“Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them” (Hebrews 7:25). 

Isn’t the Easter season wonderful?! We are moved and inspired as we marvel in our Lord’s crucifixion and glory in His resurrection. Hopefully, we all capture what these events mean, and especially mean to us, in all of their depth and richness. Although one could never exhaust an exposition of these topics, it is always, and I mean always, best for us to keep them top of mind and pondered in our hearts. For Jesus’ work at Calvary and His being raised from the dead frame the essence of our faith and hope. 

Since today is exactly one week since the Christian community celebrated Easter, I’m reminded that it is so very easy for the inspiration of that celebration to fade. We too quickly forget the way we were touched and changed during this most important holiday season. The impact of Easter, however, shouldn’t and doesn’t end on a date or after a designated time. Just as Rebekah and I were discussing during our “Celebration Wednesday” time, Jesus’ work did not cease after His Passion and ascension. Instead He has moved into a high priestly role and is now active in sustaining us and guaranteeing the efficacy of His earthly work that we celebrate during the Easter holiday. 

The writer of Hebrews tells us that one of the reasons for Jesus’ resurrection is that He now lives to intercede on His follower’s behalf. In other words, Christ’s redeeming and sanctifying work continues so that we are completely and utterly saved. And don’t we ever need this?! When we receive Christ our sin nature does not disappear. Sure, our desires change but our attitudes and actions continually fail to meet His holy standard. Though we grow more and more like Him, which is called progressive sanctification (see Romans 8:29 and 2 Corinthians 3:18), we will never in this life reach a state of perfection. We are counted as totally righteous because of our faith in the finished work of Christ, but in practical reality we don’t live in total righteousness. This is why Christ’s high priestly function is so critical for His people, a people still in desperate need of a Savior who continues His work from the right hand of the Father. 

Paul affirms this: “Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died–more than that, who was raised–who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?” (Romans 8:33-35). And so does John: “My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:1-2). 

And what a comfort this is! But that comfort comes only from understanding that these three of Christ’s activities – the crucifixion, the resurrection, and His intercession – are inextricably linked. He died for our sins, He rose to give us victory over the grave and eternal life, and He is our righteous defense attorney (advocate) that sustains us by pleading His case (not ours) when we fall. Because He died for us and was raised again, Jesus is now appearing before God and stating His indisputable argument, saying, in essence, ‘look at my righteousness and not their filthy rags’. 

Some questions come quickly to mind when we contemplate Hebrews 7:25. The writer says Christ is interceding for, “those who draw near to God through Him.” He is only interceding for those who have surrendered, by grace through faith, to Himself. So, are you one of His disciples, someone who has Jesus pleading His righteousness on your behalf before a holy God? That’s one important reason we celebrate Easter – because our capitulation to a crucified and risen Savior grants us His eternal intercession. God’s Word says that we must believe with all that we are and fully receive Him in order to be given these amazing gifts and blessings (John 1:12). So, if you’ve never surrendered to Christ as your Master and Savior, I pray that God will draw you to Himself and that you will seek out someone who can fully explain the good news of Jesus. And I pray the Holy Spirit compels you to say an eternal “Yes!” to Him knowing that means He has already said an eternal “Yes!” to and for you. 

Or have you surrender to Jesus but aren’t fully experiencing the forgiveness found only in Christ, the righteousness He has purchased for you? Are you still looking at Jesus, as wonderful as this is, as only crucified, raised, and ascended?  If not, focus this day on Christ’s ongoing intercessory work for you that saves you to the uttermost! For in truth, He is now our perfect defense attorney that guarantees that we stand forgiven and counted as righteous before a holy God. So draw near to God in Christ and rest in this truth. And give Him the glory not just for what He did for you during the Passion Week but also what He continues to do in sealing the incomparable reality of His forever presence with those who believe on Him.