…let us hold fast to our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has similarly been tested in every way, yet without sin. So let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and to find grace for timely help.
Today our Holy Church calls us to confidence. This call comes directly from scripture.
We start by understanding that we have reason to hold fast to our confession. Our confession is not something without an accompanying promise. In fact, the promise of God is that those who confess Him have a mansion waiting for them in heaven. We who confess Him have the promise of eternal life. We are entitled to call upon Him, and when we do so in faith all that we ask for will be given to us. Confess with confidence.
If this were not enough, the Letter to the Hebrews goes on to explain that our High Priest is also our Advocate. Jesus gets us. He intimately understands us. This isnâ€™t just because He is God, but because He has traveled the same paths we travel. He set aside and emptied Himself and took up our humanity. He ate and drank as we do. He laughed and cried as one of us. He was tempted, He was hungry, He was poor, He was betrayed, He was abandoned, He faced the desecration of His Fatherâ€™s house, and He suffered and died. He was similarly tested in every way.
As both God and man, Jesus has deep compassion for us. He sympathizes with us. He stands before the Father and claims ownership of us. He and His Precious Blood stand between the Father and us to invoke the Fatherâ€™s mercy for us. He pleads for us; and is ever ready to take up our cause. As such, we have reason to approach the throne of grace. This is not a mercy-seat on earth such as the high priests of Israel approached with animal and grain sacrifices. It is rather the true throne of grace. A throne won through Jesusâ€™ High Priesthood and self-sacrifice for our redemption.
This throne was built for us, unworthy though we are â€“ so that without qualification, pre-requisite, or preparation we may come, open our hearts, confess our sins, and obtain God’s blessing. It is a throne of glory and beauty built to encourage us to come. It is a throne where grace is freely, frequently, and plentifully dispensed. Grace for pardon and sanctification so that we may be fit for God’s service and praise. Grace is dispensed to us from this throne without money and without price.
Our Lord gets us. He needed the Fatherâ€™s grace and blessing to carry out His Fatherâ€™s mission. Thus He offers us the same chance to come to His throne of grace for all we need. Let us be confident, confess Him, and go to Him.