Summary: Thanks-giving: our offerings should be in response to what Jesus has done for us in our lives.
Title: Git Er Done!
Scripture: Hebrews 10: 11-25
Theme: Thanks – Giving; our offerings should be in response to what Jesus has done for us in our lives.
Call to Worship: Jesus is Lord of All
Hymn 1: Come Ye Thankful People Come
Anthem: Thank You Lord for Your Blessings on Me
Hymn 2: Jesus, We Just Want to Thank You
Thanksgiving day – anxious cooks wanting to just Git er Done!
Church – often have that same attitude – about worship, about helping with events, about giving. We often feel that we HAVE to be in church – it’s our obligation.
And we just want it to be over so we can get back to our regular life.
Now this isn’t a new problem. We read in our scripture today in vs. 24- 25 – And let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another (to meet together, to love and do good deeds), and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
This second generation of Christian Hebrew people were having this very problem. Why?
Before Jesus died on the cross, God was basically unapproachable. God’s people worshiped in the tabernacle bringing sacrifices with them. You brought a sacrifice to the gate on the East side of the tabernacle courtyard. Then a priest came out, slit the throat of your offering and carried it back inside with him. But you weren’t allowed beyond that gate or you would be killed – stoned to death.
The priests and the Levites were only allowed to be on that side of the gate. They would place your sacrifice on the altar and offer it up as a sweet fragrance to God. This was to atone for your sins – if God liked your offering and it was sweet to God.
Now, there was another area that only a priest could enter. This is actually the tabernacle and it was divided into two parts. In the first section, the priests ministered to God by keeping the lamp stand (menorah), an altar for incense, and a table for bread clean and orderly. The second section, separated from the first by a curtain, was only approachable by the High Priest and then only once a year when he would offer a sacrifice for all the people – the Day of Atonement. This room was the Holy of Holies and was where the Ark of the Covenant was kept. And even the High Priest was not able to look on the things of God. When he entered, smoke filled the room and a rope was tied to his ankle and bells were put around the bottom of the priest’s robe. If the bells stopped ringing, it was a sure bet that God had not accepted the sacrifice, the sins of the people made them unacceptable to God, and the dead body of the priest was then pulled out with the rope.
God was not personal. In fact, God was rather scary. And most didn’t mind bringing their offering, dropping it off, just to git er done! To have their sins atoned for with a sacrifice. This made them good Hebrews! They realized that their sins kept them separate from God and so they wanted atonement for those sins so they could get back to their regular life.
But when Jesus died, everything changed. God’s people had now, the “confidence to enter the sanctuary by the blood of Jesus, By the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain (that is, through his flesh or body), And since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us approach with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.” Vs. 19-22
When Jesus died, your sins, my sins were removed. Forgiven. They ceased to exist. The fear and guilt that would have kept us away from God, was wiped clean.
Do we appreciate that or are we just ready to come to church and git er done? Can you grasp the sacrifice that was made for you? The Hebrew Christians were having a hard time understanding it. Can you grasp that because of Jesus you can now approach God and that God loves you and wants you to be a part of His family. Because of the cross, because of what Jesus did on that cross, we can now approach God – not with fear and trepidation, but with confidence, boldness, and a realization that was are acceptable in His presence – just like we are.
We should be thankful all the time! Our thankfulness should not be dependent on things of this world but on what God has done through his son Jesus Christ! And all that we do for the church, in the church on Sunday mornings and other times, should be in response to what Jesus has done for us!