Advent_165

Jesus Is Our Priest: Approach God With Confidence

Ryan Allred (Pastor | Partner Development)

Life is in many ways like college football. Some in the south would argue that life is college football, but we’ll hold that debate for another blog post. Any fan of college football will tell you that it is a game of momentum. The underdog steps onto the field, wondering if they can hang with the big, bad team with the household brand. If the underdog slips early, perhaps with a fumble or an untimely defensive breakdown, the game is usually over by halftime. “We can’t hang with these guys” they say, and they play like they are overmatched and overwhelmed. After all, they are only Midwestern Southern School of Welding and Cosmetology, right?

But what happens if the Fighting Llamas of Midwestern Southern catch an early break or two? What happens if they are tied at halftime, or maybe even up by a field goal at the end of the third quarter? The team with the household brand starts playing tight and the Fighting Llamas play like the ’72 Dolphins. The quarterback is making throws he hasn’t even attempted in his dreams. The scrappy, undersized defensive line gets a sack on 3rd down. The announcers say that Old Mo is definitely on the Llamas’ sideline, and everybody starts believing they can pull off the upset. They are brimming with confidence, and they play out of their minds.

Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
(Hebrews 4:14–16 ESV, emphasis mine)

More than anybody else on the planet, followers of Jesus should have confidence. Why? Because the ball bounced or way, or because the other team is having a bad game? No! Because Jesus, our Great High Priest, has paved the way of grace. He has purchased our forgiveness and taken our shame. Our deepest fears and regrets were satisfied by his work on the cross. We don’t have to pretend like sin doesn’t matter, rationalizing it away. It does matter – it matters so much that Jesus died to release us from sin’s chains! We don’t have to hide from God in fear…not because we have made God small enough to be palatable, because he’s not. God is big, powerful, and holy! No, we no longer have to hide because Jesus our Priest has reconciled us with our Creator, and he invites us to draw near to God with confidence. In Jesus, God has extended grace, love, and mercy and made us one of his children.

This Christmas, the baby Jesus not only brings hope to difficult times – he also instills real confidence that allows us to rest in God’s strong, loving arms. And not because we are good enough or rationalized our sin away. But because our Great High Priest has made us right with God. When life gets difficult, we should have all of the confidence in the world. Sin is no longer our master and death’s sting is no more. Our Great High Priest is beckoning us to draw near and play with confidence, for he has already won!

Post Series: Advent 2015

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *