Tag Archives: devotional

Create In Me A Clean Heart…

Matthew 23:25-26 25 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. 26 You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and the plate, that the outside also may be clean.”

Some people try so hard to look so clean and perfect on the outside; trying to play the part and put on a show for the whole world to see that ‘they’ are pious. Putting in that ‘extra effort’ which results in them being seen as upright and holy in the sight of man. But God reveals all, and all comes out in the wash when He establishes it to be so. Yet on the inside their souls are full of sin; greed, self indulgence, pride, self ambitions, etc… failing to realize that their hypocrisy has ended in their bones rotting as they slowly drift into a path of becoming white washed tombs.
But all are warned, and given a way of escape from this destructive path. By truly cleansing and purifying our inner being, so too will our outer being become so. When we truly set our hearts on God and His word, He will cleanse us of all iniquity as we take the first steps of putting on our new man. He then walks with us on that journey of sanctification until our days end, and forevermore. We are then seen as perfect, because God sees the Christ in us rather than the sin in us.

Psalm 51:10 “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me, Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me…˝

This is my prayer; that I may not be a hypocrite, and that I may not put to shame or mock the word of God by becoming an actor or pretender. But that You may protect me from this vain and vile way of life. And may You create and form and mold a clean heart and spirit within me, erasing all iniquity and defilement. Help me to live a life of righteousness that will glorify You in Your sight and not in the sight of man. I so desperately need your mercies and grace Lord. And may you help me be made holy and pure for the rest of my days, for they are fleeting away like a vapor
– Amen


The Other 90%

How to be a Good Steward of your Money!

Today I was thinking about none other than… yes that right, MONEY! The bills have just came in, another $800 out the door, down the street, to the post office, and into the hands of someone who will cash my check, leaving me with …. almost nothing. My mind shortly becomes flooded with thoughts and images of soon living out on the street carrying nothing but my Bible, a suitcase full of items, and tattered clothing. I immediately had to stop myself and remember that I am a child of God; with my God all things are possible, he promises to provide for my all needs, and in my hands lies the Ultimate Manual To Life which guides me.

They say that money is the root of all evil, but I must strongly disagree. For it is not the money that causes evil but the mismanagement of money that causes evil. We tend to mismanage our money on account of many other sins such as; pride, covetousness, gluttony, lies, self-idolatry, gossip, debt, pretending (to be rich), wasting, fearing men and so many others. So for the sake of reflection, I’m compelled to give you the biblical ethics and tips on how to be a Good Steward of your money.

1) Remember All You Have Belongs To God –
Everything we have belongs to God and is a good and perfect gift from above coming to us from our Father of Lights (meaning God created everything the sun, moon, and starts; a reference in which traditional ritualistic Jews of that time understood). All which we possess God has allowed and bestowed upon us, this includes our jobs and our money. Have you, or a friend, ever prayed for God to get you that job from that ‘one’ interview? I know I have… then the next week you/they get that call from the interviewer and get the job. Later you go out and celebrate but can’t stop taking about how God pulled through when you needed it! Well guess what most of us do after we get done celebrating and praising God? Oh you don’t know? Well we FORGET about God and the provision He had for us and granted us. Soon we are taking advantage of the Job, which leads to money, which leads to paying bills and entertaining ourselves. Where is God Now? Nowhere! We need to always remember every time we get that paycheck in the mail that GOD bless us with the job to begin with.

Deuteronomy 8:18 ‘And you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.’

Jeremiah 9:23-24 ‘Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, Let not the mighty man glory in his might, Nor let the rich man glory in his riches; But let him who glories glory in this, That he understands and knows Me, That I am the Lord, exercising loving kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. For in these I delight,” says the Lord.’

John 3:27 ‘To this John replied, A person can receive only what is given them from heaven.’

Psalm 24:1-2 ‘The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness, The world and those who dwell therein.For He has founded it upon the seas, And established it upon the waters.’

