Encourage One Another

Hebrews 3:13-19

New Living Translation

13 You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God. 14 For if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ. 15 Remember what it says:

“Today when you hear his voice,
    don’t harden your hearts
    as Israel did when they rebelled.”[a]

16 And who was it who rebelled against God, even though they heard his voice? Wasn’t it the people Moses led out of Egypt? 17 And who made God angry for forty years? Wasn’t it the people who sinned, whose corpses lay in the wilderness? 18 And to whom was God speaking when he took an oath that they would never enter his rest? Wasn’t it the people who disobeyed him? 19 So we see that because of their unbelief they were not able to enter his rest.

But encourage each other every day, while you still have something called “today. Help each other so that none of you will be fooled by sin and become too hard to change. We have the honor of sharing in all that Christ has if we continue until the end to have the sure faith we had in the beginning. That’s why the Spirit said,

“If you hear God’s voice today, don’t be stubborn as in the past when you turned against God.” Who were those who heard God’s voice and turned against him? It was all the people Moses led out of Egypt. And who was God angry with for 40 years? He was angry with those who sinned. And their dead bodies were left in the desert. And which people was God talking to when he promised that they would never enter his place of rest? He was talking to those who did not obey him. So we see that they were not allowed to enter and have God’s rest, because they did not believe. Challenging one another in loyalty of Gods law and love in humble god fearing ways

Hebrews Chapter 3

Hebrews 3 – Jesus, Superior to Moses

A. Considering Jesus.

1. (1a) Therefore: who we are in light of the previous paragraphs.

Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling,

a. Therefore: From the previous chapter, we are left with the picture of Jesus as our heavenly High Priest. Since this is true, it teaches something about who we are. Understanding who we are in light of who Jesus is and what He did is essential for a healthy Christian life. It keeps us from the same depths of discouragement the Hebrew Christians faced.

b. Holy brethren: This is who we are because Jesus regards us as such, because our heavenly, holy High Priest is not ashamed to call them brethren. (Hebrews 2:11) It should bless and encourage us that Jesus calls us His holy brethren.

c. Partakers of the heavenly calling: Because Jesus is committed to bringing many sons to glory (Hebrews 2:10), we are partners in His heavenly calling. This should bless and encourage us to press on, even through times of difficulty and trial.

2. (1b) Therefore: what we are to do in light of the previous paragraphs.

Consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession, Christ Jesus,

a. Consider the Apostle: We don’t often apply this word to Jesus, but He is our Apostle. The ancient Greek word translated apostle really means something like ambassador. In this sense, Jesus is the Father’s ultimate ambassador (Hebrews 1:1-2). God the Father had to send a message of love that was so important He sent it through Christ Jesus.

i. The ancient Greek word translated consider is katanoein: “It does not mean simply to look at or to notice a thing. Anyone can look at a thing or even notice it without really seeing it. The word means to fix the attention on something in such a way that its inner meaning, the lesson it is designed to teach, may be learned.” (Barclay) The same word is used in Luke 12:24 (Consider the ravens). It is an earnest appeal to look, to learn, and to understand.

ii. The message is plain: consider this. Consider that God loves you so much He sent the ultimate Messenger, Christ Jesus. Consider also how important it is for you to pay attention to God’s ultimate Apostle, who is Christ Jesus.

iii. God also chose His original, authoritative “ambassadors” for the church. These are what we think of as the original twelve apostles. God still chooses ambassadors in a less authoritative sense, and there is a sense in which we are all ambassadors for God. Yet surely, Jesus was and is the Father’s ultimate ambassador.

b. Consider the… High Priest: Jesus is the One who supremely represents us before the Father, and who represents the Father to us. God cares for us so much that He put the ultimate mediator, the ultimate High Priest, between Himself and sinful man.

i. The message is plain: consider this. Consider that God loves you so much to give you such a great High Priest. Consider that if such a great High Priest is given to us, we must honor and submit to this High Priest, who is Christ Jesus.

c. Of our confession: Jesus is the ambassador and the mediator of our confession. Christianity is a confession made with both the mouth and with the life (Matthew 10:32, Romans 10:9).

i. The word “confession” means, “to say the same thing.” When we confess our sin, we “say the same” about it that God does. In regard to salvation, all Christians “say the same thing” about their need for salvation and God’s provision in Jesus.

3. (2) Consider Jesus as faithful in His duties before the Father.

Who was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses also was faithful in all His house.

a. Who was faithful: When we consider the past faithfulness of Jesus, it makes us understand that He will continue to be faithful. And as He was faithful to God the Father (Him who appointed Him), so He will be faithful to us. This should bless and encourage us.

b. As Moses also was faithful in all His house: Moses showed an amazing faithfulness in his ministry; but Jesus showed a perfect faithfulness – surpassing even that of Moses.

B. Jesus, superior to Moses.

1. (3a) Jesus has received more glory than Moses did.

For this One has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses,

a. Moses: Moses received much glory from God. This is seen in his shining face after spending time with God (Exodus 34:29-35), in his justification before Miriam and Aaron (Numbers 12:6-8), and before the sons of Korah (Numbers 16).

b. For this One has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses did: But Jesus received far more glory from the Father, at His baptism (Matthew 3:16-17), at His transfiguration (Mark 9:7), and at His resurrection (Acts 2:26-27 and Acts 2:31-33).

2. (3b-6) Moses the servant, Jesus the Son.

Inasmuch as He who built the house has more honor than the house. For every house is built by someone, but He who built all things is God. And Moses indeed was faithful in all His house as a servant, for a testimony of those things which would be spoken afterward, but Christ as a Son over His own house, whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end.

a. Inasmuch as He who built the house has more honor than the house: Moses was a member of the household of God but Jesus is the creator of that house, worthy of greater glory.

i. According to Morris, the ancient Rabbis considered Moses to be the greatest man ever, greater than the angels. The writer to the Hebrews does nothing to criticize Moses, but he looks at Moses in his proper relation to Jesus.

b. Moses indeed was faithful in all His house as a servant… but Christ as a Son over His own house: Moses was a faithful servant, but he was never called a Son in the way Jesus is. This shows that Jesus is greater than Moses.

c. Whose house we are if we hold fast: We are a part of Jesus’ household if we hold fast. The writer to the Hebrews is encouraging those who felt like turning back, helping them to hold fast by explaining the benefits of continuing on with Jesus.

i. True commitment to Jesus is demonstrated over the long term, not just in an initial burst. We trust that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ (Philippians 1:6).

ii. Whose house we are: 1 Peter 2:4-5 says we are being built up a spiritual house. God has a work to build through His people, even as one might build a house.

