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Hebrews 4:1-16

Friday, 16 April 2021

“Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” -Hebrews 4:16

Every human being has his/her own concept of approaching God. It may have been acquired through religion or watching somebody or his/her perception of God. If one understands Him to be a living God who seeks a relationship with His creation, then our approach would be different. Let’s see what the Bible says about approaching God.

The Bible talks about two covenants- the Old Covenant and the New Covenant. Under the Old Covenant, it was not possible for common people and priests to go to the Most Holy place in the temple where the presence of God was revealed. Only the High Priest, specially appointed, male Levite (priest) and a direct descendent of Aaron could enter the Most Holy Place in the Temple, once in every year, on the Day of Atonement. Here the main responsibility of the high priest was to offer a sin offering not only for the sins of the whole congregation, but also for himself (Leviticus 4:3-21). In fact he was taking on the role of a mediator between man and God.

But today’s key verse contradicts the pattern in the Old Covenant. According to Hebrews 4:16, everyone can go to the throne of grace with confidence. This reversal here is because Jesus brought in many changes to the Old Covenant – new and better ways (Hebrews 7:22). Priests were no longer needed as mediators between God and His people, because Jesus took on the roles as the ultimate Mediator (Heb. 8:6) and the ultimate High Priest (Heb. 6:19-20). Hebrews 10:19-20 tells us: Therefore, brothers and sisters, 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, that is, his body…”

Let’s concentrate on few main aspects from today’s verse

  1. Why we should draw near? John 15:5 says “without Me, you can do nothing” and hence we draw near to Him because we are weak and we have there a sympathetic High Priest. When we draw near, He welcomes us as a father welcomes his children.

  2. When we should draw near? We should draw near to the throne of grace in ‘time of need’ which means at all times. A main reason we don’t pray is that we don’t realize how needy we are. We think we can handle things on our own. But the fact is, we depend on Him for every breath we take and our daily sustenance.

  3. How should we draw near? We should draw near to the throne of grace with confidence. We don’t need to draw near through a priest as in the Old Covenant. It says, “let us draw near”, us means every believer. Our confidence is not in how good we have been or how well we can pray. Our confidence is in our High Priest who can cleanse us from our sins!

  4. What can we expect when we draw near? We receive a wonderful promise— mercy and appropriate grace. We won’t be scolded/questioned for our wrong doings but instead we receive God’s tenderness and compassion in the form of mercy and God’s undeserved favour in freely forgiving our sins in the form of grace. When your life seems torn apart and nobody is there to mend it just cry out to our sympathetic High Priest at the throne of grace. You will receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need!

  5. Who can draw near? All those who trust in Christ and His shed blood as the payment for their sins have free access at the throne of grace to God’s abundant mercy and undeserved favour.

Prayer: Abba Father, I bow before Your throne, acknowledging You as the Sovereign Creator. I boldly approach You as my Father. I know I deserve judgment, but through Jesus I ask for mercy and grace. Amen



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