So far we have come to know Jesus more deeply as Immanuel, the Alpha and Omega, our King, and the mighty Lamb. But linking these all together is another unique role that Jesus fulfills as He meets the unblemished perfection of God’s high standards. We discover this role in His name of Great High Priest, found predominantly in one of the most misunderstood books of the Bible: Hebrews. Admittedly, Hebrews is one of the more difficult books of the Bible to comprehend. Most people consider it the second most difficult New Testament book to understand after Revelation. One of the reasons Hebrews can be so confusing is that the book was written with an assumption. That assumption is that its readers had a solid understanding of the Old Testament.
In the Old Testament, we see many sacrifices, symbols, regulations, and systems in place that contributed to the daily routine of people’s lives. And while Jews living in the day that Hebrews was written would have been entirely familiar with all of this and more, most of us living today simply are not.
Many of us don’t come from that background. We are not steeped in Old Testament tradition or theology, the sacrificial system, nor the biblical priesthood. As a result, it is unclear to many of us what Hebrews is even talking about.
If I were to summarize the main point and message of the book of Hebrews for you, I would do it in three words: Never give up. That’s the bottom line of all the peculiar elements of this book.
Never give up.
This book was written to a group of believers who were severely struggling with throwing in the towel. They were tempted to walk away from the faith. They were tempted to give up or give in because life had become too hard. Living as a Christian in their culture had become too difficult. They faced persecution, pressure, challenges, and overwhelming odds on a daily basis. Life was hard. Which is why the author of Hebrews sought to remind them not to quit. Not to give in. Not to give up. Not to let their hearts, which had already grown weary, simply stop.
You might be able to identify with the audience of Hebrews. You might find yourself in dire situations and feel tempted to quit. It could be you are raising the question, “Why go on?” You feel that things will never change. It simply isn’t going to get any better. You may think you will never find the victory you are looking for or discover the life you hope to live.
Even though we are Christians, go to church, say our prayers, and seek the Lord, there are times when each of us (if we’re honest) feel tempted to give up. There are times when we are merely holding on by a thread and feeling as if one small thing could tip us over.
But the author of the book of Hebrews seeks to explain why you don’t have to give up or give in. And it all hinges on one name of Jesus: Great High Priest.
Tony Evans, The Power of Jesus’ Names (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 2019).
We have just released a new Bible study on topic of The Power of Jesus’ Names. This study supplements Tony Evans’s book by the same name.
These lessons are available on Amazon, as well as a part of my Good Questions Have Groups Talking Subscription Service. Like Netflix for Bible Lessons, one low subscription gives you access to all our lessons–thousands of them. For a medium-sized church, lessons are as little as $10 per teacher per year.
Part 1: Power in His Positions
2. Alpha and Omega
4. Lamb of God
5. Great High Priest
Part 2: Power in His Person
7. I Am
11. Son of God, Son of Man