The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"Looking Unto Jesus"
"The writer directs his readers to set their spiritual gaze on the Lord Jesus, the sight of which always renews and refreshes those experiencing the challenge of life in a fallen world."
We do not know the human author of the New Testament epistle to the Hebrews. We do know, however, that in the first chapter of his letter, he provided perhaps the most concentrated and succinct declaration of the Person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ found in the Bible.
Twenty affirmations of Christ grace the fourteen verses of the chapter. Included below are the affirmations, which provide a marvelous content and outline for reading, pondering, and study to anyone who seeks to heed the Apostle Peter's call: "But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ" (II Peter 3:18). The reason for this powerful declaration of our Lord's Person and work lies in those to whom Hebrews was written, namely, first century Jewish believers who were tempted to return to the law of Moses because of suffering and persecution for the Lord Jesus.
"But call to remembrance the former days, in which, after ye were illuminated, ye endured a great fight of afflictions, partly, whilst ye were made a gazingstock both by reproaches and afflictions; and partly, whilst ye became companions of them that were so used. For ye had compassion of me in my bonds, and took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven a better and an enduring substance. Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise" (Hebrews 10:32-36).
"The law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did, by the which we draw nigh unto God" (Hebrews 7:19)
"Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds" (Hebrews 12:2-3).
The writer directed his readers to set their spiritual gaze on the Lord Jesus, the sight of which always renews and refreshes Christians experiencing the challenge of life in a fallen world. As the epistle begins, he wields his most powerful weapon to combat the enemies of God who would discourage the children of God. The Holy Spirit led the writer to proclaim Christ in the wonders of His person and work, knowing it would transform the "wearied and faint" into the worshipping and faithful. "Let us have grace" declared the writer of Hebrews - the grace found only in the Lord Jesus - "that we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and godly fear" (Hebrews 12:28).
The affirmations of Hebrews provided below will strengthen our hearts as we ponder them in the light of so many other Scriptures that proclaim Christ as the abounding hope of salvation, and a life lived that bears witness to our having received it. Great encouragement awaits anyone who approaches this Christ-exalting portion of God's Word with a trusting, humble heart seeking strength for the journey. It - He - will be found.
Weekly Memory Verse
Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth He any man. (James 1:13).
God spoke to us through the Lord Jesus.
He is the heir of all things.
He is the maker of all things.
He is the brightness of God's glory.
He upholds all things by the word of His power.
He purged our sins.
He sat down at the right hand of God's majesty.
He is better than the angels, not only as their Creator, but as a man who has inherited a more excellent name than they.
He is the begotten of God, as a man.
He is the Son of God the Father.
He was to be worshipped by angels in His incarnation.
He is declared by His Father to be God.
A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of His kingdom.
He loves righteousness and hates iniquity.
He is anointed with the oil of gladness above His fellows.
He laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the works of His hands.
They will perish, but He will remain.
They will perish by His folding them up and thus changed.
The Father has said to Him, Sit on My right hand until I make Your enemies My footstool.