This week we continue in Hebrews starting in verse nine. This is the only time in this letter that Paul addresses the people as beloved and it comes after a stern warning in verses 4-8. We all have heard of or perhaps experienced “tough love”. It is far better to speak the truth than being hurt by not doing so. It is even more important to love so strongly that you take a risk to protect those things and people you love. We need to note here that the writer is not speaking to a mass or even grouping them together, he is in his love for them expressing a desire that as individuals they hear the truth. The writer sees them as individuals of worth and worthy of God’s love. There is a message here that applies to all of us. There are times the fire burns low, we began to fall away. Maybe the church services aren’t speaking to us, we are not receptive to the Sunday school teachings and maybe the music does not speak to us, in such times we have two alternatives. We can give up our worship and service and risk being lost and without hope, or the other alternative is to continue on in our service and faith because christian values and habits will return the joy to us once more.
Here we find something wonderful and important to the faith. Paul tells us to imitate those who have passed this way before us, noting that their faith and patience enabled them to inherit the blessings and rewards of faith. Scripture tells us of others and the results of such behavior of those,“before you and they have won.” We, you and I are to be an example to others. They are not treading a path where no others have been, they and we are treading a path where saints have tread. These next verses 13-20 concern the promise God made to Abraham. God made many promises to Abraham but one he made, followed by an oath is of great importance to the church today. From the DBS we find this: “the promise was to the Christian Church, for the Church was the true Israel and the true seed of Abraham.” Just as Abraham never wavered from his hope and trust in God’s promises, we also must be of patient and trust in God. The writer of Hebrews lays out a path of hope and presents the underlying foundation that we as Christians processes the greatest hope in the world. There was a time that only certain people could pass that veil into the presence of God, but because of what Jesus did God became assessable to all who called upon the name of his Son, Jesus Christ.
This brings us to the end of chapter six and ends on a reference to the high priest Melchizedek. In the future we will look at Melchizedek in an expanded study. Next we move on to other things, join us here in the Pew as we continue to share a layman’s view of the Scripture. Hope to see you here next week.
Life is Good