by Philip Layton
Christ’s self-sacrifice was a once and for all
- Do you think the author is persuasive to Hebrew Christians who had been wondering whether or not they needed to continue with their sacrificial traditions (vv 1-10)?
- Why is it important to be in fellowship with other believers (v 25)?
Share your thoughts below, or tweet about it with the #boundlessbible hashtag. Don't forget this week's Children's Challenge!
Going Deeper From 'Words of Life'
When my son Joel was a boy, he was given a yellow T-shirt which had the words: I know I’m somebody ’cause God don’t make no junk! I’m not sure he knew the implications of that statement at his young age, but the words are so true. We are somebody, because we are all created in the image of God. We are each special, unique, one of a kind in his eyes.
But not everyone believes this. Even some who have accepted Christ as Saviour find it hard to believe they are truly loved and accepted by God.
Perhaps it’s because of something they have done in the past. God has forgiven them, but they cannot forgive themselves. They still believe Satan’s lies, becoming discouraged, depressed – and can’t seem to pull themselves out of it.
We are to encourage one another. Not simply saying words we don’t really mean. Not to encourage because we are commanded to, but to encourage and bring inspiration because of love. We are to pray for our brothers and sisters – that they receive courage, strength, perseverance. To bring them a sense of hope, light and life.
In the New Testament the word often translated as 'encouragement' is παρακαλεῖν – parakalein. This comes from two Greek words: para – meaning ‘alongside of’, and kaleo – meaning ‘to call’. When we come alongside another person during a difficult situation, we bring a renewed sense of spirit. A rallying ‘call’ of sorts. We urge them on. It’s speaking into the lives of others, bringing them to a higher and nobler way of thinking. We do our part, but the one who helps us all to conquer life is the Parakletos – the Holy Spirit.
God does not make junk! He makes, shapes and transforms his children into the likeness of his Son. When we belong to him, claiming him as Lord and Saviour, we have the responsibility of encouraging one another. It’s an expression of our deep love for God; and it lifts someone else’s spirit to new heights – to bring blessing and honour to Almighty God.
Beverly IvanyTags: Hebrews