In this sermon, part of a series on moving forward, Pastor Neil talks about “a new and living way,” moving forward by faith in the Christ Jesus, God’s One and Only Son. Here are some excerpts:
Jesus, it says in Colossians 1:20, has “opened for us” “a new and living way” “through the curtain, that is, His body.” In the Jewish temple, there was a curtain separating the inner sanctuary (the Most Holy Place) from the outer sanctuary through which, as already noted, only the high priest was permitted to go, and only once a year. But, as the Gospel writers attest, when Jesus died on the cross, “the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom” (Matthew 27:51; see also Mark 15:38 and Luke 23:45). In His death on the cross, you see, Jesus removed the barrier – the curtain – that separated us from God because of our sin. In a sense, Jesus was the “incarnate curtain” whose body (flesh) was torn so that we may now have full and free access to God’s presence.
It is “a new and living way” that He has opened for us. It is living, because Jesus, though He died, is a living Savior. He was crucified, dead, and buried. But on the third day He rose again from the dead, and He ascended into heaven where He sits and reigns and intercedes for us at the right hand of God the Father Almighty. It is new in the sense that it was never before available. New because it was newly inaugurated by the saving work of Christ. It is a new way that was previously inaccessible.
But now, through Jesus, the door to peace with God, to forgiveness and cleansing from sin and guilt, to reconciliation and fellowship with God, is open to anyone and everyone who will walk through the door by faith in who Jesus is and what He has done. It is not new just in terms of time. It is new in quality and power. This new and living way Jesus has opened for us is unlike anything that ever came before. And there will never be anything like it.
Have you moving forward by faith in Jesus, opened your heart to receive Him as your Savior and Lord? Have you put your faith in Him alone for your salvation? If the answer is no, or you’re not sure, I urge you not to leave today until you have settled your relationship with God. Jesus is always ready to welcome you into His family of faith.