The Blood of Christ Encyclopedia

The Blood of Christ. Blood in scripture is always connected with death, because, as we read in Lev. 17:11, "the life of the flesh is in the blood". Blood can sometimes be a symbol of death generally, usually as a judgment, of life being taken, like the river of Egypt turned to blood. But in a sacrifice the blood speaks of the value of the life offered up. Hence, on the cross the Lord suffered, died, and then His blood was shed. The shed blood of Christ contained all the value of His sufferings and of His life offered up. In the Old Testament we have the blood mentioned in connection with three purposes.1 Blood is used: (1) to seal a covenant made, (2) to cleanse or purify, and (3) to remit sins. There is a fulfillment of each of these in connection with the blood of Christ!
Necessity of Jesus' Blood. “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 maketh an atonement for the soul” (Leviticus 17:11). The life of a body of flesh is contained in its blood. When Adam sinned he forfeited his life, “for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die” (Genesis 2:17; see Rom. 6:23). Once sin has come in there is no way to set man on another footing before a holy and righteous God apart from a life being given. Hence, God required the sacrifice of blood. But the life of an animal could not redeem a man’s, other than in a ceremonial sense, as Hebrews 9 and 10 show (Heb. 9:12; 10:4). It must be a human life given in exchange for another human life. But “all have sinned” (Rom. 3:23), and so none could give himself a ransom for many (Matt. 20:28), because that life is forfeited, and therefore not free to offer. It must be a sinless human life. Further, the one whose life was given must be a Divine person (Zechariah 13:7; 1 Timothy 2:5; Heb. 9:14; Ecc. 8:8; Eph. 5:2; Gal. 2:20; 1 John 3:16). In incarnation, the Son became a man in order to be the sacrifice that God’s righteousness required; thus a body was prepared for Him (Heb. 10:5). On the cross He offered up His holy life in death, and shed His precious blood - blood that contained all the value of that life - before the eye of God, in order to bring us into a new standing before God! Hence the preciousness of the blood of Christ (Heb. 9:12; Heb. 10:19; 1 Pet. 1:19; 1 Jn. 1:7).
  1. There are three aspects in which the value of Christ's blood is here seen. First, it was the seal of the covenant, connected with its dedication to God. That was also done in connection with the covenant with Abraham; Gen. 15. A person, binding himself to death in the most solemn way, passes through the pieces of the sacrifice. It was the seal of the covenant. Second, it is purifying. Third, the blood is for remission. - Darby, J.N. Exposition of Hebrews.