The Word of God discovers our condition

Hebrews 4:11-13

 

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The Word of God is powerful. When you read it, your life will be changed. It is not just an old, dusty book that has no relevance. As you read it, asking the Holy Spirit for revelation, He will speak to you through His Word. He will convict you about your sin and will give you direction about your life.

Joints and Marrow

The three parts of the inside of the bone are the marrow, surrounded by the actual bone cells (which is where the blood cells are) and the outside membrane.

This membrane is a very hard substance and is called the periosteum.

It would be very difficult to slice between the three parts because the three parts are fused together to form the bone. It could be done, but only with the very sharpest knife or tool.

In this passage, the Word of God (ie.the Bible ) is being compared to this, the sharpest of knives with precision cutting abilities.

God knows what He wants to accomplish in our lives and as we meditate on the Word of God He operates on us (spiritually)  with the precision of a surgeon.

Let His Word transform your inner being!

Take a Gospill!

God knows our frailties and our weaknesses and He wants to do a work in our life.

 

 

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Persecution

Hebrews 12:3 and 4 says, “For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin.”

Jesus suffered infinitely more than any of His followers are asked to suffer. This is a great encouragement when we are feeling weary.

Hebrews 4:15- Jesus does not expect us to go through anything that He hasn’t already been through.

2 Thessalonians 3:12 and 13 says, “Everyone who wants to live a godly life will be persecuted, while evil men and imposters will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.” Pesecution in some form is inevitable for the believer.

Hebrews 10:33,34- Though they had suffered persecution and loss of possessions, they had not yet had to die for the faith. They’ve not yet had to resist with the pouring out of their blood. Some people WILL have to have their blood poured out for the gospel. Praise the Lord if that hasn’t happened to you,  but some of the “cloud of witnesses” were stoned, sawn in two and put to death by the sword. They are our inspiration. Consider the outcome of Jesus’ life and what He achieved in spite of the opposition. You reap what you sow. And Jesus reaped a marvellous reward . Ecclesiastes 7:8 says, “The end of a matter is better than its beginning”. Consider the end of the matter. Consider the result and reward in Heaven of a godly life. Consider the eternal destiny of your opponents if they don’t repent.

Fix Your Eyes On Jesus

Hebrews 12:2 says, “looking unto Jesus , the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Just as a runner concentrates on the finishing line, so we should concentrate on Jesus, who is the author and finisher of our faith. Jesus shot the starting pistol – we started out on our spiritual life because the Holy Spirit drew us to Christ (John 6:44), and He is the one who will perfect our faith. Jesus was at the start and is at the end of the race. He is the One who brings our faith into being and causes it to grow, and He will bring it to maturity and perfection.

Jesus endured the pain, shame and humiliation of the cross for our sake, so we could be made right with God. What was the joy that was set before Him? Luke 15:7 says, “… there will be more joy in Heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.” The joy was the Father’s pleasure at Jesus’ sacrifice and the repentance of sinners who otherwise would have no means of being made right with God. Furthermore Jesus was glorified at the Father’s right hand. He scorned the shame of the cross – Jesus died as someone disgraced, outside the city (Hebrews 13:13) and He died as someone cursed (Galatians 3:13) Crucifixion was the most degrading kind of execution that could be inflicted on a person, but Jesus scorned its shame because He knew what it would accomplish. Similarly the humiliation of our present suffering for the gospel’s sake is far outweighed by the prospect of future glory.(see Hebrews 11:26 and 2 Corinthians 4:17,18)

Likewise, we too, if we are obedient,  can look forward to the joy set before us . Matthew 25:21 says, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your Lord.”

Now, Jesus is sitting at the right hand of the throne of God. The work of redemption is complete and Jesus is actively ruling with God as Lord over all.

The right hand of God is a position of authority, second only to God’s.

The more you look at someone, the more their likeness is imprinted into your mind. Let Jesus influence your life. Men put blinkers on working horses so they are not distracted by things on either side. If our eyes are on Jesus we should be blinkered to the things of the world that seek to distract us. The Bible is not talking about a quick glance on a Sunday morning, but steadily and continually fixing your eyes on Jesus.

Let Jesus transform you.

Perseverance


Hebrews 12:1,2  says, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great  cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God”

The Greek word “martus” translated ” witnesses” is the origin of the English word “martyr” and means “testifies, witnesses”.

Here, Christianity is compared to a long distance race and we need perseverance to finish it.

This letter was written to Jewish converts who were familiar with the Old Testament and were being tempted to revert to Judaism or to Judaise the gospel.

The witnesses are the heroes of the faith who were mentioned in Hebrews 11 and they are our inspiring examples. Examples of some of these heroes are Abel, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph , Moses, Gideon etc. They and others through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, were tortured, had trial of mockings and scourges, chains and imprisonment, were stoned, sawn in two, were tempted and slain with the sword. Their work on earth has been done. Now the baton has been passed on – to you and I.

To run this race successfully we need to throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles and run with perseverance the race that is set before us.

We can take comfort in the fact that this race has been marked out for us. The Lord directs our steps and our stops. If He has brought us to it, He will bring us through it. God says, “This is the way, walk in it.”

The definition of “perseverance” is “the steadfast pursuit of an objective” or “the constant persistence , for example in a belief ”

Throwing off everything that hinders is like someone in a hot air balloon throwing out everything that’s heavy so the balloon can rise. Everything that gets in the way of serving God needs to go.

The Christian life is not a short sprint – it is a long distance race and we will need perseverance. There will be peaks and troughs. Despite all that, we need to keep going. Just as a runner concentrates on the finishing line we need to concentrate (fix our eyes on ) Jesus.

It will be worth it in the end!

Hebrews 10:36 says “You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised.”