Pushing Through Hard Times

in Uncategorized

Pushing Through Hard Times

By Grant Gaines

There are very few excuses that give you full permission to miss work without having to pay a consequence. Some of those reasons are great – having a baby, getting married, or winning a company-sponsored vacation. Unfortunately, however, not all of the reasons for missing work are great. Sometimes you’re sick, sometimes a loved one is sick, sometimes the weather stifles out any attempt of making it into the office, and then of course there is the most painful excuse of all for missing work: the death of a loved one.

No one is going to harp on you for not turning in your report on time, showing up late for work, or being absent from a company meeting when you lose a family member, everyone understands that you need some time to grieve your loss. It may not be a written rule in the American Constitution, but it might as well be – when you lose a loved one, you get a free pass from work.

However, for the first priest mentioned in the Bible, Aaron, this was not the case. Aaron had several sons who enjoyed joining their father in the family business – serving as priests before the Lord for the nation of Israel. What a joy it must have been for Aaron to see his sons following the Lord and adopting the same servant leadership attitude that he had.

Unfortunately for Aaron, however, this joyful season of life didn’t last too long. One day two of Aaron’s sons, Nadab and Abihu disrespected the Lord by the way they treated His sanctuary and were immediately consumed by fire from the Lord on the spot (Leviticus 10:1-2).

What a swing of emotions that must have been for Aaron. One moment his two sons were supposedly following in their father’s footsteps and the next moment they were killed for their disobedience.

You would expect for Aaron to get a “Hall Pass” from having to come into work for the foreseeable future so he could mourn his loss, but that was not the case. Instead of showing sympathy and letting Aaron dip out on his priestly duties, Moses approached his devastated brother Aaron and said to him and Aaron’s other two sons, “Do not show grief by leaving your hair uncombed or by tearing your clothes. If you do, you will die, and the LORD’s anger will strike the whole community of Israel. However, the rest of the Israelites, your relatives, may mourn because of the LORD’s fiery destruction of Nadab and Abihu. But you must not leave the entrance of the Tabernacle or you will die, for you have been anointed with the LORD’s anointing oil…” (Leviticus 10:6-7, NLT).

The common folk were allowed to mourn Aaron’s loss, but Aaron and his sons were not allowed to join in their grief. Why not? Because Aaron and his sons were the priests for the nation of Israel. They were the ones who were responsible for offering sacrifices for the Israelites’ sins as well as being a mediator between the Lord and His people. If they stopped their work, the Israelites would miss the presence of the Lord.

Fast forwards several thousands of years later to a small olive garden right outside Jerusalem where you will find a small carpenter from the town of Bethlehem in a great deal of stress. You see, this Carpenter knows that His captors are quickly approaching His location and therefore has a tough decision to make in a short amount of time – He could slip away into the wilderness to never be seen again, or He could stay right where He was at and face a brutal death as a result.

This may seem like an easy option for us – run and save your life, but as you can likely guess, this is no normal carpenter. Instead, this Carpenter is none other than the Lord Jesus Christ. And this is no normal death that is approaching Him. This is the sacrificial death on the cross where He willingly laid down His perfect life so that we as His children could walk away with eternal life after accepting Him into our lives.

To compound the matters, Jesus wasn’t simply a carpenter. Hebrews 4:14-16 describes Jesus as our “High Priest” who empathizes and intercedes for us. And just as the original high priest – Aaron – had done when times were tough way back in Leviticus 10, Jesus did by not setting aside His priestly duties simply because the circumstances were difficult. Christ knew that He, like Aaron, must complete His priestly work for the sake of His people – you and me – by offering the ultimate sacrifice (Himself) so that He could be the mediator between the Lord and His people (1 Timothy 2:5). Had Jesus chosen to flee from His impending death, there would be no hope of ever having true, abundant, and eternal life.

Aren’t you glad that our great High Priest never wavered from His duties despite the situations that opposed Him? Aren’t you thankful that Jesus chose the cross over comfort so that we could freely choose Him?

What an incredible Savior we have!

Comments? Questions? Suggestions?
Email me
©Grant Gaines 2017


Previous post:

Next post: