Category: Hebrews

Looking for a city!

Scripture reading for March 4th: Numbers 6-7, Hebrews 13

Hebrews 13:14-17 “For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. Through Him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge His Name. Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God. Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.”

The writer of Hebrews was not looking for a permanent home here on earth. He emphatically stated, “here we have no lasting city,” but “we seek the city that is to come.” He had earlier described it at Mt. Zion, (Hebrews 12:22-24) another name for Jerusalem. He described it has the “heavenly Jerusalem” which consisted of unnumberable angels in joyful assembly and the assembly of the “Firstborn”, whose names were written on the roll of the city. In this city, there is joyful worship and eternal joy in God’s presence. Because of this, we prepare now by doing good and sharing with others our goods and the good news! We obey our leaders and submit to them. We invite God to do His will in us and through us to His eternal glory!

Hebrews 13:20-21 “Now may the God of peace Who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the Great Shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to Whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.”

Prayer: Father God, I also am seeking the city that You promised to Your people, the heavenly Jerusalem! I have no lasting city here but want my name in Your book! Lead me by Your Holy Spirit to do good works and to share. Help me to obey my leaders and submit. May You work in me Your will and good pleasure. The best is yet to come!

Numbers 6:24-27 “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace. So shall they put My Name upon the people of Israel, and I will bless them.”

Tags : , , , , , ,

Keep your focus!

Scripture reading for March 3rd: Numbers 3-5, Hebrews 12

Hebrews 12:1-4 “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfector of our faith, Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider Him Who endured from sinners such hostility against Himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.”

Holiness is an important character trait of God’s people. Without holiness, no one will see the Lord. Jesus Christ is the author and perfector of our faith and His example of perfect obedience, even in the face of hostile opposition, helps all believers to run their race here on earth. We must focus on Jesus and run patiently asking God for grace when we stumble or fall. We must guard our hearts against “roots of bitterness” that will spread evil and sin in the body of Christ. God’s desire is that all believers obtain grace and successfully run their race through enemy opposition and the old sin nature that tries to hinder us. Let’s keep our focus on Jesus all the way to holiness in His presence for eternity!

Hebrews 12:14-15 “Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled; . . “

Prayer: Father God, thank You for Jesus Christ, the Author and Perfector of my faith. Thank You for Your discipline and grace when I stumble or fall. As You live in me, I am striving for peace with all men and I long for holiness in Your presence forever. Help me to guard against bitterness and anything that would cause defilement in the Church. Jesus Christ is my inspiration and the source of my joy as I run this race with endurance and faith.

Numbers 5:1-3 “The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Command the people of Israel that they put out of the camp everyone who is leprous or has a discharge and everyone who is unclean through contact with the dead. You shall put out both male and female, putting them outside the camp, that they may not defile their camp, in the midst of which I dwell.”

Tags : , , , , , ,

Living abundantly by faith!

Scripture reading for March 2nd: Numbers 1-2, Psalm 64, Hebrews 11

Hebrews 11:24-28 “By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward. By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing Him Who is invisible. By Faith he kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the first-born might not touch them.”

Moses was a man of faith who came from God’s people of faith. Faith is the substance of things not seen, the evidence of things hoped for.(Hebrews 11:1) When Moses was older, he chose mistreatment with the people of God, rather than a life of pleasure in Egypt as a part of the ruling Pharaoh’s household. Moses, saw Jesus Christ and His reproach by faith and chose identification with Christ as the most precious treasure and his ultimate reward. By faith, Moses kept the Passover by sacrificing a lamb and sprinkling the blood to keep the destroying angel at bay. Moses followed God’s Word and lived a life that pleased God! We can only please God by trusting in His Son Jesus and faithfully living!

Numbers 1:1-3 “The Lord spoke to Moses in the wilderness of Sinai, in the tent of meeting, on the first day of the second month, in the second year after they had come out of the land of Egypt, saying, “Take a census of all the congregation of the people of Israel, by clans, by father’s houses, according to the number of names, every male, head by head. From twenty years old and upward, all in Israel who are able to go to war.”

