You Have Direct Access to God
By Rick Warren
“You come to him as living stones, a spiritual house that is being built into a holy priesthood” (1 Peter 2:5a GW).
God says that you are a priest. Depending on your background, that may be scary or confusing. Peter is saying that the two benefits that priests have are now available to everyone who is a believer.
In the Old Testament, priests did two things:
1. They had the right, privilege, and responsibility to go directly to God. They could pray and talk to God, worship, and fellowship with God. Everybody else had to go through a priest.
2. They had the privilege and responsibility of representing God to the people and ministering to the needs of people (serving).
Those are the very two things that are true of you when you become a believer.
You now have direct access to God. You don’t have to pray through anybody else. You don’t have to confess through anybody else. You don’t have to fellowship with God through anybody else. Read your Bible, talk with the Lord, and fellowship directly with him.
The Bible says that when Jesus died on the cross, there was a veil in the temple that separated the Holy of Holies, where God’s Spirit was, from where man was. Only priests could go behind that veil once a year. When Jesus died on the cross, God ripped that veil — about 70 feet long — from top to bottom, symbolizing that there is no longer a barrier between him and us.
You have also been gifted for ministry to serve other people. Every Christian is a minister — not a pastor, but a minister. Any time you use your talents and gifts to help others, you are ministering.
“It is he who saved us and chose us for his holy work, not because we deserved it but because that was his plan long before the world began” (2 Timothy 1:9a TLB). Why did God save you? So you could serve him. A non-serving Christian is a contradiction.
How do you know what your ministry is? Look at your talents, gifts, and abilities. When you use those talents and gifts to help other people, that’s called ministry — nothing fancy or scary about it. It’s just helping others. Can you be a priest in a sales office? You bet you can. Can you be a priest as an accountant? Of course. Driving a truck? Sure.
Any time you’re helping other people in God’s name, you’re ministering.
Talk It Over
How are you using your gifts and abilities to serve God and others?
In what ways would your life change if you started viewing your job, your neighborhood, and your relationships as ministry and opportunities for service?
How do you make the most of your status as a priest? Do you take full advantage of your direct access to God?
For more Daily Hope with Rick Warren, please visit pastorrick.com!
Many people step into the Christmas season run down and worn out. And by the time January rolls around, they’re so exhausted that they’ve completely missed the real reason for the season.
But there’s really no better time to recalibrate your heart toward Jesus than during the holidays. And Pastor Rick Warren’s book, The Purpose of Christmas, can help you fill your Christmas with more of God’s love and peace by making Christ the center of your life.
This resource shows you . . .
• What Christmas means for your salvation
• How to surrender to God’s will
• Practical steps to overcome discouragement
• Why we celebrate Christmas at all
• How Christmas can be a time to make peace with others
The Purpose of Christmas is our way to thank you for your gift below to help more people learn, love, and live the Word – so request your copy when you give!
From all of us at Daily Hope, may you experience God’s peace and joy this holiday season!
This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
You can listen to Rick Warren on OnePlace.com.