“Come, and see the victories of the cross. Christ’s wounds are thy healings, His agonies thy repose, His conflicts thy conquests, His groans thy songs, His pains thine ease, His shame thy glory, His death thy life, His sufferings thy salvation.” -Matthew Henry
A few months ago, Cay and I celebrated our anniversary with a nice dinner at a fancy restaurant. Wait staff in elegant dresses or coats and ties, candles on the table, a long menu with unpronounceable appetizers and unknown entrees, and of course, the ever-intimidating white tablecloths!
The bread was delicious, as was the salad. I enjoyed them both – maybe a little too much. When the server returned to remove the salad plates, my messy tablecloth was beyond what he could restore with his little crumb scraper. He soon emerged with an additional white cloth napkin and spread it skillfully over my stained tablecloth. White again!
Covering spiritual stains and messes was the rule for thousands of years, but Jesus came to wash our sins away. The writer of Hebrews says, because it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said: "Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me’ (Hebrews 10:4-5).
Praise God for Christmas and Easter. They remind us that Jesus came, died, and rose again. Not to cover over our sins, but to wash them away.