Propitiation for sins

Ro 3:25  Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

Many Christians do not have a clear understanding of Jesus as a propitiatory sacrifice, in context with the body of Christ. They view the death of Jesus on the cross as a sin offering, as being a substitute payment for mans sin. But his death on the cross was more of a inclusionary sacrifice in regards to mankind than a subsitutionary sacrifice of atonement. The primary definition from the Strong’s Concordance for the word propitiation used in Ro 3:25, is pasted below.

“a) used of the cover of the ark of the covenant in the Holy of Holies, which was sprinkled with the blood of the expiatory victim on the annual day of atonement (this rite signifying that the life of the people, the loss of which they had merited by their sins, was offered to God in the blood as the life of the victim, and that God by this ceremony was appeased and their sins expiated); hence the lid of expiation, the propitiatory”

The sprinkling of his blood represented OUR blood being shed in payment for the penalties of OUR sin, and as such, God is appeased. That is the true nature and meaning of a sin sacrifice. We are reconciled to God, through the body of his, Jesus, flesh through death, Col 1:21-22, precisely for that reason. More than a few times in the New Testament we are told that we are crucified with Christ, Ga 2:20, Ro 6:6. Are we not baptized into his death by water baptism, Ro 6:3? These are not just figures of speech but a firm reality. The tendency to put the sacrifice and offerings for sin by Jesus Christ largely in the past tense, and as a substitution for us, negates the power of the cross in our lives. Let us take a look at a literal translation of Ro 6:6 & 7.

Ro 6:6-7 knowing this, that our old humanity was crucified together with Him, that the body of Sin may be nullified, for us by no means to be still slaving for Sin,
7 for one who dies has been justified from Sin. CLV

I bought a Concordant Literal New Testament years ago and it does a good job indicating various verb tenses and verb functions used in the Koine Greek manuscripts. The verb tense for “dies” in verse 7, is a Act form of verb, which means the verb action is incomplete with action going on.

That is more consistent with the preceding verse 6, since it states the body of sin may be nullified/destroyed, which is indicative of a incomplete and on going process. This is also consistent with 1Pe 4:1-2.  In order to understand Jesus and his offerings for sin, it is necessary to understand the component pieces. Two offerings, the offering of his blood in heaven as our blood and our death in payment for our past sins and the offering of his body on the altar outside the camp, as our body of sinful flesh, Heb 13:11. The simplicity of it is overwhelming. That is why Paul said the following to the Corinthian church.

1Co 2:2  For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

In the rest of this article we are going to concern ourselves with the offering of his blood as mentioned in Ro 3:25. In a coming article the offering of his body, which most of the Christian world is largely ignorant of. The offering of his blood, as a propitiation for sin, gives those of us who have faith in his blood, remission of sins past, due to the fact that the death of Jesus and the offering of his blood represents our death in payment for the penalties associated for our sin. Remember the wages of sin is death, Ro 6:23. Since Jesus was sinless, Heb 7:26, he hardly needed to be a sin sacrifice for himself. All of this is very important to us in everyday life, in regard to the salvation process. Due to the offering of his blood as a propitiatory offering, we have remission of sins past, Ro 3:25, and we also have faith that if we confess our sins through Christ, God is faithful to forgive our sins, 1Jn 1:9. It is important to confess our sins because if we do not, we face judgment. The easiest way to understand all of this, is to look at it from God’s perspective, in light of His purpose in Christ, Eph 1:10-11. His will and purpose is to have Jesus Christ and the body of Christ, rule and reign with Jesus during the thousand year Kingdom of God, Re 20:6, from the nation Israel. God is using Jesus Christ, and his sacrifice and offerings, to purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

Tit 2:14  Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

In order to prepare a people zealous of good works for the age to come, God has to be able to pass judgment on them. Judgment should largely be looked at as ultimately a corrective process by God, correcting that which is wrong in us. Jesus is our advocate and Satan is the accuser or prosecuting agent. All this is taking place before the throne of grace in real time. This is all very legalistic and God plays this all out, according to His rules. In order to comply with His rule that it is appointed unto man once to die and after that the judgment.

Hebrews 9:27 KJVS
[27] And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:

God sent Jesus Christ as a propitiatory sacrifice for us. Simply put, God views us as dead in Christ, even though we are living, because Jesus is our propitiatory sacrifice, and in God’s view, we are dead. Thus liable for judgment.

Ga 2:20  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

2Co 5:14  For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:

Col 2:12  Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.

2Ti 2:11 [It is] a faithful saying: For if we be dead with [him], we shall also live with [him].

1Pe 4:17  For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

Read carefully 1Co 11:20-32 and see what the members of that church were doing and why Paul was correcting them. When the church gathered together for the love feast, some members were eating and drinking more bread and wine than they should have. When the time came to serve communion, there was not enough bread and wine to go around. Those that did not receive wine or bread, when the breaking of the bread and wine took place, which was representative of the body and blood of Christ, were shamed because they did not receive bread and or wine. That inconsiderate behavior towards fellow members of the body of Christ opened those individuals up for judgment, 1 Co 11:20-22, 29. 30, 31. Largely because they failed to understand who the Lord’s body is, 1 Co 11:29. The Lord’s body is fellow members of the body of Christ, 1 Co 10:17. It is necessary for the Lord to judge us and discipline us in order that He can correct and mature us and see that we possess the necessary fruit of righteousness, fruit of the Spirit to reign with Jesus Christ, He 12:6-11, Col 1:12. Let us look at verse 1Co 11:32, as there is so much doctrine to be learned from the verse.

1Co 11:32  But, being brought under judgment, by the Lord, are we being disciplined, lest, with the world, we should be condemned. Rotherham

The word “teaching” in Titus 2:12 and word “chasteneth” in  Hebrews 12:6 & 7 were translated from the same Greek word, G3811 paideuo, which appears in 1Co 11:32, as the word “chastened”. Part of the Strong’s Concordance definition of this Greek word, is “to train up a child, i.e. educate, or (by implication), discipline (by punishment), chastening, (of the evils with which God visits men for their amendment”. Judgement is being disciplined by God so as to train mankind. We are brought under judgment by God when we do not judge ourselves and essentially force God’s hand to judge us, in light of correcting us and instilling righteousness. Always keep in mind that only the body of Christ is being judged at this time due to being dead with Christ. But even still, the problem of sin in the flesh, has not been fully dealt with. God can put His laws in our heart and minds and use His grace to teach/chastise us, to deny ungodly lusts. We can be forgiven our sins of the past and be judged when we sin against the body of Christ, in our day to day lives. But the old man, the sin nature, still resides within ourselves to plague us, Ro 7:17. That is where the sin sacrifice altar, which is outside the camp, comes into play. The place where sanctification takes place.