Good morning my friends. I hope you are considered a rich person this morning. The Scriptures tell us that a person with many friends is considered a wealthy person. If you have many friends I am sure that you would agree with this. Having many friends provides for greater support and encouragement as you move through the various seasons of your life. It also provides you with company to enjoy along the trip. The fact is very few people like to travel alone and those that do usually do not make good friends. Yet, having so many friends can be a messy affair as well.
Friendship goes two ways, so just as you need them they also need you. As much as you need to be encouraged so do they. As much support as you demand, they demand an equal amount. You will even find many of you friends will take but they won't give back. Regardless if Jesus is your Saviour or not, life is messy. Sometimes it is really messy. There is no sense hiding it because we all know it so having many friends can also be tiring, but still worth it. However, there is one friend who is indispensable, especially because life is so incredibly messy.
The thing I appreciate about the letter of Hebrews is the focus it puts on our relationship with Jesus and the in-depth explanation of who Jesus is. After reading Hebrews the reader walks away with the understanding that Jesus is indispensable in our lives. There is no other friend who gives us so much. In our reading today, Hebrews 7, the writer is explaining why Jesus is considered to be a priest in the order of Melchizedek:
Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. (Hebrews 7:23-25)
Jesus is a friend who is always on our side, who is always explaining to our Father why we need so much help and support, so much love and forgiveness. He is the champion who has already been through all of this mess we are living, who beat it and is now in our corner encouraging us. Not only is he encouraging, he is also bringing in all the help and support he can to help us succeed. Do not forget who this Jesus is, because he is not like a friend who could ever fail us:
Such a high priest meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself. (Hebrews 7:26-27)
Jesus' character is perfect, one that we are growing in to. This is our friend who will never leave us or forsake us. He demonstrated just how much he loved us by dying for us, but not dying an ordinary death, instead willingly facing the torturous death of the cross. If he was willing to face that for us how could we ever doubt that he would strengthen us to face our current situation? Could we say that our situation is greater then death on the cross?
Some people have this mistaken notion that his sacrifice was a general event, that he did not do it specifically for them. This is because they fail to understand that intimate knowledge God has of each of us, starting from the moment he began to knit us together in our mothers' womb. It does not matter how many billion of us have lived and died, our Father knows each one of us, to the detail of knowing the number of hairs on our head. He loves us intensely, saved or unsaved. The only difference between the saved and unsaved is that one has accepted the gift of salvation and the other has rejected it, but God loves us all with equal intensity, and Jesus is proof of that.
So as you go out through the door of your house today know that you are not facing it alone. Perhaps you need that knowledge before you exit your bedroom door or even before your spouse wakes up. Wherever your challenges are today, you have a friend who is fighting for you, who believes in you, and who will never walk away from you. Remember to thank him today and make sure that relationship stays strong.