Reading: Hebrews 10: 11-25
Verses 21-22: “Since we have a great high priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith.”
In the first part of our passage from Hebrews we see a contrast between earthly priests and Jesus Christ. The writer notes that day after day the temple priests offer the same sacrifices. It is noted that these “can never take away sin.” Jesus “offered for all time one sacrifice” when he himself went to the cross as our sacrifice for sin. This provided for the “new and living way” spoken of in verse 20. The physical curtain that has separated people from the Holy of Holies was torn in two when Jesus breathed his last. This opening of the access to God symbolizes the new personal, intimate, direct relationship that we can have with God. Our confession and repentance of sin can be brought straight to God; no earthly priest is necessary.
In verses 21 and 22 we read, “Since we have a great high priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith.” We can draw near to God because we know that Jesus paid the price for our sins. We have assurance that our sins will be forgiven and forgotten by God. We no longer carry any guilt or shame. Cleansed from a “guilty conscience” we can boldly approach the throne of God anytime, anyplace. This total access to God is made possible through Jesus Christ.
In the last few verses the writer addresses the community of faith created through the ministry and life of Jesus. During his earthly ministry Jesus modeled what the church should be: a place that values all people, ministers to one and all – just as he did through his sacrifice on the cross. With hope and in faithfulness we “spur one another on toward love and good deeds.” Encouraged by our own personal relationship with Jesus Christ, we can encourage one another as well. In doing so we grow in our faith together. Walking together in Jesus Christ, we are ever made more and more into his image. Day by day may we walk together in faith, building the kingdom of God here on earth.
Prayer: Lord God, you call us personally and corporately to a walk of faith. You love me intimately and you love the community of faith intimately. Use me today to encourage my brothers and sisters in Christ, just as they encourage me. Doing so may I grow in faith. Amen.