Hebrews – God’s Action in Jesus
God knows us well. He created us. From Adam to Christ, He designed a plan to take humans from merely obeying the rules (and failing) to a new plan that provided an intimate, loving relationship with Him. God loved Adam, loves the humans he has created since Adam.
The Old Plan gave specific rules to follow. “I will be your God and you will be my people” IF you obey these rules. People began to look more at the rules than to God. When they obeyed it was only from a heart of obligation and duty at best. When they sacrificed animals for their sins in front of the priest, the system became only dutiful. People flawed the system. Many looked for loopholes in the Law and created ways to get around it. Others made up and added human “by-laws” to gain power over people. They lost the main intent–To love God back.
God knew His created humans would completely miss the point. So, a New Plan was ready to go into action at God’s command. This action involved His One and Only Son, Jesus Christ, as the once and for all sacrifice for all sin. Forever. God was not after puppets who would obey out of duty, He is after a relationship with each one of us that is honest and complete, loving and full of joy in just being together. This New Plan gives us the opportunity to do just that. If we reject this New Plan, we are missing out on the greatest relationship we could ever have with the God of all, who knows us by name. We are missing HIS action in Jesus Christ to save us.
Hebrews 8, The Message
A New Plan with Israel
1-2 In essence, we have just such a high priest: authoritative right alongside God, conducting worship in the one true sanctuary built by God.
3-5 The assigned task of a high priest is to offer both gifts and sacrifices, and it’s no different with the priesthood of Jesus. If he were limited to earth, he wouldn’t even be a priest. We wouldn’t need him since there are plenty of priests who offer the gifts designated in the law. These priests provide only a hint of what goes on in the true sanctuary of heaven, which Moses caught a glimpse of as he was about to set up the tent-shrine. It was then that God said, “Be careful to do it exactly as you saw it on the Mountain.”
6-13 But Jesus’ priestly work far surpasses what these other priests do, since he’s working from a far better plan. If the first plan—the old covenant—had worked out, a second wouldn’t have been needed. But we know the first was found wanting, because God said,
Heads up! The days are coming
when I’ll set up a new plan
for dealing with Israel and Judah.
I’ll throw out the old plan
I set up with their ancestors
when I led them by the hand out of Egypt.
They didn’t keep their part of the bargain,
so I looked away and let it go.
This new plan I’m making with Israel
isn’t going to be written on paper,
isn’t going to be chiseled in stone;
This time I’m writing out the plan in them,
carving it on the lining of their hearts.
I’ll be their God,
they’ll be my people.
They won’t go to school to learn about me,
or buy a book called God in Five Easy Lessons.
They’ll all get to know me firsthand,
the little and the big, the small and the great.
They’ll get to know me by being kindly forgiven,
with the slate of their sins forever wiped clean.
By coming up with a new plan, a new covenant between God and his people, God put the old plan on the shelf. And there it stays, gathering dust.
Think About It…
–What a patient, loving Father, God we have!
–Who could turn their backs on accepting Someone who laid down His life for us?
–We are “kindly” forgiven as we repent of our sin. Why? Because of God’s great love for us!
–Love God. Commune with God. Repent and Stand before God redeemed and ready to grow a loving relationship with Him!
–Love God with all your heart, mind and soul. Jesus added, “Love others like I have loved you.”
–We obey because of our relationship with the God who created us and made a Way for us…not because of our religious practices. Obedience becomes an honored privilege and opportunity to love God back…not a mere obligation to satisfy a rule. Do we get it now?
–God wants us to love Him back. That is the main focus of His Word from Genesis to Revelation. What are we waiting for?
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you, thank you, thank you for wanting to have this intimate, loving, relationship with us. Thank you for listening to us, helping us, kindly forgiving us, gently teaching us, and always being with us. You are just a whisper away. Thank you, Lord for saving us so that we can relate to You with freedom, joy and peace, unashamed and ready to listen to you speak to us. I love our relationship, Father God. In Jesus Name, Amen