law to be how you're sanctified. It's painting the picture that you need it, it's painting a picture that you need to substitute, but it says here, this

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is the Book of Hebrews chapter 10, The law has but a shadow of the good things to come. Instead of the true form of these realities, it can never by the same sacrifice that they continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near. Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, since the worshippers having once been cleansed would no longer have any consciousness of sins. I've met people who are Christians who still have some consciousness of some sins that they seem somehow never to forget and to realise that forgiven. That's not what this is talking about. That no doubt happened in the Old Testament days, and they might be doing the same sin and coming back next year with another sacrifice or next month sometimes. We do have a role to confess our wrongs, but it isn't because there's

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any more paying to be paid. We confess our wrongs, and the actual word at 1 John on one night if we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness that's for Christians but the word confess means say the same as God agree with God that it is a rubbish event this happened for you but don't think there's anymore sacrifice needed to be made especially by you for Jesus has made a once and for all sacrifice for all of your sins made perfect those who draw near otherwise I would have ceased to be often since the worshippers having been cleansed I just read this would no longer have any consciousness of sins but in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year that's the old Jewish

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system for it is impossible for the bulls plough of Bulls and goats to take away sins. Now never forget, the book of Hebrews says that all of that sacrificial system, all of the keeping of the law as a legal standard to make you sanctified is a picture of the real event that was going to happen. And all of those offerings for sin, they have been finalised. And when Jesus cried out 10 out and said, it is finished. 11 He was talking about your sins, yes, but is also talking about all the system of trying to get there to be some sanctification from sin. The whole system has been finalised for Jesus on the cross payed it in full which is why you can also translate the word tetelestai that's the form of tele génesis you can translate

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it to mean paid in full when you've had a bill that was outstanding. You know how when you got bills and pay off a little bit every now and then. And then at last it's finished and so you get to the person, here's the thing, right in there, paid in full so you can't wave at me again. Well Jesus said Te Te-Lesteai not only about your individual sins but for entire Old Testament system which is why the Bible says that that order of things the Old Covenant has been superseded by the New Covenant, and as a part of the superseding of the Old Testament by the New, God then says His Spirit is going to come and write his requisites in your heart and make you a person who at the heart level loves to do the right thing even though you struggle with the flesh, which would want to go the old way, but there's something new has come

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to you in which you are now sanctified totally in a sense about your sins they are no more and you don't have to have a consciousness of them again. Let's look the one verse that I've got and I'm going to finish this part soon we've got a bit of a presentation to give to you in a minute but in this one verse which is chapter 10 and verse 14 look at chapter 10 and verse 14, for by a single offering he has perfected T Athenaos or the forum thereof T. Athenaos for all time those who are being sanctified. Now notice it's definitely done by Jesus once for all sacrifice and when you realise that and rest in it that's actually what the communion service we're about to have is to make you do, to recognise in your case it has been paid in full. It's finished the old regime of getting you feeling guilty which a lot

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of people think Christianity is about, has been closed, finalised, perfected by Jesus, single offering. He has perfected for all time those who are now, notice, who are being sanctified. Even though the moment you first came to Christ was when you got in the door as far as being justified for being a sinner. Sinner though you were you were given the status of being forgiven totally forgiven unjustified in God's eyes. But following that, it's what funds your sanctification because the action has actually been done Jesus's great sacrifice, a single offering He has perfected for all times of all time right back in the old areas, all time, future to come. You are one sanctified by His death and then you go on being sanctified which is an outworking of that and one of the funds F-U-N-D-S, one of the supply of energy to

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make happen, one of the causes of it to be triggered, is this realization that the death of Christ is enough. You don't have to add anything to it. You don't have to bring law way up the back steps to your Christian house. You can trust in the total death of Christ and let the Holy Spirit take you through sanctification that he's come to bring to you. Isn't that fantastic? Sometimes I feel like crying when I understand another snippet or aspect of the Gospel. The Jesus cry, I've always thought it was just about my sins being finished, paid in full, but I suddenly realized it's about the whole system being brought to a close. There's one final thing to say from the verses that follow there in the Hebrews chapter 10, the next set. It just says therefore we

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should have full assurance of faith and full assurance is what you get when you rely in totality to Jesus' death once and for all as dealt of your sins past sins present sins maybe yet to happen. But this in Hebrews 10 and probably about verse 15 on talks about, you can look this up when you get home, the assurance that grows in you as you rest in the finished nature of His Death for your sins. And there's the passage and it's all about a new and living way that is open to us and there's much I could bring out but I'd make my sermon go too long. But look up the following part of Hebrews 10 and you'll be able to read this. It's about the assurance that someone here wants God to give you that he's not treating you as a second-hand Christian or a third-level Christian, or someone that has wrecked everything.

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I want to tell you you have been totally sanctified by the death of Christ and He will outwork by the Holy Spirit, those applications in your life.

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