Apples of Gold
Where is the
'Where is the blessedness ye spake of?'
This is an interesting question that we can all ask ourselves. I will never
forget the blessedness I knew when first I met the Lord. I had had such a fear
of dying in my sins and going to a lost eternity that my life was absolutely
miserable. But the moment when I managed to grasp that Christ had actually died
for ME on that cross at Calvary - brought with it joy unspeakable!
The weight of sin and the burden of guilt that I had been carrying around for so
long had finally been lifted from me! I saw clearly that God had taken my sins
and placed them all upon Christ. Christ bore the punishment that was due to me
in His own body upon the tree. God accepted His sacrifice and forgave me my sin.
I had languished with a multitude of others in the valley of dry bones. His
Spirit brought these dry bones to life and He gave me a heart of flesh.
Forgiveness of sin was a new thing for me then. I had never experienced such a
blessing before. The wonder, the splendour of amazing grace at that time took my
breath away. I rejoiced and found that I could not keep this Good News to
myself. I could not but speak of the things which I had seen and heard.
I told as many folk as I could about Godís wonderful way of salvation. I could
not understand why they did not accept this offer as I had. How could such an
offer be refused?
However, if we do something often enough in this life, it becomes routine. A new
house or a new car will hold our attention and pride for many a day, yet over
time we become used to them and they no longer seem to have the same sparkle or
importance that they used to.
The Beefeaters who guard the Crown Jewels view these wonderful gems each day of
their lives, and they do not hold the same attraction for them as they do for
the first- time viewer.
Does the Good News of the Gospel fall into the category of familiarity for you
There are tasks that the Christian must do on a daily basis if zeal is to
remain. But possibly we have become mechanical in doing them? Are we just Ďgoing
through the motions?í If we are, then the blessedness we knew will no longer be
there. What was once a joy will become a dreary task or worse still a heavy
Confessing our sins will have become a legalistic necessity, where faith is no
longer in exercise. The result will be a soothing of the conscience for a little
while for having carried out the task, yet no joy at knowing sins forgiven.
For many of us - and I mentioned this recently - the problem lies with sinning
against Light. It was easy for us to believe that our sins were forgiven when we
were ĎBorn Again,í as we were then taken from darkness into light. It was a new
experience for us.
But now we find that we are constantly sinning against that same Light! We
confess our sins and perhaps believe that the sins of today and yesterday have
been forgiven yet we remain in bondage as we think of the sins that we will
commit in the coming seconds, minutes, hours, days etc.
We may even be aware of a certain pollution attached to our request for
In a sermon recently, the preacher spoke on this very topic. He said that we
have difficulty in believing that the sins we are about to commit or future sins
will be forgiven. He brought a very valid point to mind on this matter. He said
that at the time when Christ died ALL OUR SINS WERE IN THE FUTURE!
Sometimes a look from a different angle can help us grasp this truth. The Lord
has given us so many examples in the Old Testament for that very purpose.
Remember the day of Atonement and the scapegoat?
The High Priest was normally clothed with fine, rich garments and an ephod
covered with precious stones. On the day of atonement he had to divest these
rich garments and put on plain white linen. Our Lord divested Himself of the
glory He knew and took upon Himself our nature.
The sacrifices having been slain, the High Priest, with two hands upon the head
of the scapegoat, made confession of sins. Then the goat was taken by the hand
of a fit man away from the camp into the wilderness - never to be seen again. In
commanding this to be done, God was clearly signifying the remission of sin.
They were gone, never to be brought before the people again.
God laid on Christ our Great High Priest the iniquity of us all. The altar was
the cross, blood was shed, and remission was secured for all those who believe.
Christ suffered what we should have suffered. He took our sins and paid the
penalty that the law required. He nailed our sins to the cross.
If the punishment has been paid and the penalty met, what else is required?
Confession is to be made of our sin and faith must accept fully all that our
High Priest has done for us. Faith must accept that these sins have been removed
out of sight forever. If we do not believe this then we do not believe God.
This I believe is the greatest sin of all!
Them that honour me, I will honour.
This way of salvation is not manís invention - it is Godís chosen way. Is this
way not good enough for us? Can you think of a better way? Can you or I add to
this atonement? Is there need for a further sacrifice?
When we ask ourselves these questions we soon realize that Godís way is best and
that it is unbelief that is preventing us from enjoying the liberty that God
freely offers us.
It was only the High Priest that was allowed into the Holy of Holies. Even that
was only once a year and not without blood. Christ however, having offered
Himself once, a sacrifice for many, has opened a way for us to enter within the
veil. We may now come with boldness unto the throne of grace whereby we may
obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Today my friend we can each experience the blessedness we knew when first we met
our Lord. We can come to Him confessing our sins and seeing these same sins
taken from us never to be seen again. Washed in the precious blood of the Lamb.
We through simple faith accept Godís pardon and forgiveness. Until we do this,
there will be a barrier between us and our God, a barrier thicker than any veil.
Let us today, however, honour Him by accepting fully His way of salvation, His
forgiveness, and His blessing.
When the High Priest had completed his work, he took off the linen garments and
put on his rich clothes. We today can divest ourselves of our filthy garments
and, having accepted the finished work of our Great High Priest, will be found
clothed with His beautiful garments.
The robe of His righteousness was purchased with blood. The price has been met
in full. Jesus the Son of God covers our nakedness with this robe.Now we may all
enjoy the blessedness of the Lord! See Psalm 32. One final thought: How far has
God removed our sins from us? His answer - as far as East is distant from the
Author : Iain Mackenzie Edited by :
Pastor Al Moak