The New Testament book of Hebrews is unique in many ways, including in referring to Jesus as our High Priest.
14 So then. since we have a
great High Priest who has
entered heaven, Jesus the Son
of God, let us hold firmly to
what we believe. 15 This High
Priest of ours understands our
weaknesses, for he faced all of
the same testings we do, yet
he did not sin. 16 So let us come
boldly to the throne of our
gracious God. There we will
receive his mercy, and we will
find grace to help us when we need it most.Hebrews 4:14-16 (NLT)
As our High Priest, Jesus:
1. makes atonement for sin (cf. Heb. 2:17; 7:27; 9:14)
2. gives strength for those tempted by sin (cf. Heb. 2:18)
3. gives grace in time of need (cf. Heb. 4:15-16)
4. brings eternal life (cf. Heb. 5:9-10)
5. intercedes on believers’ behalf (cf. Heb. 7:25; 9:24)
6. gives confidence to approach a holy God (cf. Heb. 10:19-21)
In Jesus we have an intercessor. We have an advocate. He takes up our cause not based on our merit or because of who we are—-but based on his righteousness and who HE IS. Jesus fights for us.
I grew up in a home where forgiveness was sorely needed.
No one could be more right than my father, even when he was terribly wrong. He had a sign in his office that read:
- Rule #1: The Boss is always right.
- Rule #2: If the Boss is wrong, see Rule #1.
Anytime I did anything, I simply waited for his criticism. Particularly, if I participated in a performance like a play or music program. His words cut like a finely sharpened blade. This proved to be true when it came to math tests and chess games. It held true at the end of piano recitals and competitions. If I made a mistake, he was sure to point it out to me. I could never be perfect enough in a home that expected perfection and precision.
It took me a long time to grasp the concept of grace and understand what mercy looked like lived out. Thankfully, I found Jesus. Or should I say, Jesus found me, His lost sheep?
Jesus is the Good Shepherd that brings us back into the flock and fights to keep us in the flock. Jesus is continually working on our behalf.
At the foot of His throne we will find all the mercy and all the grace we need today. Not just today, but every day. Not just this week, this month or this year, but forevermore.
I don’t have to be perfect, because Jesus already is. When I make a mistake, He picks me up, brushes me off and sends me back onto the field. He doesn’t give up on me. He doesn’t quit on me.
To be clear, I loved my Dad. Still do. I hope to see him in Heaven someday (Won’t we both be surprised?).
Over the years, I’ve come to realize that my Dad did the best he could with the tools he had. Because he grew up in Germany during the Second World War, he didn’t have a normal childhood or a role model to show him how to be a dad. My paternal grandfather spent most of my dad’s early childhood at war and sitting in a prisoner of war camp, waiting to come home. Legend has it that my paternal great-grandfather fought in wars as well, amid battling other hardships, therefore limiting his ability to properly demonstrate how to be a dad.
From my conversations with people, I have learned that relationships with dads tend to be complicated. Thankfully, our relationship with Jesus doesn’t need to be.
Jesus is loving, generous, compassionate and kind. His tenor is one stemming from a desire to help me, rather than one simply seeking to critique me and point out my flops, flaws, and failures. He gives me the grace I need when I need it.
Recently, Terri and I attended Andrew Peterson’s performance of Behold the Lamb of God. One of the many talented artists taking part in that performance was a group called “The Arcadian Wild.” They are phenomenal. The video below features the first song of a four song EP inspired by Genesis 2 and 3. Give them a listen.
Life after the Fall is hard. Show people grace, especially those you love. One day, our High Priest will return and restore Creation. Do not be discouraged nor dismayed. Do not fear. God is with us.
The Devotional Guy™
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