World English Bible translation
10:19Having therefore, brothers, boldness to enter into the holy place by the blood of Jesus, 10:20 by the way which he dedicated for us, a new and living way, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; 10:21 and having a great priest over the house of God, 10:22 let's draw near with a true heart in fullness of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and having our body washed with pure water, 10:23 let us hold fast the confession of our hope unyieldingly. For he who promised is faithful.
10:24Let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good works, 10:25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as you see the Day approaching.
If yesterday's lesson was the key argument of the entire epistle, today's scripture is the logical result if that argument is accepted. The epistle had compared the two covenants in terms of the priest that officiate and the sanctuary in the first nine chapters. In this chapter we have seen that the emphasis was placed on the effectiveness of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Jesus laid down His life once for all time and by that one sacrifice He saved all that will ever be sanctified. He willingly took upon Himself the sins of the whole world and then was willing to pay the debt for that sin. His death reconciled the Holy God to His fallen creation.
Now, if Christ offered Himself once for sin and then set down at the right hand of the Father, if God has promised to remember our sins and transgressions no more, we can enter into the presence of the Father with boldness. Sin created a barrier between man and God. Now through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ that barrier has been eradicated. Now a new way - a living way - has been opened up to God. In the old tabernacle, a heavy veil separated God from the people. The new way is like that veil, only the new way is the body of Christ. Through the sacrifice of Christ we can enter into the presence of God.
If we hold fast to our confession that Jesus Christ is our savior we can draw near to God with a true heart in fullness of faith. But even in this, our emphasis should not be in our own holding fast to our confession. Rather, it should be on God's own faithfulness. All that we have under the New Covenant of Christ is a result of the initiative of God. It is God that sent His Son to reconcile us to Himself, even when we were sinners. It is God that through Christ was willing to sacrifice Himself so that we might be saved. And it is God that maintains us in righteousness because of His own faithfulness.
Now, as a response to God's faithfulness, let us provoke each other to love and good works. Our love for one another and our good works toward others do not earn the righteousness of God, but they are an outgrowth of our new creation in Christ. Because God first loves us, the redeemed are able to love others. Because the Spirit of God works in us, we can offer the good works of our heart to others.
To these Hebrew Christians who were considering abandoning Christ and returning to their Jewish heritage, this letter informs them that only through Christ can they be perfected and only through Christ can they enter into the presence of God. As the day of judgment approaches for each of us, it is important that we exhort one another to draw closer to God just as this author exhorted these Hebrew Christians. Those of us that know Christ must continue to support each other. The world will be against us, just as it was against Christ. All the more those of us that have entered into the household of God must support each other.
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