The writer of Hebrews begins his letter by exalting Jesus Christ as the exact representation and radiance of our heavenly Father who sustains all things by his powerful word. After Jesus Christ had atoned for the sins of man, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. Previously God had spoken to man through his prophets and near the end of time sent his son as a personal spokesman. The words spoken by Christ were not his own but were prepared by his father and spoken by Christ making him the most profound teacher about spiritual matters known to man.
Because Jesus Christ loved righteousness and hated wickedness, God gave Jesus Christ a position of authority above everyone in his kingdom. In his Kingdom every knee will bow and every tongue will confess the lordship of Jesus Christ. Presently, Jesus Christ has completed his work to atone for mankind and is sitting (resting from his work) at Godís right hand. Then when the time is right, Christ will tread the grapes of wrath and God will make his enemies a footstool.
Because of this, you and I must pay closer attention to what we have heard or through neglect we will drift away from the promise of Salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ. The world has a separate agenda and is ready to oppose the message that God wants man to hear. Peter thought it wise to remind you that you have been cleansed from your sins in the first chapter 2nd Peter. Peter also spoke of the promises of God and partaking in the divine nature, and after his departure, he wanted his brothers and sisters to be able to remember these very things.
Keeping the words of Christ fresh in our mind and before our eyes is important to God because Godís promises will fade from our mind as the world is constantly desensitized our mind to the word of God. Being reminded of the promises becomes important when we consider the chosen leaders of the Old Testament were required to keep a copy of the covenant at their side. Today, God has given us his Holy Spirit to remind us of the words Christ spoke to us, but we also need the word of God close to us to know what we are hearing is from God.
God is impartial, violating the message spoken by angels received its just punishment. Because of God's holiness, the act of sin separated man from God make any relationship with man impossible. Because of sin, man was hostile to the plan God has for mankind. Until the messiah was born man stood condemned in the eyes of God all because you and I have sinned and deserve to die. However, God wants to promote life to its fullest and has devised a way that you and I can serve him free of sin.
But God does not take away life; instead, he devises ways so that a banished person may not remain estranged from him. 2 Samuel 14:14
Jesus Christ took descended from his glory to taste death for man and demonstrate of the grace of God through his work at Calvary. Many died because sin entered the world through one man, how much more did God's grace and the gift that came by the grace of God, overflow to those who would accept Jesus Christ as Lord. God prepared a body for his son to become a sacrifice representing the sin of men. Because man had sinned, Christ had to be made like his brothers in every way to demonstrate sin could be overcame by example. As an indestructible being he became a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God with personal knowledge of the trials man have to endure. In his death, Christ fulfilled the law by becoming the Lamb that atoned for manís sin. The death of one man satisfied the penalty God demanded for those who sinned.
He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9
God is building the kingdom of God from those whose sins were atoned through Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is building your body into a holy place that God can live in by his spirit. Everyone who has placed his hope in Christ purifies himself and those who confess the name of the Lord must turn away from sin. For this reason, those who share in the heavenly calling must fix your thoughts on Jesus whom you confess as Lord.
Israel heard Moses command them to enter the promise Land. Israel also heard Joshua and Caleb say that with Godís help Israel could subdue the nations and conquer the land. However, Israel's faith was built on the report of the remaining spies who spoke of the overwhelming size of both men and cities in the Promised Land. They trusted what they could see and hear more than in the God who delivered them from the hand of Pharaoh with signs and wonders. Because of this Israel wandered in the desert for forty years testing the patience and love of God. They did not enter Godís rest or the Promised Land because of their unbelief. Instead they stirred the anger of God and died in the desert as an example to those who believe. The generation that followed went out to conquer the promise land under Joshua command. They believed Joshuaís message and combined their trust in God by doing the will of God.
You too have a rest that you can enter, because the promise of God rest still stands. However, you must make every effort to enter the kingdom of God because the salvation is limited to one name and the way to heaven is cluttered with trials and tribulations. Turning to the right or left to avoid the trials won't help as they will return until you are forced to deal with them. on the other hand the trial and tribulations teach you to deal with lifeís problems now so they wonít overtake you later. The Christian life is not easy but God has promised you that he will be with you until the end of the age. You will never have to face the trials of life alone.
Because many turn to the right or left of God's plan, Christians are not producing fruit in keeping with repentance. Matthew 3:8. In addition many Christians do not worship the Father in spirit and truth, John 4:23. Veering, straying from the walk or turning from God amounts to saying the right words with the appearance of being a Christian, but living a life indistinguishable from those in the world that are destined for the fire. Your deeds need to agree with the words that you speak so God can see the desire and effort you made to turn from sin. Actions speak louder than words and when words and deeds agree God has solid evidence to rely on.
Therefore we must pay closer attention to the commands of God. Let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity. Let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. Let us also spur others on to good deeds while we still have time. Our beliefs in God can not be words alone but be enforced with deeds that reflect the love God has lavished on us. When we do these things, we can expect a rich welcome into the kingdom of God and be called a son whom God is pleased with.
The words "therefore" and "Let us" are key words that are repeated several times throughout Hebrews. Reading the passages with these key words will help you to have a synopsis to the book as a whole. Both of these words stress the content and the focus of Scripture and each give an message of importance to those who want to please their God. Below the words therefore and Let us are are bolded and italics to help you find them. As you read Hebrews these words will come alive and help you to understand God covenant with man.
1. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy." Hebrews 1:9
2. We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away. Hebrews 2:1
3. Therefore, holy brothers, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, the apostle and high priest whom we confess. Hebrews 3:1
4. Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, Let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. Hebrews 4:1
5. Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today, when a long time later he spoke through David, as was said before: "Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts." Hebrews 4:7
6. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience. Hebrews 4:11
7. Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, Let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. Hebrews 4:14
8. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:16
9. Therefore, Let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God, Hebrews 6:1
10. Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. Hebrews 7:25
11. Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said: "Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me; Hebrews 10:5
12. Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, Hebrews 10:19
13. 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. Hebrews 10:22
14. Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23
15. And Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Hebrews 10:24
16. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but Let us encourage one another-- and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25
17. Instead, they were longing for a better country-- a heavenly one, therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. Hebrews 11:16
18. Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1
19. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:2
20. Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. Hebrews 12:12
21. Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, Let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, Hebrews 12:28
22. Let us, then, go to him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace he bore. Hebrews 13:13
23. Through Jesus, therefore, Let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise-- the fruit of lips that confess his name. Hebrews 13:15