Access into the presence of God

Wed, 05/09/2012 - 12:34 -- James Oakley

This Sunday, at Kemsing and Woodlands, we begin a 4-week series looking a single paragraph of the epistle to the Hebrews. We're going to be looking at Hebrews 10:19-25.

The structure of the passage is clear - verses 19-21 summarise the privilege that it is to be a Christian. These 3 verses draw together most of Hebrews thus far; they say "since we have this enormous privilege". Then verses 22-25 spell out the consequences - 3 exhortatoins. Those verses say "Therefore, let us ...". We hear first of the faith we must have, then the hope we must hold to, and lastly the love we must show.

So, this Sunday is Hebrews 10:19-21 - what privilege we have in Christ.

As I've been reading around this and considering what is here, Alan Stibbs is heart-warming:

“It is well to pause, like the writer of the epistle, briefly does, to appreciate the wonder and the cost of these privileges which are ours. Complete outsiders and unworthy sinners can now come right into God’s presence. We were shut out by our sinful flesh, which deserved only God’s judgement. The Son of God by becoming flesh – by being made sin for us – and by offering his human body to be broken for us in sacrificial death, achieved, so to speak, the rending of the excluding curtain; and, by his blood, or through the virtue of his sacrificial death, opened a fresh and effective way into God’s presence for us to tread. Indeed, the very way is living because Christ himself is the way. No one comes to the Father, but by him.

“The very same Jesus, alive and enthroned at God’s right hand, is also the high priest who receives us when we do come to God through him. He speaks to God on our behalf. It is his concern and ability to minister to all our needs as the mediator or executor of the new covenant. We have everything in having him as our crucified and exalted saviour. With such a high priest as ours, we can and we ought to have absolute confidence to enter the sanctuary of God’s presence.”

Sadly, Stibbs' little book on Hebrews has long been out of print - but Amazon do have a few second-hand copies going. I'd snap them up if I were you!

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