Hebrews 10:16-25 The Key to Freedom to Fulfill My Purpose

Hebrews 10:16-25 The Key to Freedom to Fulfill My Purpose May 17, 2016

Hebrews 10:16-25 The Key to Freedom to Fulfill My Purpose

A traveler was making his way with a guide through the jungles of Burma. They came to a shallow, wide river and waded through it to the other side. When the traveler came out of the river, numerous leeches were on his torso and legs. His first instinct was to grab them and pull them off.

This guide stopped him, warning that doing so would leave tiny pieces of the leeches under the skin. Eventually, infection would set in. The best way to rid the body of the leeches, the guide advised, was to bathe in a warm balsam bath for several minutes. This would calm the leeches, and soon they would release their hold on the man’s body.

Likewise, when I’ve been hurt by another person, I cannot simply yank the injury from myself and expect that all bitterness, malice, and emotion will be gone. Resentment still hides under the surface. The only way to become truly free of the offense and to forgive others is to bathe in the soothing bath of God’s forgiveness.

When I finally fathom the extent of God’s love in Jesus Christ, forgiveness of others will follow.1

Since I am forgiven, I am free. (Hebrews 10:16-17)

Since I have been forgiven, I am free. I am free to do other things. I don’t have to continually spend all of my time trying to determine how I am going to pay a debt I owe. Instead, I have a new relationship with God – one in which He doesn’t remember my debts to Him (Hebrews 10:16-17).

This is the covenant I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws on their hearts and write them on their minds, He adds: I will never again remember their sins and their lawless acts.” (Hebrews 10:16–17, HCSB)

Arnold Fruchtenbaum, a noted Messianic Jewish theologian mentions the point of the new covenant in the following way:

In verses 16–17, he quotes Jeremiah 31:33–34….he [the writer of Hebrews] wants to point out only two things here: (1) under the New Covenant there is no more remembrance of sin; and (2) there is no more consciousness of sin. For that reason, under the New Covenant there is no more need for the Levitical sacrifices, and these Jewish believers can dispense with them without any loss. Jesus fulfills the promises of the New Covenant.”2

British Anglican pastor Simon Ponsonby makes the interesting observation about the nature of God’s memory and our sins:

…I am personally inclined—in view of the New Testament texts cited above that indicate the universality of sins exposed—to conclude that all people’s sins are revealed, those of both the sheep and the goats, the righteous and the unrighteous. The sins of the saints are revealed as forgiven sins, under the blood of Jesus, no longer incurring judgment and no longer bringing shame. It is like a bill stamped “Paid”—but the bill still shows what was paid. Indeed, our sins manifested as “forgiven sins” will simply serve to show the height and depth of Christ’s love, dying for us to redeem us, and this revelation will elicit from us more profound worship and gratitude. Many of us as Christians have no idea how sinful we have been and are being, nor have we fully grasped what Christ endured at Calvary for us when he bore all our sins. The day of judgment will reveal the magnitude of Christ’s mercy that alone will elicit the magnificence of praise that is his due.”3

Since I have been forgiven, I am free from my obligations and am free to give. (Hebrews 10:18)

Now where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer an offering for sin.” (Hebrews 10:18, HCSB)

Warren Wiersbe explains this well with the following the following story:

I once shared a conference with a fine Christian psychiatrist whose lectures were very true to the Word. “The trouble with psychiatry,” he told me, “is that it can only deal with symptoms. A psychiatrist can remove a patient’s feelings of guilt, but he cannot remove the guilt. It’s like a trucker loosening a fender on his truck so he won’t hear the motor knock. A patient can end up feeling better, but have two problems instead of one!”

When a sinner trusts Christ, his sins are all forgiven, the guilt is gone, and the matter is completely settled forever.”4

Jesus and His death on the cross gives me the freedom from the burdens I would have to perform in order to get the forgiveness I seek and need (Hebrews 10:19-21).

