Morning and Evening with A.W. Tozer
Devotional: January 16th
A disturbing phenomenon of the day is the new and tricky use of familiar words.
A ''people's republic,'' for instance, is not a republic nor does it belong to the people. The word ''freedom'' now in most countries refers to something so restricted that a generation or two ago another word altogether would have been chosen to describe it.
Other words that have changed their meanings without admitting it are ''war,'' ''peace,'' ''grant'' (to describe the small sop the government tosses back out of the money it has previously taken from us), ''right,'' ''left,'' ''equality,'' ''security,'' ''liberal'' and many more. These have been emptied of their meaning and a different meaning has been poured into them. We may now read them or hear them spoken and, unless we are very sharp, gain from them a wholly false idea.
This phenomenon has invaded the field of religion also. In a predominantly Christian society such as prevails in the West the words of Scripture and of Christian theology have quite naturally acquired a fixed meaning and until recently always meant the same thing whenever they were used by educated and responsible persons. With the coming of the various revolutions—scientific, industrial, philosophical, social, artistic, political—fixed meanings have deserted religious words and now float about like disembodied spirits, looking for but apparently never finding the bodies from which they have been exorcised by the revolutionists.
Among religious words which have lost their Christian meaning are ''inspiration, ''revelation,'' ''spiritual,'' ''fellowship,'' ''brotherhood,'' ''unity,'' ''worship,'' ''prayer,'' ''heaven,'' ''immortality,'' ''hell,'' ''Lord,'' ''new birth,'' ''converted''—but the list is long and includes almost every major word of the Christian faith.
And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God (Hebrews 10:10-12).
And if that is not plain enough the inspired writer further says, "Because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy" (verse 14); and, "where these have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin" (verse 18).
The teaching of the New Testament is not that there is a perpetual sacrifice, but that there is one sacrifice of perpetual efficacy. The thought that Christ's sacrifice needs to be repeated is obnoxious to the spirit of biblical theology and an affront to the tears and sweat and blood and death of the Lamb of God.
Obviously our Catholic friends are in serious error here, and the kind thing is not that we in the name of tolerance smile away their error, but that we point it out and try to correct it.
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