Saturday, October 22, 2016

Better!

Note from Jesus

Dear Child of the Father,

Today you begin a short journey through the wonderful “word of exhortation” (Hebrews 13:22) you call the book of Hebrews. This special document is a collection of short exhortations built upon the comparison of Old Covenant images with their fulfillment in the New Covenant brought by My sacrifice on the cross, by My resurrection, and through My pouring out the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost and subsequently to you also.

Notice the word “better” when you read this “word of exhortation.” It occurs repeatedly in later sections of Hebrews to refer to Me and the salvation that I offer. I brought the world a “better” covenant, built on “better” promises and leading to a “better” hope, provided by a “better” and once-for-all sacrifice so that I could become a “better” high priest for My people and ensure a “better” Sabbath rest for the people of God.

Today’s verses come from the first two chapters of the book of Hebrews. Even though the word “better” is not used in today’s verses, they nevertheless have a clear message: I AM “better” than the angels or “heavenly messengers.” I bring a “better,” complete, fulfilled, and incarnated message from the Father.

I came as the Father’s Son. I was God’s very presence among you (Matthew 1:23). I am superior to the angels who brought the first covenant and who were part of many messengers involved in the Old Covenant. As the Son, I came and brought the Father’s greatest and final message. No messenger compares to Me as God’s Son.

My chosen vessel who wrote Hebrews adds a powerful exhortation to this truth of My superiority. You must “pay even closer attention” to My message than to any message you have previously received. You don’t want to “drift away” from this message and ignore the “great salvation”! To “ignore” this message would invite your own “destruction”!

Verses to Live

Hebrews is not only a “word of exhortation,” but it is also a message of urgency. It is a spiritual alarm clock sent to warn those who heard its message to awaken from their spiritual slumber. They needed to shake off their spiritual lethargy because of the better things they had received from Me. I hope you will hear the same alarm. I want you to awaken to the “better” things that I have planned for you.

Long ago, at different times and in various ways, God’s voice came to our ancestors through the Hebrew prophets. But in these last days, it has come to us through His Son, the One Who has been given dominion over all things and through Whom all worlds were made.

This is the One Who — imprinted with God’s image, shimmering with His glory — sustains all that exists through the power of His word. He was seated at the right hand of God once He Himself had made the offering that purified us from all our sins. This Son of God is elevated as far above the heavenly messengers [angels] as His holy name is elevated above theirs.

For no heavenly messengers have ever heard God address them with these words of the psalms:

You are My Son.

Today I have become Your Father.

Or heard Him promise,

I will be to You a Father,

and You will be My Son.

Now, when the Son, the firstborn of God, was brought into the world, God said,

Let all My heavenly messengers worship Him.

And God continues,

In the beginning, You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth

and set the skies above us with Your own hands.

But while they will someday pass away,

You remain forever;

when they wear out like old clothes,

You will roll them up

and change them into something new.

But You will never change;

Your years will never come to an end.

Did God ever say to any of the heavenly messengers,

Sit here, at My right hand, in the seat of honor;

and I’ll put all Your enemies under Your feet?

No, of course not. The heavenly messengers are only spirits and servants, sent out to minister to those who will certainly inherit salvation.

That is why we ought to pay even closer attention to the voice that has been speaking so that we will never drift away from it. For if the words of instruction and inspiration brought by heaven’s messengers were valid, and if we live in a universe where sin and disobedience receive their just rewards, then how will we escape destruction if we ignore this great salvation? We heard it first from our Lord Jesus, then from those who passed on His teaching. God also testifies to this truth by signs and wonders and miracles and the gifts of the Holy Spirit lighting on those He chooses.

(Hebrews 1:1-6; Hebrews 1:10-14; Hebrews 2:1-4)

Response in Prayer

O Father, I recognize that Jesus is Your greatest messenger Who brings Your greatest message. I commit to hearing that message and respond with urgency and passion. Open my eyes to Your truth in this interesting and challenging “word of exhortation.” I ask for the Holy Spirit’s help in understanding and applying its important messages to my life as I live to honor You. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

‘A Year with Jesus’ is written by Phil Ware.

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All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from The Voice™. © 2008 by Ecclesia Bible Society. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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