C. The application of the fact of Jesus’ superiority to Moses.

1. (7-11) A quotation from Psalm 95:7-11 and its relevance.

Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says:

“Today, if you will hear His voice,
Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion,
In the day of trial in the wilderness,
Where your fathers tested Me, tried Me,
And saw My works forty years.
Therefore I was angry with that generation,
And said, ‘They always go astray in their heart,
And they have not known My ways.’
So I swore in My wrath,
‘They shall not enter My rest.’”

a. Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: The Spirit of God (speaking through His Word) told us that Jesus the Messiah is much greater than Moses. This truth should lead someone to action, and now the writer to the Hebrews will encourage those actions.

b. Do not harden your hearts: If those who followed Moses were responsible to surrender unto, to trust in, and to persevere in following God’s leader, we are much more responsible to do the same with a greater leader, Jesus the Messiah.

i. The point is clear. As the Holy Spirit speaks, we must hear His voice and not allow our hearts to become hardened. We hear the Spirit speak in the Scriptures, in the heart of His people, in those He draws to salvation, and by His works.

ii. Just as the Spirit speaks in many ways, there are also several ways we can harden our heart.

· Some harden their hearts by relapsing into their old indifference.

· Some harden their hearts by unbelief.

· Some harden their hearts by asking for more signs.

· Some harden their hearts by presuming upon the mercy of God.

c. Today: There is urgency to the voice of the Holy Spirit. He never prompts us to get right with God tomorrow, or to trust in yesterday – the Holy Spirit only moves us to act today.

i. The Holy Spirit tells us today because it is a genuine invitation. We know that the Holy Spirit really wants us to come to Jesus because He says, “today.” If someone asks me to come over their house for dinner but they give no day or time, I know it isn’t a firm invitation yet. But when they say, “Come over on this day at this time,” I know it is a firm invitation, that they want me to come, that they are ready for me to come, and that it will be prepared for my coming. The Holy Spirit gives you a time for His invitation – today.

ii. Charles Spurgeon pointed out one reason why the Holy Spirit is so urgent: “Besides, he waits to execute his favourite office of a Comforter, and he cannot comfort an ungodly soul, he cannot comfort those who harden their hearts. Comfort for unbelievers would be their destruction. As he delights to be the Comforter, and has been sent forth from the Father to act specially in that capacity, that he may comfort the people of God, he watches with longing eyes for broken hearts and contrite spirits, that he may apply the balm of Gilead and heal their wounds.”

iii. We must also have great urgency about today. “Select the strongest man you know, and suppose that everything in reference to your eternal welfare is to depend upon whether he lives to see the next year. With what anxiety would you hear of his illness, how concerned you would be about his health? Well, sinner, your salvation is risked by you upon your own life, is that any more secure?” (Spurgeon)

d. As in the rebellion, in the day of trial: The day of trial refers first to the trial at Meribah (Numbers 20:1-13). More generally it speaks of Israel’s refusal to trust and enter the Promised Land during the Exodus (Numbers 13:30-14:10). God did not accept their unbelief and He condemned that generation of unbelief to die in the wilderness (Numbers 14:22-23 and 14:28-32).

i. This only makes sense because there is some continuity in God’s work among His people through the centuries. We can learn from the mistakes of God’s ancient people.

e. And saw My works forty years: Because of their unbelief, the people of Israel faced judgment which culminated after forty years. This warning in Hebrews was written about forty years after the Jews’ initial rejection of Jesus. God’s wrath was quickly coming upon the Jewish people who rejected Jesus, and would culminate with the Roman destruction of Jerusalem.

f. Therefore I was angry with that generation: God’s anger was kindled against that generation on account of their unbelief. They refused to trust God for the great things He promised, and they were unwilling to continue in trust. Therefore the could not enter the rest God had appointed for them, the Land of Canaan.

2. (12-15) Beware: Don’t be like the generation that perished in the wilderness.

Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end, while it is said:

“Today, if you will hear His voice,
Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”

a. Lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief: This is strong language, but we often underestimate the terrible nature of our unbelief. Refusing to believe God is a serious sin because it shows an evil heart and a departing from the living God.

i. “Unbelief is not inability to understand, but unwillingness to trust… it is the will, not the intelligence, that is involved.” (Newell)

ii. One can truly believe God, yet be occasionally troubled by doubts. There is a doubt that wants God’s promise but is weak in faith at the moment. Unbelief isn’t weakness of faith; it sets itself in opposition to faith.

iii. “The great sin of not believing in the Lord Jesus Christ is often spoken of very lightly and in a very trifling spirit, as though it were scarcely any sin at all; yet, according to my text, and, indeed, according to the whole tenor of the Scriptures, unbelief is the giving of God the lie, and what can be worse?” (Spurgeon)

iv. “Hearken, O unbeliever, you have said, ‘I cannot believe,’ but it would be more honest if you had said, ‘I will not believe.’ The mischief lies there. Your unbelief is your fault, not your misfortune. It is a disease, but it is also a crime: it is a terrible source of misery to you, but it is justly so, for it is an atrocious offense against the God of truth.” (Spurgeon)

v. “Did I not hear some one say, ‘Ah, sir, I have been trying to believe for years.’ Terrible words! They make the case still worse. Imagine that after I had made a statement, a man should declare that he did not believe me, in fact, he could not believe me though he would like to do so. I should feel aggrieved certainly; but it would make matters worse if he added, ‘In fact I have been for years trying to believe you, and I cannot do it.’ What does he mean by that? What can he mean but that I am so incorrigibly false, and such a confirmed liar, that though he would like to give me some credit, he really cannot do it? With all the effort he can make in my favour, he finds it quite beyond his power to believe me? Now, a man who says, ‘I have been trying to believe in God,’ in reality says just that with regard to the Most High.” (Spurgeon)

vi. The living God: “This divine title is of supreme significance, and shows that God’s character is the same to believers as to all else.” (Griffith-Thomas)

b. Exhort one another daily: If we will strengthen our faith and avoid the ruin of unbelief, we must be around other Christians who will exhort – that is, seriously encourage us. This shows our responsibility to both give exhortation and to receive exhortation, and to exhort one another daily. It is an easy thing to judge and criticize, but that is not exhortation.

