Message NotesHebrews ? Part 67 Page 1
Sunday November 25th 2012
The Letter to the Hebrews
Part Sixty Seven
1). Heb 12:3 For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. 4 ? You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin. 5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: "My son, do not despise the chastening of the LORD, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; 6 For whom the LORD loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives." 7 If you [patiently]endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? 8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.
a). Our Lord Jesus Christ is the ultimate example given to us of patient endurance, of faithful obedience, of laying down our life and we are to ?consider Him? as we look away from the things of this world for 2 inseparable reasons ? because of the way in which He suffered the hostility ?from sinners against Himself?, which is our example and because of what lay beyond His suffering that is now in His possession because of His suffering, which is our hope.
b). Peter gives us commentary on the way in which the Lord endured suffering, showing how He is our example ? 1Pe 2:19 For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. 20 For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. 21 For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: 22 "Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth"; 23 who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously;
V19-20 ? describe exactly the Lord?s experience ? He ?endured grief, suffering wrongfully? and v23 provides us with commentary on His arraignment before Pilate as recorded in - Mr 15:2 Then Pilate asked Him, "Are You the King of the Jews?" He answered and said to him, "It is as you say." 3 And the chief priests accused Him of many things, but He answered nothing. 4 Then Pilate asked Him
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again, saying, "Do You answer nothing? See how many things they testify against You!" 5 But Jesus still answered nothing, so that Pilate marveled.
c). And then according to earlier Chapters in Hebrews we see that Christ?s suffering and His attitude towards His suffering were for a particular purpose - Heb 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone. 10? For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
Heb 5:6 As He also says in another place: "You are a priest forever According to the order of Melchizedek"; 7 who, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, and was heard because of His godly fear, 8 though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. 9 And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him, 10 ? called by God as High Priest "according to the order of Melchizedek,"
d). We see then that through sufferings Christ is made ?perfect?, He is brought to completion, He accomplishes the end result for coming to the earth in the form of a man.
e). And then along with this we also see that by the things which He suffered He learned obedience ? He experienced the practice of obedience, not as a supernatural being, but as a man in a body of flesh, blood and bone ?
Php 2:7 but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. 9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,
f). Then within each of our scriptures, from Hebrews 2:9-10, Hebrews 5:6-10 and Philippians 2:7-9, we see not only the purpose for Christ?s sufferings but also that which is now His which lay beyond His sufferings, which His sufferings made possible, our hope ? In Hebrews Chapter 2 we see Him crowned with glory and honor, in Hebrews Chapter 5 He is the High Priest after the order of Melchizedek and in Philippians He is highly exalted and given the name which is above every name.
g). Jesus Himself spoke of this recorded in - Mt 28:18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
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And the same thing is recorded this way in - Eph 1:20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. 22 And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.
h). Then both the purpose for His sufferings and that which lay beyond them is brought together for us in - Heb 12:2 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 has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
i). And so we can clearly see that Christ?s patient endurance, His faithful obedience and His laying down His life, during the course of His time on earth have resulted in exaltation and glory in anticipation of rulership in the age to come - Ps 2:6 "Yet I have set My King On My holy hill of Zion." 7 ? "I will declare the decree: The LORD has said to Me, 'You are My Son, Today I have begotten You. 8 Ask of Me, and I will give You The nations for Your inheritance, And the ends of the earth for Your possession.
2). Now Christ?s experiences set for us the example that we must follow if we are to attain exaltation and glory in anticipation of rulership in the age to come.
a). The Lord Himself has made this clear in - Joh 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
b). Lu 9:23 Then He said to them all, "If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.
c). And the promise of scripture is that if we do follow the Lord?s example then exaltation, glory and rulership must follow - 1Pe 1:7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,
d). 2Ti 2:12 If we endure, We shall also reign with Him.
e). Now, ?your faith? seen in 1 Peter 1:7 is ?the faith?, faith to the saving of the soul and with respect to ?the faith? we had seen this in Hebrews Chapter 2 earlier - 10? For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
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f). Christ in bringing ?many sons to glory? is the ?captain of their salvation? ? and the word translated ?captain? literally means ?the first to go?. He is then the first to go with respect to the salvation of the soul ? not that the Lord?s soul needed saving, but rather, that He has through His experience demonstrated that which is necessary for fallen man with an eternally redeemed spirit to receive the salvation of the soul.
g). Again then we see patient endurance through suffering, faithful obedience to the word of God and laying down our life now that we might take it up again in the age to come ? Jesus being ?the first to go? along this path.
h). Now none of these things come naturally to us and therefore we must receive instruction with regards to them ? we need to be taught, we need to be trained, we need to be prepared, and this is the very thing that the writer of Hebrews has drawn our attention to - Heb 12:5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: "My son, do not despise the chastening of the LORD, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; 6 For whom the LORD loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives."