Prayer: Father God, thank You for revealing to Your people their eternal riches in Christ Jesus and calling them to live by faith. Thank You for Jesus Christ, our Passover Lamb, slain for our protection from the death angel and the penalty of sin. You have truly provided an abundant salvation! I rejoice in You and take refuge in Your amazing provision.

Psalm 64:7-10 “But God shoots His arrow at them; they are wounded suddenly. They are bought to ruin, with their own tongues turned against them; all who see them will wag their heads. Then all mankind fears; they tell what God has brought about and ponder what He has done. Let the righteous one rejoice in the Lord and take refuge in Him! Let all the upright in heart exult!”

Tags : , , , , ,

Cling to your confidence!

Scripture reading for March 1st: Leviticus 26-27, Psalm 112, Hebrews 10

Hebrews 10: 32-36 “But recall the former days when, after you were enlightened, you endured a hard struggle with sufferings, sometimes being publicly exposed to reproach and affliction, and sometimes being partners with those so treated. For you had compassion on those in prison, and you joyfully accepted the plundering of your property, since you knew that you yourselves had a better possession and an abiding one. Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may received what is promised.”

The Hebrew believers suffered great persecution for their faith in Jesus Christ. Sometimes, their own families disowned them and they were imprisoned and lost their property, the family inheritance. The writer of Hebrews encouraged these believers to cling tightly to their confidence in Christ and His eternal promises. They have something better and ever-lasting. Shrinking back to the law and Judaism would cause their destruction. Pressing on in faith would bring great reward as God had promised to all who would believe! Endurance and confidence are byproducts of true faith.

Hebrews 10:37-39 “For, ‘Yet a little while, and the coming One will come and will not delay; but my righteous one shall live by faith and if he shrinks back, my soul has no pleasure in him.” But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.”

Prayer: Father God, help me to cling tightly to Your promises and the promise of Jesus’ return with a full reward for those eagerly awaiting Him. There is nothing in this world that compares to You! Help me to do Your will here on earth and live confidently in faith and endurance, sharing the great reward with whoever will believe and receive! In Christ Jesus I shall never be moved or fear bad news!

Psalm 112:6-7 “For the righteous will never be moved; he will be remembered forever. He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the Lord.”

Leviticus 26:9, 11-12 “I will turn to you and make you fruitful and multiply you and will confirm My covenant with you. . . I will make My dwelling among you, and My soul shall not abhor you. And I will walk among you and will be your God and you shall be My people.”

Tags : , , , , , ,

Once–for all!

Scripture reading for February 28th: Leviticus 24-25, Psalm 81, Hebrews 9

Hebrews 9:24-28 “For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf. Nor was it to offer Himself repeatedly, as the high priest enters the holy places every year with blood, not his own, for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world. But as it is, He has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for Him.”

The old covenant had this interesting provision for the year of Jubilee, when at the end of forty-nine years, on the day of Atonement, a trumpet was to be sounded and the Lord decreed liberty and restoration of all property and relationships. This was in the Law, but was never really enacted. But in Jesus Christ, through His sacrifice and the new covenant, He has become our Jubilee! In Him we have our sins forgiven. In Him we have relationship with God and others restored! In Him we await our full restoration at the resurrection at the last trumpet! In Him we have eternal inheritance and full reward! We eagerly await a Savior, Christ Jesus our Lord!

Leviticus 25:8-10 “You shall count seven weeks of years, seven times seven years, so that the time of the seven weeks of years shall give you forty-nine years. Then you shall sound the loud trumpet on the tenth day of the seventh month. On the Day of Atonement you shall sound the trumpet throughout all your land. And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, when each of you shall return to his property and to his clan.”

Prayer: Lord Jesus, You are our Jubilee! In You we have full pardon, redemption from sin’s power and penalty, and an inheritance in Father’s House forever! We rejoice at Your great goodness and mercy and that You remember our sins no more! You are our Strength and Joy! Amen!

Psalm 81:1-3 “Sing aloud to God our strength; shout for joy to the God of Jacob! Raise a song; sound the tambourine, the sweet lyre with the harp. Blow the trumpet at the new moon, at the full moon, on our feast day.”