i. If you are out of fellowship altogether, you can’t you exhort or be exhorted. When we are out of fellowship there is much less around us to keep us from becoming hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

ii. Some think that Jesus’ command to not bother with the speck in our brother’s eye while we have a log in our own (Matthew 7:5) indicates that we should not exhort one another daily. Yet Jesus told us to first deal with our log in our own eye, but then to go and deal with the speck in our brother’s eye. He did not tell us to ignore their speck, only to deal with it in proper order.

iii. This emphasis on the importance of fellowship stands in the face of society’s thinking. A United States survey found that more than 78% of the general public and 70% of churchgoing people believed that “you can be a good Christian without attending church.” (Roof and McKinney)

iv. “You are to watch over your brethren, to exhort one another daily, especially you who are officers of the church, or who are elderly and experienced. Be upon the watch lest any of your brethren in the church should gradually backslide, or lest any in the congregation should harden into a condition of settled unbelief, and perish in their sin. He who bids you take heed to yourself, would not have you settle down into a selfish care for yourself alone, lest you should become like Cain, who even dared to say to the Lord himself, ‘Am I my brother’s keeper?’” (Spurgeon)

c. Lest any of you become hardened: Christians must be vigilant against hardness of heart. That hidden sin you indulge in – none suspect you of it because you hide it well. You deceive yourself, believing that it really does little harm. You can always ask forgiveness later. You can always die to self and surrender to Jesus in coming months or years. What you cannot see or sense is that your hidden sin hardens your heart. As your heart becomes harder you become less and less sensitive to your sin. You become more and more distant from Jesus. And your spiritual danger grows every day.

d. The deceitfulness of sin: The sin of unbelief has its root in deceit and its flower is marked by hardness (lest any of you be hardened). Unbelief and sin are deceitful because when we don’t believe God, we don’t stop believing – we simply start believing in a lie.

i. One great danger of sin is its deceitfulness. If it came with full revelation, full exposure of all its consequences, it would be unattractive – but the nature of sin is deceitfulness.

ii. From the very beginning, much of the power of sin lies in its deceitfulness.

· Sin is deceitful in the way that it comes to us.

· Sin is deceitful in what it promises us.

· Sin is deceitful in what it calls itself.

· Sin is deceitful in the excuses it makes, both before and after the sin.

e. Partakers of Christ: Believers – those who turn from sin and self and put their life’s trust in Jesus – are gloriously called partakers of Christ.

i. Partakers of Christ – this is the whole picture. Partakers of His obedience, partakers of His suffering, partakers of His death, partakers of His resurrection, partakers of His victory, partakers of His plan, partakers of His power, partakers of His ministry of intercession, partakers of His work, partakers of His glory, partakers of His destiny. Saying “Partakers of Christ” says it all.

ii. There are many ways that the believer’s union with Jesus is described:

· Like a stone cemented to its foundation.

· Like a vine connected to its branches.

· Like a wife married to her husband.

f. Do not harden your hearts: We often say our hearts become hard because of what others or circumstances do to us. But the fact is that we harden our own hearts in response to what happens to us.

3. (16-19) It isn’t enough to make a good beginning.

For who, having heard, rebelled? Indeed, was it not all who came out of Egypt, led by Moses? Now with whom was He angry forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose corpses fell in the wilderness? And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.

a. For who, having heard, rebelled? As a nation, Israel made a good beginning. After all, it took a lot of faith to cross the Red Sea. Yet all of that first generation perished in the wilderness, except for the two men of faith – Joshua and Caleb.

i. Think of their great privilege:

· They saw the ten plagues come upon Egypt.

· They had great revelation from God.

· They had received great patience from God.

· They received great mercy.

b. They would not enter His rest: 11 times in Hebrews chapters 3 and 4, the Book of Hebrews speaks of entering rest. That rest will be deeply detailed in the next chapter. But here, the key to entering rest is revealed: belief.

c. So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief: One might be tempted to think the key to entering rest is obedience, especially from Hebrews 3:18: to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey? But the disobedience mentioned in Hebrews 3:18 is an outgrowth of the unbelief mentioned in Hebrews 3:19. The unbelief came first, then the disobedience.

i. It was unbelief and not something else that kept them out of Canaan:

· Their sin did not keep them out of Canaan.

· Lack of evidence did not keep them out of Canaan.

· Lack of encouragement did not keep them out of Canaan.

· Difficult circumstances did not keep them out of Canaan.

ii. In a New Testament context, our belief centers on the superiority of Jesus Christ, the truth of who He is (fully God and fully man) and His atoning work for us as a faithful High Priest (as in Hebrews 2:17). When we trust in these things, making them the “food” of our souls, we enter into God’s rest.

d. They could not enter in: Israel’s great failure was to persevere in faith. After crossing much of the wilderness trusting in God, and after seeing so many reasons to trust in Him, they end up falling short – because they did not persevere in faith in God and His promise.

i. Jesus reminded us in the parable of the soils with the seeds cast on stony ground and among thorns that it is not enough to make a good beginning, real belief perseveres to the end. It is wonderful to make a good start, but how we finish is even more important than how we start.

ii. C.S. Lewis speaks to the difficulty of persistence (from a tempting demon’s fictional perspective): “The Enemy has guarded him from you through the first great wave of temptations. But, if only he can be kept alive, you have time itself for you ally. The long, dull monotonous years of middle-aged prosperity or middle-aged adversity are excellent campaigning weather. You see, it is so hard for these creatures to persevere. The routine of adversity, the gradual decay of youthful loves and youthful hopes, the quiet despair (hardly felt as pain) of ever overcoming the chronic temptations with which we have again and again defeated them, the drabness which we create in their lives and inarticulate resentment with which we teach them to respond to it — all this provides admirable opportunities of wearing out a soul by attrition. If, on the other hand, the middle years from prosperous, our position is even stronger. Prosperity knits a man to the World. He fells that he is ‘finding his place in it’ while really it is finding its place in him… That is why we must often wish long life to our patients; seventy years is not a day too much for the difficult task of unraveling their souls from Heaven and building up a firm attachment to the earth.” (The Screwtape Letters)

iii. If we enter in to God’s rest then the coming years will only increase our trust and reliance on Jesus. If by unbelief we fail to enter in, then the coming years will only gradually draw us away from a passionate, trusting relationship with Jesus.

