“I would, but I am afraid of needles.” This is one of the more common responses from those who decline to donate blood. There are some who can’t donate because they might have Mad Cow disease. Some have been told by a doctor they shouldn’t donate. But let’s face it: most people don’t want to donate blood because it’s scary. It’s icky. And it hurts a little. Christian, we should follow our Savior as he stepped into a scary, icky suffering to save us.
It is tempting to turn “blood of Jesus” into another abstract Christian phrase. When we lose this phrase to abstraction, we lose sight of the fact that Jesus was a real human. His blood was red and sticky like ours. His heart pumped blood through his body just like ours. In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus didn’t want to walk into this sacrifice. He begged the Father to take the cup of suffering from him. He knew it would hurt. But Jesus, “who for the joy set before him, endured the cross,” walked into this suffering, knowing it was for eternal good (Hebrews 12:2).
There are many Scriptures that refer to the blood of Jesus, but let us look at Hebrews 13:12. In a section of Scripture discussing sacrifices pleasing to God, the author is encouraging us to continue in brotherly love. He lifts our eyes to Jesus when he tells us “Jesus suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own blood.” Why did he suffer? In order to sanctify the people. How was he going to sanctify people? Through his own blood. Through our blood, we have the opportunity to save those in crisis. We won’t save their souls, but we may save their lives. Our pint of blood may be the bridge that connects someone’s soul to Jesus.
Brothers and sisters, you have been adopted into God’s family by Christ’s blood, the actual pints of blood that flowed down his side. Let us love others like Jesus loved us. Donate blood for the joy of knowing that your sacrifice will do real good and it just might save a life.
(Our next blood drive is happening Wednesday, June 15 from 10am-4pm. Sign up here!)