Tags : , , , , ,

Obsolete and passing away

Scripture reading for February 25th: Leviticus 21-23, Hebrews 8

Hebrews 8:6-7 “But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant He mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion to look for a second.”

The old covenant of Law mediated by the Aaronic priesthood was made obsolete when God sent His Son, Jesus Christ to mediate a new covenant. The old covenant was written on tablets of stone and every violation required a blood sacrifice. The priests had to offer sacrifices for their own sins as well as the sins of the people. These sacrifices could not remove sin, but only cover it temporarily. The new covenant through Jesus Christ was enacted on better promises. The appointed Priest would live forever and be seated at God’s right hand. He would forgive their sins and remember them no more through the sacrifice of His own blood. The law would be written on tablets of human hearts and each person would personally know God and have access through Jesus Christ, their High Priest. Lay hold of the new today, and let the obsolete pass away!

Hebrews 8:10-13 “For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put My laws into their minds and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God and they shall be My people. And they shall not teach, each one his neighbor and each one his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest. For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more. In speaking of a new covenant, He makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.”

Prayer: Father God, thank You for the new covenant through the sacrifice, once for all, of Jesus’ body and blood. Thank You for the gift of the Holy Spirit Who writes Your laws and Word on my heart and causes me to want to obey and love You and others. Empower me to proclaim the powerful message of freedom through the new covenant to those still living in the obsolete and vanishing dead religion.

Leviticus 22:1-2 “And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to Aaron and his sons so that they abstain from the holy things of the people of Israel, which they dedicate to Me, so that they do not profane My Holy Name; I am the Lord.”

Tags : , , , , , ,

Everlasting intercession!

Scripture reading for February 24th: Leviticus 19-20, Hebrews 7

Hebrews 7: 21-27 “. . but this One was made a priest with an oath by the One Who said to Him: “The Lord has sworn and will not change His mind, ‘You are a priest forever.'” This makes Jesus the guarantor of a better covenant. The former priests were many in number, because they were prevented by death from continuing in office, but He holds His priesthood permanently, because He continues forever. Consequently, He is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them. For it was indeed fitting that we should have such a High Priest, holy, innocent, unstained, separated from sinners, and exalted above the heavens.

Jesus Christ was appointed by God, His Father, to be a Priest forever. God swore by Himself, since there was nothing greater or higher and His Word is forever settled in heaven and on earth! Because Jesus lives forever and is an eternal priest, He is able to save completely and eternally all who come to Him. These are comforting and encouraging words to all who have humbly put their trust in Jesus Christ. It is indeed fitting for us to have such a High Priest! Jesus is holy and exalted. He is unstained by sin and has conquered death and hell. He lives by the power of an indestructible life and imparts that life to those who repent and believe on Him. He ever lives to intercede for us! We are now made holy by His sacrifice and intercession and are free to love our neighbor as ourselves, entrusting all judgment to our Intercessor.

Leviticus 19:1-2 “And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the congregation of the people of Israel and say to them, You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy.”

Prayer: Father God, Thank You for Your divine appointment of Jesus Christ as High Priest forever. I am greatly encouraged and cling to Him as my High Priest before Your throne. I trust that He is able to save me completely! Help me to live a holy life of loving You and loving my neighbors as You have commanded and made possible through the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Leviticus 19:18 “You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself; I am the Lord.”

Tags : , , , , ,

God’s Word and Oath.

Scripture reading for February 23rd: Leviticus 15-18, Psalm 31, Hebrews 6

Hebrews 6: 17-20 “So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of His purpose, He guaranteed it with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.”

Often, in this life, our life foundations are shaken by the various trials and events that befall us. Governments come and go, generations pass away, and our lives are fleeting and often filled with trouble. But those who trust in Jesus Christ and His Holy and unchangeable Word have an anchor for their souls. That anchor is attached to God, Himself, in the person of Jesus Christ. He is the Word of God, in human flesh. He is alive from the dead and now has entered into the Holy of Holies in Heaven itself and is our ever-living High Priest. He has spoken God’s Word and sworn by Himself that heaven and earth may pass away but His Word will never pass away! He is able to give us the strong encouragement we need to get us through the trials and uncertainty of this life!