©2018 David Guzik – No distribution beyond personal use without permission

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Encourage One Another Daily

Hebrews 3:12-19

Key Verse 3:14

“We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first.”

Look at verse 14. There is controversy regarding verses like this that seem to have words such as “if” in the middle of them making salvation conditional, as if to say that we share in Christ only if we hold firmly to the our confidence or confession of faith in him. What is the word of God telling us? Is it telling us that one is saved by faith in Christ and comes to share in Christ, but only if one keeps on holding to one’s conviction? The real question is, what plays the greater role in our lives, God’s sovereignty which pours out grace into our lives and saves us for good, or our free will which is equally granted by God and affects all our decisions in life, especially decisions to hold up our end of keeping up with our salvation? So here is something to think about when we come across such verses in the Bible as verse 14. There seems to always be two truths running through the Bible at the same time, one is that God is sovereign, and two is that man is a responsible person with a free will. And it is only when the balance of truth is maintained between these two that can keep us from errors. We should not stress God’s divine sovereignty such that we exclude our own responsibility before God. And we should not stress our own responsibility before God such that we ignore or deny God’s sovereignty. The problem is we like extremes and those in history who stress God’s sovereignty have made the error of believing that if a sinner had received Christ, then whatever he or she does after that, and whatever their life is like afterwards, he cannot perish. On the other hand, those who have stressed human responsibility and the free will have gone as far as denying the efficacy of the completed works of Christ when they say that a sinner’s eventual salvation status depends on his good works and faithfulness. But the truth is that Scripture (Philippians 2:12; 2 Peter 1:5-12) teaches us that salvation calls us to exercise our human responsibility as we live in the grace of our Lord Jesus in obedience to his word and his will in our lives. So if we go back to verse 14, we see that we have a responsibility before God, to hold firmly to our confidence and conviction in Christ Jesus as we share in him all that he has blessed us with through his grace. Now that that is out of the way, let us look at this passage and see what it says.

In verse 12, the apostle says to these struggling Hebrew Christians: “See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart.” Then he defines the worst case of a sinful unbelieving heart when he says, “A heart that turns away from the living God.” And that’s apparently what many of them were struggling with— the sin of unbelief— that would eventually cause them to turn away from, and abandon the living God— Jesus Christ. He had showed them an elaborate example from their own history of the results of what abandoning their faith in Christ Jesus would entail. God Almighty didn’t spare their ancestors when they abandoned God in their unbelief. He swore they wouldn’t enter his rest. In other words, they wouldn’t be allowed into the promised land. But apparently, the sin of unbelief isn’t a trivial problem that could be dealt with in one example from the past. It’s such a grave problem that the apostle continued addressing it to reveal its seriousness and its dire consequences.

Read verse 13. “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” There is no prayer that a true Christian needs more often than “Lord, protect my heart from being hardened” and, “Lord, don’t let me be deceived by my own sin”. We have faith, but our faith needs to be strengthened and it needs to grow, otherwise it falters and weakens and falls prey to the enemies of our faith. That’s why the apostle admonishes them and us in verse 12 saying: “See to it” as a warning that you don’t find your faith being hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. Yes, we have faith and it’s the most precious thing which the Lord our God had given to us. So it must be passionately guarded without fail. Without it we are nothing but human beings born in this world, enslaved by its ways and desires, and soon to die in it, only to face God’s judgment.

But with faith in Christ, we are the very children of God, those the Lord Jesus suffered and died to redeem from this world, who have been given an inheritance in his kingdom. Our faith in Christ is what distinguishes us from all other people in this world. It doesn’t make us any better than them because what we are and who we are is entirely based on the grace of our Lord. But it is our faith in him that makes us belong to him, and gives us purpose and hope and a calling to live by a different paradigm. It’s a faith worth fighting for, and keeping close to our hearts. We cannot afford to let down our guard even a moment. But as much as we struggle in prayer to be strong in the faith, and to mature in it, this is a fight Christians cannot fight alone. We surely need God’s help. But the author also has very good advice for us as a church.

Look again at verse 13. He says, “Encourage one another daily, as long as it is called today”. Often, “Today” is used as the time of God’s favor, the time when the opportunity is there. The apostle here uses the word daily and today in the same sentence because of how urgent this exhortation is for you and me— that we encourage one another daily. He calls us to encourage each other daily. In regards to what? In regards to our faith in Christ Jesus; in regards to our love for him; our walk with him; our devotion to him; our service to him; our wholehearted commitment to him, and to the hope we have in his promises. In regards to the glorious truths found in his words that speak of his Glory and his Kingdom. And to encourage one another especially in regards to our faith— a faith deeply rooted and firmly grounded in him. The Holy Spirit tells us to do that daily— to encourage one another daily with such things. We have a duty, a responsibility, an obligation towards one another to encourage each other’s faith. As Christians we know and should know how to do that! [We don’t have to tell what usually discourages the spirit and dampens the faith of others. Complaining and godless chatter, unruly behavior and stubborn pride— such things do not encourage anyone’s faith but rather discourage.]

Why? Look again at verse 13. He says, “So that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness”. We are God’s children with the Spirit of God, but we are also flesh and are subject to this world’s temptations. And they come in many shapes forms and sizes. When temptation turns to sin, and sin is conceived in the heart (James 1:15), it corrupts the heart and works its deception until it has destroyed what faith there is in that heart. It happened to the Israelites in the desert as the apostle recounts to his readers. It can happen to us. How does sin corrupt your heart and reduce faith to unbelief? David was a man after God’s own heart, a man of faith. One time when he saw a married woman bathing, rather than fleeing the temptation, he had her brought to his house to enjoyed her. Sin deceived him in convincing him that it was his absolute privilege as king. When sin isn’t dealt with it is justified and that hardens the heart. With a hardened heart, sin deceived him even more to cover up his sin by using the woman’s own husband. When that scheme didn’t work, David’s heart was so hardened by then that this shepherd was willing to kill him, a faithful soldier in his army in order to cover up his own sin. It does not mean that he stopped believing in God, but it does mean that sin hardened him not to listen to the voice of truth and to follow evil. If he had not eventually repented, David would have been lost in his unbelief like any other godless man. Surely sin’s deceitfulness hardens our hearts to the point of unbelief, until we stop listening to the word of God and the Holy Spirit’s convictions; we refuse to repent and to let go of the sin that has made us its captive. Today many are hardened by unbelief, even though they appear to be godly doing godly things. Today idols cause them to sin and then rob them of their faith. We must hold to our faith in Christ at any cost. We must never stop listening to God’s voice of truth, in humility of heart.

