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0318-How Do We Approach God? 如何亲近神?

Hebrews 11:4 (NKJV) By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks.God was pleased and looked upon Abel favourably because he obeyed and carried out the offering based on God’s requirement. Abel was seen as righteous and Cain as unrighteous. Abel acted in faith according to what was taught to him. The most excellent sacrifice to approach God was solely through the sacrifice of an animal with the shedding of blood. Cain, on the other hand, attempted to use his own effort by offering the produce of the land obtained through his sweat and labour. Cain did not do what was stipulated by God. It was actually an act of self-righteousness, which was like filthy rags before God.

Likewise, we need to obey, acknowledge, submit and have faith in the way that God has established for us to approach Him through the blood of Jesus Christ. We need to come before God by faith based on what Jesus has done for us on the cross of Calvary.

The High Priest Aaron used to enter into the Holy of holies on the Day of Atonement with the blood of goats as a sin offering yearly. However, the Day of Atonement was also a day to remind them that their sins were not completely removed but merely covered by the blood of animals and therefore, it was a yearly reminder. The blood of animals could not remove the mark of their transgressions completely. The Day of Atonement pointed to the work of Jesus Christ in bringing us eternal redemption because the sacrifices of goats and calves had their setbacks.

Any attempts from us to approach God based on our own strengths will have an outcome just like Cain’s. They will not work and we cannot redeem ourselves with our own strengths, good works or deeds!

Jesus is the Lamb of God who has taken away the sin of the world. Once Jesus’ blood was offered at the heavenly tabernacle, God does not remember our sins and lawless deeds anymore. He completely blots out from our accounts all our sins and therefore, we have no past as they are under His blood. We do not need to keep offering sacrifices of animals, tormenting ourselves or trying all earthly means to appease God because Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice who obtained eternal redemption for us.

The difference between the earthly High Priests and Jesus as our High Priest was that Jesus sat down at the right hand of the Father after He offered up His blood whereas the earthly High Priests had to offer up animal blood yearly. As Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, no more sacrifices were needed. It is complete. The redemption of mankind is DONE. There is absolutely nothing we can add to it in order to approach God. We can have a clean and cleansed conscience because through the blood of Jesus Christ, we have His righteousness. We approach God by faith that Jesus has completed the work of redemption! This pleases God!

Sermon Series: What Pleases God? (Part 2) – What to Do?

如何亲近神?

希伯来书 11:4 (和合本)亚伯因着信,献祭与 神,比该隐所献的更美,因此便得了称义的见证,就是 神指他礼物作的见证。他虽然死了,却因这信,仍旧说话。

神感到满意并且青睐亚伯,因为他顺服并按着神的吩咐献上供物。亚伯被视作义人,而该隐则被视为不义。亚伯凭着信心,照着所领受的教导行事。唯有动物流血的献祭才是那唯一使人亲近神的最完美的献祭。而该隐所献上的是他流汗耕耘所得的土产,他试图以自己的努力亲近神。他没有按照神的规定行事。这其实是一种自义的行为,在神面前就像污秽的衣服。

同样地,我们需要顺服、承认、降服,并且相信神藉耶稣基督的宝血为我们所修建的道路。我们需要基于耶稣在加略山十字架上为我们所成就的,凭着信心来到神面前。

在每年的赎罪日,大祭司亚伦都要带着山羊的血作为赎罪祭进入至圣所。然而,赎罪日也是个提醒的日子,提醒他们的罪并没有完全被洁除,只是被动物的血暂时遮盖,因此这就成了一年一度的敲打。动物的血不能完全抹去他们的过犯。赎罪日预表了耶稣基督的工,为我们带来永恒的救赎,因为山羊和牛犊的牺牲都有其自身的欠缺。

任何以一己之力去亲近神的尝试都会落得与该隐一样的下场。它们不会奏效,我们无法用自己的力量、善行或行为来赎回自己!

耶稣是神的羔羊,除去世人罪孽的。一旦耶稣的血被献在天上的帐幕,神就不再记念我们的罪和不法的行为。祂把我们所有的罪都从账上一笔勾销,因此我们没有过去,我们的过去已在祂宝血的遮盖下。我们不需要不断地献祭牲口,折磨自己,或尝试以所有世俗的方法取悦神,因为耶稣已作了终极的献祭,为我们获取了永恒的救赎。

地上的大祭司与我们的大祭司耶稣的区别是,耶稣献上祂的血后就坐在了天父的右边,而地上的大祭司则需要每年都献上祭牲的血。因为耶稣是终极的献祭,不再需要其它的献祭。这献祭是完全的。人类的救赎已经完成。 “亲近神”于我们是现成的坦途,无需再做任何额外的工作。藉着耶稣基督的宝血我们拥有了祂的义,得以拥有洁净纯正的良心。我们靠着对耶稣已经成就的救赎之工的信心来亲近神!这使神喜悦!

讲章系列:什么能得上帝的喜悦?(第二部分)-该怎样行?