Jesus Is The Centre
This letter is all about Jesus. He is uniquely wonderful. Having just described Him as the only One who can bring sinners to glory (Hebrews 2:10) and the elder brother of all God's children (Hebrews 2:11, 17), the writer now calls Jesus 'our Apostle' and 'High Priest’. 'Apostle' means 'sent-out one'. In this verse, Jesus is the primary Apostle – sent by Father God to earth to be the Saviour of the world; to show us the Father, and to demonstrate His power (John 14:8-10).
Jesus is also our High Priest (Hebrews 4:14). He mediates for us with the Father (Hebrews 7:25). Even though Jesus is the sacrifice for sins, He is also the priest who offers the sacrifice to God. This theme occupies a significant part of the letter (Hebrews 4:14-10:39) when different aspects of His High Priestly roles are examined in detail. But this introduction is enough to alert us to the importance of acknowledging this apostleship and priesthood as being appointments by Father God. He is God's ultimate authorised voice to the world (Hebrews 1:1-2) and God's only authorised mediator (1 Timothy 2:5).
The family theme is continued from Hebrews 2:5-18. We who trust in Jesus are not just related to each other, we are His brothers and sisters also. We have been brought close to God, made holy by the blood of Christ (Ephesians 2:13). We have been called to be holy because He is holy (1 Peter 1:15). It is because we are His holy people that we have both the responsibility and desire to fix our thoughts on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2). Our faith is not about getting God to make us feel better, but acknowledging that Jesus is the centre of all God's purposes.
If we fail to recognise Christ as God's Apostle and High Priest we will invent a different gospel, assuming that any voice is God's voice and that it is not necessary to go through Jesus to reach God's heart (Galatians 1:6-9). That is the route away from holiness and eternally away from God (Hebrews 12:14). Therefore our goal and heart's focus must be Jesus. As we see His character and work expounded in this letter let us throw off everything which stops us or slows us in running the race of faith (Hebrews 12:1) towards our Saviour. He is the centre of all God's purposes: He must be the centre of ours too.
© Dr Paul Adams