Tag Archives: our high priest

December 23; Our High Priest’s Birthday

Hebrews 7:1-10:18

Melchizedek is a curious fellow. He appears in Scripture for a few verses, then promptly disappears. We don’t know where he came from, or where he went after talking to Abraham. He was a priest, but not from the tribe of Levi. Curious.

Yet the writer of Hebrews compares Jesus to this mysterious Old Testament priest. He tells us in 7:16 that Melchizedek represents the “one who has become a priest not on the basis of a regulation as to his ancestry, but on the basis of the power of an indestructible life.”

Jesus was descended from Judah, not Levi. And with Him came a new and better covenant than the one God had previously made with Israel. (vs 22)

No more animal sacrifices. No more need of any priest to enter the Presence of God on our behalf. Jesus offered Himself as the ultimate, perfect sacrifice for us all, then He sat down at the right hand of God in heaven where He serves as our High Priest in that sanctuary set up by the Lord, not by man.

I hope you’ll read these chapters in Hebrews today. As we get ready to celebrate the birth of Jesus, let’s do so with the knowledge of what His birth meant. Let’s thank Him that the baby didn’t stay in the manger, but grew up to be our sacrifice. Jesus was born to die.

But He is not dead. Right now, today, this very minute He is sitting next to the Father and interceding for you and me. He is praying for us. Does that make you want to fall at His feet in humble praise and thanksgiving? Does that make you want to love Him like He deserves to be loved, obeyed like He demands, and serve Him in any way you can? It does me.

I want to say “Happy Birthday Jesus, my Savior, my King, my amazing High Priest. I love you!”

 

Hebrews 1-8; A Better Way

I hope you have read, and considered, the Old Testament with its laws and regulations. Do you know the awesome responsibility Levitical priests carried? Have you looked at the intricate details they had to follow to first, make atonement for their own sins, then offer sacrifices for the sins of the people? The rules had to be followed down to crossing t’s, or God could not forgive sin.

Unless you’ve spent time looking at what God required for the sacrificial system, I’m not sure you can fully appreciate what Jesus did on the cross, or understand His role as our High Priest today. Jesus’ words from the cross, “It is finished,” take on a significant meaning in light of the Old Testament Law.

The writer of Hebrews celebrates our eternal High Priest, and the new covenant God made to us through Jesus. The truth, the anchor for the soul, our hope and assurance is this:

Therefore he (Jesus) is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. (7:25)

Jesus came, lived, died, and rose again 2000 years ago. But He didn’t complete the mission, then go home and put His feet up. He lives to intercede for us. Right now. Today. Jesus is working for you at this very moment.

What a blessing is ours to live this side of the cross, to know our Savior is alive, our High Priest is interceding for us. It is a better way.

A Better Hope

Colton, my nephew’s four-year-old son is learning to zip his own coat, and the other day he wanted to show me he could do it. Colton found the two ends, lined them up, and tried to connect them, but failed. So he tried again, doing exactly the steps Mommy had taught him. But he failed again. And again.

Then I watched him look at his mother with a soulful look that said, “I need you,” and he took a step toward her. She didn’t roll her eyes or scold him. She didn’t make fun of him because he’d failed. She squatted down so her face was level with his, kissed his forehead, and zipped his coat.

The writer of Hebrews talks about the Law, and Jesus’ role as Priest. In chapter seven he points out that the Law was weak and unprofitable. It, he says, made nothing perfect.

On the other hand, there is the bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.” (verse 19)

That better hope is Jesus. You can try to live this life on your own. You can go to church, volunteer at the homeless shelter, write a check to a charity. But none of that will save you. You can try all you want to meet God’s standard of perfection. And you’ll fail.

But when you look to our High Priest, Jesus who bought your salvation with His blood, He will meet you face to face. He will save you. He won’t roll his eyes or scold you. He’ll kiss you on the forehead and zip your coat. He loves you so much. You can trust His love.

Thank you, Jesus, for loving us. As our High Priest you have the power to forgive sins. As the perfect Lamb of God, you’ve shed the blood necessary for our salvation. I pray that everyone reading this post will know that better hope the writer of Hebrews talks about. May we come to you, admit our need of you, and allow you to demonstrate your love for us. Thank you, God, for forgiving me, and giving me hope.

September 9

Zechariah 1:1-6:15

“Shout and be glad, O Daughter of Zion. For I am coming, and I will live among you,” declares the Lord. “Many nations will be joined with the Lord in that day and will become my people. I will live among you and you will know that the Lord Almighty has sent me to you. The Lord will inherit Judah as his portion in the holy land and will again choose Jerusalem. Be still before the Lord, all mankind, because he as roused himself from his holy dwelling”. (2:10-12)

How thrilling was that? God revealed to the people that he himself was coming to live with them right here on planet earth. He would walk on the roads in Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. It won’t be exclusively a Jewish thing, he says. Many nations will become his people. And the world will know the Lord Almighty is in it!

This is a beautiful picture of Jesus, isn’t it?

In chapter 3 God draws another picture, this one of his redemptive work. He clothed Joshua with a clean garment and forgave Joshua’s sins. Sound familiar?

It is the Branch we know as Jesus who promises to build the temple and be clothed with majesty. Jesus, ruling on his throne, doing the work of a priest from that throne.

What a privilege it is to know this One who is our king and our high priest, sitting with the Father and working on our behalf. What an awesome truth that we need not be born of Jewish parents to be included in the family of God through the blood of Jesus. We are the apple of his eye, loved, forgiven, protected, cherished. 

It must have been thrilling for the Old Testament Jews to hear about Jesus’ coming. It’s even more thrilling to live it after the cross!

I pray you know him, that you are included with us who are his people. I pray that you’ve accepted Jesus as your Savior, realizing your sin and asking him to forgive you. I pray that you worship the King of Kings and allow him to clothe you with his righteousness. That’s why he came. That’s why you were born in the first place.

Dear Jesus, thank you for coming to our world, for walking where we walk and experiencing life like we do. Thank you for understanding our temptations and our sorrows. And thank you for dying so we can live. I pray for everyone reading this blog today. May we bow before you as King, allow you to intercede for us and be our sacrifice. And may we serve you out of grateful hearts, loving you because you first loved us.