“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account” ( Hebrews 4:13 )
At first glance this verse seems scary depending on your view of God. If you believe God is waiting for you to mess up then a verse like this can be terrifying. Or, if you believe you God is waiting for you to settle your sin account after death, then reading these words are less than reassuring. However understanding the context of this verse and God’s loving nature toward us in the person of Jesus, we should see how wonderful this message is.
Nothing is concealed from God’s sight, everything is open and exposed, but through Christ, this is not a scary thing. We feel secure in knowing that people don’t really know our true thoughts and intentions, but the Bible says that God knows and scripture judges the heart. The verse prior to this passage says, “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart” ( Hebrews 4:12 ). Since God knows and understands who we are, he also knows and understands the truth we need to hear to continue the transformation of our soul realm into the likeness of Christ.
The good news in all of this is; understanding that God loves us. He takes an active interest in our lives and desires for us to grow and develop through that love. As I was thinking about this passage and understanding the knee-jerk reaction to reading words such as this, Psalms 103 kept playing in my mind.
“The LORD is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;
he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
As a father has compassion on his children,
so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him” ( Psalm 103:8-13 ).
One thing I’ve realized through life is that God is so patient, loving and understanding. He knows the real us and loves us anyway. He knows what we need to change and uses the Word to do it. It comes just at the right moment exactly when we need to hear it, whether through a sermon, a friend or reading it for ourselves.
Even though everything is open and exposed before God we have a promise in this scripture as well because we have Jesus as our High Priest. The very next passage says, “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need” ( Hebrews 4:14-16 ). Jesus has been there and understands everything about us. He is our personal advocate with the Father interceding continually on our behalf. We have confidence in approaching God to obtain grace and mercy because of what Jesus did for us on the cross. This truly is an amazing truth, to know that God knows everything about us, nothing being hidden, everything laid bare, exposed and naked and yet knowing that we have Jesus making a personal plea and defense for us. He is our eternal high priest living to maintain the position of grace that we have through His name.
Tomorrow we will look at Hebrews 4:14; Holding Firmly To the Faith We Profess.