Therefore, brothers, since we have boldness to enter the sanctuary through the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way He has opened for us through the curtain (that is, His flesh ), and since we have a great high priest over the house of God,” (Hebrews 10:19–21, HCSB)

As a result of Jesus’ forgiving and saving work on the cross, I am free to give other things.5 My freedom that Christ gives me is for Him. Jesus did not make me free to go further away from Him. He died on the cross so that I may be free to serve Him. The death of Jesus opens me to a new way of life (Hebrews 10:20).

by a new and living way He has opened for us through the curtain (that is, His flesh ),” (Hebrews 10:20, HCSB)

Since I have been forgiven, I am free. I am free to do other things (Hebrews 10:18). I don’t have to continually spend all of my time trying to determine how I am going to pay a debt I owe. Instead, I have a new relationship with God – one in which He doesn’t remember my debts to Him (Hebrews 10:16-17).

This is the covenant I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws on their hearts and write them on their minds, He adds: I will never again remember their sins and their lawless acts.” (Hebrews 10:16–17, HCSB)

Since I have been forgiven, and since Jesus has given me access to God, I have been challenged by God to live a new way – to fulfill God’s purpose for my life. (Hebrews 10:19-21)

Therefore, brothers, since we have boldness to enter the sanctuary through the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way He has opened for us through the curtain (that is, His flesh ), and since we have a great high priest over the house of God,” (Hebrews 10:19–21, HCSB)

I have been challenged to live a new life, the life of following Jesus Christ. Jesus’ death has forgiven me and has given me access to Him, and has given me a new purpose. God’s forgiveness opens up an opportunity for me to fulfill God’s purposes in my life.

FIVE WAYS I CAN FULFILL GOD’S PURPOSE FOR ME IN LIFE

1. Head in (Hebrews 10:22)

let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water.” (Hebrews 10:22, HCSB)

Since I am forgiven, I am free to WORSHIP. I can head in straight into the presence of God. I can pray to Him and trust Him fully in faith.

John MacArthur writes about the conscience:

Unregenerate men and women have consciences that condemn them. One who appeals to God for a good conscience is sick of his sin and desires to be delivered from the load of guilt he bears. He has a crushing and intimidating fear of coming judgment and knows only God can deliver him. He desires the cleansing that comes through the blood of Christ (cf. Heb. 10:22). So he repents of his sin and pleads for forgiveness.6

2. Hold on (Hebrews 10:23)

Let us hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” (Hebrews 10:23, HCSB)

Since I am forgiven, I am free to GROW. I can hold on tightly to God because of His promises.

3. Help out (Hebrews 10:24)

And let us be concerned about one another in order to promote love and good works,” (Hebrews 10:24, HCSB)

Since I am forgiven, I am free to SERVE. I can help out others in times of need. I can “be concerned about others.” But this concern for others is not just for believers. This concern should also be for unbelievers. We serve unbelievers and at the same time we are able to let people know about Jesus.

4. Humor with (Hebrews 10:24)

And let us be concerned about one another in order to promote love and good works,” (Hebrews 10:24, HCSB)

Since I am forgiven, I am free to SHARE. I can humor people with the Gospel. The Gospel is not a joke. But that doesn’t mean that when I share the Gospel that it needs to be the most negative thing a person hears. It is the most important, valuable piece of motivation that someone should hear. Many motivational speakers use humor to connect with an audience. Jesus used humor to share stories with people about the Kingdom of God. I want to draw a person into the Gospel story. I do that best when I use interest, inspiration, and humor.

5. Hang with (Hebrews 10:25)

not staying away from our worship meetings, as some habitually do, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:25, HCSB)

Since I am forgiven, I am free to CONNECT. I can hang out with others to encourage one another. The purpose of the worship meetings is to be a regular time when I can connect with other believers and receive and give encouragement.

David Jeremiah, in his book, Sanctuary: Finding Moments of Refuge in the Presence of God:

I wear many hats as a parent, as all parents do. I am a provider, a leader, and a disciplinarian when necessary. But I believe my greatest responsibility is as a cheerleader. More than anything else, kids today need the supportive love, encouragement, and cheering-on of their parents. James Dobson, the family expert who spent years studying problems of adolescent behavior, once said in my presence, “Here’s the distilled wisdom of all my research. Here is what you need to do if you have adolescents: Just get them through it.”