Look how urgent is the apostle’s exhortation to us again that he now repeats it in verse 14. Read verse 14. “We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first.” He’s already said the same thing in verse 6 when he said: “Hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast.” Now once again he talks about holding onto “the confidence we had at first”. This “confidence we had at first” is better translated as “our original conviction”. Here there are two things to consider very carefully. First, what we share in Christ. And second, our original conviction in him. And the two are so closely related. We have to ask ourselves what is it that we share in Christ that compels us to hold so tightly to our original conviction? Or what is the original conviction so strong in our hearts, that has brought us all such an inheritance in Christ worth holding onto?

To begin with, as Christians it is our original conviction (confidence) that we are condemned sinners whose souls are hopelessly lost, and whose hearts are beyond cure. It is our conviction that God in his mercy had promised and fulfilled his promise to send us a Savior, our Lord Jesus Christ to save us from our sins and to restore us to our Father God. It is our original conviction that Jesus took upon himself our sins on the cross where he crucified our flesh in himself, and in his death and resurrection has also raised us up with him to a new life— justified, sanctified and glorified in him. This is our original conviction in Christ Jesus— our absolute confidence from the start to the end! Our original conviction is the conviction we had the moment Christ became real to us, and his gospel came alive in our personal lives, and the Holy Spirit came to live within us marking our new birth in him. Our original conviction is one of the most important events in our lives. It is the memory of divine grace and mercy, a memory of unmerited favor. It is a grace in our lives that cannot be forgotten or ignored.

The original conviction is also the time the Christian receives his or her share in Christ Jesus. Of course the author is talking about owning Christ, meaning that we share in Christ and he owns us and we own him. But the wording “share in Christ” also lends us a universe of meaning. Our original conviction of him made us partakers of him, that is, partakers of his life everlasting and all the privileges that only those in him are privileged to share. We are joined to him. We love him and are loved by him. Nothing will ever harm us in heaven or on earth. We are members of his body, of his flesh and bones, the very heart of his very heart. We are joint heirs with him. Whatever we are here and now, whatever our situation, rich or poor, weak or strong, successful or unsuccessful, we are the ones who share in Christ, and that’s our reality! The author tells us, exhorts us, commands us, “to hold firmly till the end” the original conviction “we had at first”. How foolish it would be to let go of the gold in order to take hold of the dust. And this is what some do at times— let go of the gold to pick up some dirt. We share in Christ! We have a conviction of him. We should stay the course to the end.  

Therefore once again the apostle repeats the central point of his quotation from the psalm 95 in verse 15. We talked about this in detail last time. When God speaks, we should not harden our hearts but instead respond in faith. Why does God speak to us? Because our hearts are naturally hard and need to be softened. And so God speaks to us to soften our hearts. When God speaks to our hearts and we acknowledge our sins; When he speaks to us and we recognize the voice of merciful Father; When he speaks and we taste the joy of his fellowship; When God speaks and we see the face of our dear Savior, he who came to forgive our sins, to wash our feet, to shed his blood, all for our salvation, how can our hard hearts but soften to him! hankfully It is such things we hear that lead us to faith and prayer, to repentance and worship, to love and the hope of heaven. These are the things that make the heart tender toward God and toward each other.

Read verses 16-19. First of all let’s be clear of whom is the Holy Spirit speaking? Who are these people? They were the very people to whom God sent his servant Moses to rescue from slavery in Egypt. God had seen their misery and heard their cry for deliverance and had brought them out of a meaningless life of slavery and delivered them to a new life in freedom to worship and to serve God. These were the very people who had witnessed more than any other people the power and presence of God among them— for forty years during their journeys in the wilderness. Many of them had heard God’s voice, received his word and had made a covenant with him to obey God. But the Holy Spirit tells us that the majority of them “perished” in the wilderness and never experienced God’s rest— the promise of entering Canaan. It was tragic that a people delivered from slavery for a promise never got a taste of that promise. And why? Because they provoked God to anger. And God had good reason to be angry with them.

In verses 16-19, we see four descriptions of the people that provoked God to such anger that he swore they would never enter into his rest. The apostle tells us that these people “heard and rebelled”. He also described them as “those who sinned”, as well as “those who disobeyed”. Finally he pinpoints the root of their problem when he says “because of their unbelief”. God had given them every opportunity to worship and honor and serve him. But looking at these descriptions, in every way they had hardened their heart and spurned him. The apostle says that they “heard and rebelled”. What had they heard? They heard what we have all heard, the gospel of God’s grace and truth preached to them with Christ at its center as Savior Lord. But they rebelled and took for themselves idols to worship rather than the King of glory. Don’t some of God’s people today do the same when they abandon Christ for their idols of money and pleasure! We can say of them too that they “heard and rebelled”.

The apostle also tells us that these people sinned and disobeyed. Many of them sinned by committing acts of immorality that would even shame the pagans. And they disobeyed when they acted against the will of God. They were like those who in the pride of heart do their own thing even when they know what the word of God says. Sadly there are many Christians who are under the illusion that their independent acts of free will are non-consequential. But in truth they are blatant acts of disobedience to God who wants us to live according to his word. Finally the author mentions the root of sin from which all other sins emerge and proliferate— unbelief. Because of unbelief, he says they lost everything, even what was once promised them. Unbelief or lack of faith is a great sin.

