Some people think that God is far up in the heavens and that we are way down here on earth, that since He is far superior to us, He doesn’t care to be too intimately related to us. However, if the veil could be removed from our eyes, we would be astonished to see what is in God’s heart.
There are natural human concepts that most of us hold true. Maybe you are convinced that God desires for us to be a religious or good person, or generally just to do good deeds as much as possible, etc. I remember hearing one person say that God has a balance and He will weigh the good and evil in our life when we stand before Him one day. I couldn’t think of a more insecure thought or feeling than that. Yet, beyond all these thoughts of men, we may not ever have imagined that these concepts may possibly be blinding us to something deeper and higher that God has prepared for us.
In the first chapter of the Torah, God reveals something very important: that He made us in His very own image (Genesis 1:26). A glove is made in the image of a hand with the purpose that the hand would enter into and fill the glove. Likewise, man is made in the image and likeness of God. Why? So that God could enter us and fill us with Himself as the eternal life in our inmost being. You may not believe that this could be true. Yet, this thought is proven in Genesis 3:22: “Lest he put forth his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat and live forever.”
Allow me to provide some context to this marvellous thought. There were two distinct trees in the Garden of Eden. Although Adam and Eve had the choice, they were told by God not to eat of the tree that resulted in death, which was the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. God’s desire was for Adam to eat of the tree of life. The tree of life was a symbol of God coming as life to (be received by) man. Knowing all this, Satan, God’s enemy (in the form of a serpent), sought to deceive Adam and Eve so that they would partake of the tree of death. As a result, sin entered into man and death came in through sin. God then closed the way to the tree of life. He placed cherubim and a flaming sword that turned in every direction to guard the way to the tree of life (Genesis 3:24). The cherubim signify God’s glory (Ezekiel 9:3; 10:4), the flame signifies God’s holiness (Deuteronomy 4:24; 9:3), and the sword signifies God’s righteousness (Lamentations 3:42-43).
In order to deal with the sense of guilt and shame from wrong-doing, Adam and Eve engineered an idea: to hide in the garden, then cover and clothe themselves with fig leaves. However, God had another thought and a different way in relation to “covering them.” God did something that they would never forget: He killed an animal (most likely a lamb) and covered Adam and Eve with animal skins. Why did God prefer this as opposed to the fig leaves? This question is very important. The answer is that God was satisfying the requirements of His righteousness. In God’s eyes, without the shedding of blood, there can be no forgiveness of sins. The animal took upon itself the sins of Adam and Eve and stood in their place as God exercised a righteous judgment. This righteous judgment fell upon the animal so as to free the guilty party. Judgment fell on one to free the other.
After being taught this by their parents, Cain and Abel (children of Adam and Eve) also had a choice. Cain took the way of trying to establish his own righteousness by offering up fruits and vegetables, which issued from his own labor, in trying to obtain acceptance and approval before God. Because of this, his offering was rejected by God. How many today are trying to establish their own righteousness by their “works”? This could be “good deeds,” or “religious works.” Once again, without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. In God’s eyes, the offering made by Abel took care of Abel’s own sins because the animal died in Abel’s place. Thus, God’s righteousness was satisfied. That is how and why Abel’s sacrifice made God happy.
All the animals that were sacrificed, from Abel to Moses, even up to the days of King Solomon (in the Temple), all foreshadowed the coming, unique sacrifice, which is the Christ. It is important to note that, at the time of the Passover, in the days of Moses, the blood was applied on the outside of the doorpost. The Jewish people within the house were spared, not because they were Jewish, but because of the blood that God could see on the doors. For when God saw the blood, He would pass over the entrance of the house. Those inside the house would be safe from the destroyer (see Exodus 12:23).
Christ was offered for our sins as the real Lamb of God on the very day of the Passover. He shed His blood for our sins, so that we might be free from God’s righteous judgment. Has the blood of the Lamb (Jesus) been applied to you? There is no need to try to attain to a level of acceptance before God outside of Christ. Christ is God’s provision for you so you can be forgiven of your sins and be clothed with righteousness. God has done everything for you, so you don’t have to try to please God in regard to being justified before Him. Jesus Christ has pleased God by his vicarious death. The righteous One died on behalf of us the unrighteous, so that we might be brought to God.
By raising Christ from the dead, God showed His acceptance of what Christ had accomplished. In His resurrection, Christ became the life-giving Spirit. He even said, “I came that you might have life and have it more abundantly.” The Greek word used for “life” here means the eternal life. When one receives Christ, he receives what God desires to give us, that is, both the forgiveness of sins and eternal life…all at the same time! God does not want you to be separated from Him any longer! You can receive these gifts—the forgiveness of sins and the eternal life of God—right now.
Please pray aloud with an open heart:
Dear Lord Jesus, I do thank You for dying for my sins and shedding Your blood for me. I open my heart to receive You as my Lord and Redeemer. Fill my being with the life of God…Amen.
How to Receive Eternal Life