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Summary: This is the 1st sermon in the series "Jesus Is Better- The Better Priest". Jesus has your back.

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Series: Jesus Is Better- The Better Priest [#1]

HE’S GOT YOUR BACK

Hebrews 4:14-16

Introduction:

The high priest was the supreme religious leader of the Israelites. The office of the high priest was hereditary and was traced from Aaron, the brother of Moses, of the tribe of Levi. The high priest had to be “whole” physically (without any physical defects) and holy in his conduct. Because the high priest held the leadership position, one of his roles was overseeing the responsibilities of all the subordinate priests. Though the high priest could participate in ordinary priestly ministries, only certain functions were given to him. Only the high priest could wear the Urim and the Thummin (engraved dice-like stones used to determine truth or falsity). For this reason, the Hebrew people would go to the high priest in order to know the will of God.

The high priest had to offer a sin offering not only for the sins of the whole congregation, but also for himself. The most important duty of the high priest was to conduct the service on the Day of Atonement, the 10th day of the 7th month of every year. Only he was allowed to enter the Most Holy Place behind the veil to stand before God. Having made a sacrifice for himself and for the people, he then brought the blood into the Holy of Holies and sprinkled it on the mercy seat, God’s “throne”. He did this to make atonement for himself and the people for all their sins committed during the year just ended.

In this new section of Hebrews, we find that Jesus is the better High Priest.

Hebrews 4:14 (NIV)

“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.”

Jesus is a better High Priest because…

1. His sacrifice last forever.

The high priest had to make a sacrifice annually. It wasn’t the same high priest every year. When Jesus ascended into Heaven and sat down at the right hand throne of God, He was showing us that the work of redemption was complete.

Because Jesus has paid the ultimate price for our salvation, we need to hold on to our faith. When things are not going well, hold on to Jesus. When you’re tired, hold on to Jesus. When you’re sick, hold on to Jesus.

Hebrews 4:15 (NIV)

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin.”

Jesus is a better High Priest because…

2. He knows and understands what you are going through.

Jesus was tempted in every way just like you are. The only difference is that He never sinned. Jesus understands the pressure you have to endure. He empathizes with you.

Hebrews 4:16 (NIV)

“Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”

Jesus is a better High Priest because…

3. He has given us unlimited access to the Father.


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