By Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell (Guest Blogger)
Scripture Readings: Hebrews 1-4
Key Scripture Verse: Hebrews 1: 3 (NIV, Life Application Bible)
“The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.”
The beginning of the book of Hebrews starts off saying that God had sent many prophets and teachers, had revealed himself through visions, dreams, sending angels with messages to specific people, but when he sent Jesus, God was speaking to his people through his son who was the same as he. It also states that even though angels had been sent many times to convey a message to the people, they were messengers of God, but not God himself. In Jesus, we have the benefit of God revealing himself in “exact representation” of his own character.
Jesus was there at the beginning when God formed the earth; he represents God’s word. In John we read that “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). Hebrews says that Jesus is superior to the angels that the angels bow down to him. Jesus was not merely a teacher, a prophet, or a messenger of God’s word, he was not only God’s word, but God himself.
When Jesus died on the cross and the curtain tore in the temple, the people no longer had a barrier between them and God. Jesus had removed the barrier of sin which separated us from God and once he became the sacrifice for our sins by dying on the cross, we were reconciled to God the Father and no longer was there any veil separating us from him. That’s the grace of the gospel. Jesus became our direct access. And after he was gone, the Holy Spirit was sent to be our access forevermore.
It is significant to note that Jesus and his covenant were a replacement of the old—Jesus not only fulfilled the prophecies and the teachings of the past, he was God himself represented in the flesh, and he brought a new covenant.
If we ever question who God is or what he looks like, what his character is, how he operates, our best representation of God is Jesus. We need look no further. Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and God the Father are one.
This should be very reassuring. If we read the scriptures and learn how Jesus did things, what he taught, understand how much he loves us, and allow him to reveal himself to us, we will develop in faith. We have direct access to God through Jesus in our prayers and through reading his word.
We can be in relationship with the living Christ. We can accept and receive his forgiveness through his grace and commune with him forever. We do not need to communicate through an intermediary. We do not need to commune with angels. We have direct access to God himself. No veil, no barrier, no separation. We need only accept the gift of his love. It’s simple. It’s profound.
Jesus said that if we know him, we also know the father, because they are one and the same–he is “the exact representation if his being.” How awesome is that?