By Garry Knighton
Church of Christ/North - Shreveport, La.
SIX REASONS FOR STAYING FAITHFUL
Expository: Hebrews 4:14-16.
Apostasy is usually not planned or pursued.
It occurs after one becomes:
Proud - self-dependent.
Satisfied - status quo.
Peaceful - no real pressures or problems.
Discouraged - or - a lack of encouragement.
In the church today, "Discouragement" or a "lack of encouragement" seems to be the greatest source of unfaithfulness.
Today, let's look at SIX REASONS FOR STAYING FAITHFUL as presented in Hebrews 4:14-16.
I HAVE A GREAT HIGH PRIEST.
Leviticus 16:1-22 - the Jew's High Priest.
Reasons for a priesthood.
God had been offended - I John 2:2 - (Propitiation).
No direct fellowship with God because of the offense - Isaiah 59:2.
God desires a reconciliation - II Cor. 5:17-19.
The priest is the bridge between the offender and the offended - John 14:6.
Jesus, our High Priest, is able to help with our sin problem.
HE PASSED THROUGH THE HEAVENS.
Acts 1:9-11 - Jesus' ascension.
Exodus 26:1ff - blue veil.
Jesus is a "full time" sacrifice - Hebrews 1:3 - "sat down."
He is our forerunner - Hebrews 6:19.
Chapter 8 - Don't be concerned that you don't see Him. He is in heaven working for you.
This gives us ASSURANCE - Hebrews 7:25.
HE IS JESUS, THE SON OF GOD.
He was man and God - John 1:1-3, 14.
He was and is close to God -Hebrews 1:1-3.
He is our mediator - I Timothy 2:5.
This demands that He know both sides.
OUR HIGH PRIEST CAN BE TOUCHED WITH OUR INFIRMITIES.
The Jewish High Priest were often arrogant, better than everyone else and felt that no one was worthy to touch or see them.
They turned the priesthood into a political office.
Jesus IS DIFFERENT.
John 11 - Jesus wept.
Matthew 23 - Jesus cried over Jerusalem.
Matthew 8 - Jesus touched a leper.
Matthew 9:36 - Jesus had compassion.
Jesus STILL hurts when you do!
OUR HIGH PRIEST WAS TEMPTED IN EVERY WAY THAT I AM.
Hebrews 2:18 - tempted like us.
Matthew 4:1-12 with I John 5:15-17.
Lust of the flesh - stones to bread.
Lust of the eyes - all kingdoms worship.
Pride of life - jump from the temple.
You are not alone in temptation.
WE CAN DRAW NEAR WITH BOLDNESS.
In the Old Testament system, the High Priest could not have such boldness - Leviticus 16.
You do not have to be afraid of God - He is your friend.
Whatever you desire, you can ask of God.
You and I have plenty of reasons for staying faithful.
Why would you possibly want to "give up?"
Consider this and never return to the old ways of sin and death.
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