Is blood atonement necessary for salvation?

by Grant
(near L.A.)

Jesus is our passover lamb

Jesus is our passover lamb

On a gay christian message board, there's been a discussion about the blood atonement of Jesus Christ. Because there is so much false teaching these days, which always seems to downplay the reality of our sins and the need for our sins to be paid for, I offer these thoughts.

The blood atonement of Jesus Christ
was necessary to God


The blood atonement of Jesus Christ for sinners is so clear in scripture and Yes, it is necessary for our salvation and it was necessary to God. When we discuss what the Bible says about atonement, I wonder if using a term like atonement "theory" is a debate device, designed to level the playing field and place human opinions against the blood atonement on the same level as clear and unequivocal statements in scripture for the blood atonement.

1. John the Baptist proclaimed Jesus to be:
"the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world." - John 1:29
2. Paul proclaimed Jesus to be our passover Lamb.
"For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us." I Cor 5:7
Those proclamations recall the passover lamb whose blood was shed when the Jewish people left Egypt. You can read about the original passover in Exodus 12. Notice the progression in Exodus 12:3ff.

"a lamb" - v. 3

"the lamb" - v. 4

"your lamb" - v. 5


God's instructions were that the lamb should be killed and the blood of the lamb placed on the side posts and on the upper door post of the house. - Exodus 12:6-7.

This shedding of innocent blood in Exodus 12, some 1400 years before the birth of Christ, pictured what would happen when Jesus went to Calvary to die on the cross in our place, as our Substitute. Jesus shed His innocent blood to pay for our sins. God accepted the payment Jesus made, signaling His acceptance by raising Him from the dead. God's acceptance of Jesus' payment is why you can be saved today.

If each family didn't kill a lamb and apply the blood, Exodus 12:13 & 23, they were not safe and death of the firstborn in the house was the result. These are the images New Testament passages about blood atonement recalled to Jewish and Christian minds in the first century when our New Testament was written.

Substitutionary, vicarious blood atonement is an integral part of the gospel. Without it there is no gospel.

What does the Bible say?


Jesus Christ "Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation (a sacrifice for sin which is totally acceptable to God), through faith in his blood, to declare his (God's) righteousness for the remission (forgiveness) of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God." - Romans 3:25.

"Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him" (Jesus Christ). - Romans 5:9.
According to Romans 3:25 and 5:9, believing that Jesus' blood was shed as the payment for your sins is essential for salvation. Those verses are direct references to substitutionary blood atonement so that we can be justified by faith.

It's not a matter of having many correct theories and we all get to choose whichever theory we find most appealing. It's a matter of whether or not we believe what scripture actually says.
"Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:" 1 Peter 1:18-19

Nor Silver Nor Gold


Nor silver nor gold hath obtained my redemption,
Nor riches of earth could have saved my poor soul;
The blood of the cross is my only foundation,
The death of my Saviour now maketh me whole.

I am redeemed, but not with silver;
I am bought, but not with gold;
Bought with a price - the blood of Jesus,
Precious price of love untold.

Nor silver nor gold hath obtained my redemption,
The guilt on my conscience too heavy had grown;
The blood of the cross is my only foundation,
The death of my Saviour could only atone.

Nor silver nor gold hath obtained my redemption,
The holy commandment forbade me draw near;
The blood of the cross is my only foundation,
The death of my Saviour removeth my fear.

Nor silver nor gold hath obtained my redemption,
The way into heaven could not thus be bought;
The blood of the cross is my only foundation,
The death of my Saviour redemption hath wrought.

I am redeemed, but not with silver;
I am bought, but not with gold;
Bought with a price - the blood of Jesus,
Precious price of love untold.

James M. Gray, 1851-1935, author of this famous hymn, was a Reformed Episcopalian. From 1925 to 1934 he served as the first President of Moody Bible Institute, Chicago.


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This page was revised
on March 7, 2012

Comments for Is blood atonement necessary for salvation?

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Aug 24, 2007
Disappointed
by: Kay

AMEN BROTHER! Wow! I find it amazing to go out on a christian website and get hammered just because I believe the Bible! In what other world?

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