April 22, 2013
In the last post I mentioned that, being Accepted in the Beloved (Jesus), we can obey the invitation in Hebrews 4:16: “Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Indeed we can! But there is more here to consider, and I believe it can help you in your prayer life as much as it did me. Here is the whole quote from Hebrews 4:14-16 (NKJV):
Seeing then that we have a great High Priest, who has passed through the
heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession [of our faith].
For we have not a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses,
but was in all points tempted [tested] as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore
come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find
grace to help in time of need.
The author of Hebrews is in the midst of telling us how greatly superior Jesus Christ is to all the laws and regulations, all the sacrifices and offerings, of the old Jewish covenant. Jesus has made the way directly to God by means of His sacrifice on the cross on our behalf. In light of all this, we are reminded that we have SomeOne who is now interceding for us in the presence of the Father just as did the Jewish high priest when he went into the Holy of Holies in the tabernacle with the blood of the sacrificed animal. But the high priest could only go in once a year on the Day of Atonement. The veil that separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies was the boundary line that any priest, including the high priest, could not cross except on that one annual day.
But the veil was torn immediately after the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. It says in Matthew 27:51 and Mark 15:38 (NKJV), “Then the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom,” which meant that God did it from above. But in Hebrews 10:16-22 (NIV), there is added more meaning to the tearing of the veil:
This is the covenant I will make with them after that time, says the Lord. I will
put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds.” Then he adds:
“Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.” And where these have
been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin.
Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by
the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain
[the veil], that is, His body, and since we have a great priest over the house of
God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith….
Jesus made the way to the very throne of the Father by the tearing of His flesh (a type of the veil). These two scriptures from Hebrews chapters 4 and 10 are saying basically the same thing: The way has been cleared. Now we can approach God boldly!
“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16). So we can come boldly! And why can we expect the Lord’s help? Because “…we have … a High Priest who can … sympathize with our weaknesses, [because He] … was in all points tempted [tested] as we are, yet without sin.“ (Hebrews 4:15). He knows all our weaknesses and needs! And not just because Jesus is God, and God knows everything. It is because Jesus has been there and done that! He, in one way or another, has experienced every test and temptation that we could ever face. And He says to us when we come with our need, “I know what you mean. I have experienced what you are going through, and I understand. And I am big enough and powerful enough to give you ‘…mercy, and … grace to help in [this your] time of need.‘”
So, Christian, be Bold before God! He has made the way, and He wants you to come with all your needs!