Every salesperson knows that they have to give their customer the “desire to want.” They have to answer the customer’s question, “What’s in it for me?”
If we were bold enough to ask Jesus, “What in it for me?” concerning his sacrificial death, how would he answer us?
The author of Hebrews answers the question with three benefits we won’t want to miss.
(1) Access to God
The old way of approaching God was ineffective. It was weak because it depended on humans.
There is, on the one hand, the abrogation of an earlier commandment because it was weak and ineffectual
(for the law made nothing perfect); there is, on the other hand, the introduction of a better hope through which we approach God (Hebrews 7.18-19).
God removed the old system of sacrifices and provided the ultimate sacrifice, his Son on the cross.
His gift allows all humans to approach God and to personally know him.
“What’s in it for me,” you ask. The greatest Being in the universe will be your personal friend.
(2) A New Covenant
Webster’s Dictionary defines covenant as “a usually formal, solemn, and binding agreement.”
The Old Covenant established on Mt. Sinai didn’t work, but the new one does.
Jeremiah wrote about the New Covenant and the author of Hebrews described how Jesus fulfilled it.
The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah.
It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt — a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord.
But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
No longer shall they teach one another or say to each other, “Know the Lord,” for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the Lord, for I will forgive their iniquity and remember their sin no more (Jeremiah 31.31-34).
Jeremiah said that the New Covenant would be written in our hearts. The Holy Spirit was given to followers of Jesus on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2). The Spirit makes Jeremiah’s prophecy a reality in our lives.
As you read Acts 2, notice how Peter connects Psalm 110 to Jesus and the work of the Spirit.
The author of Hebrews describes how the New Covenant works.
This was confirmed with an oath, for others have become priests without an oath, but this one became a priest with an oath because of the one who said to him,
“The Lord has sworn
and will not change his mind,
‘You are a priest forever’ ”
Accordingly Jesus has also become the guarantor of a better covenant. (Hebrews 7.20-22)
There are two key words that need emphasis. Jesus is a priest “forever” and has become the guarantee that God has provided a “better covenant.”
We are living under the New Covenant of God’s grace and have access to God because of what Jesus did for us.
(3) Jesus is at the right hand of Majesty and makes intercession for us.
I have been asked many times to pray for people. The good news is that Jesus is the Ultimate High Priest, seated at God’s right hand, praying for us.
Furthermore, the former priests were many in number because they were prevented by death from continuing in office,
But he holds his priesthood permanently because he continues forever.
Consequently, he is able for all time to save those who approach God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them (Hebrews 7.23-25).
“I’m there for you,” is a contemporary expression that implies friendship and solidarity.
Jesus, who is the Ultimate High Priest is there for us. We can confidently count on his intercession and the access to God that he provides.
Rudy Ross and I talk about Hebrews today on YouTube. You can see the video on the Bob Spradling channel.
I am indebted to Gareth Lee Cockerill’s commentary on Hebrews for the information contained in this blog.
Please email your prayer request to firstname.lastname@example.org. The Maywood prayer team will pray for you.