I recently got into an online discussion about Jesus' sacrifice on the cross. One individual was confused about the sacrifice of Jesus. He understood and believed that Jesus lived, died, even that He rose again from the dead, but was struggling with how/why the bloody cross would be or even could be a sacrifice or substitution for our sins. He wanted to know the mechanics of the metaphysical reality of our spirits. How could we incur a debt by sin? What is that debt? If it was a sacrifice, who was the Father offering the sacrifice to, seeing as most sacrifices are offered to God or gods?
I didn't have the answers for Him. I don't know the specifics of what happens in the spiritual realm exactly. But it got me looking at the Scriptures and the cross, the blood, the death, the sacrifice are everywhere.
The Gentiles were "brought near by the blood of Christ" (Eph 2:13), Jesus purchased the church "with His own blood" (Acts 20:28), we were "redeemed... with precious blood...the blood of Christ" (1 Pet. 1:18-19), we are "justified by His blood" (Rom. 5:9), Jesus sanctified "the people through His own blood" (Heb. 13:12), "the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin" (1 John 1:7), among others.
Hebrews 9 and 10 have His sacrifice as the main theme. We learn that Jesus entered the Holy Place in Heaven through His blood and offered His blood as sacrifice once and for all to cover our sins. His sacrifice was without blemish and it cleanses our conscience. This sacrifice makes Him the mediator of the New Covenant with God. This has sanctified us. Having completed His sacrifice He rose from the dead, sat down at the right hand of the Father, and will one day return, bringing forgiveness of sins and salvation with Him. This New Covenant has opened up the Holy Place to us and given us confidence to draw near to God's presence.
We may not know the exact mechanisms of how sin and Christ's sacrifice operate, but we do know that it is through the blood of Christ that we live. When we understand the gravity of sin and our fall from grace, then and only then can we recognize the need for so great a sacrifice.
If you are struggling understanding the cross and why it was so necessary, please reach out. I would love to talk it through with you.
May God be praised for His sacrifice that cleanses us of sins and gives us life everlasting!