Chapter 5 of Hebrews shows us that Jesus is our High Priest, who was the perfect sacrifice for the sins of mankind, who was understanding and compassionate, having been made man He knew our weaknesses and frailties. He was also obedient to His death, submissive and holy.
Sunday our pastor spoke of the veil that was rent in two when Jesus died.
Luke 23:44-46 "44And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour.
45And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.
46And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost."
Up until that time only the high priest could go into that holy place in the temple to offer the sacrifice for his sins and sins of the people in that day.
Since Jesus' death and resurrection has broken the barrier between us and God, He now intercedes for us so we can go directly to God, without the need of a priest to intercede for us. Jesus is our High Priest of the New Testament, and He said go to the Father and ask in My name.
In John 16:23-24, Jesus had not died yet. He told the apostles "23 At that time you won’t need to ask me for anything. I tell you the truth, you will ask the Father directly, and he will grant your request because you use my name. 24 You haven’t done this before. Ask, using my name, and you will receive, and you will have abundant joy."
The author of Hebrews states some people were in need of spiritual milk because of their behavior. Mature adults are able to digest spiritual meat. Some still need baby food because they're not studying or applying what they learn to daily life.
Hebrews 5:12-14 "12For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.
13For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.
14But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."
You and I, if we are to wage this spiritual battle victoriously (with discernment between good and evil), need to exercise our knowledge of God's Word, and "study to show ourselves approved" (see 2 Timothy 2:15) and we have Jesus' example of spiritual warfare in (read Matthew chapter 4). It's when He spoke Scripture to the devil during the 40 day fast and temptations.
In Hebrews 6, verse one in the KJV says "leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ." Don't be misled. The principles are the basics. He doesn't mean to actually leave the doctrine of Christ! The New American Standard version reads "1Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God,
2of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment.
3And this we will do, if God permits."
So, there's no need to go through kindergarten if we're in sixth grade or middle school, but keep progressing, as if to say, move on up and get through high school, kids, and graduate! Quit acting like children who don't know any better.
It goes on to warn us about backsliding, and very sternly. Don't think God won't forgive us if we do backslide. When we read the Old Testament and we see how many times God forgave Israel, and how many times He pled with them to turn back to Him so He could restore them. God forgives and Jesus taught us to forgive, how many times? Challenge for you to find! Hint: Matthew.
Hebrews 6:10-12 "10For God is not unjust so as to forget your work and the love which you have shown toward His name, in having ministered and in still ministering to the saints.
11And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope until the end,
12so that you will not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises."
You see, God will forgive us if we turn to Him. Don't backslide after receiving Christ and our Father's wonderful blessings because sinning after receiving Christ is likened to nailing Him on the cross again; but if we do, don't give up! Turn back to God, for He's a forgiving God who loves us! And we can go straight to Him ourselves, no matter where we are. We have access to God's inner sanctuary within our hearts, and we can speak to Him, in Jesus' name, because the curtain has been rent (torn)!
Pay attention to the last 2 verses below.
Hebrews 6:17-20 "17 God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise could be perfectly sure that he would never change his mind. 18 So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. 19 This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary. 20 Jesus has already gone in there for us. He has become our eternal High Priest in the order of Melchizedek."