As for unbelief in Christ Jesus himself, let me tell you what he Bible says. The Bible tells us that faith in Christ Jesus is the way of salvation for all people. And so, all people are lost through unbelief. There is no sin of men that is greater than the sin of unbelief in Christ Jesus our Lord. As he was promising his disciples the coming of the Holy Spirit, Jesus himself told us of the primary work of the Holy Spirit. He said: “When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me.” (John 16:8-9) And sure enough when the Holy Spirit came, his primary work has been a work of conviction of men’s hearts regarding sin, righteousness and judgment. But here, we’re only concerned with guilt in regard to sin. All men are guilty of sin until they put their faith in Christ Jesus. It has been the Holy Spirit’s work to challenge the hearts of all people to put their faith in Jesus. He convicts them of their guilt in regard to sin. He impresses upon them the truth that that are guilty of sin before God, and that only the Son of God Jesus Christ can save them from their sins and cleanse their souls. The Holy Spirit convicts them to believe in Jesus, to put their faith in his blood shed for them on the cross, and to escape God’s judgment. Those who remain in their unbelief remain in their sin, and it’s the greatest sin one commits against God, because Jesus is God’s greatest gift to humanity, so that no one has any excuse.

But the convicting work of the Holy Spirit does not absolve us from our responsibility to preach the gospel and to teach the word of God and to proclaim the name of our Lord. As the apostle says elsewhere: “For, ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!’” (Romans 10:13-15) As our passage opens with the words of encouraging one another daily, as important as it is that we encourage each other in faith so that our hearts may not be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness, it is equally important that we encourage one another to proclaim the gospel to our generation so that many may find salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. May God help us be active workers in his mission field suffering for his glory until we find our final rest in him. Amen. Read our key verse again, verse 14.

What does Hebrews 3:13 mean?

This passage is a warning to Christian believers not to allow stubbornness, sin, or a lack of faith to rob them of God’s promised blessings. The nation of Israel suffered when it failed to “hold fast,” and spent forty years wandering in the desert. So too can a Christian suffer when they lack trust and faith in God.

One key to avoiding this pitfall is the influence of other Christian believers. One of the great benefits of healthy church relationships is loving correction. Having a meaningful, personal relationship with other Christians means “watching each other’s back.” This means warning our brothers and sisters in Christ when they are being pulled away into sin and helping them to resist temptation and error. The author’s urgency is highlighted by using the phrase “as long as it is called ‘today.'” This, in more modern terms, could be stated as “do it while you still can.”

The New Testament often explains that sin is deceptive, destructive, and deadly (2 Timothy 3:13; Titus 3:3). It can also create a spiritual callous, making us less sensitive to our own sin (1 Timothy 4:2). Fellow Christians should love each other enough to “exhort,” meaning “encourage, uplift, or challenge” each other when it comes to living a righteous life.

Context Summary

Hebrews 3:7–14 uses the example of Israel’s forty years in the wilderness (Numbers 13—14) as a warning. This is directed at Christians who fail to ”hold fast” their faith in God during persecution. Israel was saved from Egypt, as believers are saved from eternal death through salvation. Israel was offered the Promised Land, as believers are promised victory through our spiritual inheritance. Israel lost faith and didn’t trust God against the ”giants” of Canaan, as believers can be tempted to lose faith in the face of persecution. The ancient Israelites were not sent back to Egypt, just as God does not revoke the salvation of Christian believers. However, both can expect hardship and a loss of fellowship if they fail to trust in God.

Chapter Summary

Hebrews chapter 3 uses a reference to Israel’s wandering in the desert from the story of the Exodus. In this incident, the nation of Israel came to the border of the Promised Land and then lost confidence in God. Rather than trusting Him, most of the people gave up hope. As a result, only a tiny remnant of the nation was allowed to enter into Canaan. This chapter explains that Jesus Christ is superior to Moses and all of Moses’ accomplishments. Christians, therefore, need to encourage each other to fully trust in God, in order to see fulfillment of His promises

What does Hebrews 3:14 mean?

The context of this passage is set up by quotations from Psalm 95. That passage warns Israel not to fall into the same error as they did in the desert after the Exodus. When Israel failed to trust in God, they were disciplined with forty years of wandering, and most of that generation lost the opportunity to see victory in the Promised Land. In the same way, the writer of Hebrews is warning Christians not to forfeit their spiritual blessings by failing to “hold fast” their faith and obedience to God (Hebrews 3:6).

With that idea in mind, the author states that those who do maintain their trust and obedience “have come to share” in Christ. This is from the Greek word metochoi, which is translated as “share,” or “partakers.” This is the same term, with the same basic meaning, as used in Hebrews 3:1. If we are faithful, we can share in the partnership Christ offers to us (Revelation 2:26–27). If we do not, and we fall into sin through an evil heart (Hebrews 3:12), then the same discipline which came to Israel in the desert is waiting for us, instead.

Context Summary

Hebrews 3:7–14 uses the example of Israel’s forty years in the wilderness (Numbers 13—14) as a warning. This is directed at Christians who fail to ”hold fast” their faith in God during persecution. Israel was saved from Egypt, as believers are saved from eternal death through salvation. Israel was offered the Promised Land, as believers are promised victory through our spiritual inheritance. Israel lost faith and didn’t trust God against the ”giants” of Canaan, as believers can be tempted to lose faith in the face of persecution. The ancient Israelites were not sent back to Egypt, just as God does not revoke the salvation of Christian believers. However, both can expect hardship and a loss of fellowship if they fail to trust in God.

Chapter Summary

Hebrews chapter 3 uses a reference to Israel’s wandering in the desert from the story of the Exodus. In this incident, the nation of Israel came to the border of the Promised Land and then lost confidence in God. Rather than trusting Him, most of the people gave up hope. As a result, only a tiny remnant of the nation was allowed to enter into Canaan. This chapter explains that Jesus Christ is superior to Moses and all of Moses’ accomplishments. Christians, therefore, need to encourage each other to fully trust in God, in order to see fulfillment of His promises

What does Hebrews 3:15 mean?

Verses 12 through 14 brought a very direct application of Psalm 95 to the discussion. Israel suffered discipline in the wilderness because the people acted in a faithless, stubborn way. The author of Hebrews has warned his readers not to make the same mistake due to their own sin. In fact, he commands Christians to exhort (encourage, challenge) each other to avoid such things. Here, he puts an exclamation point on his use of the Psalm by repeating the first verse quoted, Psalm 95:7.

