A needed word of encouragement is contained in the 12th chapter of Hebrews for people who live by faith in Jesus Christ. It begins with the call to persevere in running the race of faith and devotion to a life of discipleship and then calls for endurance to all opposition to the precious things of God.
Jesus Christ serves as an example of such intentional engagement in the spiritual realm. When we get tired and weary in the battles of life and the battles of right and wrong and feel like giving up, we need to look to Jesus, who is “the pioneer and perfecter of faith.” (verse 2) For, Jesus provides the ultimate example by conquering evil through his death on the cross. He embraced the shame it represented to win victory for us in our fallen condition and has given us the birthright as children of God.
As children of God, we are spiritual soldiers fighting the good fight for the Kingdom of God, which emphasizes truth, justice, peace, and love. We are encouraged to endure and surrender to God’s discipline to enhance our journey to share in the holiness of the Lord. “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” (verse 11)
We are also encouraged to look to God for the presence of the Kingdom that cannot be shaken by any resistance in our world to do the will of God. This Kingdom has already arrived through the coming of Jesus Christ and continues to expand and reign even amid the spiritual warfare of good and evil in our world today. As we align with Jesus Christ and God's character, we are victors in the battles of life and the battle of right over wrong. So “let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our “God is a consuming fire.” (verses 28-29)
Dumas A. Harshaw, Jr., Ph.D, Pastor
Sunday Morning Worship: 8:00 a.m. & 11:00 a.m. (10:00 a.m. only service for the entire month of July & Friends and Family Day) Sunday School: 9:45 am