THE LIFE IS IN THE BLOOD – a Devotion for 20 October 2016 Anno Domini
11 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. Lev 17:11 (KJV)
53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. 54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. John 6:53-56 (KJV)
This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.
Luke 22:20 (KJV)
The topic of blood is offensive and unnerving to many. The sight of it causes some to repel in horror. But there are different forms and types of blood. Each human being has a blood type, and those types all differ from the blood of animals. But the blood of all living creatures is endowed with certain necessary qualities, imparted by their Maker, that causes life to be possible. The blood of each is essential and indispensable. Such a supreme role of blood marks the fluid as an almost sacred commodity since life, itself, is sacred. All life comes from God, and the blood of life provides fuel, nutrients, and movement to all life. The red blood of life runs as a Scarlet Thread from Genesis all the way to Revelations in Holy Scripture. Blood in the Bible is polysemantic in that it can mean the physical blood of creatures, but also that divine Blood of Jesus Christ which is both spiritual and physical.
There are some great works that deal with blood from a combined spiritual and medical point of view. Two exceptional books written on the subject by medical doctors who love the Lord are: Balm of Gilead, by Dr. Lillian B. Yeomans; and the Chemistry of the Blood, by Dr. M.R. DeHaan. I have both someplace in my library but, owing to my meticulously organized book banks, I could find neither one after a 30 minute search.
There are properties of blood that make it unique in the biological sciences. Let us exam the constituent properties of human blood:
Blood is composed of red blood cells, or corpuscles (erythrocytes) whose function is completely dedicated to the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide in every cell of the body, and to deliver life-giving nutrients to every cell; White blood cells, or white corpuscles, whose role is to defend against the invasion and progress of disease; and, Platelets that empower the blood to stanch loss of blood from injury or hemorrhage of every type. There are other components of blood that exceed the scope of a simple devotion. Be it sufficient for us to consider only these three since they define the major purpose and function of our circulatory system. Human life would not be possible if a single of these three components were missing from our blood. In the same sense, the Triune God does not exist as a single entity, but are forever Three in One. Just as three dimensions are required to describe a physical object, so must Three Persons be required to describe God. Only two dimensions, and only two Persons, would define no object or Being of Divinity at all. Though the dimensions of three are separate and apart from one another, all three must be used to define space. So with God.
RED BLOOD CELLS:
The color, red, is a spiritual symbol of sacrifice. A sacrifice was made for us in the Lord Jesus Christ to sustain our lives, and we feed on His Body and Blood just as the red blood cells provide sustenance to the soul that belongs to Christ. Our leading text reveals this purpose: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.” John 6:53-56 (KJV) Just as every cell of the physical body is fed and sustained by the red cells, so every fiber of our spiritual being is fed upon the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. The blood of Christ is different from that of mortal man being uninfected by the sin of Adam. The blood properties are inherited through the father, and the Blood of Christ bore the purity of His Father in Heaven. The Blood of Christ was shed for us according to the Scriptures. That Blood was the ONLY Blood that could avail for our salvation.
WHITE BLOOD CELLS:
The white blood cells perform the essential mission of fighting disease organisms that invade the body. The amazingly miraculous genius of our Maker gave the white cells the ability to immediately sense the invasion of disease organisms into the body with immediate dispatch. The very moment that bacteria enter the body through a puncture wound or cut, the white blood cells rush to the site of invasion. How they have the instinct to be aware of this intelligence boggles the human mind for mystery. Once the invading organism is encountered, the white cells embrace the organism thus surrounding it and starving it of the oxygen and nutrients it attempts to steal from the human body cells. This results in the white pus that forms at the site of infection of any wound. The color of these cells represents the purity and power of God to keep our souls pure despite those organisms of sin that invade our soul through hurt or temptation. “7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” Psalms 51:7 (KJV) It is important to recognize the significance of this cleansing! We are purged on the inside first as the alimentary canal is purged with the hyssop – a plant with laxative properties. Next, once our hearts are spiritually cleansed by the imputed righteousness of Christ, our outward behavior is cleansed so that our inward grace is represented by our outward appearance – the crude definition of the Sacraments. This is the cleansing of God the Father through the gift of salvation through His only Begotten Son’s sacrifice. “I will save them out of all their dwellingplaces, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God.” Ezek 37:23 (KJV) Our present dwelling place is a body of clay, in which sin has abode, from which we shall be saved and given an immortal body.
What critical function does the platelets perform? In the true and faithful church, the loss of a single soul is not acceptable. Just as our Lord Jesus Christ lost no soul placed in His possession by the Father (except that son of perdition who was a devil), neither should we be satisfied with the loss of a single soul. The Church, being a monolithic family, cannot brood the loss of a beloved brother or sister. No true man or woman of red blood would allow their brother or sister to be kidnapped from under their roof. So, no true Christian can abuse or expel a single soul from the care of the Church into which God has placed them (for safe keeping, if you will). Well, in this same sense, the blood platelets, very like the white cells in the case of infection, rush immediately to the site of any loss of blood – either through internal rupture of a vessel, or to a site of trauma to the body. It sets to work within seconds to clot the blood and stanch the loss of it. If our blood supply lacked this function, we would perish soon after birth through the loss of blood though capillaries in the brain and body. So the platelets preserve, intact, our blood supply of life just as the Holy Ghost preserves our spiritual blood supply of faith from heresies and false doctrine. Knowing the truth makes the lie more obvious. So the Holy Spirit teaches and reminds us of all that is contained in Holy Writ concerning Christ. This stanches the possibility of apostasy and reprobation.
Can we see, in this comparative devotion, the absolute necessity of the Blood of Christ in giving life eternal to every believer who is covered under that Blood He shed at Calvary. It is symbolized fully in that first blood of an innocent lamb that was sacrificed on the first Passover for the Children of Israel. When God’s Angel of Death passed over Egypt that terrible night, if He saw the blood of the lamb on the lentils and doorposts, He passed over that house. So at the last trump, shall death pass over all who are covered under that shed blood of the Lamb of God on the cross.
If this devotion has stimulated your curiosity to know more, I hope you will acquire and read the two books referenced earlier on the Blood. They are both ably written by good doctors of superior knowledge and understanding to that of my own. God bless you.