At the end of my questions for Hebrews 13, I encouraged those doing the study to summarize things they learned/deepened their understanding about God and themselves and how they could change. I thought I’d post my summary here.
What struck me was that our response to all that Jesus is (as I’ll note in part below) was summed up in part by our reverent and acceptable worship and service of God. Our works that evidence our faith are part of the means by which we persevere in our faith. The practical commands that are given as being part of our service to God and part of our perseverance in the faith are things like show hospitality, be generous, care for the imprisoned and mistreated as if it were you imprisoned. I think I’ll write more on some of these ideas later, but I was struck by the “everyday” nature of our perseverance. We don’t always (usually!) persevere by amazing feats of faith in which we stand in lion’s dens. We persevere in doing good to the elderly in our church, teaching others to be faithful, being hospitable to the travelling missionary, writing a check to a struggling family in your church, visiting shut-ins, etc.
This is in part how I plan to apply Hebrews in my life. As I stand amazed that I can enter the presence of God because of the blood of Jesus, my gratefulness, my focus is on him. The values of my life shift as I realize how passing this world is. My love for the Savior is reflected in my love for people. Especially as my youngest is no longer a baby, I am looking forward to expanding my ministry to include more visiting and encouraging those in my circle.
Below are my summary thoughts on Hebrews.
This book has been a celebration of Jesus Christ—we were asked to consider him, to look at him while we endure and finally to give glory to him forever. (I could have listed more, but I chose to focus on the broad, main themes the author presented.)
- Superior to angels
- Sitting at God’s right hand
- Sovereign of everything
- Founder of salvation
- Merciful and faithful high priest
- Superior to Moses and the Old Covenant
- Obedient Son
- Perfect Sacrifice
- Founder and Perfecter of the Faith
- Enduring completer of the race
- Great Shepherd of the sheep
Looking to Jesus, I should:
- Pay close attention to what he says
- Exhort each other to continue in the faith, strengthen those who are weak and tired
- Fear lest I fail through disobedient faithlessness
- Live with the mindset that this earth is temporary and heaven is my forever home
- Strive to persevere and hold fast with confidence
- Draw near to God (Jesus died for this purpose)
- Lay aside sin
- Run with endurance and be strengthened when I get weak and tired
- Not get tired, weary, and discouraged
- Strive for peace with everyone
- Strive for holiness (essential to see God)
- Not refuse God’s words
- Be grateful for all God has done, has given me, and has for me
- Offer God awe-inspired and reverential worship and service
- Love fellow believers
- Be hospitable to strangers
- Care for those imprisoned and mistreated as I would want to be cared for
- Instead of being covetous, stingy, and greed, be generous
- Honor marriage
- Remember former spiritual leaders and imitate their faith
- Obey and submit to current spiritual leaders in a way that makes it a joy for them to shepherd me
- Not be led away by strange, unbiblical teachings
- Be willing to suffer reproach and shame for Christ
- Do good
- Pray for others
- When I am overwhelmed, I should look to Jesus. I can be reminded that God will powerfully and effectively work faith and these works of faith in me through Jesus Christ. His blood is effective for my salvation and my sanctification.
To Jesus Christ be glory forever and ever. Amen.