“Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful” ( Hebrews 10:19-23 )
These verses are a culmination of the entire book of Hebrews. Everything that has been said has been leading up to this point, we can draw near and approach God on the basis of faith in what Jesus did to make us acceptable, knowing that nothing stands in our way. This is a profound truth!
Reflecting on the entirety of Hebrews we see that Jesus is God’s Son, an exact representation of the Father and far superior to angels (Hebrews 1). Secondly, we see that He was sent to destroy the power of sin and death and release us from slavery to it (Hebrews 2). Next, we see how vastly superior Jesus is to Moses (Hebrews 3) and by believing in Him we enter into the very Sabbath Rest that God promised His people (Hebrews 4). Next we see how Jesus was chosen by God to be our High Priest fashioned after that order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 5). After a short warning about falling away, the writer goes on to explain this priesthood, given on oath and How Jesus meets all of its requirements (Hebrews 6, 7). Next, the New Covenant is introduced and explained with Jesus at its epicenter (Hebrews 8). Chapter 9 compares and contrasts earthly tabernacle worship with Jesus’ heavenly duties and shows how His perfect and Holy blood has ratified and guaranteed the New Covenant (Hebrews 9). Chapter 10 brings home the point that this sacrifice was only made once to forever seal the deal. It shows how Jesus’ work on the cross was perfect and complete (Hebrews 10).
In light of all of these things, the main point now becomes the fact that we can have boldness and confidence to draw on what Jesus did and approach God fully assured that we are acceptable to Him. By faith we can come to him in absolute conviction that we are not guilty of sin and we are not polluted by its effects. Because of Jesus we are righteous and holy.
The only requirement is that we come through the veil of His body, washed solely by His blood. Jesus on the night that he was betrayed spoke of this very thing, “While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it anew with you in my Father’s kingdom” ( Matthew 26:26-29 ).
This was not the first time Jesus made mention that both His body and His blood was necessary to be brought into fellowship with God. He deliberately said it to the multitudes that were following Him looking for miracles. They were offended at the words He spoke so He took a hard stance declaring, “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him” ( John 6:54-56 ). Many left Him that day and followed Him no longer. However, His point was that there is only one way to be accepted by God and that is through the body of Christ which was broken for us and the blood of Christ that was shed as atonement for us. This hasn’t changed since Jesus spoke these words, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” ( John 14:6 ).
At the cross the veil in the temple that separated mankind from the Holy of Holies where God resides was torn in two from top to bottom in a divine act of God ( Matthew 27:51, Mark 15:38, Luke 23:45 ) Jesus’ body has become the veil where we can pass through in faith into the very presence of God the Father. This is an amazing truth! Jesus opened up a new and fresh way of approaching God. We now enter, not by the blood of bulls and goats but by His body and blood which cleanses and absolves us from all guilt associated with sin.
Because this is so we are called to draw near to God in confidence and boldness. Jesus’ changed the rules. “So let us seize and hold fast and retain without wavering the hope we cherish and confess and our acknowledgement of it, for He Who promised is reliable (sure) and faithful to His word” ( Hebrews 10:23 Amp ).