More Reading Found Here —>

2) Always Seek God First-

You would be surprised what happens when you seek God first. When we consistently read our Bible’s, study and meditate on His word, spend time with Him in prayer, fellowship with others in the body of Christ, sing Him songs and hymns, share His Good News professing him to all we come in contact with, etc… whatever you can thing of – God blesses you for it! He gives you treasures and blessings here on earth in this life, but you are also storing up treasures and blessing in Heaven for your eternal life. Also God wants us to seek Him solely, we cannot have anything else put before him, that includes our money and finances. The moment we make God small our problems and troubles only get larger. He is all powerful, he created the Heavens and the earth, what is our small financial problem to Him? So remember God will always provide as long as you seek His kingdom first.

Matthew 6:33 ‘But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.’

Isaiah 33:6 ‘He will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the LORD is the key to this treasure.’

Matthew 6:24 ‘No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.’

Colossians 3:1 ‘If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.’

The More I Seek You Video —>

Trusting God To Know What’s Best —>

3) Tithing it’s not just about the Money –

Here is what really gets me about a lot of people, and Christians, these days. Yeah, the economy is tough, you’re barely getting by, but the thing is that; you are no longer trusting God with your life or finances! I was talking to my neighbor yesterday, she’s 78 years old and goes to my church, full of wisdom and childish charm. She was telling me stories of all the people she’s encountered who went to Church and were having financial problems one after another. She would ask, “Well are you tithing your first of your wages to God?”, they would reply, “NO…”, with a quizzical look on their faces. Then soon advice and wisdom poured from this woman’s lips, “Well I’ve found when I faithfully give my tithe to the Lord he always over-provides for my needs – but I’ve found that when I don’t tithe i get into a lot of trouble and begin to drown in my troubles and sorrows’. These people would take her advice and start giving and soon enough these people would have all their needs taken care of and a little extra to go out and spend on entertainment. When you don’t give your first-fruits and just wait till the end of the month you see what you have left and feel its not enough and then just don’t give. Always give your first-fruits from every check. It’s not about the money it’s about trusting the Lord with the money He’s given to you, then seeing the increase that comes from such great faith.

Malachi 3:10 ‘Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,” Says the Lord of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing. That there will not be room enough to receive it.’

Proverbs 3:9 ‘Honor the Lord with your possessions, And with the first-fruits of all your increase…’

Deuteronomy 14:22-29 ‘You shall truly tithe all the increase of your grain that the field produces year by year.And you shall eat before the Lord your God, in the place where He chooses to make His name abide, the tithe of your grain and your new wine and your oil, of the firstborn of your herds and your flocks, that you may learn to fear the Lord your God always.’

2 Corinthians 9:7 ‘So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.’

Get more Understanding Here —>

4) Giving Freely For Needs of Others –

When you care for the needs of other, God blesses you for it. When you provide for the physical and spiritual needs for others, God provides for the physical and spiritual needs for you. We are to love one another as we love ourselves, we are not to be partial in our giving. If the body of Christ were to all give, as they had, to fulfill the needs of someone else in the body of Christ – Do you think that one single person would have debt? lack of food? lack of supplies? lack of clothes? lack of a place to live? I don’t think so! So let’s be a real community and start providing for the need of those in our Home, our Church, and our Local Community.

Acts 20:35 ‘I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’

Proverbs 28:27 ‘He who gives to the poor will not lack, But he who hides his eyes will have many curses.’

James 2:15-16 ‘If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that?’

2 Corinthians 9:10 ‘Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness…’

Become Generous By Learning It’s Importance Here —>

5) Saving and Preparing for the Unknown-

So, yes, God does provide for our needs, what we do with what we get is up to us. Now we never know when tragedy will strike; when you will break your leg, when you don’t have money to make rent, when you can’t go on the vacation you already booked a flight for, when someone you love dies and you’re stuck with all the medical bills, when you get cancer, or when your car breaks down and don’t have enough for a tow and the repairs, etc… Whatever that tragedy may be in your life, it comes unexpectedly. We go through trials and suffering from time to time, and every time we successfully handle it we come out emotionally, physically, and spiritually stronger and closer to God. It produces endurance and patience. So to help prepare somewhat for these money costing crisis’ we need to be able to save up money. So only spend money on what you need, don’t waste (food, time, money, etc…), have discernment, think everything through before making a purchase, and take a certain percentage from every check to put into a ‘safety account’ (a second savings account).

