One teaching that has spread through Christendom like wildfire over the past 20-30 years, and which needs to be examined by Biblical Fundamentalists in order to discover whether or not it is truly in accord with Scripture, is the belief that 'claiming the shelter of the Blood' of Jesus upon an individual, or group, is a guarantee of absolute protection from:
This belief is widely held by many Christian Fundamentalists, especially among Pentecostal10 and Charismatic11 groups, even though most who promote it do not offer any Scriptural basis for it. A few, however, such as June Newman Davis (author of 'Scripture Keys for Kingdom Living') and Max Whyte (author of 'The Power in the Blood') attempt to justify this doctrine by the following verses:
Leviticus 9:12, 9:24, 14:25; Hebrews 11:28, 12:24 and I Peter 1:2
Let's examine each one in turn:
"Then he [Aaron] slaughtered the burnt offering. His sons handed him the blood and he sprinkled it against the altar on all sides."12Davis and Whyte rightly claim that the burnt offering was a 'type' of Jesus (that is, a symbol pointing to the true "lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world"13), and that the shedding of blood for the forgiveness of sins was part of the whole plan of worship ordained by Yahweh14 and revealed to Moses. the Old Testament system of sacrifice was a foreshadowing of Jesus' death on the Cross.15 However, neither author even attempts to explain what any of this has to do with protection from physical harm or demonic activity.
"Fire came out from the presence of Yahweh and consumed the burnt offering and thefat portions on the altar. When all the people saw it, they shouted for joy and fell face downward."16
Davis says, "What effect did the blood have on all the people? IT DROVE AWAY EVERY EVIL SPIRIT FROM THEIR MIDST!"17
Oh Really??? This is an excellent example of someone reading a meaning into a text that is foreign to the normal sense of the words, grammar and context.
There is, in fact, no suggestion in the text that it was the presence of the sacrificial blood that caused the people to 'shout for joy' or 'fall face downward', rather, it was a response to the spectacular manifestation of Yahweh's power by sending fire from the tent of His Presence to consume the offering. There is certainly no indication whatsoever in the text in question, of the presence of, let alone deliverance from, evil spirits!
"He [the Priest] shall slaughter the lamb for the guilt offering and take its blood and put it on the lobe of the right ear of the one to be cleansed, on the thumb of his right hand and in the big toe of his right foot."18
In its correct textual and historical context this verse describes part of the ceremonial cleansing of those with infectious diseases who could not afford the regular offerings required by Levitical Law. It should be well noted that this is a ceremonial cleansing only and as the beginning of the passage, 'If the person HAS BEEN HEALED...the Priest shall order two live clean birds...be brought to the one TO BE CLEANSED"20 clearly shows that this is not intended to describe a cure, or a means of protection from disease. This verse in no way gives any support to the doctrine of 'pleading the shelter of the blood of Jesus'.
"Through faith he [Moses] kept the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood, so that the Destroyer would not touch the fust born of Israel."21
Again, this verse is grossly misinterpreted by both Davis and Whyte. This text concerns the first Passover and Israel's Exodus from Egypt22 and in no way lends itself to the idea that by 'claiming the blood of Jesus' over oneself, or a group, one is protected from the activity or influence of demon or from any physical harm, as the 'Destroyer' mentioned in this verse is identified in Exodus 12:12-13 as being Yahweh Himself!
"...and Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel."23
All Biblical Fundamentalists would agree that Abel's blood cried out for retribution,24 whereas the blood of Jesus that was shed on the Cross speaks of forgiveness and reconciliation with God.25 But once more there is no support for 'pleading the blood' to be found in this text without first imposing a preconceived idea upon the verse, rather than drawing the meaning from the text itself.
"To God's elect..who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of the Father, through the sanctifying work of the [Holy] Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by His blood..."26
Davis claims, "As believers, we are to obey the Law of the 'sprinkling of the blood', knowing that the power of the blood overcomes all evil."27
However, the Law of the 'sprinkling of the blood' was for the cleansing of the Old Testament Tabernacle28 which was a copy of the heavenly Tabernacle.29 Where it was necessary for the Earthly Sanctuary to be cleansed with the blood of animal sacrifices, it was necessary for the Heavenly Sanctuary to be purified by the Sacrifice of Christ himself.30
This Law has, then, been obeyed and its requirements have therefore already been fulfilled.
