For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are, yet was without sin. So let us approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:15-16 EHV)
Have you ever met with someone famous? If so, how did you feel going into that meeting? If you are a big fan of that person you could be excited—maybe you were meeting your favorite athlete or actor. You would be filled with eager anticipation to meet him! Maybe it is someone who is well-respected, influential, or yields a great deal of power. How would you feel about meeting that person? Perhaps a little nervous, apprehensive, and maybe even a little scared.
What about meeting God? God is holy; we are not. God is righteous or perfect; again, we are not. When Moses asked to see God’s face, the Lord responded, you cannot see my face, for no one can see my face and live (Exodus 33:20). When The Angel of the Lord appeared to Manoa and his wife to announce the birth of Samson Manoa said, We’re going to die, because we have seen God! (Judges 13:22).
We might not worry too much about meeting someone famous—after all they are just like us. They may have more fame, more money, or more power than most people, but when it comes down to it, they are just humans like everyone else. But God, of course, is different. He is God; and we are not. He is our just judge, and we are nothing but sinners.
But in verse 16 above the Writer to the Hebrews wrote, let us approach the throne of grace with confidence. How can we, sinful human beings, approach the throne of the holy God with confidence? Because of verse 15—Jesus lived a perfect life, he was tempted like we are but was without sin. Jesus then credited his perfect life to us—so that we are pure and holy in the eyes of God.
No longer sinners, but righteous before the Lord we don’t have to be afraid to approach God. We do this now on earth through prayer. It is through Christ that our prayers are acceptable to the Lord. Through faith in his son we are his own dear children, who are loved by him. Our Father is a God full mercy and grace. He loves us and wants to show us mercy and give us his love, which we do not deserve. And so we can go before him with confidence to ask him anything, just as a little child can go and ask his father anything. We not only know that our Father in heaven hears us but that he will answer our prayers in a way that will benefit us, for he will not give us anything to harm us.
And when the Lord calls us home and we stand before his throne, we will have no reason to fear. We will stand before him with confidence because we have been clothed with the robe of Christ’s righteousness, or holiness. And there in heaven, free from sin, we will see him as he is (1 John 3:2). We will see him in his full glory, as we stand before his throne and sing his praises forever!
Our Midweek Lent Services have begun. The services are at 10:30 am and 6:30 pm. This year our theme for our midweek services will be "Three Words of Truth." Each service will focus on an important three-word phrase from Jesus' passion and resurrection. Next Wednesday the theme will be : "Watch and Pray." Please join us for these special worship services. A Supper will be served each Wednesday from 5:30-6:15 and please take note that the Confirmation Classes will be starting at 5:00 pm and be over by 7:30 pm. We hope and pray that each child’s parents will be able to attend our midweek Lenten services with them.
On Sunday mornings, Pastor Frey is leading a study on the first 11 chapters of Genesis—an important and interesting portion of Scripture. Join us this week as continue our discussion of chapter 3, the fall into sin and God’s promise to send a Savior.
Pastor Gartner has begun his new study, entitled, "What Must I Do To Be Saved -- A Study of God's Gospel and the Words The Holy Spirit Uses To Proclaim It." We will be looking at the many beautiful words that God uses in the Bible to describe God's plan to save us. Please plan on joining us for these studies.
Ladies Painting Night
On Sunday, March 24, all ladies of St. John ages 12 and up are invited to take part in making a painting. The cost is $20 and the sign-up sheet is in the back of Church.
Tuesday March 19 at 9:00am all the men of St. John are invited to join us for a Bible study as we continue our study on "This We Believe" which is a statement of faith on what the Bible teaches, and thus, also, what the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS) believes. It is a great opportunity for us to review some of the main teachings from God's Word which we believe and follow.