Hebrews 12:25-29 ESV
“See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven. At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, ‘Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.’ This phrase, ‘Yet once more,’ indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.”
This chapter begins with counsel to the believers to lay aside every weight (burden, obstacle), and sin which clings so closely, so that we can run with endurance the race God has marked out for us to run. And then it goes on to talk about God’s discipline in our lives, which is for our good, that we may share in God’s holiness and that later it will yield the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by such discipline.
Then it goes on to counsel us to strengthen our walks of faith and to make straight paths for our feet, i.e. where we have been spiritually weak we need to be strong, and where we may have wandered, we need to get back on the straight path and follow our Lord in obedience to his commands (New Covenant). No more laziness or carelessness, but now we need to be getting dead serious about following Jesus Christ in all ways.
Don’t Refuse Him
This is really a parallel passage from the one from yesterday from Psalms 95 (also Hebrews 3 and 4 and 1 Corinthians 10). There the warning was not to harden our hearts when we hear the Lord speak, and to not follow the example of the Israelites in the wilderness, most of whom died in the wilderness because of their unrepentant hearts and their disobedience. For they were engaged in idolatry, sexual immorality, drunkenness, revelry, and putting the Lord to the test and grumbling against God.
We are not to desire evil as they did and we are not to engage in the kinds of sins they engaged in in rebellion against the Lord Jesus. And this passage in Hebrews is saying something very similar. We are not to refuse God when we hear him speaking. We are not to do what most of the Israelites did in rebellion against the Lord in the wilderness. Why? Because we will face the same results as they did. We will die in our sins, and we will not enter the kingdom of God (God’s eternal rest). And it will be because of our disobedience which = unbelief.
Now this removal of things that are shaken – that is, things that have been made – is in order that things that cannot be shaken may remain. Now I see this happening in our lives when the Lord disciplines us and when he allows us to go through trials to test our faith. He is pruning us. He is cutting away the rough edges, those places in our lives that need trimming so that what remains are people of God completely surrendered to the Lord, committed to walking in him in all ways, and to not wandering from the truth.
He will do this in judgment, too, during these last days on the earth, when the saints of God are being martyred for their faith in Jesus Christ. But while they are alive they are being persecuted, and the Lord is pruning them then, too, purifying them and getting them ready to meet him in the air or to be taken in death to be with him for eternity (Revelation 19:1-9; Revelation 6:9-11; Revelation 12:17; Revelation 13:1-18; Revelation 14:12-13).
So, what can’t be shaken? God’s kingdom cannot be shaken. So we are to be grateful to God that we who are daily dying to sin and who are walking in obedience to our Lord are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken. Amen! But we are to offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire. And so what this is saying is that we have to stay the course, and we have to keep on following Jesus in obedience until the very end, because if we don’t, we will not have eternal life with God. It is what the Scriptures teach. Please take this to heart.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
Your New Life / An Original Work
Based off the Gospels / May 15, 2014
Go and make disciples of peoples,
Teaching them to obey their Savior.
Do not fear, but go where He sends you.
Tell them all of what you have heard.
The kingdom of God now is upon you.
Come, and follow Jesus, your Lord.
He will make you fishers of man.
If the people Jesus desire,
They must die to sin and to self-life.
If they want to hold on to their lives
They will lose them forevermore.
Surely you heard that coming to Christ
Means a new life in Jesus, your Lord.
Follow Christ wherever He leads.
Love the Lord with all of your heart, and
Love your neighbors as you would yourself.
Preach the gospel to all the nations.
Do not worry what you will say.
Proclaim the freedom for all the captives.
Share the light with all who are blind.
You are ministers of our God.