Hebrews 10:19-25; Ps 24 Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face; Mark 4:21-25
"Since through the blood of Jesus we have confidence of entrance into the sanctuary by the new and living way he opened for us through the veil, that is, his flesh.."
What is this new and living way through the veil that is his flesh? Many believe the author of Hebrews is speaking directly about the sacramental presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. This veil is the presence of Jesus under the appearance of bread and wine from which through the celebration of the mass becomes the Real Presence of Jesus.
This is why we are encouraged "to draw near with a true heart and full assurance of faith". It is faith that enables us to perceive the true reality that awaits us upon the altar. In faith we move beyond appearances of bread and wine and see reality as it is.
Again we are encouraged to "hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering; the one who promised is faithful." Our hope is the very word of Jesus himself who said "take and eat this is my body; take and drink this is the cup of my blood."
Our hope is rooted in the word of Jesus who is truth himself thus he can never deceive. The word of God is the anchor that holds us firm in the faith we profess.
We are told to "consider how to stir up one another to love and good works." The celebration of the Eucharist is a feast of true love. We encounter what love looks like on the altar as Jesus lays down his life for us. Having celebrated this beautiful revelation then we must go forth and live what we celebrate. The Eucharist is what encourages us in love that moves beyond feelings and becomes active.
Then the author invites us to not "neglect the assembly."
Here the sunday liturgy, the public gathering of the faithful is recommended as necessary part for the life of faith. At the assembly we enter into the sanctuary together as a people of God united on the word and promise of Christ through which we pass beyond the veil and into the very real presence of Jesus who calls us to himself. Sunday worship is important.
We can pray at home or in the woods or outdoors or on the back porch. This is all true and good. There is something different about the Sunday worship around the altar the place where God has chosen to make himself known, the place where heaven and earth unite that we might experience eternity here and now.
We look to the gospel and Jesus has these words for us to chew on, "The measure with which you measure will be measured out to you…"
We set the standard of our own judgment. God has that much respect for our freedom. Think about how hard we are on others and perhaps how easy we are on our selves. Won't we be surprised.
Is not a lamp meant to be placed on a lamp stand? Light has two functions: to help us see and to help us be seen. Both are important in being a disciple.