Let Us Draw Near with Full Assurance
With this passage, the Preacher turns a corner in his sermon to the Hebrews. He has proven conclusively that our Lord is the Mediator of a better covenant as he is the Son whose sacrifice need not be repeated and offers an eternal redemption. Now he moves to the topic of how the benefits of this sacrifice should impact our approach to our Lord.
First, we may “have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh.” This is an amazing statement—and an amazing welcome. Let us go back to the throne room vision of Isaiah 6. There, Isaiah beholds the majesty of God, high and lifted up, surrounded by seraphs who themselves cover their eyes before the Holy One, who cry “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory.” And Isaiah’s cry before such a One is exactly what we would expect from a man created in the image of God standing before his Creator, “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!” Add to this the throne room scene in Revelation 4 & 5, as majestic as human fingers can pen. But here the Preacher tells us that we may enter this very place—the holy place. And why may we enter? Because we enter through the real and true curtain—not the curtain in the temple embroidered and so thick that human hands could ever hope to tear, which only served as a copy of the reality to come. No. We enter the curtain of our Lord’s flesh, for he is “the new and living way,” the only way to the holy place.
And second, Christ is our “great high priest over the house of God,” the very one who has cleansed our hearts and washed our bodies with his own pure and sinless blood through the washing of the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5). So then let us approach the throne of grace with confidence. Confidence! Not presumption, of course; we mustn’t forget humility, but with confidence that we go before a loving Father who has done all to save us. He is faithful. What He promised, He has done; what He prophesied through His prophets, He has fulfilled. And this is the blessed time we live in—the time of fulfillment, the end of the ages, the last days.
And with such a loving God and faithful High Priest, let us gather together that we might encourage one another to worship and return the debt of gratitude to Him. For his return approaches; let us not be found wanting.