This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep. (Heb. 9:20)

Last year, my husband and I read through the entire Bible chronologically. Though we had each read the Bible in its entirety before, neither of us had ever done a full chronological reading. As we camped out in the first books of the Old Testament, we both commented on the incredible amount of blood that flowed in the Israelite camp. We could only imagine the aroma (though I believe we may have called it stench) that must have blanketed that sizzling desert land as the priests slaughtered thousands of animals to atone for thousands of sins.

I don’t handle blood (or stench) very well, so I came away from our study of the Old Testament law especially grateful that I live under the new covenant that doesn’t require animal sacrifice. But even though he no longer demands animal sacrifice, God still requires the shedding of pure blood to atone for sin—mine included. He commanded it, and Jesus fulfilled it with his own blood.

May we never forget, as we breathe (relatively) clean air, that the stench of sin cost Jesus Christ his very life. Our place of worship may not be drenched in animal blood, but his body was drenched with his own blood in keeping with God’s command that “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness” (Heb. 9:22).

Live a life that demonstrates gratitude for Jesus’ sacrifice.

Bekah Shaffer lives in Kokomo, Indiana, and enjoys endless coffee, scrapbooking, speaking, and planning adventures with her husband, Ryan.

© 2019 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.
Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.