Help is on the way…
In OT times the people were kept at a distance; now in Christ we are brought near through the blood of His cross.
Therefore we are encouraged to draw near. This exhortation assumes that all believers are now priests because we are told to have boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus.
The common people during the Jewish economy were barred from the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place; only the priests could enter the first room, and only the high priest could enter the second.
Now that is all changed. God has no special place where only a special caste of men may approach Him.
Instead, all believers may come into His presence by faith at any time and from any place on earth.
Our approach is by a new and living way.
New here may have the meaning of “newly slain” or “newly made.”
Living seems to be a reference to Jesus in resurrection, therefore, to a living Savior.
This way was opened through the veil, that is, His flesh. This clearly teaches that the veil between the two compartments of the tabernacle was a type of the body of our Lord.
In order for us to have access into God’s presence, the veil had to be rent, that is, His body had to be broken in death.
This reminds us that we cannot draw near by Christ’s sinless life, but only by His vicarious death.
Only through the mortal wounds of the Lamb can we go in.
Every time we enter God’s presence in prayer or worship, let us remember that the privilege was bought for us at tremendous cost.
We not only have great confidence when we enter the presence of God; we also have a great High Priest over the house of God.
Even though we are priests (1 Pet. 2:9; Rev. 1:6), yet we still need a Priest ourselves.
Christ is our great High Priest, and His present ministry for us assures our continued welcome before God.
Let us draw near.
This is the believer’s blood-bought privilege. How wonderful beyond all words that we are invited to have audience, not with this world’s celebrities, but with the Sovereign of the universe!
The extent to which we value the invitation is shown by the manner in which we respond to it.
There is a fourfold description of how we should be spiritually groomed in entering the throne room.
1. With a true heart. The people of Israel drew near to God with their mouth, and honored Him with their lips, but their heart was often far from Him (Matt. 15:8).
Our approach should be with utter sincerity.
2. In full assurance of faith. We draw near with utter confidence in the promises of God and with the firm conviction that we shall have a gracious reception into His presence.
3. Having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience.
This can be brought about only by the new birth.
When we trust Christ, we appropriate the value of His blood.
Figuratively speaking, we sprinkle our hearts with it, just as the Israelites sprinkled their doors with the blood of the Passover lamb.
This delivers us from an evil conscience.
Our testimony is:
Conscience now no more condemns us, For His own most precious blood
Once for all has washed and cleansed us,
Cleansed us in the eyes of God.
4, And our bodies washed with pure water. Again this is symbolic language.
Our bodies represent our lives. The pure water might refer either to the word (Eph 5:25, 26), to the Holy Spirit (John 7:37–39), or to the Holy Spirit using the word in cleansing our lives from daily defilement.
We are cleansed once for all from the guilt of sin by the death of Christ, but cleansed repeatedly from the defilement of sin by the Spirit through the word (see John 13:10).
Thus we might summarize the four requisites for entering God’s presence as sincerity, assurance, salvation, and sanctification.
I’m verse 23 we find the second exhortation is for us to hold fast the confession of our hope.
Nothing must be allowed to turn us from the staunch confession that our only hope is in Christ.
For those who were tempted to give up the future, unseen blessings of Christianity for the present, visible things of Judaism, there is the reminder that He who promised is faithful.
His promises can never fail; no one who trusts in Him will ever be disappointed.
The Savior will come, as He has promised, and His people will be with Him and like Him forever.
Let us remember that we have significant privileges associated with our new life in Christ:
(1) We have personal access to God through Christ and can draw near to him without an elaborate system (10:22);
(2) We can grow in faith, overcome doubts and questions, and have deepening relationships with God (10:23);
(3) We can inspire and cheer one another on as believers (10:24); and
(4) We can worship together (10:25).
To neglect Christian fellowship would mean giving up the encouragement, motivation, and help of other Christians that we need.
We gather together to learn from each other, refresh our faith, and strengthen one another in the Lord.
As we get closer to the day of Christ’s return, we will face many spiritual struggles, and perhaps times of severe persecution as evil forces grow in strength.
Difficulties, disillusionment, or busyness should never be excuses for missing church services.
Rather, they should motivate us to make an even greater effort to be faithful in meeting with other believers and participating in mutual encouragement.
From Max Lucado’s LifeLessons:
Once the author told that Jesus’ death surpassed any earthly sacrifice, he encouraged the Hebrew Christians to have confidence.
Jesus’ death not only provides salvation, but also great confidence for Christians.
We can step boldly before the Lord in prayer, and boldly into the world in service and witness.
Jesus has already won the battle!
Picture it this way. Imagine that you are an ice skater in competition.
You are in first place with one more round to go.
If you perform well, the trophy is yours.
You are nervous, anxious, and frightened.
Then, only minutes before your performance, your trainer rushes to you with the thrilling news:
“You’ve already won!
The judges tabulated the scores, and the person in second place can’t catch you. You are too far ahead.”
Upon hearing that news, how will you feel?
And how will you skate? Timidly? Cautiously?
Of course not. How about courageously and confidently?
You bet you will. You will do your best because the prize is yours.
You will skate like a champion because that is what you are!
You will hear the applause of victory. . . .
The point is clear: the truth will triumph.
The father of truth will win, and the followers of truth will be saved.
(From The Applause of Heaven by Max Lucado)
If you are a child of God, claim your victory over sin!
Be confident. Nothing can ever take you out of God’s hand. No one can ever take away your salvation. No matter what happens, you are always His.
And Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 about Striving for a Crown…
“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize?
Run in such a way that you may obtain it.
And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things.
Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown.
Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty.
Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air, but I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.
Tuesday, June 28
The Cutting Edge
HELP IS ON ITS WAY
by Larry Ollison
“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.”
— Hebrews 10:23
God’s Word tells us to hold tightly and not release the confession of our hope.
We must believe that God is willing and able to meet our every need. We must never doubt His promises and we must never doubt that His promises are for us.
A lady in my church approached me with a problem. She wanted prayer. She wanted deliverance from the problem that had entangled her for years.
After explaining the problem to me in great detail, she looked at me and said,
“Do you think there is any possibility that God can solve this problem?”
At that point I showed her a promise in God’s Word that pertained to her situation.
When she saw God’s promise in His Word, I could see her countenance change.
All of a sudden, she had hope that help was on its way.
When the world approaches us with a problem, we must give them hope.
We must instill in them God’s answer to their problem. And God’s answer is found in His Word.
When we speak His Word and give them hope, then they will feel like help is on its way.
They may not be in faith, but they have hope and if they continue in their belief and confession of hope without wavering, then their confession of hope will become rhema in their heart and faith will be born.
Romans 5:5 tells us that hope does not disappoint.
This is a principle in God’s Word that we must remember as we witness to the world.
Hope brings peace and is an anticipation of the deliverance that is on its way.
Hope will encourage and give joy and strength to the oppressed.
When someone’s back is against the wall and it looks like there is no way out, hope delivered by a man or woman of God will bring freshness and peace to the heart of the oppressed.
We must always remember that hope is a godly quality and is a result of His promise spoken to the hopeless.
— Larry Ollison Ministries
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