3). Remarkably, that which we see in these verses from Hebrews 12, was Christ?s experience.
a). The word translated ?chasten? does not imply punishment, but instruction and we will remember that the Lord ?learned obedience by the things which He suffered?.
b). And the Lord was ?scourged? literally before the Father received Him
Joh 19:1 ? So then Pilate took Jesus and scourged Him.
c). Now the point is not that Jesus needed to be trained, or needed to be scourged, but that He had to experience and therefore demonstrate the training process because God will not receive any son, even the only begotten Son apart from this.
d). This is the essence of the exchange between Jesus and John the Baptist at the Lord?s baptism seen in ? Mt 3:13 ? Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. 14 And John tried to prevent Him, saying, "I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?" 15 But Jesus answered and said to him, "Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness." Then he allowed Him.
e). And do you remember what happened immediately following these verses? - Mt 3:16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. 17 And suddenly a voice
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came from heaven, saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." Mt 4:1 ? Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.
f).What we see here in this sequence of events presents the same ?training process?, but from a slightly different perspective ? notice the order ? The Lord comes up from the water, a declaration is made as to God regarding Him as a Son, He is then led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tested [and do you remember how the Lord responds to each of the devil?s tests? ? ?It is written?] ? and all of this has to do with a coming Day of rulership.
g). This is the self-same process that Jesus spoke to Nicodemus about ?
Joh 3:5 Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of [brought forth out of] water and [brought forth out of] the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
h). This is why Jesus had to ?fulfill all righteousness? ? because God had set in place, that in order to enter the Kingdom, as a son, any person must be brought forth out of the water, picturing baptism - being raised from the place of death to walk in newness of life and then be led by the Spirit, that which is brought forth from above, the Word of God, and then be tested with regards to that which the Spirit has revealed and this must be accomplished if entrance, and therefore rulership, in the Kingdom is to be attained.
i). This is the same picture we see in foundation with Israel coming out of the Red Sea and being led by the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night towards their inheritance ? and it is of course during this wilderness journey that they are tested with respect to that which God had brought forth from above - Ex 19:5 'Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine.
4). And then with respect to ourselves we find this recorded in - Ro 8:13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For as many as are [being continually] led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, "Abba, Father."
a). In v13 we see that which is pictured in being brought forth out of water and in v14 we see a present continuous leading by the Spirit, that which is brought forth from above and those who avail themselves of this are referred to as ?sons of God?, with adoption and therefore inheritance in view.
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b). And all of this brings us back again, for it is one and the same thing, to ?the chastening of the Lord?.
c). Now according to our scripture in Hebrews 12 we are not to ?despise the chastening of the Lord? ? the word despise means to have little care for, to regard as inconsequential ? and so we are not to regard the training, the instruction of the Lord as something of no consequence.
d). And the training, the instruction, the chastening, we receive from the Lord and being ?led by the Spirit? are synonymous.
e). The word translated ?led? in the original language is a word that means to bring forth ? therefore the training we receive from the Lord is brought forth by the Spirit ? this then is the Word of God which the Holy Spirit takes to guide us into all truth, the Word of God which we receive that the Holy Spirit takes to bring about the metamorphosis in us, that takes us from faith to faith and glory to glory.
f). So, to be absolutely clear, the ?chastening of the Lord?, the instruction of the Lord comes through our correct reception of the Word of God ?
Jas 1:21 Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
g). But this is really only half the picture ? the verse that follows on from James 1:21 is equally familiar to us - Jas 1:22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
h). Simply put, the Word of God that we have received, if it has been believed, if we have been trained by it, will result in action ? the genuineness of our faith must be proven through testing and as the test comes we will either respond by being a doer of the Word or not - 1Pe 4:12 ? Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; 13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.
