Monday, October 3, 2011

Blood – Contaminant Or Cleanser?

~Nancy Goring

     The blood that God placed within our bodies is a marvelous thing. Blood flows through us providing oxygen to all of our organs and then carries away all the waste products. It purifies our bodies. Ironically, it is the blood of Jesus Christ that also carries away all of our sins when we are obedient to His gospel. The church was purchased with that very blood of Christ, “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood”(Acts 20:28). We see in Ephesians 1:5-7 that we have redemption by that blood that Jesus shed: “ Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved; In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.” From these few verses it is evident that the blood of our dear Savior is a “Cleanser.” It cleanses us from our sins when we take advantage of it, by believing, repenting, confessing our sins and being baptized (immersed in water) for the remission of those sins.
     Conversely, blood can be a Contaminant! The blood that flows through our veins can carry any numerous diseases and viruses. None of us want to come into contact with that, do we? We go to great extremes to immunize, inoculate, avoid contact with contaminated blood, or those who might have such. Billions of dollars are spent each year on research, attempting to wipe out such problems.

     God warned His people early regarding the drinking/eating of blood: “Moreover ye shall eat no manner of blood, whether it be of fowl or of beast, in any of your dwellings. Whatsoever soul it be that eateth any manner of blood, even that soul shall be cut off from his people,” Leviticus 7:26-27. 

    Yes, blood can be a Contaminant, as well as a Cleanser. Looking at several passages we find in the Bible we see references made to the contamination factor of blood, not in the physical sense, but in the spiritual sense. That is what I would like to hone in on. In Psalm 51:40 we see David asking God to forgive him: “Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.” He did not want to be found guilty in God’s eyes of shedding any man’s blood. David was a man of war and was asking God to forgive his actions if they were wrong in the sight of Jehovah.

     On a more spiritual side, though, and much more relevant to us today is a remark made by Ezekiel in chapter 3 of that book, verses 18-19, “When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.” That is a very scary thought, sisters! Do we see friends, loved ones, family in harm’s way spiritually, yet fail to try to teach them, knowing their soul is in jeopardy? I know that I have been guilty of this before. It’s very hard to have to tell a loved one when they are religiously wrong. But it is needful if we truly love them. It should be done with love and tender kindness, but it should be done. Lest you say, “Well, that’s Old Testament, that doesn’t apply to us today,” let’s look at one more passage from Acts 20:26-27. Paul, speaking to the elders at Ephesus, states: “Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.” There was no “bloodguiltiness” on Paul’s part. He had declared the gospel in truth, purity and simplicity to all with whom he had come in contact.

     I dare say that most of us could not make that comment. I know that I cannot, and as I write this, I am considering myself, and my responsibility as a Christian. I know that we all need to be bolder, more confident in the gospel, and more knowledgeable. The one Scripture that stands out most in my mind and causes me to tremble is found in Revelation: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” Revelation  21:8. We see all those horrific sins coupled together, but we often fail to recognize the very first one – THE FEARFUL! That is you and me, sisters, if we are  afraid to stand up for the truth and tell it to others. We don’t even live in a country that persecutes Christians in the physical sense, but I am pretty sure that we are more timid than our sisters of the first century! Ladies, we need to study harder, pray more diligently, and learn to speak up when the occasion arises, whether it is with a family member, friend, or anyone else who is questioning the Word of God, living in sin, or has not obeyed the gospel. Of course, we need to make sure we are not usurping authority or violating any biblical commands, but when our children, sisters in Christ, family and friends ask, we need have a ready answer as commanded by the Scriptures (1 Peter 3:15).

     Blood can be a contaminant. We can have it all over our hands if we are not careful, but it can also be a cleanser that will heal the souls of our loved ones and give eternal life to the lost. It’s our choice. Will we use that blood for good?  I will be praying for you and I ask that you pray for me, that we will all be more serious minded about being bold with the Word of God and may we never be found guilty of the blood of another or fearful to speak up for the Lord.

Nancy is the wife of Bill Goring, gospel preacher for the Chipman Road church of Christ. She has 4 children, 11 grandchildren and has taught Bible class for over 40 years, published several books including: Behavior Becoming Holiness: Studies in Titus Chapter 2 and Overcoming our Self-Imposed Prisons.

No comments:

Post a Comment