Sin & Sacrifice Pt. 7 – A Perfect Atonement

Tom Pennington |

October 26, 2021


As we continue to look at Hebrews 10, there are some key truths that I do not want us to overlook. The author emphasizes Christ’s one sacrifice that atones for all the sins of every believer, which makes repeated Old Testament sacrifices completely unnecessary.

“Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time onward UNTIL HIS ENEMIES BE MADE A FOOTSTOOL FOR HIS FEET.”

Hebrews 10:11–13

Notice the contrast between the priests standing in verse 11 and Christ sitting in verse 12. The Levitical priests continuously stood because their work was never finished, their work wasn’t fully accomplished. They offered thousands of animal sacrifices but not once did the death of any of those animals ever take away a single human sin. On the other hand, our Lord Jesus Christ sat down, which implies that He had completely, finally, and permanently dealt with human sin. This reality has huge ramifications!

If you are truly in Christ, you will never be judged for a single sin you have ever committed, because God judged every one of them—without exception—in the body of Jesus Christ at Calvary. For those six hours that Jesus hung on the cross, God treated Him as if He had committed your sins—all of them! That is why the apostle Peter writes, “And He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness” (1 Pet. 2:24). Peter essentially summarizes the heart of the gospel message!

The author of Hebrews goes on to write, “For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified” (10:14). Through Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, He satisfied the wrath of God for every sin, of every person who would ever believe in Him. What repeated animal sacrifices could never do in terms of forgiveness and removal of sins, the Lamb of God accomplished through one sacrifice.

Hebrews 10:15–16, “And the Holy Spirit also testifies to us. THIS IS THE COVENANT THAT I WILL MAKE WITH THEM AFTER THOSE DAYS, SAYS THE LORD: I WILL PUT MY LAWS UPON THEIR HEART, AND ON THEIR MIND I WILL WRITE THEM.” The New Covenant provides a legally binding promise that comes directly from the Holy Spirit to every person who believes in Christ (Jer. 31:33).

If you repent and confess Jesus Christ as Lord, the Spirit of God will change your heart and give you power to obey Him.

The author of Hebrews adds divine testimony to this truth by showing that the Holy Spirit testifies to this profound reality. Hebrews 10:17, “AND THEIR SINS AND THEIR LAWLESS DEEDS I WILL REMEMBER NO MORE.” That is the Holy Spirit’s promise to every person who believes in the Lord Jesus Christ (Jer. 31:34). Because the New Covenant promises that kind of forgiveness, the Old Testament sacrifices become obsolete and unnecessary. That’s why Hebrews goes on to say, “there is no longer any offering for sin” (10:18). You no longer need repeated animal sacrifices because Christ’s one sacrifice has forever dealt with sin. 

The message of Hebrews 10 reveals the necessity of sacrifice for human beings to approach a holy God. God has established the terms on which you can come to Him, and His Word reveals that only through the person and work of Jesus can you be reconciled to Him. If you turn from your sin and confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, He will cleanse you, forgive you, and will gladly accept Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross in your place.