The God of our fathers raised up Jesus whom you murdered by hanging on a tree
Freedom comes at the expense of sacrifice. Thomas Jefferson once said, “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.” His statement has been proven true from Valley Forge to Afghanistan. Citizen soldiers raised their hands and swore to protect and defend this nation against all enemies foreign and domestic.
God loved us so much that He sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, to become the sacrifice for the sin that separated us from Himself. Jesus humbled Himself, wrapped Himself in flesh, and obediently went to Calvary. He became cursed for us by hanging on a tree (Galatians 3:13). The Lamb of God shed His Blood to wash away our sins. His sacrifice bought our freedom. When we were captives to sin, He paid the ransom that released us.
Unlike the tree of liberty that is watered with the blood of patriots, Hebrews tells us over and over that Jesus made this sacrifice “once for all” (Hebrews 7:27; 9:12; 10:10). Jesus, our High Priest, entered the Most Holy Place – not with the blood of goats or calves – with His own Blood to suffer once for all. Every separation, the barrier that sin had erected between us and God, was destroyed.
At the moment that Jesus died, the veil of the Temple was torn from top to bottom. This veil separated the Holy of Holies from the rest of the Temple. The veil itself was about 60 feet tall and six inches thick. It prevented people from entering the presence of God unworthily. The Holy of Holies housed the Ark of the Covenant, and it was there that God’s presence presided. It was there that the High Priest entered – only one time a year – to make atonement for the sins of the people.
As Jesus breathed His last, God Himself tore the veil from the top down. No more separation! No more barrier! We now have direct access to the Father because Jesus bought our freedom once for all. As the Blood and water flowed, as the light and the love rushed from the Holy of Holies, a new covenant was born. Jesus Himself is our Mediator.
The Cross truly became our Tree of Liberty. There, once for all, He purchased our salvation through His suffering and through the shedding of His Blood. His sacrifice bought our freedom. Oh, what a Savior!