Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.
Select a thought to read by choosing a collection, the month, and then the day:
“For the administration of everything for all time, to bring everything together in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth, . . . by the working of His mighty power that He wrought in Christ when He raised him from the dead and set him at His right hand in heaven . . .”
Paul, in Ephesians 1:10; 19–20
One possible translation of Matthew 18:14 is, “There is not a will in the presence of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.” What makes this such an attractive translation is that we know God cast out of heaven both Satan, “the accuser of the brethren”, and the angels who followed him. And inasmuch as those foolish creatures have been forever barred from the presence of God, there is no one left in heaven to oppose our salvation. Instead, we have in heaven a “multitude of the heavenly host” serving us (Heb. 1:14), and an intercessor sitting at the Father’s right hand, “Jesus Christ the righteous”. There is no creature left in heaven who opposes our prayers for God’s help; and that is how it has come to be that “there is not a will in the presence of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.”
When Moses had constructed the tabernacle according to the pattern given to him by God on Mount Sinai, God then required that the tabernacle and everything in it be ceremonially cleansed by sprinkling it all with the blood of a sacrificial animal. Only then was it considered clean enough to be used by God’s priests for the service of Israel. That Old Testament tabernacle was but an earthly figure of heaven, and the sprinkling of the blood on it foreshadowed the day when the Son of God would return to the Father from earth and purify heaven with his blood (the holy Ghost) so it would be a fit place for him to minister for us. Hebrews 9:21-23 says it this way: “[Moses] likewise sprinkled with the blood. Moreover, under the law, almost everything is purified by blood, and without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness. So then, it was necessary that the earthly figures of things in heaven be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.”
When the blood of the “better sacrifice”, the sinless Lamb of God, sanctified heaven to prepare it for the priesthood of Christ, every unclean spirit in heaven was cast down to earth and was forever barred from the presence of God. Now, whenever a sinner repents, there is nothing but “joy in the presence of the angels of God” (Lk. 15:10). Every creature in heaven will rejoice when God finally brings an end to the religion of Christianity (Rev. 18:20) because all of the remaining creatures in heaven know that Christianity is an abomination to God, “the habitation of demons, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird” (Rev. 18:2). Satan’s presence defiled heaven, but he is no longer there. Satan could not rejoice at any human escaping the darkness of confusion, but now his discontentment with humans discovering the truth is confined to the earth. Heaven is untouched by his envy and hatred. Heaven has been purged! Now, that crafty serpent is reduced to “walking to and fro in the earth” . . . . “seeking whom he may devour” with his lies about God (Job 1:7; 1Pet. 5:8).
Our heavenly Father, we know, “is not willing that any should perish” (2Pet. 3:9). And since the day that the blood of Christ sanctified God’s heavenly tabernacle, every being left in heaven feels the same way. All of heaven is for us now. Everybody who is there is pulling for us to safely make it home. The holy angels have become our servants, and Jesus is our advocate with the Father. We praise God that, because of Jesus, there remains in His holy presence not one that is against us.