We find in the book of Hebrews numerous times when the author uses the statement “Therefore, let us.” The therefore is always referring to something that the author has been discussing and has finished making his point. The “let us” is what we need to do because of the point that the author has made. In Chapter 4 of Hebrews we find a very significant and encouraging “therefore, let us.”
Hebrews 4:14-16 states, “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are- yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need” (NIV).
The verses that are preceding the “therefore” say that nothing that we do is hidden from God, and we must give an account to him. The “Word” judges the thoughts and attitudes of our hearts. If this were the end of the book, we may feel a bit discouraged and afraid that all our sins are being judged and there is no hope. But it’s not the end!
It goes on to tell us that Jesus is our High Priest. There are a few important aspects to this. In the old sacrificial system there were certain requirements for a high priest. They had to be a human, God-appointed, represent the people to God, and offer sacrifice for sin. Jesus Christ fulfilled all of these things. This is an important Scripture showing both Jesus’ divinity and humanity. He was human in the fact that he can sympathize with our weaknesses, who has been tempted just like us. The big difference, which also proves his divinity, is the fact that he did not sin. Because of this He is able to be our High Priest and was able to offer himself as a sacrifice once for all time. Knowing that Jesus Christ can sympathize with us and is our representative before God brings us to the “let us” in this passage.
The first “let us” is to hold firmly to the faith we profess. We know without a doubt that Jesus sacrificed himself for us, and we can hold firmly to the faith we profess in Him. We can have faith that He died, rose again and is now advocating for us. And because Jesus has been tempted like us, but did not sin and has become our atonement, we can approach God with confidence.
Jesus Christ is our confidence.
With Him by our side, we know that all that has been laid bare before Him has been forgiven. There is no need to tremble and fear, for He sympathizes with us. And we must approach the throne so that we may receive mercy and grace in our time of need. If we are unable to approach our heavenly father, we will not find the full grace and mercy that He offers.
Thanks be to Christ who became like us, that he may save us from sin and give us the wonderful confidence that allows us to come into the presence of a most holy God. In the Old Testament, High Priests were the only ones allowed to go into the Holy of Holies where God dwelled. And there was much fear. So much so, that they would tie bells and a rope around their ankles so if they stopped jingling because they were dead, the others could pull him out. But because Jesus has made a sacrifice for us we don’t have to be afraid. We can enter the presence of God with confidence and receive the mercy and grace that we are far from deserving.
What obstacles keep you from approaching God with confidence??
Rhegan is a woman on a journey seeking the truth in all things. Check out her personal blog here where she shares her photography, her life as an adoptee, and what she likes to call “God Talk.”