Portrait of Salvation (Hebrews 10:1-10)

Jehovah, like an artist, first began,
By roughly sketching His salvation’s plan.
The law in symbol, shadow, and out-line,
Would be memorial and as a sign.
For it could never fully cleanse our sin,
But must be done again and yet again.
And so the Father painted in the lines,
With flesh and blood the portrait He designed.
For God who spoke the Law now spoke once more,
His final Word, His Son who would restore:
This vibrant shape foreshadowed in the sketch,
Who was, and is, and who is coming yet.

God did not want the guts of slaughtered sheep,
But His desire is to make us clean.
He takes no pleasure in the blood of beasts,
But in His holy Bride is He well-pleased.
His will was never endless sacrifice,
But sons and daughters of the blood of Christ.
The portrait of salvation which God made –
Before the footings of the earth were laid –
He paints with blood and sinews of a man:
The incarnation was His perfect plan.
The Law was letters scribbled into stone,
In Christ God wrote again in flesh and bone,
To fill the nature which His law had lacked,
From contract to a personal contact.
The sketch has vanished in the final art,
The Law became a beating, human heart.

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Blood (Hebrews 9:21-28)

Since blood was needed to redeem,
It sprinkled all the holy things.
Since sin had made it all unclean,
More blood was needed, more they bring.

But Christ, the perfect sacrifice,
Had blood that would forever cleanse,
Poured out in heaven to suffice,
As our eternal recompense.

And dying once, then all is done,
As our redemption is complete.
Remember, He is yet to come,
To trample death beneath His feet.

The Fitting Priest (Hebrews 7:26-8:5)

A priest must hold the people’s place to God,
To represent them and beg for redemption,
As intercessor for his fatal flock –
But how, if he is in the same condition?
For he has no effect if he is fallen,
And for his own sin sacrifices daily,
For then he can not quite complete his calling,
Performing sacrifice perpetually.

Our fitting priest must yet be like to us,
Yet holy, harmless, wholly undefiled,
And separated from all sinful lusts:
One sacrifice to make us reconciled.
A man, yet higher than the heavens, He,
Who gives Himself, the sacrifice sufficient,
Enthroned and perfect God eternally,
When (radiant) to life again He’s risen.

All other priests were then a type of Him,
Their sanctuary, too, a shadowed image.
Yet He is the true minister to men,
The priest – yet sacrifice – without a blemish.