The use of the term “today,” both in Hebrews and in the Old Testament, is meant to be a call for urgency. This is not a topic to be taken lightly, or put off until some other time. The nation of Israel failed to “hold fast” to their trust in God (Hebrews 3:6), and it cost them dearly. They were not cast off by God—just as the Christians this letter is written to are not at risk of losing their salvation—but they were denied their inheritance due to their stubbornness.

Context Summary

Hebrews 3:15–19 ties several of the previous sections together. Using four primary forms of spiritual error, the author shows why Israel was disciplined by God. This discipline meant a loss of the Promised Land—not a parallel to salvation, but to spiritual rewards. Rebellion, sin, defiance, and faithlessness were all present in the nation of Israel, and that generation was denied their potential victory. Christians are warned, in this chapter, to avoid these mistakes so they don’t forfeit their own spiritual inheritance.

Chapter Summary

Hebrews chapter 3 uses a reference to Israel’s wandering in the desert from the story of the Exodus. In this incident, the nation of Israel came to the border of the Promised Land and then lost confidence in God. Rather than trusting Him, most of the people gave up hope. As a result, only a tiny remnant of the nation was allowed to enter into Canaan. This chapter explains that Jesus Christ is superior to Moses and all of Moses’ accomplishments. Christians, therefore, need to encourage each other to fully trust in God, in order to see fulfillment of His promises.

What does Hebrews 3:16 mean?

Verses 16 through 18 use a series of rhetorical questions—sentences which are framed as questions, but are really meant as definite statements. These are used to prove the author’s main point, which is that believers who fail to trust in God risk losing their spiritual blessings. Just as Israel suffered forty years of wandering when they were faithless, so too can a Christian suffer instead of obtaining the “Promised Land” of God’s inheritance. This is not a matter of salvation, but of fellowship, and yet it is still deadly serious.

This verse also shows that the Bible’s authors understood the use of generalities. The words say “all” in reference to those who left Egypt. However, a major aspect of the story was the faithfulness of Joshua and Caleb, and the fact that the younger members of Israel would live to enter Canaan. The point, however, fits the rhetoric. This is similar to how we might say, “nobody shops at that store anymore” when business is extremely poor. The point is not literalism, but effect, and would have been well understood by the Jewish readers of this letter.

This verse also gives one of the four major types of spiritual failure which can invite divine discipline. The first, given here, is rebellion. This is from the Greek word parepikranan, and it most literally means to “provoke.” These are those moments when we respond to God in a way which even other human beings would consider obnoxious or immature. Complaining, selfishness, carelessness, and so forth are all forms of rebellion.

Context Summary

Hebrews 3:15–19 ties several of the previous sections together. Using four primary forms of spiritual error, the author shows why Israel was disciplined by God. This discipline meant a loss of the Promised Land—not a parallel to salvation, but to spiritual rewards. Rebellion, sin, defiance, and faithlessness were all present in the nation of Israel, and that generation was denied their potential victory. Christians are warned, in this chapter, to avoid these mistakes so they don’t forfeit their own spiritual inheritance.

Chapter Summary

Hebrews chapter 3 uses a reference to Israel’s wandering in the desert from the story of the Exodus. In this incident, the nation of Israel came to the border of the Promised Land and then lost confidence in God. Rather than trusting Him, most of the people gave up hope. As a result, only a tiny remnant of the nation was allowed to enter into Canaan. This chapter explains that Jesus Christ is superior to Moses and all of Moses’ accomplishments. Christians, therefore, need to encourage each other to fully trust in God, in order to see fulfillment of His promises

What does Hebrews 3:17 mean?

This verse, along with verses 16 and 18, uses rhetorical questions to close up the author’s point about sin and discipline. Israel was forced to wander in the desert for forty years due to their sin. This caused an entire generation to lose out on entering the Promised Land. In this chapter, the author has made the argument that Christians are subject to the same dangers, if they fail to “hold fast,” making the same errors as the people of Israel did. These verses remind the reader that it was due to Israel’s sin that they were forced to wander.

The prior verse introduced the first of four ways in which our spiritual failures can disrupt our fellowship with God. The first was rebellion. Here, the main concern is simply referred to as “sin,” from the Greek hamartēsasin. In this particular context, the term has more to do with our actions than anything else. The connection is fairly clear, as this verse connects “sin” with the death of the body—physical for physical. Of course, what we do with our bodies is a reflection of what we think and believe. And, it demonstrates the extent to which we see God as the ultimate authority in our lives.

Context Summary

Hebrews 3:15–19 ties several of the previous sections together. Using four primary forms of spiritual error, the author shows why Israel was disciplined by God. This discipline meant a loss of the Promised Land—not a parallel to salvation, but to spiritual rewards. Rebellion, sin, defiance, and faithlessness were all present in the nation of Israel, and that generation was denied their potential victory. Christians are warned, in this chapter, to avoid these mistakes so they don’t forfeit their own spiritual inheritance.

Chapter Summary

Hebrews chapter 3 uses a reference to Israel’s wandering in the desert from the story of the Exodus. In this incident, the nation of Israel came to the border of the Promised Land and then lost confidence in God. Rather than trusting Him, most of the people gave up hope. As a result, only a tiny remnant of the nation was allowed to enter into Canaan. This chapter explains that Jesus Christ is superior to Moses and all of Moses’ accomplishments. Christians, therefore, need to encourage each other to fully trust in God, in order to see fulfillment of His promises.

What does Hebrews 3:18 mean?

Verse 16 mentioned rebellion as one of the ways in which our spiritual failures can result in a loss of fellowship with God. Verse 17 used the term “sin” as a more generic reference to our physical behaviors. Here, the third of four such problems is given: defiance. This is apeithēsasin in Greek, a word carrying a strong flavor of stubbornness and refusal. This, in other words, covers those moments when our sinful natures take on the form of a toddler: stamping our feet and saying, “no!”

The context of these warnings is that of Psalm 95: Israel suffered for decades without entering the Promised Land, because they were stubborn and rebellious towards God. When faced with something difficult, they failed to “hold fast” to their faith (Hebrews 3:6). Christians face the same risk. The author of Hebrews is warning believers to guard their lives (Hebrews 3:12), and to lovingly encourage each other (Hebrews 3:13), to avoid this discipline.

