Don’t Shrink Back!

Hebrews 10:19-22 NASB

Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.

We Have Confidence

Under the Old Covenant relationship God had with his people Israel, the temple of God was a physical building. God’s presence was found in an inner sanctuary within that temple, which was called the “Holy of Holies.” Only the high priest could go in there, once a year, to offer sacrifices for the sins of the people. For, there was a veil which hung in front of this inner sanctuary which kept all other people from entering this room into God’s holy presence.

Nonetheless, when Jesus Christ died on that cross for our sins, that veil was torn in two, which symbolically represented the fact that, via Jesus’ blood shed for us on the cross, we who believe in him can now enter into God’s holy presence. The veil that stood between us and God was no longer in the way. Our sin, which separated us from God, was now paid for, and through faith in Jesus Christ we could now be in fellowship with Almighty God.

The veil that stood between us and God, though, truly was not a physical curtain, but what the curtain represented, which is human flesh. Thus, Jesus had to die in order to put flesh to death, so that we could be liberated from our bondage to sin and the control the flesh had over our lives. Jesus Christ now became our high priest, who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our sin, his own life, which was given for us once for all.

The way in which we now enter into God’s holy presence, and we unite our hearts and lives with our God in heaven, is through faith in Jesus Christ, God the Son. Because Jesus died to put sin to death, through faith in him we die with him to sin so that we might live with him to righteousness. But, this is ongoing in our lives, for daily we must die to sin and self and live to him and to his righteousness. Daily we must, by the Spirit, be putting the deeds of the flesh to death in our lives, and daily we must be putting on the armor of God with which to fight off Satan’s evil schemes against us.

Hebrews 10:23-25 NASB

Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.

Without Wavering

What is this confession of our hope? Our hope (confident assurance) is that, via faith in Jesus Christ, we are dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Our sins are atoned for, they are forgiven, and we are no longer enslaved to sin but we are now servants of His righteousness. We can now walk in victory over sin and live holy lives, pleasing to God. We no longer have to walk in fear, but we can now walk in faith, in peace with God. And, the ultimate end of it all is that we get to spend eternity with our God in glory.

If we hold to this confession without wavering, then we don’t retreat back into living like we did before we trusted in Jesus Christ to be Lord and Savior of our lives. We don’t desert the faith at the first sign of opposition from the enemy. We persevere. We endure. We keep pressing on. We may stumble along the way, but we get back up, we repent, and we keep moving forward by faith in walking with our Lord in obedience and in surrender to his will.

And, not only do we keep pressing on in our walks of faith, but we are concerned about our brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ, that they also walk in faith and in the Spirit of God, and that they no longer walk (in lifestyle) according to the flesh. For, if we walk according to the flesh, we will die in our sins, but if by the Spirit we are putting to the death the deeds of the flesh, we will live with Christ for eternity.

So, we encourage one another on in the faith. We spur one another on to love and good deeds done in the Spirit. We lift up one who has fallen, and we help him or her back on his or her feet (preferably male to male and female to female). We help strengthen one another in the faith, too, and we encourage holiness, purity, honesty, integrity and sincere devotion to our Lord Jesus Christ in one another. For, this is essential to holy living in this life and to our eternal security with God in heaven when we leave these fleshly bodies.

Hebrews 10:26-31 NASB

For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a terrifying expectation of judgment and the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries. Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

If We Go On Sinning

This is where “the rubber meets the road,” so to speak, i.e. “the point at which a theory or idea is put to a practical test” (Google).

There are many people today who are giving folks the idea that they can go on sinning (practicing sin) after they “believe” in Jesus, and that it doesn’t matter since Jesus already paid the penalty for our sin. But, that is not what scripture teaches. It is not that we never sin again, but if we truly believe in Jesus, which is ongoing belief, by the way, we die to sin so that we might live to his righteousness, and this happens daily and continuing on until the end. For, our salvation will not be complete until our Lord returns for us and he takes us to be with him forever, and our relationship with him is consummated.

Basically, what this is saying, and what much of the New Testament teaches is that salvation is not a one-time experience, then we live how we want, and one day we go to heaven. It is saying, too, that genuine faith in Jesus Christ ceases living to the flesh, but it now lives to God and walks (in lifestyle) according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. For, if we continue to live according to the flesh, we don’t have the hope of eternity with God, but a fearful expectation of judgment and of hell’s fury.

Hebrews 10:32-39 NASB

But remember the former days, when, after being enlightened, you endured a great conflict of sufferings, partly by being made a public spectacle through reproaches and tribulations, and partly by becoming sharers with those who were so treated. For you showed sympathy to the prisoners and accepted joyfully the seizure of your property, knowing that you have for yourselves a better possession and a lasting one. Therefore, do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised.

For yet in a very little while,
He who is coming will come, and will not delay.
But My righteous one shall live by faith;
And if he shrinks back, My soul has no pleasure in him.

But we are not of those who shrink back to destruction, but of those who have faith to the preserving of the soul.

Don’t Give Up!

Life can get really hard sometimes. Trials and temptations will come and go. We will have difficulties along the way. People will betray us, reject us and mistreat us. We can’t let these undo us. But, we must realize that God is absolutely sovereign over our lives and over all that he has made, and our suffering has not gone unnoticed by him. He has a plan for our lives, and he will work it all out according to his plans and purposes. We just have to surrender our lives to his will and trust him to work it all out for our good.

God allows trials and suffering in our lives, though, for his purposes. Through our difficult times, when we turn to him in faith, he matures us in him. He conforms us to his likeness. He increases our faith. We learn perseverance, which is needed for the next trials which come our way. And, we learn to rely on God and not on ourselves.

So, don’t let your trials push you away from God and back into your old sinful ways. Remain steadfast in faith in the power and working of our Lord in your life and cooperate fully with his work of grace in your life. Yield to the Lord and to his sovereign will over your life. And, keep on keeping on in your walks of faith and your commitments to follow your Lord in surrender to his will for your lives. Then, you can be assured that the victory is yours in Christ Jesus, our Lord, and that you can be at peace in knowing that you will spend eternity with God in heaven.

For Our Nation
An Original Work / September 11, 2012

Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.

Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.

Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.

Men deceiving: we’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.

Monday, September 24, 2018, 4:11 a.m. – Thank You, Jesus, for these truths.

7 thoughts on “Don’t Shrink Back!

    • Thank you. Glory to God. I grew up on the KJV, too, but had trouble understanding what I read. When I was introduced to the NASB in the 70s, the Word of God began to come alive to me. My favorite is the NIV84, but the NASB seems more consistently accurate to the original.

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