…and now the Good News!
April 2, 2021
When Adam and Eve’s firstborn son Cain murdered his brother Abel, God said to him, “Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground. Now you are under a curse…” (Ge 4:10-11a). Abel’s blood cried out for justice – the punishment Cain deserved for his sin against his brother. Last week, we spoke and prayed about the consequences of sin. Now the good news!
Sinless Jesus, unjustly executed, went to His death with intentionality to bear the punishment we deserve. His blood “speaks a better word than the blood of Abel” (Heb 12:24). Jesus’ blood speaks mercy over us.
John wrote instructions to the church about God’s faithfulness to forgive and purify those who confess their sins: “My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 Jn 2:1-2).
“And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven’s Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus. By His death, Jesus opened a new and life-giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place. And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house, let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting Him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water” (Heb 10:19-22).
Not only does Jesus’ blood speak to God about us, but also to us about who God is and wants to be for us:
- His desire is for us. Jesus suffered to bring us to God (Lk 22:15 NKJV, Ro 8:38, 1 Pe 3:18).
- He is the Living God. He has the power and authority to lay down His life and take it up again. Nothing can destroy the life principle in Him, and He wants to share that life – His life – with us (Jn 1:4, 10:10, 10:17-18).
- He is with us. “The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us” so we could become His dwelling place (Jn 1:14, 1 Co 6:19-20).
- He is the initiator and perfecter. He “made Himself in human likeness”, suffering and dying so we can be made in His likeness (Heb 12:2, Php 2:7-8, Heb 2:17-18, Gen 1:26-27, 2 Co 3:18, 1 Jn 4:17).
- He is Father. “Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call [us] brothers and sisters” (Heb 2:11). “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” (1 Jn 3:1).
- He is … What does Jesus’ blood say to you about who God is and who He wants to be for you?
Solomon wrote that God set eternity in our hearts (Ecc 3:11a). What lack must there be in the hearts of Muslims (and countless others) who have eternity set in their hearts but don’t know God’s longing for us to love Him, to share in His life force, to know He has done everything to make it possible for us to live forever with Him, and that He is building a family big enough to include them!
Pray through each statement about who God is and wants to be, not only for us but also for the whole world. Praise and thank Him. Ask that Muslims would hear Jesus’ blood speaking to them about who God is and wants to be for them. Declare over them,
“Come to Jesus and live!”