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14 Mar | Show the Same Earnestness to have the Full Assurance of Hope Until the End

14 March • Tuesday of the Third Week in Lent

Hebrews 5:11—6:12

11. About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. 12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, 13 for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child. 14 But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.

6:1 Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God,


2. and of instruction about washings, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. 3 And this we will do if God permits. 4 For it is impossible, in the case of those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5 and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, 6 and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt. 7 For land that has drunk the rain that often falls on it, and produces a crop useful to those for whose sake it is cultivated, receives a blessing from God. 8 But if it bears thorns and thistles, it is worthless and near to being cursed, and its end is to be burned.

9. Though we speak in this way, yet in your case, beloved, we feel sure of better things—things that belong to salvation. 10 For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do. 11 And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end, 12 so that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.

 

Meditation

We need to grow and progress in our faith!” This is the message in today’s reading. It was the message to the readers then and is still the message to us today. We should not stay where we are because we can’t. We either progress (forward) or we will drift (away). I remember this advise when swimming in the sea. We should always keep our eyes on a target on the beach for our bearings, because the currents will drift us away. Likewise, we need to focus on the Lord and progress forward in Him, otherwise the world/life will drift us away.

Growing and progressing is a natural aspect of life. We grow up and progress as time goes on. If we don’t, something has gone wrong or is wrong. Imagine a child who at the age of one could not speak yet—we say it’s ok, the child is still growing and is still learning. Fast forward 20 years. Imagine the same child now at the age of 21 yet still could not speak—we would say that’s not ok, something is/has gone wrong. Unfortunately, this is the picture of many Christians in our churches. They know Christ. They have been baptised. They are faithful to the church. They have attended church for the longest time, but yet when asked to progress in the faith e.g. to serve, they would not. When asked to share from the Bible or even to pray, they could not. Something has gone wrong.


This is why we need to practise more. People say practise makes perfect but I say, practise makes better. When we practise more, we (should) become better at it. We practise the ways of our faith more to develop and demonstrate a maturity in the faith and in understanding more of the ways of the Lord. We must practise doing His Word and being led by His Spirit. We need to continue on and “show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end” (6:11). Yes, things have changed—life as we knew it has been disrupted and even become disjointed, especially in this new normal, but our focus should remain the same i.e. on the Person of Jesus Christ—His message has not changed, his ways has not changed.

The apostle Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 3:18 that as we keep our eyes on the Lord, His Spirit will transform us— “And we all, with un-veiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”. So, let’s keep our eyes on Him as we continue on and practise more to become better in (keeping) our faith to the end.

 

Prayer

Lord Jesus, help me to keep my eyes on You and help me to continue on in You. Help me to practise Your ways more so that I can continue on until the end. I want to grow and progress in the faith to develop a maturity of faith to serve others with the ways of Your Kingdom so that at the end of it all, You may find me a faithful servant of the Kingdom. Help me O God, I pray this in Yeshuah’s name, amen.

 

Action

Increase the time spent with the Lord.

Extend more time in His word.

Pray more for others.

Seek the Lord more for opportunities to serve Him.

The Rt. Revd. Andrew Shie

Assistant Bishop of Kuching and Vicar of St. Andrew’s Church

Bandar Seri Begawan

Diocese of Kuching (Sarawak and Brunei Darussalam)


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