For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast (Eph 2:8-9); “Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, and having a High Priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful (Hebrews 10:19-23).” The author of Hebrews talks about a “new and living way” opened up to Christians because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. To me, the “old and dead way” is a life under the law or works because that way of living is one completely self-centered. It’s all about what “I” do. It is a life where God’s blessings are completely conditional upon ‘my’ actions and utterly unattainable. It is a way of life dedicated to the impossible; living a life that you will never live in order to achieve blessings of the flesh God will never grant. It is a way of living that creates an attitude that says, “Look at what I’m doing for God.” “Look at how I go to church.” “Look at how I was raised in my denomination.” “Look at how I gave my money.” “Look at how I confessed my sins.” “Look at how successful my life is.” “Look at how I healed the sick.” “Look at how I spoke in tongues.” The list is endless. Nowhere in that way of life is the focus on knowing your God through faith in Jesus Christ. However, as the scriptures tell us, the “new and living way” of life is one where we can boldly approach God because of our faith in the work of Jesus on our behalf. That is why we can “draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith.” There is no assurance to draw near to God when we believe our ability to do such a thing is conditional on our behavior. We know we will fail each and every time to live up to God’s perfect requirements. But, the grace of God that we now live in changes everything about our lives in the Lord. Our new way of living creates an attitude stemming from the grace of God that says, “Look at what Jesus did for us.” “Look at how Jesus went to Calvary.” “Look at how Jesus was raised from the dead.” “Look at how Jesus gave His life.” “Look at how Jesus took away our sins.” “Look at how successful the death of Jesus was.” “Look at how Jesus raised the dead.” “Look at how Jesus spoke in love.” This list is also endless. The difference between the “old and dead way” and the “new and living way” is the difference between law and grace. You must ask yourself a serious question: “Are you willing to die to all self-effort and rest in the saving grace of Jesus Christ?” If your answer is, “Yes,” then it is time to “approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need (Hebrews 4:16).” The Old Covenant law can be described as man reaching up to God with self-effort to be accepted by Him. The New Covenant of grace can be described as God reaching down to man through Jesus Christ with love and acceptance.
– It’s About Who You Know – Do You Know Him? –