But when Aaron Rogers got back in the game…But when America entered WWI and WWII…But when the Beatles arrived in America… History is filled with “but when’s,” yet none matter when we remind ourselves of the “but when’s” of Jesus. We find one of Christ’s “but when’s” in Hebrews 9:11-12:
But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption.
But when Jesus
When Jesus presented His blood as the perfect, once-for-all-times sacrifice, in that instant, He ended the nearly 1,500 years of the Jew’s animal blood sacrifices. There would still be a need for those sacrifices today, but when Jesus made His sacrifice, everything changed. Consider the next two verses of this passage of Scripture:
For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God. – Hebrews 9:13-14
God with us
Let’s consider 1 Corinthians 13:9-10:
For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away.
This verse is referring to the second coming of Christ. It’s another “but when.” We could paraphrase this passage as, “You and I only see a small portion of Jesus, but when Jesus returns, then we will see Him in His full glory.” And let’s not forget Galatians 4:4-5:
But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.
But when Jesus arrived in the flesh, after 4,000 years of preparation, He came as “God with us” (Emmanuel). Eternity changed. Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection were the pinnacle of God’s redemptive work.
So here is some great news: as believers, Jesus writes Himself into our lives, into the story arcs of our days. Surely, when we arrive in heaven and read our biography, we will see that every time we were snatched from the jaws of actual destruction, we will read, “but when Jesus came into his/her need, then everything changed.”
Photo by Yannick Pulver on Unsplash
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