…and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw…
It feels strange to speak of Jesus Christ as our property. Mainly, because we normally think of what we own as material, inanimate objects, and not people.
Certainly not the Owner and Creator of everything.
And yet, this is not the firs time in Hebrews that we are told He belongs to us.
19 (A)Therefore, brothers,[a] since we have confidence to enter (B)the holy places by the blood of Jesus, 20 by (C)the new and living way that he opened for us through (D)the curtain, that is, through his flesh, 21 and since we have (E)a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts (F)sprinkled clean (G)from an evil conscience and our bodies (H)washed with pure water.
Because of the Beauty of Jesus Christ, this is because of Who He is and What He has done – we now have a fresh and living way to the Father.
19 (V)Therefore, brothers,[c] since we have confidence to enter (W)the holy places by the blood of Jesus, 20 by (X)the new and living way that he opened for us through (Y)the curtain, that is, through his flesh, 21 and since we have (Z)a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts (AA)sprinkled clean (AB)from an evil conscience and our bodies (AC)washed with pure water. 23 (AD)Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for (AE)he who promised is faithful.
“Therefore.” A beautiful word, in the English language.
It implies that something has been explained, and now the author will disclose its application.
In these verses, the writer of Hebrews is preparing for the final approach to the summit of his sermon. It’s a rest stop before presenting the conclusion, the application of what he was been writing all along : the supremacy of Jesus Christ has a practical and direct impact in our relationship with God, in the way we live this life, and in the way we relate to one another.
Jesus Christ has been presented as God Incarnate, who is better than anything and anyone. Who is sufficient and effective. Who voluntarily gave Himself for His people. Who loves intentionally, and secures the glory that is to come, for those that belong to Him.
By using therefore, the writer invites the reader to consider all that he has said. He also invites people to confirm that all this is true. To add to the emphasis, he also uses the word since. With this structure (Therefore… since… and since…) he calls us to action (“let us…“, in verse 22).
It’s as if he were saying…
… Evidence has been provided
… Truths can be verified
… Now, all this should produce fruit (movement, action) in you!
And this is fantastic! Because of Who Jesus Christ is, and because of what He has done, now we – His people – are enable to do certain things. Since he never denies our current struggle with our sin, these abilities are present in us even with that ongoing battle.
In other words, His work in us should be evident.
It may be at different levels and look not the same, when compared to what He is doing in others, but His fruit should be evident, nevertheless.
Can you see His work in you?
This week, let us pray:
Remember His grace.
Man is awesome, but he is also a mess. That’s what our sin has done to us. But God has intervened, becoming like us – but without sin – and enduring humiliation, thus demonstrating His holiness and His love for us. Out of His Incarnation and Humiliation come real and practical benefits for us.
One of the most important questions that we, as humble followers of Christ, must answer constantly is this : How should we live, now? If we believe that our LORD invaded human history more than 2000 years ago with His Incarnation, and we are really expecting the advent of His Second Coming, then those two events should have a significant impact in what we do, daily.
To respond correctly to God’s generosity, to be able to give thanks to our Lord we need to understand three things: our real condition, His character, and the gift He has given us.
Psalm 124 adds a new dimension to our call to enjoy His generosity : we are called to give thanks… together.
Yep, His children are called to live life together, in communion with Him and with one another.
A problem, right?
Have you ever seen something that is simple in its design? Something that accomplishes a whole lot, and yet, it’s not complicated and it’s expressed in terms that make it easy to use?
Think Google’s home page.
Think Android OS.
Think God’s generosity.
We can clearly see that David, in Psalm 40, is really feeling bad. He feels he’s been down in the pit of destruction, swimming in the miry bog. Using that as a backdrop, later he contrasts God’s generosity toward him.
God has done really amazing things for David, providing for him more than what he was expecting.
But, Isn’t God supposed to do that? Helping and rescuing is part of what makes God, well, God… right?