Overcoming the Fear of Death

funeralc_2319We often avoid talking about, or even thinking about, death. But if you trust Jesus, Hebrews 2:14-15 tell you that it is a fear that can be conquered.

Christ shared your humanity. Like you, he is flesh and blood. All human beings, since the fall in the Garden, are mortal. We are flesh and blood. Jesus Christ shares in that. He became human. At a particular point in tome, the second person of the Trinity, God himself, partook of, or began to partake of, your humanity. Look back to Hebrews 1:1-4 to see how great this Son is. This Son became man. The purpose of his incarnation is his death and resurrection. By becoming human and through his death and resurrection, he made you who trust in him his brothers and sisters. He is your comfort and strength when you are tempted. Continue reading “Overcoming the Fear of Death”

The Author of Your Salvation

sea_9582cIs follow the leader a children’s game or is it more important? Hebrews 2:1-13 tells you it is the latter, especially as you look at who the leader is and where he is leading you.

Follow your leaderto glory. The first step is to recognize that God is truly God. He is, as some modern translations correctly indicate, the subject, the one doing the action, in verse 10. He is Creator. He is central to everything and everyone. Your chief end is to glorify and enjoy him forever. Take God at his own terms. Beware of a conversation that begins, “I can’t believe in a god who. . . .” God, not we, sets the standard.

Your goal is glory. This God is pleased to bring you, along with many brothers and sisters, to glory. The original readers failed to recognize the glory of Christ, so Hebrews goes to great lengths to point our his majesty at the right hand of the Father. If you fail to recognize God’s glory, you probably also fail to recognize what goal God has for you. It is nothing short of sharing in the glory of God in the new heavens and earth. Your being in Christ, united to Christ, means that you are on your way to glory. That’s why it is so important that you trust in him. Continue reading “The Author of Your Salvation”

But We See Jesus

psalm81cOn Ash Wednesday, March 5, 1522, Ulrich Zwingli, preacher in Zurich, Switzerland, was at a dinner hosted by a publisher in the city, when the host served and ate a piece of fried sausage. This was a violation of the mandatory fast of Lent. On March 23, 1522, Zwingli preached against the mandatory fast of Lent. This event and the controversy around it led to the city coming into the Reformation. You can listen to Glen Clary describe the details: http://reformedforum.org/ctc357/. The churches of the Reformation rejected the observance of Lent as compromising the idea of justification of faith in Christ alone. There is nothing we can do by way of penitential (or quasi-penitential) rites that that can prepare us for the Lord’s presence. Rather than trying to make ourselves worthy, you need to look where Hebrews 2:5-9 points you: to see Jesus!

You see Jesus made lower than the angels. Jesus is the Son of Man. Psalm 8 contrasts God and man. God is the Creator. Man is merely a humble creature. In the Psalm “man” is parallel with “the Son of Man.” Yet Psalm 8 tells you that man is exalted. He is only a little lower than the angels. He is given dominion over creation. Continue reading “But We See Jesus”

Miracles—Why and When?

Ayear1143pcWhat is a miracle? Are miracles something you experience? Many of us can attest to wonderful answers to prayer. What does the Bible tell you about them? Hebrews 2:2-3 helps answer that.

God used miracles to bear witness to you. The original witnesses confirmed Christ’s words to you. Your salvation was first proclaimed by Christ, who is far superior to any angelic being. Witnesses confirmed what he had said. Apostolic preaching reflected what Christ had told them and explained the redemptive facts of his death, resurrection, and ascension. What they wrote was revelation from God, 2 Peter 3:15-16. Continue reading “Miracles—Why and When?”