Remember Jesus in the wilderness.
i). And all is with a view to rulership, ?when His glory is revealed? - Israel came up out the Red Sea, picturing baptism/resurrection, to be ?led? by the Spirit and tested with a view to rulership; Christ came up out of the Jordan River to be ?led? by the Spirit and tested with a view to rulership and so must we come from the waters of baptism to be ?led? by the Spirit and tested with rulership in view. This is the unalterable sequence of events; the child training that must take place, for all who will be rulers in that coming Day.
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5). Consider this for a moment - Ac 7:22 "And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and deeds.
a). Why was Moses ?learned in all the wisdom of Egypt??
b). Because he was the adopted son of Pharaoh?s daughter and as such he was being trained from his earliest childhood for the day when he would take a position of authority within the royal house of Egypt. Such a position was not to be entered into in ignorance, but entered into through proper preparation.
c). Now we are not being trained in the wisdom of Egypt, the wisdom of the world, but the wisdom which is from on high - 1Co 2:6 ? However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory,
d). Our training is for a glorious purpose, we are being trained for that Day when we will be adopted and take a position of authority within the royal family of heaven as a co-heir with the only begotten Son and such a position cannot be entered into in ignorance, but only through the proper preparation.
e). And this training, as we see, is rooted in instruction from the correctly received Word of God, the only means by which we can be properly prepared - 2Ti 3:15 and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction [same word translated ?chastening? in Hebrews 12] in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Tit 2:11 ? For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, 12 teaching [same word from Hebrews 12] us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,
f). The Word of God is the only means by which the metamorphosis can be worked in us and the only means by which our faith can be brought to its goal, by which we can be properly trained ? 2Pe 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, 3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, 4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the
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world through lust. 5 ? But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. 10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; 11 for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
6). Mt 18:1 ? At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, "Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" 2 Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, 3 and said, "Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 "Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
a). If we will ever enter the Kingdom of Heaven, and entering the Kingdom cannot be separated from rulership, then we must become as a little child and allow our Father to teach us and train us so that we can grow up into spiritual maturity - 1Pe 2:1 ? Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, 2 as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby [with respect to the salvation of the soul], 3 if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
Eph 4:13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;
b). Now according to our scripture in Matthew Chapter 18 the Lord is responding to a question from His disciples about greatness in the Kingdom of Heaven ? everything here then has to do with the eternally saved ? and He makes clear to them that greatness in the Kingdom is dependent upon something, ?unless? ? it is therefore conditional ? we can choose to become as little children or we can choose not to.
c). And this is the very same truth taught in - Heb 12:7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? 8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.
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d). Now, let?s just make these verses a little clearer for our understanding ? 7 ?If you [speaking of Christians] are patiently enduring child training, then God is dealing with you as sons; for what son is there whom a father does not train? 8 But if you [speaking of the same Christians from v7] are not patiently enduring the child training which all who are enduring child training and are therefore being dealt with as sons are partakers, then you [same Christians] who are not enduring child training are illegitimate and not being dealt with as sons.
e). What an astonishing thing! If we are submitted to the patient endurance of child training then God even now is dealing with us as sons, sons who will be adopted as firstborn sons - Eph 1:5 having predestined us to adoption as [firstborn] sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will,
f). The word translated ?adoption? here literally means ?son placement?. The word adoption as used today has to do with someone who is not a family member being legally brought into that family ? but this is not how the word is used in scripture.
g). All Christians are children of God and therefore already members of the family of God, but some of those children, because they are submitted to His child training, are no longer looked upon by God as children but as sons and those sons when they are properly grown and properly trained, when they attain the goal of their faith, will be placed as firstborn sons within the family of God, realizing the rights of the firstborn; whereas those who are not submitted to His child training will remain children only ? and therefore cannot experience ?son placement? and cannot realize the rights of the firstborn and therefore can have no position of rulership in the coming Kingdom and God even now cannot view this group as anything other than disobedient children.
h). Now there is no middle ground with this God is either dealing with us as sons or He is dealing with us as children - Mt 12:30 "He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad.
i). So even now as we sit here God is dealing with us as a son or as a child ? and what we really want to know is are these 2 positions irreversible?
j). Clearly they cannot be and either could be reversed ? all is dependent upon how seriously we take the Word of God ? not in a religiously correct sense, but through the action we take with respect to it - Ru 3:3 "Therefore wash yourself and anoint yourself, put on your best garment and go down to the threshing floor???.?..5 And she said to her, "All that you say to me I will do."
k). We will continue next time if the Lord is willing.