Ever tried to get seats for a hot commodity like a college or pro football game? To gain access you often need to know someone with some inside pull. Same thing might be true for a seat at a concert by the latest superstar. It can be next to impossible to get access to the event unless you have an inside connection. You simply don’t have any hope of getting near the stage or the stadium. No amount of effort on your part or money alone can score a ticket to such an event. It takes the aid of someone who has access to offer their help if you are to ever get inside and be present for the event. When a friend comes through on your behalf and you get tickets then you can hardly wait for the day to come. You will be on the 50 yard line for watching the Super Bowl or in the artist’s circle only a few feet from your favorite performer. You look forward with excitement. You mark the days off on your calendar.
And yet if you are a Christian do you look with such eagerness towards the Sunday morning worship time?
Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
(Heb 10:19-25 ESV)
Hebrews reminds us that we gather together as a church each week able to gain access to God the Father. It is a great privilege made possible through what Christ has done in the Gospel and His priestly ministry on our behalf. We owe no small debt of gratitude for what He has done in this way. We could never gain access to God. Because of Christ we are granted fellowship with the Creator of the universe, the Almighty King and Ruler of All. Such an audience with God was impossible if it were not for Jesus Christ seeking and procuring and paying the price to obtain it. Through the finished work of Christ on the cross we can come into God’s presence.
Do you look forward to Sunday morning with awe, anticipation, with joy? Do you recognize the blessing of gathering in the Lord’s presence? Does the priestly work of Christ on your behalf cause you to respond in worship? Are you rejoicing that God has made a way into His presence? Are you filled with the desire to proclaim the mercies of God or to sing of his majesty? Or do you simply go through the motions, mechanically and casually? Let you heart respond to this Gospel, this grace, this Savior and be moved to WORSHIP. You can not draw near to Him on your own. You need access through a mediator. God has provided a way that we may come to Him and be refreshed and glorify (reflect) our Creator.
But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel. See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven. At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, "Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens." This phrase, "Yet once more," indicates the removal of things that are shaken--that is, things that have been made--in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.
(Heb 12:22-29 ESV)
As the church gathers together here on earth it reflects the great communion of saints called for all eternity. It is a manifestation of the entire span of the generations of the people of God. The worship draws us near to Him, it is a festive occasion, a representation of all those who will one day meet in heaven. Let us be grateful we are a part of a kingdom that can not be shaken and let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.