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The Daily Word of Righteousness
Doing Away With Sin, #6
When Aaron has finished making atonement for the Most Holy Place, the Tent of Meeting and the altar, he shall bring forward the live goat. He is to lay both hands on the head of the live goat and confess over it all the wickedness and rebellion of the Israelites—all their sins—and put them on the goat's head. He shall send the goat away into the desert in the care of a man appointed for the task. The goat will carry on itself all their sins to a solitary place; and the man shall release it in the desert. (Leviticus 16:20-22—NIV)
The sins of the Israelites were confessed. Then the goat, symbolically bearing the sins, was led away from the congregation and released in the desert.
There is no clearer picture in the Bible of the forgiveness of the guilt of our sins, and then the removal of our sinful nature as part of the same atonement. Here is a biblical basis for the concept that the atonement includes the removal of sin as well as the forgiveness of sin.
How and When Deliverance Is Accomplished
We have discussed how and when our transformation is accomplished, and then have presented a biblical basis for deliverance from sin as part of the atonement.
Now we will examine the concept of deliverance from the law of sin that dwells in our body.
It has been ventured that our deliverance from sin will take place when we die physically or when the Lord returns. But the Scripture contradicts these two proposed solutions. We will address these two unscriptural positions in a moment, but let us consider what the New Testament says about the removal of the presence of sin from God's saints.
As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear. (Matthew 13:40-43—NIV)
The time is the end of the age. The Greek term translated "angels" means nothing more than "messengers." The Son of Man will send out His messengers. They will remove from his kingdom everything that causes sin. At this point we are not referring to forgiveness but to "everything that causes sin." In other words, we are speaking of the sin nature.
Look at the passage closely. "Out of his kingdom."
We are referring to those who have been born again and are presently in the Kingdom of God.
We understand, then, that at the end of the age everything that causes sin will be removed from those who are members of the Kingdom of God.
Then there is a further step. "All who do evil" will also be removed from the Kingdom.
The idea is that God first will approach the saints and require that they cooperate in the work of removing sin from their personality. If they cooperate they then will shine forth in the Kingdom. If they do not cooperate they become part of "all who do evil" and will be removed from the Kingdom of God and cast into the fiery furnace.
This clearly is a purifying of the Kingdom of God, that is, of the Church.
To be continued.