The Blood of the Lamb the Conquering Weapon
by Charles Spurgeon

“They Overcame Him by the Blood of the Lamb”

The blood of the Lamb means the death of the Son of God. The sufferings of Jesus might be described in some other way, but His death on the cross requires the mention of blood. Our Lord was not only bruised and beaten, but He was put to death. His heart’s blood was made to flow out of His wounds. This Person we are speaking of was God over all, blessed forever. But He stooped low to bring our humanity into union with His divinity in an amazing way. He was born at Bethlehem an infant, He grew as a child, He ripened into manhood, and lived here among us, eating and drinking, suffering and rejoicing, sleeping and laboring as men do. He really died—not figuratively, but in truth—and He was buried in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathaea. That death was the great fact contained in the words “the blood of the Lamb.” We are to view Jesus as the Lamb of God’s Passover. He was not only separated from others and dedicated as a memorial and consecrated for divine service; He is the Lamb that was slain. A Christ who lived but never died would not be a saving Christ. He himself said, “I am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever!” These days some say, “Why not speak more about His life, and less about His death?” I reply, Speak about His life as much as you want, but never apart from His death. It is by His blood that we are redeemed. “We proclaim Christ.” Complete the sentence. “We proclaim Christ crucified,” says the apostle. Yes, there is the point! It is the death of the Son of God that is the conquering weapon. If He had not “humbled Himself and become obedient to death, even death on a cross,” if He had not “poured out his life unto death” and been “numbered with the transgressors,” we would have had no weapon to use against the dragon prince. By “the blood of the Lamb” we understand the death of the Son of God. Hear it! Because you have sinned, Jesus died that you may be cleared from your sin. “He himself bore our sins in His body on the tree” and died that He might “redeem us from all unrighteousness.” Paradoxically, this death is the vital point of the gospel. The death of Christ is the death of sin and the defeat of satan, and so it is the life of our hope and the assurance of our victory. Because He “poured out His life unto death,” He “divides the spoils with the strong” (Isaiah 53).

Next, by “the blood of the Lamb” we mean our Lord’s death as a substitutionary sacrifice. Let’s be very clear here. The Spirit did not choose to say that they overcame the archenemy by the blood of Jesus, or the blood of Christ, but by the blood of the Lamb. Those words were deliberately chosen because the lamb symbolizes sacrifice. If the blood of Jesus had been shed only because of His courage for the truth, or out of simple compassion, or as an act of self-denial, it would not be especially good news for humanity, and it would have no particular power to it. A death like that might be a worthy example for martyrs, but it is not the way of salvation for guilty men and women. If you proclaim the death of the Son of God but do not show that He died as the “righteous for the unrighteous, to bring us to God,” you have not proclaimed the blood of the Lamb. You must make it known that “the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him,” and that “the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all,” or you have missed the meaning of the blood of the Lamb. There is no overcoming sin without a substitutionary sacrifice. The lamb under the old law was brought by the offender to make atonement for his sin, and it took his place when it was killed. This was a picture of Christ substituting Himself for the sinner, bearing the sinner’s sin and suffering in the sinner’s place, and in this way satisfying the justice of God and making it possible for Him to justify the one who believes. I understand this to be the conquering weapon—the death of the Son of God as the sacrifice for sin to turn away God’s anger. Sin must be punished. It is punished in Christ’s death. That is our only hope.

What’s more, I understand by the phrase, “The blood of the Lamb,” that our Lord’s death was effective for taking away sin. When John the Baptist first pointed to Jesus, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” Our Lord Jesus has actually taken away sin by His death. Beloved, we are sure that He had offered an acceptable and effective sacrifice when He said, “It is finished.” Either He did put away sin, or He didn’t. If He didn’t, how will it ever be put away? If He did, then believers are clear. Completely apart from anything that we do or are, our glorious Substitute took away our sin, just like the scapegoat carried the sin of Israel into the wilderness. If Jesus offered Himself as a substitutionary sacrifice, then God’s justice is fully satisfied. God can bless the redeemed and still be just. Two thousand years ago, Jesus paid the dreadful debt of the human race, and He made a full atonement for the entire burden of sin for anyone who believes in Him. He removes the whole enormous load and throws it with one motion of His pierced hand into the depths of the sea. When Jesus died, He offered atonement, and God accepted it. In the high court of heaven there was a distinct removal of sin from the whole body that has Christ as its head. Each redeemed person individually receives for himself the great atonement by an act of personal faith, but the atonement itself was made long before.

I believe this is one of the sharp edges of the conquering weapon. We are to proclaim that the Son of God has come in the flesh and died for human sin, and that in dying He not only made it possible for God to forgive, but He secured forgiveness for all who are in Him. He did not die to make men savable, but to save them. He came not that sin might be put aside at some future time, but to put it away then and there by sacrificing Himself. By His death He “finished transgression, put an end to sin, atoned for wickedness, and brought in everlasting righteousness” (Daniel 9:24). Believers can know that when Jesus died they were delivered from the claims of law, and when He rose again their justification was secured. The blood of the Lamb is a real price, which powerfully ransomed them for God. The blood of the Lamb is a real cleansing, which really did purge away sin. This we believe and declare, and by this sign we conquer. Christ crucified, Christ the sacrifice for sin, Christ the powerful Redeemer of men, we will proclaim everywhere, and so put to rout the powers of darkness.

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