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A New Living Way (Hebrews 10:19-25)

Sermon on 22 August 2021 by Ps Paul

Hebrews 10:19-25 - “And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven’s Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus. By his death, Jesus opened a new and life-giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place. And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house, let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water. Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.”


God wants the people of Israel to build a sanctuary for Him so that He can live among them. God wants to dwell among His people so the tabernacle must be made exactly according to His instructions. God speaks to Moses, Aaron and the high priest in the tabernacle. The cloud of the Lord descended on the tabernacle and not anyone could enter because it is a Holy place. Only the high priest can enter once every year to the Holy of Holies. He must be well prepared if not he will be struck down as he cannot handle God’s holiness. His holiness is so awesome that no one can come near because of our sins. However now, the veil that separates God and us is torn away because of His grace. We can boldly enter into His holy presence. It is because of Jesus Christ that He allowed us to enter this holy place.


There are 6 actions we should take to reflect a new way of living.


1. Acknowledge Jesus


Hebrews 10:19-21 - “And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven’s Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus. By his death, Jesus opened a new and life-giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place. And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house,”


Jesus Himself is the high priest and is still praying for us today. Jesus really loves us. Our focus in life should be on Jesus. However, not everyone has the same reason why Jesus is their focus. Do you acknowledge Jesus because of what He has done for us on the cross so we come to Him because we are so thankful for His saving grace, love and forgiveness. Or do we acknowledge Jesus only when we need Him? When the times are good, our priorities shift away from Jesus. By His blood, we can enter into His Holy presence. By His death, we are saved and have eternal life.


2. Draw near to find with a true and pure heart


Hebrews 10:22 - “let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water.”


A pure heart is very important. Jesus said in the sermon on the mount that the blessed are pure in heart. We are able to have this true and pure heart to draw close to Him and worship Him in spirit and truth. Are we having the right heart? What kind of relationship do we have with Him? Is it genuine - seeking Him all the time or only transactional, coming with a motive to expect Him to bless us. Love God for who He is regardless of the situation happening around us. We love God because of what He has done for all of us.


3. Trust in god with full assurance of faith


Hebrews 10:22 - “let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water.”


2 Corinthians 5:7 - “For we live by believing and not by seeing.”


People tend to misuse this verse and make decisions rashly. These decisions might not be made anchoring to God's words. When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, the devil tempted Him to jump from a high point to prove that He is the son of God. If we aren’t anchored on all His words fully, it is easy for us to misinterpret them. Some of us might really jump because we think it is walking by faith. However, Jesus taught us that we shouldn’t tempt our God. We should beware of this blind faith. When we walk by faith, it isn’t a baseless act, but it should be anchored in His words.


Romans 10:17- “So faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ.”


Faith comes from hearing, not just emotions. There must be a basis of believing in His words. Walking not by sight doesn’t mean we don’t see. God gave us eyes to see. It means that we should not seek for signs to believe in Jesus. Don’t be like the Pharisees, asking Jesus to show them a miraculous sign but their hearts were hardened to believe. They actually witnessed Jesus turning water into wine, allowing the blind to see and healing people with leprosy, but their hearts were still hardened. Believe in Jesus and His words and do not seek signs to believe in Him for our focus is on the words of God.


4. Hope in god without wavering


Hebrews 10:23 - “Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.”


Faith and hope are always interconnected. When we have faith in God, we will also have hope in Him. When we have hope, our faith will be strong in God.


Hebrews 11:1 - “Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see.”


We need to come back to His words. Men shall not live by bread alone but by the words of God. They are spirit and life. Just like how we need to eat everyday, we need to read the Bible everyday because it is our food. Believe His words wholeheartedly and live it out.


5. Stir who love and good works


Hebrews 10:24 - “Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.”


What do we stir up with? We are all called to be peacemakers. We are called to stir up love and good works, not strife and division.


Ephesians 4:32 - “Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.”


Ephesians 4:31 - “Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior.”


Jesus said that we are the light of the world and salt of the earth.


Mark 9:50 - “Salt is good for seasoning. But if it loses its flavor, how do you make it salty again? You must have the qualities of salt among yourselves and live in peace with each other.””


6. Come together and encourage one another


Hebrews 10:25 - “And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.”


Due to the pandemic, we were not able to meet physically for a few months. However, by the grace and mercy of God, we could worship virtually and have fellowship. Through everyone’s cooperation and diligence and hard work, we can meet physically now. When we come together, what do we do? Do we build each other up or tear others down?


1 Thessalonians 5:11 - “So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.”


Jude 1:19 - “These people are the ones who are creating divisions among you. They follow their natural instincts because they do not have God’s Spirit in them.”


It is so precious for us to come together so let’s not have strife among ourselves because it can cause the body of Christ to be separated. We should encourage each other with His words.

Summary:


God has led us out of bondage and sin and we are called into a new living to please Him. We have to acknowledge Jesus that He has done everyone for us on the cross. We should not come to Him when we need Him, but acknowledge Him in every moment of our lives. Use a pure heart to draw close to Him, not a transactional relationship. We should fully trust Him and have hope in Him that’s unwavering. Our hands should be to stir up good works. Come together and encourage one another to build each other up in Christ Jesus. This is the new way of living that we should strive to live. We can become a vessel of god, to be used by Him.


Amen.

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