Read 359.) Hebrews, from 10:24 thru chapter 13. From this point, the writer to the Hebrews closes out chapter 10 with a call to them to trust in their High Priest, Jesus, and His sacrifice on their behalf. He writes encouragingly, v.24+25, threateningly, v.26-31, and putting them in remembrance of their earlier days in the faith, v.32-34. In patient, faithful waiting, there will be a great reward, v.35-39! What will that be?
Beginning with 11, we have the great Faith chapter! First, faith is defined. It is being sure and certain. Sure and certain of what? What we hope for, but cannot yet see. What things are those? The things God has promised to us! What are they? We find them within these closing chapters! But, let me say right up front; God does not promise us health and wealth in this life. God is looking for faith. He wants people like you and me to believe, v.2. Note all the heroes of faith who find mention and commendation here. Verse 6 is key. See the connection between faith and believing, and His rewarding of those who do. Verses 8 thru 16 have everything to do with the promises and prophecies God gave and fulfilled that comprise all the Old Testament story; beginning with Abraham, and the promises of many descendants in the Promised Land. See what they longed for? Verse 10, a city. Verse 14, a country. Verse 15, a heavenly country and city. These are ours, too, and are seen in Revelation, chapters 21 and 22. We are to be looking forward to the same, and we’ll see this again in Hebrews. Verses 39+40 close on that note. God is looking for faith. He wants to reward faith. His reward is not to be found in this life, but it will come, and we will be made perfect!
The point of chapter 12 is that the hardships of this life, for His people of faith, is to be viewed as discipline which corrects us, and makes our faith ever more precious to us, v.1-13. Therefore, go on with God, and do not turn back, v.14-17, and 25-27 and 29. Our promised reward, in which we are to be sure and certain of, is in verses 22-24+28. There are at least 9 things mentioned here. This is our hope. These are those things which God has promised. They are ours, for those who believe in their High Priest, Jesus, to have saved them! We are receiving a ForeverKingdom that cannot be shaken!
Chapter 13 concludes with, O, a dozen further exhortations and reinforcement to faithfully persevere in the true Christian faith, which is clearly expressed in verses 11+12, where it says Jesus, our High Priest, makes us, “holy through His Blood,” and in verse 20, where we are reminded that God brought Jesus back from the dead; these are the elements of the Gospel. And, our reward is seen one last time, the city that is to come, in verse 14. This really is what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell