“Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy” ( Hebrews 10:11-14 )
Pointing out the contrast between the continuous and repetitive acts of the priests compared with the one act of Jesus’ sacrifice is the main theme of Hebrews chapter 10. What the priests did over and over, Jesus did only once. And since that time He has been seated at the right hand of God the Father because the work He was sent to do is finished and complete.
We see the same thing with creation. On the seventh day God rested from all His work ( Genesis 2:2 ). Not because he was tired, but because He was done ( Hebrews 4:10 ). He saw all He had made, declared it good, gave it the ability to reproduce and so He entered into rest. In fact Adam and Eve were created in that Sabbath Rest. There was no sin, it was a paradise and they fellowshipped with God in perfect unity, then came the fall of mankind.
After Jesus completed His restoration work on the cross, like God He sat down because everything was done. Redemption had been accomplished. Sins had been forgiven. The Sabbath Rest that God originally instated in the garden had been restored ( Hebrews 4:1-11 ). In other words, Jesus rested because there was nothing left to do. Now He waits for His enemies to be made His footstool.
The book of Hebrews opens with this very idea, “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven” ( Hebrews 1:3 ). Evidence that this is currently the case is that the universe is held into place by His powerful Word. Jesus is the glue that is holding everything together and this testifies to the fact that Jesus is seated in heaven at the Fathers right hand.
This is good news for us because it means that His one sacrifice, in contrast to the law’s many sacrifices, worked. We, by this single offering are completely cleansed, perfected, consecrated and made holy once for all. Just like Jesus, we can enter into the rest that God desires for His people. This Sabbath Rest is in the person of Jesus Christ and comes through trusting in Him ( Colossians 2:16-17; Hebrews 4:3; 9-10 ).
By His one sacrifice we have been made holy and the law has been fulfilled in our lives. “For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man, in order that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the sinful nature but according to the Spirit” ( Romans 8:3-4 ). All of this is guaranteed by witness that Jesus is currently in heaven occupying the seated position of right hand to God the Father. Everything has been done and His work is completed. In the same way, our job is to believe in the One that God has sent ( John 6:29 ) when this happens our work is also finished and complete and we enter into the very rest that God promised His people right from the start.