Lesson 9 – Hebrews
The contrast is striking. Our culture teaches us that “self-confidence” is one of the greatest traits that parents and teachers should build into the lives of children. Counselors spend hours helping people to have a realistic view of their own potential and value. While all of this is very true, it has its limitations. The Bible teaches us that “God-confidence” can be a much greater and solid foundation for becoming the person that God intends for us to be.
For centuries the people of Israel had been living under a covenant that God had made with Abraham centuries before, resting in the confidence that the Messiah would come as God had promised. Little did they know that when He would come, there would be a “much better and new covenant” that would eliminate the need for high priests and sacrifices because He, Himself, would make it possible for every man and woman to go individually right into “the Most Holy Place, right into the presence of God.” (Hebrews 10:19 – 22) It must have been an amazing change for them to grasp and to experience. The writer of the book of Hebrews carefully explained this “new and better way,” being careful to describe how Jesus was the fulfillment of all that God had planned and promised to them from the beginning. Through His blood we can have complete confidence that our sins are forgiven and that He will equip us for doing His will. Because of Jesus we can “come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive His mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most” – Hebrews 4: 16.
So why is it that we often depend on “self-confidence”, our own abilities and insight, our own courage and determination, and our own independence and reputation? What do you think? Could it be our pride that gets in the way and distracts us? “Prayer is the window that God has placed in the walls of our world. Leave it shut and the world is a cold, dark house. But throw back the curtains and see His light. Open the window and hear His voice. Open the window of prayer and invoke the presence of God in your world” – Max Lucado. He has invited us to pray with the confident expectation that He is listening and He understands.