In any case, this verse does not concern the 'Law of sprinkling the blood' as it states that it is "God's elect" - that is, Christians - who are 'sprinkled with Jesus' blood' (and not the Tabernacle), through which they have atonement for sin31, redemption32 and salvation.33
Any suggestion that this verse supports the 'pleading of the blood' of Jesus is purely in the minds of Davis and Whyte and their followers and not in the Scriptures!
Although not cited by either Davis or Whyte, the following verse seems to be the only Scripture that author and self-styled 'expert' on Witchcraft and 'Spiritual Warfare', Rebecca Brown MD, bases her belief in this doctrine on34:
"They [Christians] overcame him [Satan - 'the accuser of the saints' - see Revelation 12:10] by the blood of the Lamb [Jesus] and by the word of their testimony."35
What are Christians to give testimony to?
"... That the Father [God] sent the Son [Jesus] to be the Saviour of the world."36 and that Satan is overcome 'by the blood of the Lamb', '...since the children [humankind] have flesh and blood, He [Jesus] to shared in their humanity so that by His death He might destroy him who holds the power of death - that is, the Devil"37
Nowhere in Scripture do we read that anyone can be 'put under the blood of Jesus' apart from their own volition and individual standing before God. Every professing Christian should regard such an erroneous concept concerning the protecting power of the blood of Jesus is most serious indeed.
For example, not only could it lead individuals to place themselves in unnecessary danger of physical harm, or even death, but if the 'shelter of the blood' is claimed over a congregation, or other group, that believes this to be an absolute protection from demonic activity, influence or deception, then any teaching or spiritual manifestation that follows will automatically be assumed to be 'sound' and 'of God' and will not be tested against the Scriptures.
This should be of major concern to Fundamentalist Christians, who would see this as opening the door wide to further and even greater error and deception.
10 Arising in the late 19th and early 20th Century in the United States, Pentecostals are members of various denominational Protestant Churches who seek a personal relationship with God through 'Baptism of the Holy Spirit', characterized by speaking in tongues. For many Pentecostals, true communion with Christ has not been achieved until this 'baptism' and, like the Apostles (Acts 2), one has 'spoken in tongues' to announce the joyous event.
11 The Charismatic Movement, sometimes known as 'Neo-Pentecostalism', began in the 1960's and 70's to establish a personal, more joyously expressive communion with God and, like 'classic' Pentecostalism, emphasizes the Gifts of the Holy Spirit (see I Corinthians 12). In contrast to Pentecostal denominations, which are aggressively Protestant and sectarian in nature, the Charismatic Movement emphasizes renewal of faith in the established denominations, including the Roman Catholic Church.
12 Leviticus 9: 12
13 I John 1:29
14 In the Bible, the name of God is most significant and understandably so. It is almost inconceivable to think of spiritual matters without a proper designation for the supreme Deity. Thus, the most common name for the Deity is 'God', a translation of the original 'Elohim'. One of the titles for God is 'Lord', a translation of 'Adonai'. There is yet another name which is particularly assigned to God as His special or proper name, that is 'YHWH'.
15 see also Leviticus 17: 11 and Hebrews 9: 11-12
16 Leviticus 9:24
17 June Newman Davis, 'Scripture Keys for Kingdom Living', [Scripture Keys Ministries, 1983], pg. 31
18 Leviticus 14:25
19 'Keys', pg. 31
20 Leviticus 14:3-4
21 Hebrews 11:28
22 see Exodus 12
23 Hebrews 12:24
24 see Genesis 4:10
25 see Hebrews 9: 12, 10: 19; Colossians 1:20; I John 1:7; etc.
26 I Peter 1:2
27 'Keys', pg. 32
28 Hebrews 9:21
29 Hebrews 9:22
30 Hebrews 9:23
31 Romans 3:25,5:11; etc
32 Ephesiansl:17; Revelation 5:9; etc
33 Acts 4: 12;1l Timothy 3: 15; Revelation 1: 5; etc
34 Rebecca Brown MD, 'He Came To Set The Captives Free', [Chick Publications, 1986], pg. 17
35 Revelation 12: 10-11
36 I John 4:14
37 Hebrews 2:14-15
II. PLEADING THE BLOOD OF CHRIST
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