March 21, 2013 - Thursday of Judica

Today's Reading: Hebrews 9:11-15

Daily Lectionary: Exodus 4:19-31; Mark 15:16-32

Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. (Hebrews 9:12)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. “Judica. Vindicate me, O God.” It takes blood. In the Old Testament, there was lots of blood. The Lord had to kill something in order to make skins for Adam and Eve to wear. Ever since, lots of blood. At the tabernacle and later in the temple: bulls, goats, sheep. Blood, blood, blood on the Day of Atonement, for the sins of all the people, blood sprinkled by the high priest on the Ark of the Covenant, to keep the wrath of God from consuming the people. Rinse and repeat. More blood.

Until Jesus. Until the Son of God. Until the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. When He comes, His perfect blood atones for the sins of the world. His perfect blood which drips from a head crowned with thorns and from holes in His hands and feet and side washes away our sins. Jesus is sacrificed to take the Law's curse and judgment in our place while making us a clothing with which to be perfectly clothed and covered so that you stand before God without any shame.

There are lots of churches out there that talk about “the blood of Jesus,” but don't know where it actually is. The blood of Jesus is sprinkled upon you, for real, by the water and Word of Holy Baptism. It is applied to you by the absolution and preaching of the forgiveness of sin for Jesus' sake. It is there, in the cup, under the wine, for you to drink, not in some cannibal or vampire fashion but in a true, real and sacramental way according to Jesus' own words. And with that blood sprinkled upon you and in you, your sins cannot harm you. Death cannot keep you down. The devil cannot have you. The High Priest Jesus has atoned for your sins and by His blood you are judged, vindicated. It's His Judica blood shed for you. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.

Not all the blood of beasts On Jewish altars slain Could give the guilty conscience peace or wipe away the stain. But Christ, the heav'nly Lamb, Takes all our sins away; A sacrifice of nobler name And richer blood than they. (Not All the Blood of Beasts, LSB 431:1,2)

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