WARNING: CONSUMING FIRE

We have just considered the contrast, in Hebrews chapter 12, between Law and Gospel -- under the figure of two mountains, Sinai and Zion. The gospel brings us to Mount Zion. It is not a place of fright, terror and dread, but rather of fulfillment and celebration, the fulfillment of all dreams and aspirations. But wait. God is no domesticated deity, either. He is not at our disposal, in need of our … [Read more...]

MOUNT ZION — GOSPEL

Mount Sinai represented Law, but Mount Zion represents Gospel. As believers in Christ, says the author of Hebrews in 12:22-24, we have come to: * Mount Zion -- the joy of believing Israel, the place of God's Presence, the location of inspiration, blessing and peace (many Psalms). * The city of the Living God (which, unlike Sinai, cannot be touched) is the Heavenly Jerusalem, inhabited by … [Read more...]

MOUNT SINAI — LAW

Hebrews 12:18-29 provides a great comparison and contrast between Mount Sinai and Mount Zion -- two mountains which represent Law and Gospel, Moses and Christ. Both mountains are "awful" in the original sense of that word -- inspiring awe in the beholder. That they have in common. But how different they are, as well! The author's description of Mount Sinai is taken from Exodus 19-20 in the Old … [Read more...]

OLD TESTAMENT ENCOURAGEMENT

In the remainder of Hebrews chapter 12, the author moves quickly through the Old Testament again, selecting for a final exhortation texts from the Writings, the Prophets and the Law respectively. It is as if (s)he says, "Why, the whole Bible is full of this message! Read it anywhere and see what you find!" Hebrews 12:5-11 quote from Proverbs 3:11-12 concerning parental discipline, and apply the … [Read more...]

FAITH ENDURES

For the writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews, "faith" involves seeing the unseen, and it leads preeminently to endurance during one's pilgrimage through this present world (Heb. 10:39). Hebrews chapter 11 illustrates such enduring faith, as the author leads us through a believer's hall of fame -- from A(bel) to Z(achariah) [unnamed but probably referenced] in the Old Testament, but also … [Read more...]

JESUS’ SACRIFICE — THEREFORE

The Epistle to the Hebrews is gospel-packed. Sadly, it is often overlooked in the modern church. Consider the strength to be found, for example, in Hebrews, chapter 10. After discussing the all-sufficient and eternally-atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ (see gracEmail at www.edwardfudge.com/gracemails/jesus_obeyed_for_you.html), the author of this Epistle steps back to ask "so what?" This is the … [Read more...]