January 19, 2017

Hebrews 7:25-8:6


Consequently he is able for all time to save those who approach God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.

 For it was fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, blameless, undefiled, separated from sinners, and exalted above the heavens. Unlike the other high priests, he has no need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for those of the people; this he did once for all when he offered himself. For the law appoints as high priests those who are subject to weakness, but the word of the oath, which came later than the law, appoints a Son who has been made perfect forever.

Now the main point in what we are saying is this: we have such a high priest, one who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, a minister in the sanctuary and the true tent that the Lord, and not any mortal, has set up. For every high priest is appointed to offer gifts and sacrifices; hence it is necessary for this priest also to have something to offer. Now if he were on earth, he would not be a priest at all, since there are priests who offer gifts according to the law. They offer worship in a sanctuary that is a sketch and shadow of the heavenly one; for Moses, when he was about to erect the tent, was warned, “See that you make everything according to the pattern that was shown you on the mountain.” But Jesus has now obtained a more excellent ministry, and to that degree he is the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted through better promises.



Psalm 40:7-10, 17


Then I said, “Here I am;
in the scroll of the book it is written of me.
I delight to do your will, O my God;
your law is within my heart.”

I have told the glad news of deliverance
in the great congregation;
see, I have not restrained my lips,
as you know, O Lord.
I have not hidden your saving help within my heart,
I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation;
I have not concealed your steadfast love and your faithfulness
from the great congregation.

As for me, I am poor and needy,
but the Lord takes thought for me.
You are my help and my deliverer;
do not delay, O my God.



Mark 3:7-12


Jesus departed with his disciples to the sea, and a great multitude from Galilee followed him; hearing all that he was doing, they came to him in great numbers from Judea, Jerusalem, Idumea, beyond the Jordan, and the region around Tyre and Sidon. He told his disciples to have a boat ready for him because of the crowd, so that they would not crush him; for he had cured many, so that all who had diseases pressed upon him to touch him. Whenever the unclean spirits saw him, they fell down before him and shouted, “You are the Son of God!” But he sternly ordered them not to make him known.





How would you react if you were to encounter Jesus in the flesh?  If God were walking among us, and you had the opportunity to meet him, talk to him, be touched by him, what would you ask for?  Would you ask for a healing?  Would you ask for something for someone else?  Would you rush to him and not waste such a wondrous opportunity?  It is easy to understand the people who rushed on Jesus in droves. Here for the first time was someone who had enough love to alleviate their suffering.  Here was someone who could relieve them of their sickness and drive out their demons for them. 


It can be easy today to mentally separate the “historical Jesus” from our concept of Jesus as our Lord and Savior.  But the beautiful reality that St. Paul points out to us, is that they are one and the same.  Historically, the people who rushed on Jesus for a chance to touch him had never encountered God personally before this.  Jesus had not been alive to them before as a person they could come to know.  But since that time, the historical Jesus is still our Jesus.  Because he was the high priest offered once for all, that means he was the sacrifice offered for you and for me.  The historical Jesus who could touch people and heal them can still touch and heal today.  We can still rush to him.  We can encounter him anytime we call upon him.  So what would you ask him for?


Prayer: Dear Jesus, hear us.  Come into our lives in a deeper way today.  Touch our hearts, and heal our souls and bodies.  We believe you are our Savior, that you came into this world to unite us forever with you.  Help us to rush to you every day and keep you in our lives, worshiping you as our God and King. Amen.  


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