Leviticus 16:32-33 “And the priest who is anointed and consecrated as priest in his father’s place shall make atonement, wearing the holy linen garments. He shall make atonement for the holy sanctuary, and he shall make atonement for the tent of meeting and for the altar, and he shall make atonement for the priests and for all the people of the assembly.”

Prayer: Father God, Thank You for Jesus Christ, Your final Word from heaven and the anchor we need today for our souls in this world of uncertainty. I have strong encouragement and blessed Hope in the One Who holds my times in His hands and will rescue me from all my enemies–including the last enemy, death.

Psalm 31:14-16 “But I trust in You, O Lord; I say, “You are my God.” My times are in Your hand; rescue me from the hand of my enemies and from my persecutors! Make Your face shine on Your servant; save me in Your steadfast love!”

Tags : , , , ,

Holy reverence

Scripture reading for February 22nd: Leviticus 12-14, Psalm 111, Hebrews 5

Hebrews 5:7-10 “In the days of His flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to Him Who was able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverence. Although He was a Son, He learned obedience through what He suffered. And being made perfect, He became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey Him, being designated by God a High Priest after the order of Melchizedek.”

The fear of the Lord–holy reverence for the power and majesty of God and holy reverence for His holy Name is the foundation of wisdom. The psalmist told of the blessedness of those who practice respect and reverence for God. God give them good understanding and reveals to them His covenant love. Jesus Christ, God’s Son, also demonstrated a holy reverence for His Father and fully submitted to His will in going to the cross and tasting death for us. He was made perfect through suffering and offering His own body and blood in perfect reverence for God’s eternal plan of salvation. He was designated by God to be our High Priest forever and ever! Praise His Holy Name!

Psalm 111:9-10 “He sent redemption to His people; He has commanded His covenant forever. Holy and awesome is His Name! The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever! ”

Prayer: Father God, Thank You for the example of holy reverence set by Your Son. Thank You that I now have eternal salvation because of His perfect submission and holy reverence. Fill me with You Holy Spirit to empower me with holy reverence in my walk through this world. Use me as an example of holy reverence to a world that is increasingly profane and irreverent.

Leviticus 11:44 “For I am the Lord your God. Consecrate yourselves, therefore, and be holy, for I am holy.”

Tags : , , , , ,

Abundant grace and mercy!

Scripture reading for February 21st: Leviticus 8-11, Psalm 110, Hebrews 4

Hebrews 4:14-16 “Since then we have a great high priest Who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest Who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but One Who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

Under the Law in Leviticus, the priests had to offer sacrifices first for their own sins and then for the sins of the people. The only sacrifice acceptable was a spotless animal who gave up his life to cover the sin. But we have a new High Priest, Jesus Christ, Son of God Who after visiting earth as a man and then dying on a cross, offering His own blood as the atoning sacrifice for the sins of the world. He is seated at God’s right hand, able to sympathize with our weakness, and intercedes for us granting a cleansing from sin, not just a covering, to all who come in faith. Jesus is not of the lineage of the Levites and Aaron but of the order of Melchizedek, the priest of the Most High God and King of Salem (Jerusalem). He is a type of an eternal priesthood because there is no record of his birth or his death. Jesus, like him, lives forever and is able to meet our every need for help. He is God’s appointed High Priest!

Leviticus 9:7-8 “Then Moses said to Aaron, “Draw near to the altar and offer your sin offering and your burnt offering and make atonement for yourself and for the people, and bring the offering of the people and make atonement for them as the Lord has commanded.” So Aaron drew near to the altar and killed the calf of the sin offering which was for himself.”

Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for being appointed our High Priest forever! I am comforted to know that You are able to sympathize with my weakness and come to my aid with grace and mercy. Thank You for cleansing me from sin and sin’s power.

Psalm 110:4 “The Lord has sworn and will not change his mind, “You are a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.”

Tags : , , ,