Friendship and love · Life and other catastrophes · Relating to God · Spiritual growth and healing

The beauty of blood

Blood. Not exactly a ‘nice’ thing to think about, is it?

Though if you’re a nurse, or anyone working in the medical profession, it’s probably a normal part of your everyday life.

And if you’ve ever been a post-adolescent female, in an accident, very sick, or given birth, you’ll know about the reality of blood.

Every mother will tell you child-birth (whether by C-section or otherwise) was visceral, unthinkable – but totally worth it.

My son Thomas (worth every bit of pain, and more!), on the day after he was born...
My son Thomas (worth every bit of pain, and more!), on the day after he was born…

Friends have said to me at different times that Christianity seems a bit sadistic – all this talk about the blood of Christ which washes away our sins. ‘What’s with that anyway?’ I’ve heard it said. ‘Basing your religion around someone dying in such a horrific way?’

It does seem a little less than sanitary, doesn’t it?

And we do tend to try and sanitise life… avoid talking about those things that might make us feel a bit off-colour.

Before Christ’s death, Gentiles had no hope of access to God – and many desperately wanted it. The Jews did have access, but only by and through their high priest. He could enter into the ‘holy of holies’ in the temple only once a year, to sacrifice the blood of animals for the cleansing of sin.

Now, through the blood of Jesus, that is – after His death on a cross – we can all find forgiveness and redemption from the things we’ve done wrong, and have direct access to God. He – the God of the universe – was the sacrificial lamb, ensuring that animal sacrifices weren’t needed anymore.

It’s hard to imagine the kind of ceremony the high priests went through just to be able to speak to God. And I’m so thankful Jesus took that need away. That I can access Him right now.

When you’re truly searching for God, you’ll do anything to find Him. But how wonderful when we realise it’s really quite straightforward. By turning from our sins – which Jesus died to save us from – and believing in Him, He is found. In an instant. And the peace we feel when we do that is incredible.

Yes, blood turns many of us pale. But Jesus courageously faced the reality of pain at its worst, for us. God, in Christ, entered humanity in the most real, visceral way imaginable. Our champion, redeemer, warrior and king! Women who give birth are brave and beautiful, but He is much more so. And for the same reason. Because He loved us so.

Love that shed blood, for me. Yes it’s raw and gritty and horrific. But like child-birth, it didn’t end at the blood-shed inflicted from excruciating pain. It ended with Jesus rising from the grave – coming alive – to prove He was God. And we ultimately triumph over death with Him. I can’t think of a better reason to celebrate!

“For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.”

(I Peter 1:18-19)

“He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.”

(I Peter 2:24)

“He was oppressed and afflicted,
    yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
    and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
    so he did not open his mouth.”

(Isaiah 53:7)

“In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.”

(Ephesians 1:7)

“The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”

(John 1:29)

The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. First he says:

“This is the covenant I will make with them
    after that time, says the Lord.
I will put my laws in their hearts,
    and I will write them on their minds.”

Then he adds:

“Their sins and lawless acts
    I will remember no more.”

And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary.

Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”

(Hebrews 10:15-23)

I have been cleansed, Jesus, by your blood. Give me a heart that draws near to you in thankfulness, hope and never-ceasing love, precious Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

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20 thoughts on “The beauty of blood

  1. Ali, this was such a meaningful post filled with wisdom to enable us to understand the beauty of and reason that the shedding of the precious blood of Jesus was the only way that we could ever approach God. Let us draw near to Him as we celebrate the real meaning of Christmas..
    Joy

  2. Oh thank you Joy! Yes, so thankful we have full rights as his blood-bought children to rest in His beautiful, freeing presence! Blessings to you and your family as Christmas approaches.
    Ali

  3. “Love that shed blood, for me. Yes it’s raw and gritty and horrific. But like child-birth, it didn’t end at the blood-shed inflicted from excruciating pain.”

    Like child birth, His blood shed doesn’t end there. It ushers us into a brand new life…teeming with untold possibilities the best of which is eternity in His presence as each day we grow into the person we are to become…

    Great analogy!

    1. What wonderful words to add to mine – yes! So thankful that this ‘new life’ is so full of such hope, purpose and wonder, ultimately finishing with an amazing ‘welcome home feast’ with the Lamb. Thanks so much Sheila, be blessed!

  4. Beautifully written!

    I had a very windy and challenging path to falling in love with His Holiness Christ for real later in my young adulthood(around 20), which meant truly delving into the example He set for us all to follow and ponder. I’ve found myself being more amazed about what He offered us in those immortal examples.

    The way He died was dramatic, and we must face our human curiosity with drama, but it was the crescendo to the larger composition He offered through His life and the accounts that have survived Him.

    Thanks for calling me to reflect upon that.

    1. Thank you! And I’m glad He’s taken you on such a journey of awe, wonder and discovery. It is amazing isn’t it, His life, death, and the roads He’s yet to take us on…
      God bless,
      Ali

  5. Ali, thanks so much for sharing such a great and meaningful post. It is absolutely beautiful.
    We don’t see people cringing at the thought of a mother turning the wheel so that when the car crashes, she’s the one with the broken neck, nor do we see people being disgusted at the blood pouring out of a father’s stab wound when he stepped in front of his son to protect him from the deadly knife. We would shed a tear in awe at the actions of these parents showing their love for their children.
    God, in blood and flesh, took love to a greater extent. The crucifixion, death and resurrection of Christ is not just a recount of a gory gruesome happening, but an act of a loving father who would go all lengths so that His children could reconcile with Him for eternity. How much more beautiful can love be?!
    God is beautiful! Love is beautiful! God’s love is beautiful!!!

    1. Thank you Von!
      And amen! How beautiful your words are… how true that is! I think when people dismiss the cross, they don’t see the heart behind it. The father heart that was broken so that we might live. As you say, this was not just gory… but the most glorious act of love 🙂
      Thanks so much for your words, and for encouraging me by reading mine 🙂
      Blessings,
      Ali

  6. Beautiful post (and beautiful child!) Blood does make me a little squeamish. Jesus knew his fate and he didn’t question it or try to get out of it. That makes it even more amazing, what Jesus did.

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