Jesus, Our Great High Priest – 02.12.12
Listen to the sermon here.
Have you ever found a good deal? If so, how is it panning out for you now? Are there deals that you thought would make a huge difference in your life that now sit lonely in your garage or in your closet? Share with your group a time you were really proud of a deal you found, but now it is no longer relevant in your life.
The life, death, and resurrection of Christ is the biggest and greatest deal. He is more wonderful than anyone or anything. Have someone read Hebrews 4:14-16. Jesus is our Great High Priest – His throne is in heaven and if you have been made righteous by his work and grace, you are welcome to dwell with him. Your problems find peace in Christ. Jesus offers peace to those who obey him (cf. Heb 5:9) and understanding to those who are weak (cf. Heb 4:15). Those who draw near to him find that he is a righteous king who offers grace and mercy in our time of need. It is clear that Jesus is far greater than some “on sale” item at the store.
At the same time, we treat him as if he has no power to help us. We hate the circumstances of our lives yet we don’t turn to him! We will say, “Jesus help me!” one time and wonder why things haven’t changed. We use him for pleasure just like we do a good deal at the store. We don’t have a living and breathing, moment by moment, relationship with him, that says, “Thank you!” for every thing and person in our lives. In turn, we create, buy, and search for idols for help; but when we cry out to them for deliverance, they offer no response of hope.
Confession / Repentance:
Confess that you don’t regard Jesus as a great high priest who reigns in heaven, who has power to help, and who desires you to come to him. Confess that you look to other things for hope, rest, and salvation. Pray together and ask the Lord for forgiveness.
The book of Hebrews addresses people who are on the brink of apostasy (renouncing their faith). They see no need for Jesus in their circumstances because they are either too hard, or not relevant enough to need Jesus. Our lives are the same. If our lives are too hard, there is the temptation to turn to something other than Jesus. If our lives are too easy, we don’t think there is a present need for him. Both of these are a slippery slope to apostasy, eternity without God!
Read Hebrews 5:1-10. What does it tell you that Jesus would be willing to share in your sufferings to be a sufficient death for your sins? How amazing it is that he would choose death so that you might live! How amazing it is that He is reigning in heaven now, praying for you, giving to you, and living in you! If your faith is in him, you have access to him. This is the big deal of your life. Your problems may not go away, but you have a faithful high priest who welcomes you and who offers you peace in all circumstances. In your group, discuss this wonderful truth.
We believe that God is sovereign. He knows the things you are going through and he is able to help. He is not a plastic, weak, uncaring God who wants nothing to do with you. He desires to be your Lord. He desires for you to call him Lord. Discuss in your group the routines and practices necessary to receive him as Lord, and to call him Lord of your lives.
Read Hebrews 5:7-10 for the application. Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears! Do you think you are exempt from this? Do you think your life should be easier than Jesus’? Jesus said that those who follow him would endure the same things! Acts 2 shows that the people of God were happy that they were persecuted! They were happy that they were given the opportunity to suffer for the name of Jesus. How are you suffering today? Is it your marriage? Is it your job, your kids, your school, or your teachers that are causing your life chaos? Take time to thank the Lord for these circumstances and people. Take time to praise him that he would give you the opportunity to need him, love him, and talk to him. Thank him that he would give you the opportunity to love those people in your lives.
- Adore Him: There is no one else like Him. Only the Lord Jesus is perfectly God and perfectly man.
- Adore Him: Because Jesus is perfectly God and perfectly man; he is able to help you and also relate to you.
- Confess that you neglect him, don’t believe that he is sufficient, and don’t want to seek him for help. You would rather trust yourself.
- Thank Jesus for dying for these sins and reconciling you to God. Thank him that now he protects and defends you, loves you, and is with you.
- Ask Jesus to help you delight in him. Ask him to help you believe that when you go to him, he will give grace and mercy in your time of need.