During my middle school years, I was fortunate enough to have a friend that would regularly take me to Oklahoma State wrestling matches and basketball games.
One afternoon, in between one of the wrestling matches, we saw a few of the basketball players walking around the bottom of the arena. My friend and I, basketball team posters in hand, walked down to the players to ask for their autographs, but something strange happened when we opened our mouths…no words came out! It was all we could muster to hand them our Sharpie and posters and give a quiet “thank you” before heading back to our seats.
Maybe you can relate to my star-struck story. The Jewish Christians in Hebrews certainly could. To the Jew, coming before God was impossibility. There was simply too much sin in your life. Sure you could go before the priest and have your sins forgiven, but you were still forbidden to enter into the place where God dwelt (the Holy of Holies). There was no personal approach you could take with God.
With Jesus all of this changed. The Holy Spirit says this in Hebrews 7:18-19:
“For on the one hand, a former commandment is set aside because of its weakness and uselessness…but on the other hand, a better hope is introduced, through which we draw near to God.”
Jesus offers us a better hope. A hope that invites us in to the throne room of God (Heb. 4:14-16) and encourages us to have confidence in our standing with God. Though we respect and fear God, we have no need to be scared or “star-struck” by Him. We can be confident and encouraged that He is our God and we are His children because of the hope provided by Jesus.