1 Corinthians 16:2 ‘On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.’

Proverbs 21:20There is precious treasure and oil in the dwelling of the wise, but a foolish man swallows it up’

Proverbs 30:25 ‘The ants are not a strong people, but they prepare their food in the summer…’

Proverbs 27:12 ‘A prudent man sees evil and hides himself, the naive proceed and pay the penalty.’

For More Tips Check Out Here —>

6) Budgeting and Planning a course of Action – 

God was a God of Order. God also always has a Plan. So start filling the shoes of the ‘Big Man Upstairs’ and start stepping out into the image He created you in. Get organized, get planning, get budgeting! When you don’t plan things out and count the costs, you are setting yourself up for failure. Whether you are planning to buy a car, rent an apartment, buy a house, make a wedding happen,  or go on a 3 week vacation… budgeting helps immensely because it shows you where your finances are currently at and how much surplus you will have every month (as you start making more, sometimes less, money). Budgeting helps you adjust to financial changes as well, and relieves  frustration from you, and subsequently your family. So get smart and start your financial blueprint now, always factoring in that 5%-30% for tithe!

Luke 14:28 ‘For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it—lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, This man began to build and was not able to finish?’

Ecclesiastes 11:2 ‘Give a serving to seven, and also to eight, For you do not know what evil will be on the earth.’

Proverbs 15:22  ‘Without consultation, plans are frustrated, but with many counselors they succeed.’

Proverbs 24:3-4 ‘By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; and by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.’

Get Help Creating You Budget TODAY —>

7) Worrying About Not Having Enough-

Do not worry about tomorrow or the future to where is gets in the way of your daily activities, your sleep schedule, or your relationships with God – and others. Concentrate on the things that you know you can take care of today, practice time management, and if you don’t get something done today just leave it on the list of Things-To-Do-Tomorrow… When you get anxious or worrisome about money and finances, like I recently did, just lift up God’s name by giving Him your burdens. For it is written His yoke is easy and His burden is light! God always provides; ask and you will receive, pray without ceasing, and know your God is ALL powerful. Everyday is trouble – so starting today let tomorrow think about tomorrow and today think about today.

Matthew 6:34 ‘Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.’

Psalm 127:2 ‘It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep.’

Philippians 4:6 ‘do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.’

Matthew 6:25 ‘For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to to his life?’

Worship God and Stop Worrying —>

8) Contentment For What You Have-

Contentment – this is a tough one. Our culture so vivaciously has been shoving covetousness down our throats for years; you’re not beautiful enough, young enough, skinny enough, cool enough, famous enough, or rich enough…. but if you want to be all these thing DO THIS! The problem with this is that it subliminally makes us NOT trust in our all powerful creator God who can do anything; provide for our needs, fill our voids, give us eternity in a place filled with NO pain, suffering, tears, etc… Our God will never leave or forsake us, so be content with your life, embrace the perfectly and wonderfully made YOU that you are. What do you gain from having every material thing that you have ever wanted in your life? When the whole world just sits in your hand will you actually be happy? Happy that everything you have is superficial, brown-nosing, and without a doubt incapable of loving you whole heartily in return? What is there to gain from always wanting more and losing all joy? The one who is content in life, themselves, and God will always bear fruit (the good things) even when drought comes to the world, or to others, God will be there feeding you what you need. Our home is not here, it is in Heaven, then things we have here we do not take with us.

Hebrews 13:5 ‘Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.’

Ecclesiastes 5:10 ‘He who loves silver will not be satisfied with silver; Nor he who loves abundance, with increase. This also is vanity.’

Mark 8:36 ‘For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?’

Jeremiah 17:18 ‘He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.’

Luke 12:15 ‘And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.’

Contentment, What It’s All About —>

9) How Not To Fall Into Debt

Debt! A BIG problem especially in the United States. Since the invention of the credit card Americans have been taught that if we don’t have something we can still buy it with ‘someone else (credit companies) invisible money, but we failed to realize the not so invisible debt that comes along with that. Who would have thunk it!? Soon this debt chases after you, runs you over, and BOOM! you’re dead instantly, and you weren’t expecting it or prepared for it.Debt controls people lives with covetousness and rewards points then enslaves them with interest.

