We All Bleed Red
|"Blessed are those who wash their robes in the blood of the Lamb"|
Romans 5:12-21 (ESV) Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned— for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law. Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come. But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ. Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous. Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Notwithstanding the popular sentiment, Aggies don’t in fact bleed maroon, but red, like everyone else. I’ve had plenty of cuts to prove it. That we all bleed red is undeniable, and it provides evidence that we are all are human, have fallen into sin with Adam, and are in need of redemption.
It’s what’s inside, not outside, that counts when it comes to facing up to God: “The LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7).
Window dressing won’t help: “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and the plate, that the outside also may be clean” (Matthew 23:25-26).
Our hearts are in bad shape: “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? ‘I the LORD search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds’” (Jeremiah 17:9-10).
The love in God’s heart moved Him to send His Son to be our Brother and Redeemer: “Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery” (Hebrews 2:14-15).
Baptized into Him, we are washed in His blood and become children of God: “Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful” (Hebrews 10:19-23).
The blood of Jesus is for all nations, all people, all sinners. In heaven, they sing to Jesus: “Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth.” (Revelation 5:9-10)
And here is what we will experience in heaven, with all those who bled red in this life and who were washed in the blood of the Lamb: “After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’ … These are the ones coming out of the great tribulation. They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Revelation 7:9-10, 14).
Prayer (LSB 431):
1. Not all the blood of beasts
On Jewish altars slain
Could give the guilty conscience peace
Or wash away the stain.
2. But Christ, the heav’nly Lamb,
Takes all our sins away;
A sacrifice of nobler name
And richer blood than they.
3. My faith would lay its hand
On that dear head of Thine,
While as a penitent I stand,
And there confess my sin.
4. My soul looks back to see
The burden Thou didst bear
When hanging on the cursèd tree;
I know my guilt was there.
5. Believing, we rejoice
To see the curse remove;
We bless the Lamb with cheerful voice
And sing His bleeding love. Amen.