Do you, in your inner spirit, cringe in guilt and shame before God? Do you see your past record of rebellion and failures as a ball-and-chain, holding you back from the comfortable walk with God you desire? Do you, like those Hebrews addressed, tend to lapse back into feeling you need to perform for God’s forgiveness and adoption as sons? The writer of Hebrews begs his readers to enter into that rest God has provided when He punished Jesus in our place, giving Him the punishment that we deserve. Instead of approaching God timidly with our life record in our hands, we can approach Him as our welcoming Father, boldly empty-handed, offering Him only the thankfulness of one rescued from the dead, passionately serious about obeying the One we love.
“Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16 NIV
“Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus.” Hebrews 10:19
Confidence with God breeds confidence with men. Knowing we are accepted by the only One whose opinion matters sets us free from any burden to perform for and conform with fellow men. The disciples were liberated from fear and felt free to speak the Truth to any who would listen. This confidence was noticed.
“Now as they observed the confidence of Peter and John and understood that they were uneducated and untrained men, they were amazed, and began to recognize them as having been with Jesus.” Acts 4:13
“For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7
Lord, open my eyes to the reality and implications of Your undeserved forgiveness. Thank you for the confidence that gives me, as I rest in the knowledge that You love me as Your adopted son. Let me not be timid before men, but speak Your Truth with confidence, as Your ambassador to a lost world.