Hebrews 13 Spiritual Farewell

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1 Hebrews 13 Spiritual Farewell As we look at the last chapter of Hebrews, you get the feeling that Barnabas had a lot of miscellaneous items to discuss. Just in the first 4 verses he addresses: Believers Let love for the brethren continue (vs. 1) Strangers Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers (vs. 2) Prisoners Remember the prisoners (vs. 3) Marriage Marriage is to be held in honor among all (vs. 4) He knows he is coming to the end of his time with them. He has emptied his heart to them in this letter. Let s break down these last few verses of Hebrews: 1. Enjoy Spiritual Fellowship (13:1-6) 2. Submitting to Spiritual Leadership (13:7-9, 17, 24) 3. Sharing in Spiritual Worship (13:10-16) 4. Experiencing Spiritual Lordship (13:20-21) Enjoy Spiritual Fellowship (13:1-6) Let Love of the brethren continue vs 1 Many of the believers had been rejected by their friends and family. A Christian s love runs much deeper than race and even deeper than family relationships. It is because it is based on the spiritual, eternal relationship with Christ! A church fellowship based on anything other than the love of Christ and the love of each other will simply not last! (1 Peter 1:22-23)

2 Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it. vs 2 Where there is true Christian love there should also be hospitality. This was an important ministry of the church because persecution drove many believers away from their homes. Also, there were traveling ministers who needed places to stay. (3 John 5-8) Hospitality should be a mark of all believers. (Romans 12:10-13) Remember the prisoners, as though in prison with them, and those who are illtreated, since you yourself also are in the body. vs 3 Christians were arrested and put in prison for their faith. Barnabas is asking them to care for them and not forget them. This could be a dangerous task. Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge. vs 4 Barnabas is very specific about what could hinder marriage sexual sin. Fornication-sex between two people that are not married. Adultery sex between a married man and another woman besides his wife or vice versa Judgment will happen. (Revelations 21:8, 22:15; Ephesians 5:5ff) Romans 1:27 receiving in their own persons [ie their body] the due penalty of their error. Make sure that your character is free from the love of money. vs 5-6 Taken in context we can conclude that the brethren are fearful of man stripping away their ability to provide for themselves and their families financially. Their greater attention is turned toward money. Questions they may have thought: How can I make more in this uncertain time? How can I secure more money since

3 I can and will be persecuted for my faith? What happens if my means of providing for my family was to suddenly disappear? How should I respond? Be content and trust His promises. Submitting to Spiritual Leadership (13:7-9, 17, 24) Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you vs 7-9 Imitate the impact. What is impact? Changed lives! Second Baptist profit statement: 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature, the old things are passed away; behold, new things have come. Jesus is the fuel yesterday, today and forever! (vs 8) The faith of Abraham, Jacob and Issac yesterday The faith of Dr. Young, Mike Taylor and Dr. Deloach today Your faith!! There is an obstacle false teaching. (vs 9) Some were considering going back to the Jewish dietary laws and regulations as a means to gain right standing with God that is false teaching! It is by His grace and grace alone that we are saved it is nothing we do that s why he said be strengthened by grace. Obey your leaders and submit to them vs 17 When a servant of God is in the will of God, teaching the Word of God, the people of God should submit and obey. Pastors should not be dictators though. (1 Peter 5:3) We suffer when we do not follow the church leadership that God has placed in our life. It is easier to win souls than it is to watch souls

4 Greet all your leaders and all the saints. Those from Italy greet you. vs 24 We should never assume that leaders are encouraged for what they do. All the saints should be encouraged as well. Always look for those who are by themselves and greet them, encourage them. Sharing in Spiritual Worship (13:10-16) We have an altar from which those who serve the tabernacle have no right to eat vs. 10 There is no need for an altar because there is no more need for a sacrifice because a once and for all sacrifice has been made. Figuratively, Jesus Christ is an altar. We present ourselves a living sacrifice which is pleasing to Him according to Romans 12:1. (John 6:53) Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate. vs 12 The veil was still torn in two! Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, this is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name. And do not neglect doing good and sharing, for with such sacrifices God is pleased. vs Inward worship--praise and give thanks Outward worship--doing good and sharing

5 Experiencing Spiritual Lordship (13:20-21) Now the God of peace vs 20 In the midst of your chaos, the God of peace can equip you in every good thing to do His will. God s truth is the padding the protection that gets you there. Who brought up from the dead the great shepherd of the Sheep through the eternal covenant vs 20 Jesus is alive and He cares for us as our Shepherd. He has conquered sin and death conquered it! This covenant is eternal everlasting what temporary thing can possibly be more powerful and have more of a lasting effect than God s eternal covenant through Christ nothing can! Life s tragic stares are eternity s blink. eternity blinks. When tragedy stares us in the face, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight vs 21 These believers had prison staring them in the face, they had financial woes due to their faith, they had family members that were not accepting of their new life and their worship practices were no longer in line with that of their earthly city, Jerusalem it takes a God of peace to get us through these things AND He does it through Jesus Christ AND we can become pleasing in His sight! It doesn t stop there if it did, then it would be all about us. This is all so that HE can RECEIVE THE GLORY! The smile, the grace, the encouragement, the perseverance that we see is because JESUS is equipping them in every good thing. Jesus is working in us that which is pleasing in His sight and therefore, it is Jesus to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen! Brian Jones MarriedLife Pastor Second Baptist Church

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