Just get them through it! Hang in there with them until the whitewater rapids of the teenage years are left behind. Encouragement is an urgent need of our day. A church that does not equip its people as encouragers will soon phase out of any meaningful ministry in its community. God help us to learn how to be encouragers!7

FORGIVENESS IS THE KEY TO HELPING OTHERS FULFILL GOD’S PURPOSE IN LIFE

The key to fulfilling God’s purpose for my life is forgiveness. God has forgiven me and so I am free to fulfill these purposes.

God’s forgiveness frees me from sin. (Hebrews 10:18)

Now where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer an offering for sin.” (Hebrews 10:18, HCSB)

But without forgiveness, then my salvation is not real. Look what happens after this section in the following verse:

For if we deliberately sin after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,” (Hebrews 10:26, HCSB)

If we continue to sin, then it means that Jesus death means nothing. What’s the key to eliminating sin? Forgiveness. If it is true for Jesus’ forgiveness for my sin, then it is also true for me to help other people fulfill God’s purpose in their lives. Jesus may take care of my sin debt for eternity. But whether I give and/or receive forgiveness can prevent me from doing what God wants me to do for Him today.

When I forgive others, it frees them from guilt, and it frees both of us to fulfill God’s purposes. (Hebrews 10:18)

If I am willing to forgive other people, then they are free from guilt. Forgiving others also allows both of us to be more willing to fulfill God’s purpose. If I am not willing to give forgiveness, then I prevent myself and the other person from fulfilling God’s purpose for life. This is why we are called to encourage one another, not tear each other down.

not staying away from our worship meetings, as some habitually do, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:25, HCSB)

The time when we meet together should be a time when we encourage one another, support one another, lift up one another and urge one another on. God’s forgiveness urges us onward. Giving forgiveness will urge others on to fulfill one’s purpose. Giving forgiveness to others encourages them and frees me.

Mandisa Hundley, a gospel singer, was one of the twelve finalists on American Idol. When she met with judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, and Randy Jackson to find out if she had made it through to the next round of the competition, however, she got a stinging comment from Simon. Eyeing Mandisa, who was heavyset, Simon asked, “Do we have a bigger stage this year?”

When she entered the room to learn the judges’ verdict, Mandisa looked right at Simon and said, “Simon, a lot of people want me to say a lot of things to you. But this is what I want to say: Yes, you hurt me, and I cried, and it was painful. But I want you to know that I’ve forgiven you, and that you don’t need someone to apologize to forgive somebody. And I figure that if Jesus could die so that all of my wrongs could be forgiven, I can certainly extend that same grace to you. I wanted you to know that.”

Simon apologized and hugged the singer, and Mandisa discovered she had advanced to the next round.8

Do you want to make it to the next round in your life? Accepting forgiveness and sharing it with others will help you go to the place where you can fulfill God’s purpose for you.

1 Craig Brian Larson and Phyllis Ten Elshof, 1001 Illustrations That Connect (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 2008), 89–90. Originally from Gary Preston, Character Forged from Conflict (Bethany, 1999).

2 Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, The Messianic Jewish Epistles: Hebrews, James, First Peter, Second Peter, Jude, 1st ed. (Tustin, CA: Ariel Ministries, 2005), 136.

3 Simon Ponsonby, And the Lamb Wins: Why the End of the World Is Really Good News (Colorado Springs, CO: David C Cook, 2010).

4 Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1996), 314.

5Jim Erwin, “Since I Am Forgiven, I Am Free,” Hebrews 10:16-25, Lectionary Reflections Year C (2015-2016), http://www.patheos.com/blogs/jimerwin/2016/03/25/since-forgiven-free/, 25 March 2016, accessed on 12 May 2016.

6 John MacArthur, Truth for Today : A Daily Touch of God’s Grace (Nashville, Tenn.: J. Countryman, 2001), 135.

7 David Jeremiah, Sanctuary: Finding Moments of Refuge in the Presence of God (Nashville, TN: Integrity Publishers, 2002), 379.

8 Craig Brian Larson and Phyllis Ten Elshof, 1001 Illustrations That Connect (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 2008), 90. Based on American Idol, realitytvmagazine.com (February 15, 2006).

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