Proverbs 22:7 ‘The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower is servant to the lender.’

Proverbs 11:15‘Whoever puts up security for a stranger will surely suffer, but whoever refuses to shake hands in pledge is safe..”

Romans 13:8 ‘Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.’

Ecclesiastes 5:5 ‘It is better that you should not vow than that you should vow and not pay.’

Getting Out of Debt God’s Way —>

10) Fraud Leads To A Void-

Fraud will only lead to karma, meaning you will reap what you sow… eventually. I don’t care if you don’t like the government and you want to skim by on taxes. Or maybe you do like the government because of the free welfare and food stamps you get because you are too lazy to get a job so you foster 5 kids (or you jut keep popping them out on purpose). Who cares if the insurance company messed you over something good. The point is fraud is fraud, though others may not see God does. You know what he sees?….. cause He doesn’t see trust and faith in Him that’s for sure. But He certainly does see deceit, stealing, hatred, abuse, greed, lust, mocking, unjustness, etc… (use your imagination). Then he cries for you because He loves you. He is wiling to forgive you, but you must repent fully and turn to Him, turning away from this sin and never do it again. Fraud causes strife and destruction because it is a lie, cheat, and scam. Fraud is a hidden sin that most don’t share but keeps to themselves. However a lie (like fraud) treas apart the soul like a knife through butter and eventually gets found out and exposed. So please refrain from fraud.

Jeremiah 22:13 ‘Woe to him who builds his house without righteousness and his upper rooms without justice, who uses his neighbor’s services without pay and does not give him his wages.’

James 5:4 ‘Indeed the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out; and the cries of the reapers have reached the ears of the Lord of Sabbath.’

Colossians 4:1 ‘Masters, grant to your slaves justice and fairness, knowing that you too have a Master in heaven.’

Proverbs 13:11 ‘Wealth obtained by fraud dwindles, but the one who gathers by labor increases it.’

Galatians 6:7 ‘Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.’

11) Taxes… Yup You Gotta Pay Em’ –

We are to submit to the power of our earthly authorities and laws as well as God’s laws. So if the federal and state governments wants us to pay taxes, pay them. You will regret it if you don’t, because when you don’t you get fined and you get to go to ‘Club Fed’ – federal prison. Jesus even payed taxes, even though the sons of the tax collectors didn’t have to pay. Let’s follow Jesus’ example and display Christ-likeness. We are also to render all the things that belong to God as well, so don’t forget that tid bit!

Romans 13:7 ‘Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.’

Luke 20:21, 25 ‘Then they asked Him, saying, “Teacher, we know that You say and teach rightly, and You do not show personal favoritism, but teach the way of God in truth: 22 Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”…..And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.’

Matthew 17:25-27 ‘He said, “Yes.” And when he came into the house, Jesus spoke to him first, saying, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do kings of the earth take toll or tax? From their sons or from others?” And when he said, “From others,” Jesus said to him, “Then the sons are free. However, not to give offense to them, go to the sea and cast a hook and take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth you will find a shekel.Take that and give it to them for me and for yourself.

12) Investing (Get Rich Quick) –

Basically work hard and diversify. When you make an investment be willing to put the needed work into it that it requires. So if you buy a building to invest and run a restaurant, be willing to plan, start it up, and manage it! If you plan to play the stocks, you will have to take the time to research the stock market to know when to pull your stocks out of a certain company and reinvest them into a different company. Do not waste money on worthless investments either, always have discernment and consider (do not rush into) each financial risk that you take. Wisdom and understanding is a key to success in any financial endeavor, so invest in areas that you already have much knowledge of.

Proverbs 12:11 ‘He who tills his land will have plenty of bread, but he who pursues worthless things lacks sense.’

Proverbs 13:11 ‘Dishonest money dwindles away, but he who gathers money little by little makes it grow.’

