“How much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.”
Hebrews 9:14 ESV
The week before spring break of my junior year of college was in no way a good one. I was in such a funk thinking about the uncertainty of my future that I told my roommate, “I feel so inadequate. I don’t see myself as worth knowing in any way.” Those were big words coming from a guy who struggled to open up back then. But they were true. I felt like I’d been trying my whole collegiate career to convince myself that I was worth having someone be my friend, but with no success. Fast forward to spring break where I was in Selma, Alabama learning from and working alongside a church there. We took a lunch break that Tuesday and went to a noon prayer service at a Charismatic Episcopal church… if you know anything about denominations, then you know it might be the only one of it’s kind on planet Earth.
Our team walks in and sits down to take part in the proceedings. There were two priests burning incense while another gave a homily, all while Hillsong worship music was playing in the background (please just try to imagine how bizarre this was). Then, after a benediction was given, all the priests came down from the alter and stood on the floor at the front and all the other members in attendance stood up. They started taking prayer requests and encouraging each other, then everyone’s attention was directed at our team. It wasn’t long before people in the crowd began to prophesy over us (if you don’t know what that is, go read 1 Corinthians 12-14). These were people who had never met us before and they were telling us things about ourselves that they shouldn’t have ever known unless God told them. Then, this one guy walks up to me, looks me in the eye and says, “You have this feeling of inadequacy. And that feeling is right, because you need to know that your adequacy comes from Jesus.” Needless to say my jaw was on the floor, but more importantly my life was forever changed.
Why was my life changed?
Because for the first time I fully realized that I don’t get to determine my worth. I realized that my value and worthiness is determined by God. How so? In John 3:16 Jesus said He was sent into this world to save it because He loves the people in it. How did He save it? He bore our shame and sin on the Cross. He was brutally disfigured and horrifically murdered as a criminal and He did it all because He wants us to know the love He has for us. Imagine how slick the Cross was with the blood of the Son of God. It’s impossible for us to climb it to where He was because that was His enthronement. He was exalted in His humiliation. You see, we find ourselves when we lie down at the foot of the Cross and realize what has been done for us as the blood of Jesus pours down onto us. You have to be covered in it. Every day. Otherwise we start to think that we have to save ourselves from a litany of evil and disastrous thoughts/actions. The blood of Jesus reminds us that we’ve already been saved.
When we are covered in the blood of Jesus not only does it remind us that we are worth knowing and loving, but it allows us to live the life God has called us to live. Not only are our consciences purified from dead works (because now we truly believe that we are loved and known), but we are free to serve and partner with the living God. We begin to get the blood of Jesus over everything we touch. We leave trails of blood everywhere. And that’s how it should be. This world is desperate for something beyond itself, and we can offer it the blood of Jesus that heals, saves and brings abundant, eternal life in freedom from sin. If you don’t know what it means to be covered in Jesus’s blood yourself, then go seek out someone that you trust and who loves God and talk to them about it. There isn’t a moment to waste. Eternity starts now.
God, I ask that we would be drenched in your Son’s blood. I ask that when you see us, that you call us clean because Jesus’ blood makes us spotless in your eyes. Help us to believe that us being covered by your Son’s blood means that we are worth being known and loved by You and other people. Help us to truly understand what Jesus has done for us. Amen