Christ Sacrificed His Body Once

Hebrews 10:1-18

New Living Translation

Christ’s Sacrifice Once for All

10 The old system under the law of Moses was only a shadow, a dim preview of the good things to come, not the good things themselves. The sacrifices under that system were repeated again and again, year after year, but they were never able to provide perfect cleansing for those who came to worship. If they could have provided perfect cleansing, the sacrifices would have stopped, for the worshipers would have been purified once for all time, and their feelings of guilt would have disappeared.

But instead, those sacrifices actually reminded them of their sins year after year. For it is not possible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. That is why, when Christ[a] came into the world, he said to God,

“You did not want animal sacrifices or sin offerings.
    But you have given me a body to offer.
You were not pleased with burnt offerings
    or other offerings for sin.
Then I said, ‘Look, I have come to do your will, O God—
    as is written about me in the Scriptures.’”[b]

First, Christ said, “You did not want animal sacrifices or sin offerings or burnt offerings or other offerings for sin, nor were you pleased with them” (though they are required by the law of Moses). Then he said, “Look, I have come to do your will.” He cancels the first covenant in order to put the second into effect. 10 For God’s will was for us to be made holy by the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ, once for all time.

11 Under the old covenant, the priest stands and ministers before the altar day after day, offering the same sacrifices again and again, which can never take away sins. 12 But our High Priest offered himself to God as a single sacrifice for sins, good for all time. Then he sat down in the place of honor at God’s right hand. 13 There he waits until his enemies are humbled and made a footstool under his feet. 14 For by that one offering he forever made perfect those who are being made holy.

15 And the Holy Spirit also testifies that this is so. For he says,

16 “This is the new covenant I will make
    with my people on that day,[c] says the Lord:
I will put my laws in their hearts,
    and I will write them on their minds.”[d]

17 Then he says,

“I will never again remember
    their sins and lawless deeds.”[e]

18 And when sins have been forgiven, there is no need to offer any more sacrifices.

My thoughts and observations:

The old system was only a shadow or preview of good things to come.

It is not possible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.

God was never pleased with burnt offerings or offerings for sin.

Christ, our High Priest, offered himself to God as a single sacrifice for sins, good for all time.

Teaching Points from

1. Verses 1-4 – Basically these verses are a review of the previous chapters. In those chapters we learned that the priests had to continually offer sacrifices. They had to do it daily on and on with no sign of ending. The reason is that the law could not perfect anyone or solve our problem of sin. The law was given as a shadow of “good things to come.” Specifically the sacrifices were a shadow of Christ’s death which would once and for all atone for our sins. In verse 3 we see another purpose of the law, that is to be a continual reminder of sin. The daily sacrifices were a visible and gruesome reminder about the cost of sin and the necessity of its being punished.

2. The writer does introduce one new logical argument for why the law (and with it the sacrifices) is not enough. His argument is that they were made year by year, probably a reference to the yearly day of atonement. IF the atonement was good enough to solve the problem of sin, it wouldn’t need to be made again, but every year it had to be made anew. This in itself shows its inadequacy.

3. Verses 5-6 – These verses show us that God does not delight in sacrifices. Then why did He command us to do it? The sacrifices are a means to an end. They act as an object lesson to teach us the seriousness of sin and instill in us an attitude of repentance and appropriate fear about the results of sin. Yet throughout Israelite history the sacrifices became the “end” or the goal themselves. People disobeyed God. They rebelled against His teachings and against His prophets. They harbored all types of sins in their hearts. And they thought that all they needed to do was offer a sacrifice to God and everything would be OK. However, sacrifices were external. This external ritual was supposed to show a person’s internal attitude of remorse over sin. Whenever the person offers the sacrifice without the right heart attitude it is unacceptable in God’s sight and He takes no pleasure in it. In the modern church, there could be parallels:

A. Giving as a ritual. Perhaps some people give because they think it will take away their sin or somehow earn them absolution. In the Bible Saul said the people saved the best of the sheep to give to God, but He didn’t want them because He had told them to destroy them. Judas gave back the 30 pieces of silver that he received for his betrayal of Jesus. In the 1800s in a church George Mueller went to, people donated to the church and received a better or worse seat depending on how much they donated (apparently this was a common practice all over England), leading many people to give for the sake of a better seat.

B. Attending church as a ritual because “it’s Sunday” or because “my friends are there” or because “they will blame me for not going” if I don’t show up.

Verse 5 shows that God didn’t want the sacrifice. Then what did He want?

4. Verses 7-9 – God did not delight in their sacrifices. This isn’t what He really wanted. He wanted their obedience. He wanted them to follow His will just as Jesus said He came to do the will of the Father. Matthew 26:39, 42. These verses could be taken as a prophecy about Jesus. In Verse 7 the “I” would refer to the Messiah. Therefore Jesus fulfilled the Old Covenant (of obeying God’s will from the heart) where all of His kinsmen had failed. In other places we read that Jesus came to fulfill the law and not to abolish it. He gives us the perfect model to follow.

Application: We should always evaluate our heart and make sure we are serving God from our heart for the right reasons. Ask yourself, “Why am I going to church today?” “Why am I reading the Bible?” “Why should I pray before a meal?” Before going to church pray and ask God to prepare your heart for learning. Do the same before a quiet time or before attending a Bible study.

5. Verse 10 – We have been sanctified. His once for all sacrifice has made us holy positionally before God. Jesus did for us what the law never could. Although we are sanctified before God already positionally, there is still the ongoing process of becoming more like Christ in our every day practice which we must pursue.

More teaching points from

1. Verses 11-12 – What is the contrast between verses 11 and 12? Jesus has sat down at the right hand of God. Notice the contrast with verse 11. Those priests are…? Standing! What is the difference? They are standing because their work isn’t finished. They need to keep doing it over and over. You sit down after you are done with your work. Jesus’ sacrificial work for us is finished. He NEVER has to repeat it again.

2. Verse 13 – Waiting from that time onward until His enemies be made a footstool for His feet. Jesus is waiting for the right time to come again and establish His earthly kingdom when all of His enemies will be forced to bow their knee and confess that He IS the Messiah. Although His sacrificial work is completed, He is not done. Jesus still has a lot to say and do about world history. Our history books tell us about many of the great empires and civilizations in world history and their rise and fall. We learn of the power of ancient Rome, the splendor of Babylon, the wisdom of the Greeks, the influence of Egypt, the creativity of the Chinese, etc. Do you know that there is one empire coming that is going to put all of the rest to shame in power, splendor, wisdom, peace, and might? That is Jesus’ kingdom. We haven’t heard the last of Jesus. What is He waiting for? See 2 Peter 3:9.

3. Verses 14-16 – He has perfected us! What is the application? Live like it! God wants to put His law on our hearts and minds. How can we enable this? He does this. At the same time we have a responsibility to respond to Him. We should read and study and memorize His Words so that they are in our hearts and He can bring them to mind whenever He wishes. We should routinely confess sin so that there is no barrier in our relationship with Him. We should sharpen our minds spiritually by meditating on His Words and delving deeper into them.

4. Verses 17-18 – He remembers our sins no more. This is the result of believing the gospel in a nutshell. In this world when someone commits a crime, it goes on a record. That record will show his crime as long as he lives. In only a few very rare cases a judge may decide to purge a person’s record. That’s what God has done for us. He purges our record and He will never hold those sins against us. He removes them as far as the East is from the West. Psalm 103:12.

%d bloggers like this:
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close