Proverbs 19:2 ‘Also it is not good for a person to be without knowledge, and he who hurries his footsteps errs.’

Proverbs 28:20 ‘He who tills his land will have plenty of food, but he who follows empty pursuits will have poverty in plenty. A faithful man will abound with blessings, but he who makes haste to be rich will not go unpunished.’

Investing Money Go’s Way —>

Well those are my thoughts and I hope that you enjoyed the post. Keep in mind… Don’t Worry, Be Happy! With God we can do all things – become a Good Steward of God’s money!

Job 2:9-10 – In Sickness and Trial Praise God

“…Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast your integrity? Curse God and die.”  But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women would speak. Shall we receive good from God, and shall we not receive evil?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips…” ESV / Commentary

The Beautiful Exchange (1 of 2)

Just as the writer has presented us with a description of Jesus Christ as the ultimate high priest, whom is far superior to the old priesthood. The writer also presents us with a description of the one final sacrifice of Jesus Christ, which is far superior to the many sacrifices offered by the old priesthood. In this study we will look firstly at the sacrifices offered under the old covenant, then at the one final sacrifice of Jesus Christ. For the second part of the study we will, again, set these side by side in a table for an easier comparison. Then we will wrap up the main points for the completion of this study.

Sacrifices under the Old Testament Ritual Laws; (NKJV Scripture in order for section)

  • 5:3 the high priest had to offer sacrifices for his own sins as well as the sins of the people, not just once but daily (day after day)
  • 7:11 they did not and could not provide ‘perfection
  • 7:18 the law made nothing ‘perfect
  • 7:27 sacrifices needed to be offered daily (day after day)
    and needed to be offered for the priest’s sins as well as the people’s sins
  • 8:13 old ritual law sacrifices under the first covenant were made ‘obsolete‘ by the implementation of the new covenant, by Jesus Christ
  • 9:6 priests entered regularly into the outer room to carry on their ministry
  • 9:7 only high priests entered the inner room, annually, only with blood, making an offering for himself and for the sins the people that they had committed in ignorance
  • 9:9 these gifts and sacrifices were not able to clear the conscience of the worshiper
  • 9:10 were temporary ‘external regulations
  • 9:11 were offered in a man-made tabernacle
  • 9:12 using the blood of goats and calves
  • 9:13 the blood of goats and bulls, and the ashes of a heifer could only ‘sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean‘, this did not and could not help the inwardly – your spirit/soul
  • 9:18 sacrifices were not put into effect without blood
  • 9:22 the law required that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness from God
  • 9:24 they were offered in a man-made sanctuary, which was only a copy, and shadow, of the true one to come
  • 9:25 high priests enter the Most Holy Place over and over again, year after year
    high priests enter with blood that is not his own, but of goat, bull, or calve
  • 10:1 the law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming – not the realities themselves in present
  • therefore… it can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship God. (10:2 – If it could, would they not have stopped being offered? For the worshipers would have been cleansed once for all by doing so, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins If so there wouldn’t have been need for the sending and sacrifice of Jesus Christ)
  • 10:3 the sacrifices are an annual reminder of their sins
  • 10:4 it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins
  • 10:5-8 God did not desire sacrifice/offering, burnt offerings, or sin offerings, nor was he pleased with them
  • 10:9 they are set aside by God
  • 10:11 the daily repeated sacrifices can never take away sins of the people

In these statements about the sacrifices offered under the ritual and traditional Jewish law of the old covenant – There are two recurring themes (1) the repetitiveness of these sacrifices (2) their temporary and superficial capabilities. By way of extreme contrast, consider what is said about the sacrifice of Jesus Christ…

The Once and For ALL Sacrifice of Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Savior; (NKJV Scripture in order for section)

