Hebrews – Chapter 13

Verse 1 – Let brotherly love continue.

True love among Christians will be shown with kindness, hospitality, empathy, and contentment.

Verse 2 – Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels.

In the Old Testament people entertained angels without knowing they were angels. Abraham (Genesis 18:1), Gideon, (Judges 6:11), Manoah, Samson’s mother (Judges 13:2).

Verse 3 – Remember the prisoners as if chained with them, and those who are mistreated, since you yourselves are in the body also.

There were many who were in prison and chained for “righteousness sake.” Christians are to sympathize with those who are suffering.

Verse 4 – Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicator’s and adulterers God will judge.

Not only the person that is married and has sex with another is guilty of adultery, but the person, whether married or not, that has sex with a married person, commits adultery. All sex outside of marriage is fornication and unless a person repents and stops, are in danger of God’s wrath.

Verse 5 – Let your conduct be without covetousness, and be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

We as Christians, should be content with what God has provided for us, not always complaining about what we lack. When we complain, we might as well be saying that God can’t provide for us. Because He says He will never leave or forsake us, this reassures that He knows our needs and will provide.

Verse 6 – So we may boldly say: “The LORD is my helper; I will not fear, what can man do unto me?”

In times where we scarcely know how we are going to make it, we put our trust in Him. When God is on our side, what is there to fear?

Verse 7 – Remember those who rule over you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct.

The word rule used here, means guides, leaders, or directors. Teachers, remembering their counsel and instructions.

Verse 8 – Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Verse 9 – Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profiled those who have been occupied with them.

Apparently some were teaching that keeping the Old Testament ceremonial laws and rituals, such as not eating certain foods, was important to salvation. But these laws were useless for conquering a person’s evil thoughts and desires. These laws could influence, but could not change the heart.

Verse 10 – We have an altar from which those who serve the tabernacle have no right to eat.

A part of the meat offered in sacrifice among the Jews became the property of the priests and Levites, and they had by the Law, a right to this support. But the apostle here says there is a higher and more valuable sacrifice of which they have no right to partake while they remain in the service of the tabernacle or temple, that is, while they remain Jews. They couldn’t continue in the old sacrifices, ceremonies, and rituals, and take part in the sacrifice of the Redeemer. That was a privilege to Christians who accepted that one time sacrifice.

Verse 11 – For the bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest, for sin, are burned outside the camp.

Verse 12 – Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate.

Verse 13 – Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

He’s telling the Jews not to go back to the old sacrifices after they have become a Christian. Follow that one true sacrifice that Jesus made outside of Jerusalem.

Verse 14 – For here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come.

We do not regard this earth as our final home. The writer tells the Hebrew Christians, that their permanent home is heaven.

Verse 15 – Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruits of our lips, giving thanks to His name.

The Jews had approached God by the blood of the sacrifice and by their high priest. Now they could approach God through the one and only sacrifice, Jesus Christ our High Priest, and worship Him with our lips, singing praises to His name.

Verse 16 – But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

Too many times we are only focused on our wants, our needs. The apostle reminds them to “Share!” Share with what you have , share liberally, with those in need, take special pains to not forget. It is our duty. And in so doing God is pleased.

Verse 17 – Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account.

Leaders of a church are to help Christians mature. Cooperating followers ease the burden of their leaders. And those leaders will give an account of how they conducted themselves to the followers.

Verse 18 – Pray for us; for we are confident that we have a good conscience, in all things desiring to live honorable.

Verse 19 – But I especially urge you to do this, that I may be restored to you the sooner. (That sure sounds like the apostle Paul writing this, even if the scholars can’t agree.)

Verse 20 – Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,

Verse 21 – make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

Verse 22 – And I appeal to you, brethren bear with the word of exhortation, for I have written to you in my words.

Verse 23 – Know that our brother Timothy has been set free with whom I shall see you if he comes shortly.

Verse 24 – Greet all those who rule over you, and all the saints. Those from Italy greet you.

Verse 25 – Grace be with you all. Amen.

The Book of Hebrews calls all Christians to maturity. It was addressed to first-century Jews, but it applies to all Christians of any age and background. I sure wish we could hear more preaching of this book in the churches today!

 

 

 

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