Read Daniel 8:14. What happens here?
After the devastating attack of the horn, the announcement is made that the sanctuary will be cleansed. In order to understand this message, we must bear in mind that the cleansing of the sanctuary mentioned in Daniel 8:14 corresponds to the judgment scene depicted in Daniel 7:9-14.
And since that judgment takes place in heaven, the sanctuary must be located in heaven, too. Thus, while Daniel 7 portrays God’s intervention in and relationship with human affairs from a judicial perspective, Daniel 8 describes the same event from a sanctuary perspective.
The earthly sanctuary was modeled after its heavenly counterpart and served to illustrate the broad contours of the plan of salvation. Every day, sinners brought their sacrifices to the sanctuary, where the people were forgiven their confessed sins as the sins were, in a sense, transferred to the sanctuary. As a result, the sanctuary became contaminated. Therefore, a periodic process of purification was needed in order to cleanse the sanctuary from the sins recorded therein. It was called the Day of Atonement and took place once a year (see Leviticus chapter 16).
Why should the heavenly sanctuary need cleansing? By analogy, we can say that the confessed sins of those who have accepted Jesus have been “transferred” to the heavenly sanctuary, just as the sins of the repentant Israelites were transferred to the earthly sanctuary. On the earthly Day of Atonement, numerous animals were slain, symbolizing the future death of Jesus, which is how sinners were able to stand in the Day of Atonement.
And just as that happened in the earthly Day of Atonement when the sanctuary was cleansed, how much more so in the heavenly, when Christ’s blood alone gets us through the judgment? The cleansing of the sanctuary, depicted in Daniel 8:14, is the heavenly counterpart of the earthly service, whose basic message is: as sinners, we need the blood of the Messiah to forgive us our sins and enable us to stand in judgment.
|Read Hebrews 9:23-28. How do these verses reveal the salvation we have in Jesus through His sacrifice for us?