8-13-2022 Jesus to the Rescue
I had another entry in the works for this time, but as I read this chapter in Hebrews, Father changed ‘my’ plans. Listen closely to what Paul tells the Hebrews.
I’ve paraphrased some of the verses for easier reading as well as made comments (in blue).
1 Therefore, because we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let’s set aside all our burdens and sins which easily weigh us down, let us patiently run this race before us.
Paul tells us that we have ‘things’ to do as we walk with our Lord! Basically, it’s not just jumping on the slide and enjoying the ride! So let’s not get ‘antsy’ and jump ahead of the ball game. Rather, patiently, follow the Lord’s lead.
2 Let us look to Jesus, who is the author and finisher of our faith because He gave up the joy He knew to endure the cross, the despising and the shame and is now set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
3 Consider that He endured that which came against Him and the sinners that we don’t become wearied or faint in our own minds.
4 For we have not shed our blood striving against sin.
Jesus is not just our ‘hope’ of salvation, but our promise. He left heaven to come to here on earth as one of us and to give Himself on the cross so we don’t have to worry about how we are going to access eternal life. So just because things don’t always go the way we want, hang in there, press through whatever we face for He is with us (Heb. 13:5). We didn’t shed our own blood to attain salvation.
5 Have you forgotten the exhortation that has spoken to us as little children? My son, don’t despise the chastening of the Lord nor faint when He rebukes you.
6 The Lord chastens those whom He loves and scourges every son whom He receives.
7 When you endure the chastening, God treats you as a son. For what father doesn’t correct his son?
8 Therefore, if we are not chastised, which we all experience, we are not partakers. We are bastards and not sons.
9 More so, we reverenced our fathers who corrected us, isn’t it better to obey the Father of Spirits and live?
10 Truly, they corrected us for their own pleasure, but God corrects us for our benefit that we may be partakers of His holiness.
11 Now, nobody enjoys correction for at the time for it is grievous. Nonetheless, after we have received it, we receive the peaceable fruit of righteousness.
12 Therefore lift up those drooping hands and feeble knees.
13 And set your feet on the straight path so rather than continuing on the wrong path, you might be healed.
Father is our heavenly Father for a reason. We are His children and as long as we act like little children, He interacts with us accordingly. Our earthly dads correct us as to how they see fit. My wife, more than once, had to remind me to make sure the punishment (for our children) was appropriate for the ‘crime’! God reprimands us to get us back on track so we don’t continue down a wrong pathway. Our earthly dad punished us, yet we still obeyed what he said – or suffered more consequences. So, if we considered our earthly dad with honor and respect, why do we “dis” our heavenly Father when He corrects us? Why is God so mean! It was just a ‘little’ sin! When we get away with one ‘little’ sin, we figure we can get away with more and try to do so – ignoring the consequences. Yes, God is longsuffering, but He does have His limits! And let’s be honest. Who out there ever liked punishment? But, like I said, God is doing what is necessary to keep us on the right path so we can live a good life! By the way, a ‘bastard’ is an illegitimate child (born out of wedlock) and is one who doesn’t really enjoy the benefits of family. Hmmmm.
14 Be peaceable with all men, in all holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.
Ooooh! Live in peace AND be holy? Holiness is being set apart from the world, not necessarily physically but in spirit and in actions (don’t do as the world does) for when we don’t live for the Lord, we live for ourselves or our enemy (the world). Such a person will NOT see the Lord! He is not loyal and runs at the first sign of danger (John 10:11-14). He is not a son. Just a hired hand!
15 Being careful not to fail the grace of God unless the root of bitterness rise up within you and you be defiled.
When we stray from God, the bitterness of this world can get us ‘down’ and then we stand in danger of becoming just as bitter as the world. When we wallow in bitterness, we become like the seed on stony ground and will most likely drift away from the Lord (Matt. 13:3-9). Who is the prince and power of the air in the world (2 Corinth. 4:4, Eph. 2:1-3, Rev. 12:7-10)?
16 Unless any of you become a fornicator or profane person such as Esau, who sold his birthright for something to eat.
17 Understand that the blessing of the first-born was held from him for even though he sought it with tears, he found no place of repentance.
18 You aren’t come to the mount that you might be touched and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness and darkness and tempest.
Our enemy and the enemy of this world, of course, is Satan. He comes to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). Esau is used as an example here because he didn’t respect God enough to keep the blessings due the first-born son, but sold them for some food to satisfy his natural body. God doesn’t bring us to His mount (salvation) just to destroy us, but rather to save us! And as God is no respecter of persons, neither does He respect “crocodile tears” (fake, pretend)!
19 For the sound of the trumpet and the voice of words that entreated Israel, God would no longer speak to them.
20 For they could not endure what was commanded. So much so that even if an animal touched the mountain, it should be slain.
When man disrespects God, God eventually gives him over to his own desires (Rom. 1:28) which will lead to his own demise. And more so, even the things around him are affected!
21 And the sight (on the mount) was so terrible even Moses said that he was exceedingly fearful and quaked.
22 But you are come to the mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem which is inhabited by an innumerable company of angels.
23 To the general assembly, the church of the first-born, which are written in heaven, and before God who judges all, and to the spirits of just men who have been made perfect.
As with Moses, when we come into the presence of our Lord (our prayer times), we need to keep God in utmost respect. Our prayer time is likened unto Moses on the mount as God spoke with him through the burning bush (an angel).
Jesus IS the first-born of all who confess and believe in Him (Rom. 8:29). We stand before God, who judges all things, those who have preceded us into the kingdom, that is those who have obediently abided in God’s love. So when we enter into eternity, we aren’t just going next door to visit with our neighbor. We ae going before all the angels of God and all those saints who have gone before us. Think, Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, relatives and friends throughout the ages, who have already gone to be ‘with the Lord’. Not just men of renown, but everyone who has trusted in the Lord!
24 And to Jesus, the mediator of the new covenant and to the blood of sprinkling, which speaks of better things than that of Abel.
Jesus intercedes for us, as He offers us better things than Abel because He shed His own blood for us on Calvary! Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin (Heb. 9:22). The blood of animals was shed over the millennia for us yet Jesus shed His own blood to cleanse us from our sin!
25 That you don’t refuse Him that speaks. For those who refused Him, when He spoke on the earth, did not escape. Then more so then we who turn away as He speaks from heaven.
Jesus came to this earth @2000 years ago and showed us how we should be living and what we should be doing and there were those who rejected Him then and are dead (in their sins). God gave Israel a choice at the foot of the mount “Who is on the Lord’s side” and Israel was punished for their sin (Exod. Chapt. 32). Now Jesus, being resurrected and ascended, speaks to us from heaven and if we reject Him, how should we live?
26 His voice once shook the earth, but He has now promised that not only the earth, but heaven as well.
27 And this Word signifies that the things made shall be shaken shall be removed, but those which cannot be shaken shall remain.
When He walked on this earth @2000 years ago, Jesus shook the earth. When He spoke to the people, lives changed and came into life. When He returns, not only will the earth be impacted, but then even the heavens shall be shaken as well! Many will be destroyed but those whose trust is in Jesus are on solid ground shall remain (eternally). Being true and faithful to our living God is most important to our eternal existence.
28 Therefore, let us, who receive a kingdom which cannot be moved, have grace, in which we serve God acceptably with reverence and fear.
In Christ Jesus, we cannot be shaken, so let us live in God’s grace, respecting Him. So let us live our lives because we know He is God and creator of all things. He invites all who have received Him into our lives into His kingdom. And we have come to know Him – personally!
29 For our God is a consuming fire!
Think about it!