Tuesday in the Fifth Week of Lent

Hebrews 3:1-19

Exhort One Another Every Day

Chapter three begins by letting us know that Christ is greater than Moses, as much as a son is greater than a servant.  This goes along with Jesus being greater than the angels, which was highlighted in chapter one.  The point, of course, is that as Jesus is God’s Son, he is preeminent over all things.  He has the dominion.  As great as Moses was, and we spent the last four weeks reading about that, even he cannot compare to Christ.  Moses was a man, a great man, the greatest prophet Israel ever had.  But Christ is God’s Son, who of his own free will (for who is truly free but God alone) and out of no obligation to us but his own promise, became man for us, to live and die and live again on our behalf.  He is the God-man, our Savior.

In light of all of this, in light of such a wonderful salvation as we have attained, in light of our Lord and Savior who endured suffering and death on our behalf, in light of our God’s calling us out of darkness and into light, and not of any works of our own but by his own grace and mercy – what kind of people ought we to be?  This is what chapter three is saying.  In light of our heavenly calling, we should consider Jesus our high priest, and how he was faithful in all God’s house as a son.  We are now called to be faithful as adopted sons.  We must “hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.”  This is the debt that Christians owe.  After all, Jesus paid a debt he did not owe on our behalf.  We now return the favor by giving our lives over for the One who gave his life over for us.

The rest of the chapter is a call to let not our hearts grow hard, nor to fall away.  It is a difficult task, as every Christian knows.  Our clinging, sinful nature drags us down; Satan tempts us sorely.  And one of his most insidious temptations is the dulling of our faith, the gradual lull of weariness that slowly hardens the heart as embers of faith cool and apathy sets in.  Soon a person becomes cynical, having been fooled by the deceitfulness of sin that tells one that it’s all for naught or that church is boring.  It is this hardening that causes one to rebel against the Lord and miss the rest that God has promised to those who believe in him.  Therefore, it is so important that we lift one another up in prayer and encourage one another, daily.  At different times, each one of us will be down, some one of us will be depressed.  That’s why we have the church.  Let us exhort one another today, while it is still today, so that sin not creep in and snatch one of us away.  There is a rest awaiting the people of God, and we shall one day enjoy it, if we do not faint before the time (Galatians 6:9).

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