"Grace for Timely Help"

 •  2 min. read  •  grade level: 8
John Gaskin
“Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:1616Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)).
The last sentence of this passage would be more correctly translated “and find grace for timely help,” and the difference is of the utmost importance.
“Help in time of need” may be illustrated thus: a child is knocked down in the road of a swiftly passing vehicle, the wheel of which passes over its leg and leaves it crushed and full of pain. A tender-hearted doctor, passing at the time, takes charge of the injured child, and attends to all its needs until at last it is well and strong again.
“Timely help” is a very different matter; it is as though that same doctor, seeing the child in danger of being run over, rushed forward and at the moment saved it out of the danger, and placed it beyond the reach of injury. This is the grace of which the verse speaks. We have a High Priest who watches with tender care all who come to God by Him, and with Him there is grace to keep us in the hour of temptation, to keep us from falling, and to preserve us blameless; it is this grace that we obtain at the throne of grace.
There is also, thank God, grace to help in time of need; if, through unwatchfulness and lack of dependence on the Lord, the Christian sins and falls, there is grace to restore such an one, for if we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. He can bind up the wounds and make the bones that are broken to sing, and His grace will never fail; but the friendly hand at the head of the cliff is better than the doctor at the foot of it. Prevention is better than cure. “Grace for timely help” is preferable to “help in time of need.”