"The message of the cross ... to us who are being saved
is the power of God."
1 Corinthians 1:18
“You have come to Mt. Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem…” Hebrews 12:22
What does this mean?
Last week we began a new series of revelation in a study of Hebrews Chapter 12.
This is Part 2.
Many scholars agree that Paul is the author of this letter to the Hebrews, which was not written in chapter and verse. His letter is power-packed with revelation knowledge to help The Church see and understand things previously hidden:
- the Son’s appointment as heir of all things
- angel’s ministry
- what He did for us on the cross
- the better covenant
- who the believer is in Christ Jesus
- what Jesus did in the Heavenly Sanctuary
- testimonies of our ancestry
- the walk of faith
- how to walk holy
- knowledge of the Kingdom of Heaven
- knowledge of God, a consuming fire
- instruction on our love walk and service
“… as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue…” 2 Peter 1:3
THE HOLY CLOUD: The Church Surrounded
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith…” Hebrews 12:1-2
Those that have gone before us, Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses and many more who have already taken up residency in Heaven, are aware of us and cheering us on to cross the finish line.
Even our beloved dear family members who have completed their earthly assignments are rooting us onward to “forget those things which are behind and reach forward to those things which are ahead, pressing forward for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13
This is not the time to give up Saints, or to grow weary.
Consider Jesus who endured the cross.
Consider Jesus who endured such hostility from sinners.
Consider Jesus who resisted sin and shed His precious blood. Hebrews 12:2-4
Think about this long enough and you can turn discouragement and weariness into thanksgiving for your salvation. Remember the race. Remember the goal.
A daily routine of praise brings strength and courage.
Because He first loved us and gave His life to adopt us into His family, certainly we can change our attitude from fatigue and dissatisfaction to boldly declare, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!” Philippians 4:13
Turn that scripture into “making melody in your heart to the Lord” and rise up to your rightful place as a citizen of Heaven and an heir of God. Romans 8:17
DISCIPLINE: Discipleship in Training
A soldier who enlists in the army knows he will go through boot camp for indoctrination and training. Not many soldiers have a great time in boot camp. Why? It’s hard work! When we were born from above we came to Jesus with a mindset that had been formulated by a fallen world system. It takes training to renew old ways from a self-dominated life to line up with a Kingdom that operates in love and humility.
It takes work to study and renew the mind to scripture. It takes work to discipline the flesh and walk in the Spirit, but it will produce the sweet fruit of prosperity. Psalm 1:1-3.
“Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live?
“For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness.
“Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” Hebrews 12:9-11
Our Heavenly Father corrects us in our spirit. As we repent and change our ways, we will enjoy the pleasant, wonderful fruit of righteousness. This pleases Father.
Be willing to quickly yield to correction for He does this for our profit, for our improvement, and for our advancement.
God is Not Mocked
Years and years of rebellion and contrariness to obey His voice may eventually bring the unpleasant fruit of disobedience, which is an open door to the curse. This does not please our Father.
God’s sovereign will allows man to choose His ways or his own ways. “Choose life that both you and your descendants may live.”
Read Deuteronomy 30:19-20.
It is always His will that we live in Abraham’s blessing. This is your birthright which was paid for by the blood of Jesus. Read Galatians 3:13-14 and Galatians 6:7-9.
Selling the Birthright: Beware, brethren …
“Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, but rather be healed.
“Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord:
“looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled; lest there be any fornicator or profane person like Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birthright. For you know that afterward, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought it diligently with tears.” Hebrews 12:12-17
A life of continual blessing has at its foundation a yielded heart that is willing to change and is open to continual training.
What is holiness? Is holiness the outward appearance of a woman with no make-up, hair in a bun and a long skirt? Is it the lifestyle of a monk who lives isolated in a seminary?
Holiness is an inward decision to follow the ways of the Holy Spirit of God. Holiness means to be separated unto God for His use.
It means separate-ness, which is the pure loving nature of God separate from all evil.
Holiness cannot be achieved without the blood of Jesus. It cannot take place without “being born again of the incorruptible seed, the Word of God which lives and abides forever.”
1 Peter 1:23
Many earthly religions strive to be holy with many rules, restrictions, and outward apparel. But they achieve nothing!
Because there is no substitution for the bloody sacrifice of God’s Son, Jesus Christ. Without faith in the cross all their works are in vain! "There is a way that seems right to a man, but it's end is the way of death." Proverbs 16:25
“If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.
“Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live? For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness.” Hebrews 12:7-10
LIFE APPLICATIONS: Growing Up
Our Father brings correction to our spirit for our profit so we may be partakers of His holiness.
So many are praying and calling out for God’s power to increase in their lives, but God is at work right now in the hearts of each one of His children to have them yield to His correction and His holy ways.
Just as a good father would never give a machine gun to a three year old, our heavenly Father knows our maturity must precede His power.
If we want to experience more of His power, He requires that we become partakers of His holiness.
Jesus was in training for thirty years before Father “anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil…for God was with Him.” Acts 10:38
“…though He was a Son, He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been perfected …” Read Hebrews 5:7-9
Let us be open to:
- Hear His voice more clearly
- Be submissive to our Father who loves us dearly
- Quickly yield to His correction
- Be open to continual training
- Do what we know to do and not be hearers only
- Love others as we love ourselves
Next week we will continue this study as we look at the children of Israel and Mount Sinai.
- But you have come to Mount Zion and
- to the city of the living God,
- the heavenly Jerusalem,
- to an innumerable company of angels,
- to the general assembly and
- church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven,
- to God the Judge of all,
- to the spirits of just men made perfect,
- to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and
- to the blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel.” Hebrews 12:22-24
PRAYER: Be watching Saints!
Prayer for our nation is vital over our coming holidays. Keep America and your state covered in prayer.
The Church—The Lost—Elected Leaders
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