Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Hebrews 1

What we believe matters at least as much as that we believe. It is one thing to be a person of faith. It is another thing entirely to be a person of right faith. It is not faith that saves us, but Christ. Faith appropriates the work of Christ to our lives, but it is Christ, not faith that saves. Faith in the wrong thing results in loss. "You gotta believe" and "you gotta have faith" are common phrases heard in the world when things get tough, but what good is having misdirected faith? If I am shipwrecked in an isolated part of the ocean generic faith might keep me alive longer, but it won't change saltwater into fresh water. It won't bring the Coastguard. It won't bring a cruise ship to my rescue. At that point faith is only wishful thinking. The object of our faith is as important as the fact that we have faith. That is exactly what Hebrews is addressing. Right belief is essential.

 

 

Who is Jesus? How is he different from what came before him? Why is that important? These questions frame the sermon we call Hebrews. Thus Hebrews begins with this affirmation:

 

[1] Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, [2] but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. [3] He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, [4] having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. [Hebrews 1:1-4]

 

Jesus is the new revelation from God which supersedes previous revelation. Jesus is superior to the angels and the prophets. He is the Son of God, heir of all things, creator of all that exists, the glory and image of God who holds all things together by his own power. He is the one who made provision for our sins and sits at the authoritative right hand of the Father. Faith is good, but what we believe about Jesus is absolutely essential.

 

Father, as we work our way through Hebrews grow us deep in our faith and in our understanding.

 

By His grace,

Rick Weinert



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