Lesson 51

The Epistle to the Hebrews

World English Bible translation

 Today's Scripture

12:25 See that you don't refuse him who speaks. For if they didn't escape when they refused him who warned on the Earth, how much more will we not escape who turn away from him who warns from heaven, 12:26 whose voice shook the earth, then, but now he has promised, saying, "Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heavens." 12:27 This phrase, "Yet once more," signifies the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that have been made, that those things which are not shaken may remain. 12:28 Therefore, receiving a kingdom that can't be shaken, let us have grace, through which we serve God acceptably, with reverence and awe, 12:29 for our God is a consuming fire.

Today's Lesson    

Christ is the mediator of the new covenant. He is superior to Moses, Abraham and the angels. In fact, He is superior to all created beings for he is the very image of and the radiance of the glory of God. In every way the covenant of grace that He has established is superior to what had come before. Once we were outcasts, far from God's mercy and grace. Now we are invited into the household of God and accepted as the children of the Heavenly Father.


But, God's mercy is not unconditional under this new covenant of grace. Salvation can only be found through Jesus Christ: Him and no other. It is only through faith in the sacrifice of God's Anointed One that we can be acceptable in the eyes of a Holy God that will judge the world according to its deeds. Only in Christ can we escape the judgment that has already come upon the fallen world in which we all are born. God's mercy and grace are boundless but that mercy and grace flow only through His Christ. Christ proclaims the salvation that comes from God, from first to last. We must respond to that proclamation.


What should occur for those that refuse Him who speaks? Under the older covenant, those that refused to hear God's messengers could not escape God's wrath. When the former covenant was established at Sinai, God shook the earth. But, it was said in the prophets, "Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heavens."


When Jesus died on the cross, the heavens and the earth were shaken. All that existed was altered by that one event. It was as though the whole world was in a jumbled, disordered mess. When God shook the world at Calvary, everything fell into its rightful place. Heaven and earth came back into alignment with its Creator. Everything that stood opposed to God was defeated.


What was created in this event has still not been revealed to the world. It is hidden, still covered by a thin layer of this reality. But, by faith we can begin to see what God has created in Christ. By faith we can see that the new kingdom that was established at the cross cannot be shaken. It waits, just beneath the surface, waiting to be revealed. When we hear the words of the Son, our eyes are opened to this new reality. It is only then that we can begin to serve God acceptably.


God is a consuming fire. His holiness permeates the whole of His creation. Soon, everything will be consumed in His fire until only the Kingdom of the Son remains. It is only then that everything in heaven and on earth will experience the full glory of the new covenant that God has established with His new people. It is only then that we will accept our full inheritance as the children of God.


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