‘Staggering to a throne’

I agree with Selwyn, when he draws attention to the fact that the prime reason Jesus came to this earth – was to save us.

He writes: “The central purpose of Jesus stepping into time to walk on this earth, we should remember, was not to be an example or a teacher, but to be Saviour and Redeemer. … He frees us from the power that sin has over us. Christ’s sacrificial death at Calvary is an accomplished fact and now awaits my acceptance. And the more definite my acceptance and commitment, the more His power can affect my life.” 

Naturally, the same theme is seen in the prayer for today: “O Father, how grateful I am that Your Son came not as a Divine Executioner to destroy me but as a Divine Redeemer to deliver me. Help me to live so that in the face of everything my affirmation will be ‘Jesus is Lord’. Amen.”

The main storyline of the entire Bible is reflected, in verse 3 of the fist Chapter, of the Hebrews letter. ” …  After Jesus had provided purification for sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.”

A sobering thought arises from this verse – just how many people would have been received into heaven if Jesus had not provided purification for sins?  After we have meditated on this aspect – shouldn’t we try harder to live our lives –  reflecting our gratitude to God for being saved? What’s your view?

The stamp of God’s image

Selwyn, now looks at verse three, in the first chapter of Hebrews.

Hebrews 1:1-3 (NLT):  “Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. And now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he created the universe. The Son radiates God’s own glory and expresses the very character of God, and he sustains everything by the mighty power of his command. When he had cleansed us from our sins, he sat down in the place of honor at the right hand of the majestic God in heaven.”

Selwyn writes, in his conclusion: This Christ, we are told, sustains ‘all things by His powerful word’. If there was any doubt about this among the Hebrew Christians, all they had to do was to reflect on the fact that when Jesus Christ was here on earth, He sustained everything around Him by His powerful word. He healed men and women – with a word. He stilled the storm – with a word. He raised the dead – with a word.

In the first chapter of the Book of Genesis (NLT) – we first heard about God’s powerful word: ” … (Verse 3) Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light … ” 

(Verse 6) Then God said, “Let there be a space between the waters … ” 

(Verse 9) Then God said, “Let the waters beneath the sky flow together into one place, so dry ground may appear … ”

(Verse 11) Then God said, “Let the land sprout with vegetation – every sort of seed-bearing plant, and trees that grow seed-bearing fruit … ”

(Verse 14) Then God said, “Let lights appear in the sky to separate the day from the night … ”

(Verse 20) Then God said, “Let the waters swarm with fish and other life. Let the skies be filled with birds of every kind … ” 

(Verse 24) Then God said, “Let the earth produce every sort of animal … ”

(Verse 26) Then God said, “Let us make human beings …  ”

I’ve emphasised, by repetition – the fact that God commands – and, it is done. In the same way, what Jesus said while on earth – demonstrated the same power and truth. It does not matter if we believe that evolution played a role in creation or not – what matters is that we understand that the process of creation was started by God’s Word. In the same way, it’s important to understand that Jesus demonstrated the same power of creation when He was on this earth. He showed that He could bring order and salvation – into a chaotic and sinful world.

Your thoughts?

‘Go to hell then’

I’m not too sure about the title of this study – because, I don’t think we have the right to say those words – in any context – even if said gently!

God will judge – and it’s His role to say to those who will not follow His ways – ‘depart from Me’; after He has shown mercy and compassion to those He ‘chooses’.

I like Selwyn’s conclusion and his prayer for today. He clearly states that it is Jesus – who is our creator God.

“Jesus Christ is the heir of all things because all things were made for Him and by Him. This means that the touch of Jesus is on all creation; everything is made in its inner structure to work in His way. When it works in His way it works well, but when it works some other way it works to its own destruction. Live according to Christ and you live; live against Him and you will face the consequences.”

The prayer is:“Lord Jesus, You are heir of all things. All things that ain’t placed at your feet simply have no place. But everything surrendered to You is safe – including myself. I am extremely grateful. Amen.”

I think it’s important to always keep in mind – that Jesus is fully God – He is our God who relates to us on our level – His humanity enables us (from our perspective) to have a full relationship with Him. This indeed – is a fantastic gift, the ability to relate to our creator. Do you agree?

Speech ‘without a stutter’

I’ve always liked the letter to the Hebrews. It’s a letter, which clearly tells us that the old covenant was a shadow of the new covenant. A new covenant that was bought into existence by Jesus’ life, death and resurrection.

The title, for this July/August edition of Every Day with Jesus, is ‘The Perfect One’. [‘The Son is the radiance of God’s glory … sustaining all things by his powerful word.’ Hebrews 1:3] 

Selwyn captures the theme of Hebrews, very simply; ‘the superiority of Christ over every other person and religious system in the universe. … (Hebrews) is the clearest and most systematic presentation of Christ’s adequacy and uniqueness.’

His conclusion, leaves us in no doubt about Selwyn’s views on the truth of Jesus’ complete superiority: “In the New Testament, especially the Gospels, you find a new voice that gathers up the syllables and phrases in which God spoke in the Old Testament and merges them into one complete and final discourse. God’s Word and message to humanity has been fully uttered in and through His Son.”

Consequently, we find the same truth expressed in today’s prayer: “Father, when my eyes fall on Christ, You own beloved Son, I know that all else is relative. He and He alone is absolute. May His supremacy become more real to me day by day. In Christ’s name I ask it.”

The one, single verse for meditation, is the first verse of Hebrews: “Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets.”

As I mentioned at the start – I like Hebrews; I think that the next two months will be most rewarding – I pray, that at the end of this study, you too will have enjoyed the journey.