Context Summary

Hebrews 3:15–19 ties several of the previous sections together. Using four primary forms of spiritual error, the author shows why Israel was disciplined by God. This discipline meant a loss of the Promised Land—not a parallel to salvation, but to spiritual rewards. Rebellion, sin, defiance, and faithlessness were all present in the nation of Israel, and that generation was denied their potential victory. Christians are warned, in this chapter, to avoid these mistakes so they don’t forfeit their own spiritual inheritance.

Chapter Summary

Hebrews chapter 3 uses a reference to Israel’s wandering in the desert from the story of the Exodus. In this incident, the nation of Israel came to the border of the Promised Land and then lost confidence in God. Rather than trusting Him, most of the people gave up hope. As a result, only a tiny remnant of the nation was allowed to enter into Canaan. This chapter explains that Jesus Christ is superior to Moses and all of Moses’ accomplishments. Christians, therefore, need to encourage each other to fully trust in God, in order to see fulfillment of His promises

What does Hebrews 3:19 mean?

This is the last of the four ways in which spiritual failure can cause us to miss out on blessings from God. The context is that of Israel and her wandering in the desert. Despite common use, the Promised Land is not meant to be a symbol of heaven in the Bible—there was still war, work, and strife in Canaan. Salvation, in the story of Israel, was her liberation from Egypt. God did not send the rebellious people back to slavery. He will not let a saved Christian fall into eternal damnation. However, He will discipline a Christian who exhibits spiritual failures with a loss of their spiritual inheritance.

Prior verses used the example of Israel to point out the errors of rebellion, sin, and defiance. Here, “faithlessness” is mentioned. This is from the Greek term apistian. As used in the Bible, it is applied to those who lack faith entirely, those who have a weak trust in God, and those who fail to maintain trust. When Israel saw the “giants” of Canaan, they “chickened out” on God, and demonstrated this kind of “unbelief.”

Hebrews was originally written to Jewish Christians suffering under persecution. There would have been a strong temptation to “chicken out” and revert back to Judaism, or otherwise compromise their faith. However, this apistian risks discipline from God. The spiritual inheritance we are promised—something separate from our eternally secure salvation—is contingent on our being willing to “hold fast” to our faith (Hebrews 3:6). Faithlessness makes pleasing God impossible (Hebrews 11:6).

Context Summary

Hebrews 3:15–19 ties several of the previous sections together. Using four primary forms of spiritual error, the author shows why Israel was disciplined by God. This discipline meant a loss of the Promised Land—not a parallel to salvation, but to spiritual rewards. Rebellion, sin, defiance, and faithlessness were all present in the nation of Israel, and that generation was denied their potential victory. Christians are warned, in this chapter, to avoid these mistakes so they don’t forfeit their own spiritual inheritance.

Chapter Summary

Hebrews chapter 3 uses a reference to Israel’s wandering in the desert from the story of the Exodus. In this incident, the nation of Israel came to the border of the Promised Land and then lost confidence in God. Rather than trusting Him, most of the people gave up hope. As a result, only a tiny remnant of the nation was allowed to enter into Canaan. This chapter explains that Jesus Christ is superior to Moses and all of Moses’ accomplishments. Christians, therefore, need to encourage each other to fully trust in God, in order to see fulfillment of His promises

What does Hebrews chapter 3 mean?

Hebrews chapter 3 makes an important shift in topic. The first two chapters were mostly about how Jesus Christ is superior to angels. In particular, the fact that Jesus Christ is fully human is what allows Him to be our ultimate example, High Priest, and the “Captain” of our salvation (Hebrews 2:10). Here, the subject turns to explain how Jesus is also superior to Old Testament figures such as Moses.

According to this chapter, Moses’ works were important, but don’t compare to those of Jesus. Like a house, Moses was a created thing. Jesus, as the “builder” of all things, including the house, is worth far more glory and honor (Hebrews 3:3). Moses pointed to great things which God would do, but Jesus Christ actually did those great things (Hebrews 3:5). Moses was a powerful and faithful servant in the household of God, but Jesus is the Son in the house of God (Hebrews 3:6).

Driving that analogy home, the author of Hebrews gives the next warning to Christians. He uses the incident of Israel’s failure to trust God, which resulted in their wandering the desert for forty years (Hebrews 3:7–12). Numbers chapter 13 and 14 describe how Israel came to the border of the Promised Land and then lost faith. Instead of trusting God for victory, they doubted that they could defeat the “giants” of Canaan. As a result, God disciplined the nation of Israel. All but a tiny remnant of that nation would wander the desert until they died, never seeing the ultimate victory God had offered.

This kind of doubt does not imply a loss of salvation. The context is Israel’s experience following the story of the Exodus. In the book of Exodus, “salvation” is represented by the Passover escape from Egypt. God did not send Israel back to the Egyptians when they doubted. Instead, He withheld from them the victory of entering the Promised Land. For the same reason, Canaan cannot be seen as a metaphor for heaven, here. There were still battles to fight and struggles to experience, even for those who held to their faith. In context, this warning is not about a loss of salvation, but rather a loss of fellowship, reward, and our “spiritual inheritance” which occurs when we doubt God’s Word.

This reflects a similar idea as the warning given in Hebrews 2:1–4. God’s message regarding our salvation cannot be neglected without consequences. In the same way, our trust in His word and His message cannot be set aside without there being a price to pay.

Book Summary

The book of Hebrews is meant to challenge, encourage, and empower Christian believers. According to this letter, Jesus Christ is superior to all other prophets and all other claims to truth. Since God has given us Christ, we ought to listen to what He says and not move backwards. The consequences of ignoring God are dire. Hebrews is important for drawing on many portions of the Old Testament in making a case that Christ is the ultimate and perfect expression of God’s plan for mankind. This book presents some tough ideas about the Christian faith, a fact the author makes specific note of.

Chapter Context

In chapters 1 and 2, the author of Hebrews showed that Jesus was not an angel. In fact, Jesus’ role as Messiah required Him to be fully human. Starting in chapter 3, the author will explain how Jesus is also superior to various Old Testament characters such as Moses. This will help to set the stage for later references to Christ’s superiority. Part of the warning in this chapter extends into chapter 4. Namely, that Christians who doubt God’s promises risk missing out on the victories He has in store for us

Author: J. Palmer

Living under the wings of God and the angels around me keeping me going and safe. Sharing the love of Christ.

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