Day 13

Great High Priest, Come

from the Advent 2023 reading plan

Leviticus 9:1-7, Leviticus 16:29-34, Hebrews 4:14-16, Hebrews 5:1-10, Hebrews 10:11-14

BY Bailey T. Hurley

The ongoing cycle of the Israelites’ sacrificial rituals must have occupied a large portion of their thoughts, well-being, and time. The presence of the Lord dwelt among their camp—a persistent reminder of how important it was to be right with Him. To atone annually for their sins, Israelite families needed to prepare to handover to the high priest some healthy livestock, part of their grains, and precious oils. They were to sacrifice their food source, provision, and in some ways their security to atone for their sins. As a woman who is consistently worrying about what my family is going to eat for dinner each week, I can’t imagine how their thoughts were consistently turning toward the sacrifices they must provide for the more precious thing—forgiveness from God’s wrath. 

Could you imagine sacrificing all of that and then preparing to do it again, knowing your sins were not completely forgiven?

But through Jesus, we have been given freedom from this way of atoning for our sins. Hebrews 10:12 talks about what Jesus has done to atone for us, “But this man, after offering one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God.” One sacrifice covered it all. No more coming to the priests with an offering that was only temporary, because what Jesus did was forever. 

The gift of our forgiveness is near, but, admittedly, I don’t consider my sin that often—not nearly as regularly as the Israelites did. Why? Sometimes I don’t want to admit my sin to myself, let alone the Lord. Sometimes my heart is too hard to recognize the sin in my life. And truthfully, there are times I do not fully understand the effects of my sin on my relationships with others and the Lord.

When I read about the beauty of Jesus as our High Priest, it eases the hesitation and apathy I feel around my need for a perfect advocate like Jesus. As High Priest, Jesus sympathizes with my weakness (Hebrews 4:15). He understands my temptation to sin, but He is without sin, so I know I can come to Him for help (v.15). He did not exalt Himself to the position of High Priest but was given the honor by God because of His dependence and humility before God (Hebrews 5:5–10). He makes our enemies His footstool and perfects those who have put their faith in Him (Hebrews 10:13–14).

Reading that list brings me to actual tears. Jesus has made a way for us to come to Him and receive salvation from our sins. At any moment, we can come to Him and ask for His help, and He will give it. May we not be afraid to ask, “Great High Priest, come.”

Post Comments (58)

58 thoughts on "Great High Priest, Come"

  1. Sarah Scheaf says:

    High Priest, come!

  2. Karen Breaux says:

  3. Wanda Woehlert says:

    Jesus has made a way for us to come to Him and receive salvation from our sins.

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