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CONFIDENCE AT THE THRONE OF GOD

 

We as New Testament saints have a lot of privileges. It is easy to forget or not even be aware of the things we can do versus the limitations the Old Testament saints had to deal with. Regardless of what era any saint ever lived in, it has always been a blessing to be one of God’s people. Worship under the Mosaic Law, though, was quite different than what we were accustomed to.

 

We are not going to examine where the children of Israel worshipped, the details of the Law, and so forth. Our point here is that various offerings including animals for sacrifice had to be brought to the Levitical priests so that atonement could be made according to the Law. The temple itself had three places: The outer court, the holy place, and the Holy of Holies where the Ark of the Covenant was kept. On the Day of Atonement (what we know as Yom Kippur), the high priest went into the Holy of Holies behind a thick veil or curtain to make atonement for himself and for the sins of Israel. It was the only day of the year he could enter, and no one else was allowed inside at all. Any unauthorized visit or visitor was struck dead by God. Think, as a modern believer, how it would be to travel to a certain place, to have to bring grain or olive oil or spices or animals to a priest who would then complete the quest of atonement for a sin, or sins, that you committed. Think of how it would be to not be able to go to God’s throne. What a difference between now and then!

 

Jesus Christ’s once-for-all atonement upon the cross did away with the Mosaic system. The Holy Spirit of God lives in us! He comes to dwell in us at the moment we are saved. We can come to God at any time. Look at this Scripture passage:

 

Hebrews 4:14-16:  Seeing then that 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 was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

 

Thanks to what Jesus did for us, we have a privilege that Aaron the brother of Moses and none of the other high priests had, or any of the Israelites, for that matter: We can go to God at any time. Even Moses, who had some powerful encounters with God (Exodus 19:16-20, 34:5-8; Numbers 12:4-8), could not come to God at just any time—but we can! How is this possible? Let’s find out:

 

Ephesians 2:11-18:  Therefore remember that you, once Gentiles in the flesh—who are called Uncircumcision by what is called the Circumcision made in the flesh by hands—that at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity. And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near. For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father.

 

Romans 4:1-8:  What then shall we say that Abraham our father has found according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt. But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness, just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works: “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the man to whom the LORD shall not impute sin.”

 

Romans 8:29-30:  For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He also justified, these He also glorified.

 

When Christ died on the cross, the veil in the temple separating the Holy of Holies from the holy place was torn in two from the top to the bottom (Matthew 27:50-51). For a long time the Jews were God’s people, and they still are His chosen ones (Romans 11:1-2a).Unless someone converted to Judaism they had no hope of being in right standing with God. Now everyone, Gentiles and Jews alike, can and must come to God only through Jesus Christ (John 14:6), and the beauty of it is, all of us can. If the Father in heaven invites us and we respond sincerely in faith and repentance, we will be saved (John 6:37 & 44). The righteousness of Christ Himself is credited to our account. We are justified—declared not guilty—before God, just as if we have not sinned, as the saying goes. We are not rigidly predestined by God into categories of the irrevocably saved and the irrevocably damned, as we still have a choice of whether or not to accept God’s free gift of salvation. However, God knows who will choose to be saved and who will not. Because the blood of Christ has cleansed us from sin and we are credited with His righteousness, we can come to God boldly, with confidence.

 

We can have fellowship with God—and we can also come to Him when we have sinned. Religion will tell you to do various works before you can go to God about your sins, particularly if you really blew it as in backsliding. The demons will try to convince you that God is mad at you and does not want to talk to you, or even that you have gone too far this time. You may feel as though you will be struck dead like the irreverent priests of old (Leviticus 10:1-3), or like the treacherous Ananias and Sapphira were (Acts 5:1-11).  But like the Hebrews 4 passage tells us, we can go boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. We can have confidence at the throne of God. He is waiting to show mercy to us, longing to have fellowship with us, and wanting to help us. The next time you start feeling like you just cannot go to God, remember Hebrews 4:14-16. Here are some other Scriptures which should help you see that the Lord loves you deeply. If you have wandered off, He has not gone anywhere. The Lord is waiting for you.

 

1 John 1:9:  If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

 

Romans 8:15:  For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”

 

Philippians 4:6-7:  Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

 

Psalm 103:8-13:  The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. He will not always strive with us, nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward those who fear Him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. As a father pities his children, so the LORD pities those who fear Him.

 

 

 

 

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