  • 7:27a was not needed daily (day after day)
  • 7:27b was not for his own sins but ours (the worlds)
  • 7:27c the sacrifice for the worlds sins was once and for ALL when he offered himself up
  • 9:9 (by assumption) is able to clear the conscience of, and give rest/peace to, the worshiper
  • 9:12 he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption
  • 9:14 the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit, offered himself unblemished and unspotted to God. This cleanses, and purifies, our consciences/hearts from acts that will evidently lead us to death, this way we may serve the living God wholly and holy
  • 9:15 he died as a ransom to set them and us free from the sins committed under the first covenant law
  • 9:25 he does not have to enter heaven to offer himself over and over again
  • 9:26 he appeared once for ALL at the end of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself
  • 9:28 Christ was sacrificed once to take away ALL the sins of many people (the world)
  • 10:1 (by assumption) makes perfect those who draw near to him in worship
  • 10:2 (by assumption) worshipers are cleansed once for all, and no longer need to feel guilty for their sins committed past, present, and future
  • 10:10 we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ – once for ALL and forever more
  • 10:12 Jesus offered for ALL time one sacrifice for ALL sins, then sat down at the right hand of God the Father
  • 10:14 by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy (us that believe in him)
  • 10:17 God no longer remembers our sins and lawless acts, we are continually cleaned and purified – white as snow – from the day we believe
  • 10:18 where we have been forgiven there is no longer any needed future sacrifice for sin – it is Final and Done
  • 10:19 we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus
  • 10:20 we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by a new and living way opened for us through… his body, no longer set apart from God
  • 10:22 therefore … let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water .
  • 10:23 therefore … let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he is faithful who promised

The two efficacious and dominant qualities of the sacrifice of Christ are (1) its once and for ALL-ness and related immutability (2) its all inclusive and radical implementation in our lives, then and now.

For our next study we will look at these two contrasting sacrifices in table form, then wrap up the study at the end. Thank you for joining us and God Bless!

The Highest of the Highest – Hebrews 4:14-16 (part 2 of 2)

Ancient Bath House in Laodicea, Turkey

In chapters five to ten the writer makes two important contrasts of his time (1) the high priests of Israel and Jesus Christ the great high priest, and (2) the ritual animal sacrifices of the old covenant and the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. For the rest of this study we will look first at what the writer says about the high priests of Israel, then at what he says about Melchizedek, then at the priesthood of Jesus Christ. In the next study we will look at the sacrifices of the old covenant and the once-for-all sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

Lets compare and contrast now the High Priests of Israel to Jesus the Great High Priest…

About the high priests of Israel the writer states in chapter 5 verse 1 ‘For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed to act on behalf of men in relation to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins.‘ and in verse 2 ‘He can deal gently… since he himself is beset (subject) with weakness‘, in verse 3 ‘he is obligated to offer sacrifice for his own sins just as he does for those of the people.’, in verse 4 ‘but only when called by God, just as Aaron was.’, in chapter 7 verse 11 ‘Now if perfection had been attainable through the Levitical priesthood (for under it the people received the law), what further need would there have been for another priest to arise‘ – basically they could not mediate ‘perfection‘ established on the basis of the law, in verse 20 ‘For those who formerly became priests were made such without an oath‘, in verse 23 ‘The former priests were many in number, because they were prevented by death from continuing in office’ – basically saying because they died they had to be replaced, many times, in verse 27 ‘to offer sacrifices daily, first for his own sins and then for those of the people‘, in verse 28 ‘For the law appoints men in their weakness as high priests‘ – basically they were weak men, in chapter 8 verse 2 ‘a minister in the holy places, in the true tent (tabernacle) that the Lord set up, not man‘ – Jesus served in a tent made by God whereas the High Priests of Israel served in a tent made by man, in verse 5 ‘They serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things.‘ – the High Priests of Israel serve a copy and shadow of what is prepared in heaven, in verses 6-12 the High Priests of Israel served under a faulty and inferior covenant, and in verse 13 ‘In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away‘ – meaning they serve under a now serve under an ‘obsolete’ covenant (remember this is a letter to the Hebrews who are being tempted to go back to this traditional and ritualistic way under the old law).

