To the woman He said, I will greatly multiply your pain in childbirth, Inpain will you bring forth children; yet your desire will be for your husband, And he will rule over you". Then to Adam He said, "Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, 'You shall not eat from it'; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you will eat of it All the days of your life.… Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; And you will eat the plants of the field;… By the sweat of your face You will eat bread, Till you return to the ground, Because from it you were taken; For you are dust, And to dust you shall return."…Genesis 3:16~19
As we have seen from Genesis 1:1 Christ is the sacrifice laid from the foundation of the world that we might be redeemed from the curse.
Adam’s fall did not surprise God. It is the price He paid for our free will that through Grace some might love Him freely. There is no compulsion in grace. We are free to come. We are free to not come. The choice has always been ours.
The fall did not surprise God, nor was He left scrambling for ways & means of redemption. What’s more I discover God is very precise. There are 7 things brought about by the curse & seven ways the cross redeems them. There are 7 times that Jesus’ blood is shed & 7 ways the blood brings redemption.
I want you to consider these things carefully, meditate on them, & give praise for them as we come to communion because communion is all about the cross & the blood.
The 1st thing is the curse itself. Once the curse was activated a number of other sins followed in its wake ~ all of which then required a sacrifice but Galatians 3:13 says But Christ has rescued us from the curse pronounced by the law. When he was hung on the cross, he took upon himself the curse for our wrongdoing. For it is written in the Scriptures, “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”
The second & third things are sweat & thorns. They go together.
Adam was given custodianship over the Garden of Eden. It would not have been onerous work because the land gave freely of its bounty & there were neither thistles nor thorns to hinder the work. This was no longer true after the fall. Adam was required to work hard [by the sweat of his brow] without guarantee of provision from the land, all his efforts hindered by thistles & thorns. Sin makes life hard.
Jesus took the hardship our sin had brought upon us at Gethsemane: And in His anguish, He prayed more earnestly, and His sweat became like drops of blood falling to the ground.…Luke 22:43 What’s more he bore our harvest of thorns. Galatians 6:7~8 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.
The 4th thing is death. But the LORD God warned him, "You may freely eat the fruit of every tree in the garden except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. If you eat its fruit, you are sure to die." Genesis 2:16~17
Adam suffered a twofold death. Firstly he suffered immediate spiritual death ie separation from God the Father. Only later did he also suffer the physical effects of decay followed by physical death but For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive. 1 Corinthians 15:21~22
Then there is Nakedness. As Adam & Eve were naked in the garden & knew shame, so too was Christ naked on the cross. There was no *modesty loincloth*. Every article of clothing Jesus owned was gambled for by the soldiers at the foot of the cross yet He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. Throughout scripture you will find righteousness referred to as a garment. On the cross Christ exchanged our self~righteousness for His righteousness that we might once again become children of God.
This is what happened on the cross: Psalm 22 … I am scorned and despised by all!
Everyone who sees me mocks me.
Everyone who sees me mocks me.
Jesus has been here with us. Any time we are mocked for the gospel we need never feel that an almighty God does not understand the depths of our hurt. When our children turn on us & throw our years of love & care back in our faces, Jesus understands. That is what we did to Him but… Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honour beside God's throne. Hebrews 12:2
Ever since the fall there was a veil between God & man. It took physical form in the temple as a curtain between the priests & the Holy of Holies but on the cross that veil was torn. Access to the very throne of God was once again made possible but there is only one way to access that & that is by the blood of Jesus!
So we have the cross & then we have the blood.
Seven times Jesus blood is mentioned as He goes to the cross:
· When He prayed in Gethsemane & His sweat fell like drops of blood.
· When His face was struck as the soldiers mocked Him.
· When His beard was pulled out.
· When He was scourged.
· When the crown of thorns was pushed down on his head.
· When He was nailed to the cross.
· And when the spear was thrust into His side.
Both the cross & the blood can be found in the Old Testament. The Passover was prophetic of the cross & the blood.
As you read through the account in Exodus you will note that the blood was applied to the top of the doors, but not the threshold; the blood was not to be trodden underfoot; It was applied to the windows in a fashion that formed a cross & It only covered those who stayed within doors as instructed. In other words the blood does not cover the disobedient.
Why Jesus blood? Because according to the law there is no redemption without the shedding of blood. Hebrews 9:22 For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that makes an atonement for the soul. Leviticus 17:11
The trouble with animal sacrifices was that they were not perfect & so they were repeated over & over. Jesus is perfect & His life is in His blood. When it was shed for us it made atonement for He poured out His soul unto death~ Isaiah 53:12 & according to Hebrews 12:24 His blood speaks of forgiveness rather than crying out for vengeance as does the blood of Able.
Now there are 7 main things the blood of Jesus does for us but first we need to understand something. We defeat satan by the blood of the Lamb and by [our] testimony according to Revelation 12:11
Psalm 107:2 says ~ Let the redeemed of the Lord say so. The NLT puts it this way: Has the LORD redeemed you? Then speak out! Tell others he has redeemed you from your enemies. That is very clear.
Hebrews 3:1 says: Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus. The word profession, confession, testimony, witness, means to say the same as God says. Literally we agree with God. Thus when we talk about how to apply the blood of Jesus in our lives we have to open our mouths & agree verbally with what God has said.
So the blood redeems us.
He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. Ephesians 1:7
Say: I have been redeemed out of the hand of satan by the blood of Jesus & forgiven all my sins.
· It cleanses us. 1 John 1:7 But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.
Say: While I walk in the light the blood of Jesus cleanses me now & continues to cleanse me.
· Justifies. Romans 5:9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.
Say: I am made righteous through the blood of Jesus just as if I had never sinned.
· It sanctifies us. Hebrews 13:13 Therefore Jesus also suffered outside the gate, so that he might sanctify the people by the own blood.
Say: I am sanctified, that is, made holy, separated from sin, set apart to God & made holy with God’s holiness
· Life. John 14:6 Jesus told him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.
In communion we come to Jesus, to eat His flesh, to drink His blood & to remember His death until He comes again.
Say: Jesus, you are the way, the Truth & the Life. We proclaim your death, until you come again.
· Intercession. Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him and was designated by God to be high priest in the order of Melchizedek. Hebrews 4:8~10
Romans 8:34 Who then will condemn us? No one--for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honour at God's right hand, pleading for us.
Say: Thank you, Jesus, that your blood pleads forgiveness for me before the throne of Grace.
· Access . Hebrews 10:19
And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven's Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus.
Say: Thank You Father that the Sprinkled Blood of Jesus provides access into your Presence, Almighty God, & into heaven’s most Holy Place.
Acknowledgements: Derek Prince