The Law, the ten commandments, is perfect and holy; in the light of this perfection we were condemned, not by God, but by ourselves, because we couldn’t keep it. Because of this, Jesus had to come. And when he came, he fulfilled the whole Law as we never could. In doing this he became the perfect sacrifice, not merely for sin, but for a new covenant.
When I first began to really understand this grace, really understand the gospel of Christ a couple years ago, God showed me something beautiful in scripture.
Traditionally, to enter into a covenant in Old Testament culture, they would take a sacrificial animal, or animals, and cut it in two. They would separate the two pieces and those entering into the covenant would walk across the blood through the pieces. You can see an example of this in the covenant Abraham, then called Abram, made with God in Genesis 15. Of course, Abraham himself didn’t physically make the covenant with God, but that’s a whole different story.
Hebrews 10:19-20 tells us that Jesus’ body and the veil that separated the people in the temple from the holy of holies, the most inner court which held God’s very presence, were symbolically linked:
“Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the VEIL, that is, His FLESH,…”
This imagery takes on beautiful significance in light of covenant sacrifice. When all was said and done, when the sky darkened and the earth shook from Christ’s death, that very veil which separated man from the presence of God was ripped in two. Now, because of our faith, our belief in Christ, we enter into the very presence of God through the torn body of Christ, through the pieces of Christ, through his blood, through a new covenant, through a new and living way. We walk through the blood and stand as holy, as blameless, as righteous before God, where there now remains not an ounce of separation between who we are and all he is.
That, to me, is quite an amazing thing.