Lets move onto Melchizedek – First read the Old Testament record of the meeting between Abraham and Melchizedek in Genesis 14:18-20. Though the writer contrasts Jesus to the high priests of Israel, he also points out to the Hebrews a similarity between Jesus and Melchizedek. Now lets draw our attention to five facts about Melchizedek; in chapter 7 verses 1-2 ‘king of Salem, priest of the Most High God‘ and ‘by translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then he is also king of Salem, that is, king of peace‘, in verse 3 ‘He is without father or mother or genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life… he continues a priest forever‘, in verse 4-10 ‘See how great this man wasIt is beyond dispute that the inferior is blessed by the superior… One might even say that Levi himself, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham‘ – basically they he is stating that Melchizedek was greater than Abraham, and therefore greater than Levi, the priestly tribe, in verse 13 ‘For the one of whom these things are spoken belonged to another tribe‘, and in verse 16 ‘who has become a priest, not on the basis of a legal requirement concerning bodily descent, but by the power of an indestructible life‘ – meaning his role as priest was all based on his conformation to regulations about ancestry

Let’s finish with the Greatest High Priest of them all, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, in chapter 4 verse 14a ‘Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens‘ – not just the man-made curtain into the man-made sanctuary, 14b ‘Jesus, the Son of God‘, verse 15 ‘For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.‘, in chapter 5 verses 5-6 ‘was appointed by him who said to him,“You are my Son, today I have begotten you…‘, in verses 7-9 ‘with loud cries and tears… he learned obedience through what he suffered’ – by experiencing the suffering, agony and temptations of man he is qualified as a perfect representative, in verse 9 ‘being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation, to all who obey him”, in verse 10 ‘being designated by God a high priest, after the order of Melchizedek‘, in chapter 6 verse 20 ‘where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.‘, in chapter 7 verse 11 ‘rather than one named after the order of Aaron?‘ – is not named after the order of Aaron, in verse 14 ‘For it is evident that our Lord was descended from Judah, and in connection with that tribe Moses said nothing about priests‘ – a tribe where priests did not come, in verse 16 his priesthood is based on the power of an indestructible life, in verse 17 ‘who has become a priest, not on the basis of a legal requirement concerning bodily descent, but by the power of an indestructible life‘ – in the order of Melchizedek, in verse 18 ‘For on the one hand, a former commandment is set aside because of its weakness and uselessness‘ – his priesthood sets the former law aside, in verse 19 ‘(for the law made nothing perfect); but on the other hand, a better hope is introduced, through which we draw near to God‘, in verses 20-21 ‘but this one was made a priest with an oath‘ – his priesthood was affirmed and established by God, in verse 22 because of this oath ‘This makes Jesus the guarantor of a better covenant‘, in verse 24 ‘but he holds his priesthood permanently, because he continues forever‘, in verse 25 ‘he is able to save to those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them‘, in verse 26 ‘indeed fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, unstained, separated from sinners, and exalted above the heavens’ – not needing to offer sacrifices day after day, in verse 27 ‘since he did this once for all when he offered up himself‘ – he sacrificed himself for our sins once for all when he offered himself up, in verse 28 ‘but the word of the oath, which came later than the law, appoints a Son who has been made perfect forever‘, in chapter 8 verse 1 ‘the point in what we are saying is this: we have such a high priest, one who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven‘, in verse 2 ‘a minister in the holy places, in the true tent (tabernacle) that the Lord set up, not man‘ – Christ serves in the ‘true tabernacle‘ set up by God, and in verse 6 ‘But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises‘ – he is mediator of a superior covenant, that was and is founded on better promises.

That’s it for Comparing the High Priests, from the Least to the Greatest of them all. Next study we will be comparing old testament sacrifices to the once and for all sacrifice of Christ Jesus.

Thank you and God Bless

A Beautiful Exchange…. A Study on Christ’s Sacrafice

Nail, Cross, and CrownFor the month of May our study is kicking off on Christ’s sacrifice that He made out of the great love that He had for us all.

Jesus Christ was sent down from Heaven, to be born a man, to live the perfect and sinless life, to become a living sacrifice, to take on ALL the worlds sin, and to die on the cross, so that WE ALL may have a relationship with the Father, have life after death, and to live richly in the Kingdom of Heaven forevermore.

So join in as we dive into the book of Hebrews to study the sacrifice of Christ and what that sacrifice means today.

God Bless!

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