Our Great High Priest

Sometimes fighting sin is hard – really hard. And when I say sometimes, I mean most of the time. And when I say most of the time….I really mean basically all the time. And as if fighting our own sin wasn’t hard enough, we exist in a sinful, broken world, surrounded by sinful, broken people, who are making sinful, broken decisions.

Sometimes it feels like no matter how hard I try, the world is determined to drag me down with it. If it’s not my sin, it’s someone else’s and usually it is a combination of both. I can’t wait until I don’t have to live on this planet anymore and I exist outside of sin in the new heavens and new earth with my sin-free body in the presence of my Lord! Sometimes the only hopeful feeling I can conjure up is that maybe Jesus will come back today (please??)

Our feelings aren’t perfect and they aren’t always trustworthy, but they are a gift from God. They are one of the ways we are made in the image of God and they are a big factor in enabling us to effectively worship our Savior King. Sometimes though, our feelings accomplish the exact opposite of what they exist to do – they draw our minds further from the gospel and focus instead on the temporary realities of the now.

The best defense against this kind of feeling, against the heaviness of despair and the temptation to buckle under the weight of sin, is the gospel.

‘Therefore, since 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 cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. 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 4:14-16

‘This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us’ – Hebrews 6:19-20a

The next time we start to get weighed down by negative feelings and circumstances, let’s focus our minds instead on that which we know to be true:

Truth: We cannot fight against sin and win….BUT

Truth: Jesus can and did fight against sin and He won for us.

Truth: We will be fighting sin until we take our last breath in this world…BUT

Truth: Jesus was tempted in all the same ways that we are and He tells us that He sympathizes with us in our weakness.

Truth: We can’t do it on our own….BUT

Truth: He promises that if we draw near with confidence to God in prayer that we will find the mercy and grace necessary in our time of need.

Let’s just be real for a moment here. This world sucks. It is deceitful, painful, and evil. Even the best things in our lives are tainted with sin. But we do not despair, because we can fix our eyes on the author and perfecter of faith, who has gone before us and resides as an anchor in heaven, slowly drawing us closer and closer into eternal rest with Him.

Let us resolve again to live our lives as a bold testament – not as to how good we are at living in a sinful world but as to how great our Savior is that He successfully conquered forever sin and death and hell when He died on the cross and rose again three days later. Praise God that He overwhelmingly conquered the sin that we struggle against each day!

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