“For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant” ( Hebrews 9:15 )
The church I grew up in concluded their weekly services by singing the hymn, ‘Jesus Paid it All’. The refrain goes like this,
Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.
There are incredible truth in these words. Even as a young child I understood that Jesus made things right. I knew that He had settled the score, made the account balanced and washed us clean by His blood.
In fact, the previous verses in Hebrews 9 declare that the previous way of forgiveness, the shedding of the blood of bulls and goats, only cleansed on the outside. In contrast, Jesus’ blood entirely cleansed the heart of mankind and was able to clear the conscience from the guilt of sin, once for all. The debt was completely and utterly wiped out by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. The result was life, so that we could serve the living God ( Hebrews 9:14 ).
Because of this, Jesus is the mediator of a New Covenant. A mediator is the representative between two parties. A mediator negotiates for both parties until a resolution is reached. Jesus’ blood was the means to bring mankind and God together. Up until this time, mankind was held hostage under the accusation of death because of sin. At the right time, Jesus was born as a man, to die as a ransom for us. The cost was his blood, the result was redemption from all of the sins committed under the first covenant. If sins have been paid for, then there is no longer the threat of death.
Jesus’ cleansing blood is the reason and the means by which He is eternally the mediator of the New Covenant. In fact, Hebrews 12:24 tells us that Jesus’ blood speaks a better word for us than the blood of Abel. Abel was murdered by his brother Cain and his blood cried out to God from the ground ( Genesis 4 ). If Abel’s blood cried for restitution, then think how much more the blood of Christ speaks on our behalf before God. What it is saying is love, mercy, grace, favor, forgiveness and acceptance. What a marvelous thing!
Just as the words of the hymn declare, ‘Sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow”, Jesus’ blood both washes us clean and guarantees the relationship we enjoy with the Father. Knowing that Christ is forever the mediator of the covenant of grace we enjoy, empowers us to live a life fully devoted to God, serving out of gratitude for all that He has done for us. Because Jesus Christ lives, we have received the fulfillment of the promise of an everlasting inheritance, He guarantees it!