3 Eternal Truths From Hebrews to Encourage Us Today
By Tan Jiaqi
To aid in my understanding of the book of Hebrews—which we’ve been studying together since July—I decided to pick up the bible commentary “Be Confident” by Warren Wiersbe.
Here are three encouraging truths I was reminded of:
1. God will always keep His promises
“For when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself, saying, “Surely I will bless you and multiply you.” And thus Abraham, having patiently waited, obtained the promise. For people swear by something greater than themselves, and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation. So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. (Hebrews 6:13-18, ESV)
The author of Hebrews reminds us of the faithfulness of God by pointing us to the example of Abraham, in Genesis 22:16-17 where God promised Abraham a son. In spite of Abraham’s failures and sins, God kept His promise and Isaac was born. Many of God’s promises do not depend on our character but on His faithfulness. Abraham also exercised great faith in God by patiently waiting for 25 years for the birth of Isaac.
God not only gave Abraham a promise, but He also confirmed that promise with an oath to underscore the solemnity of His promises. He has also given His promise and oath to “the heirs of promise” (Heb 6:17).
One of the sins I struggle most with is unbelief. I am prone to forgetting all that God has done for me and doubting His word. However, the truth is God’s word never fails, and I need to exercise great faith and patience to wait upon Him.
What a wonderful assurance it is for us to know that our assurance of salvation is secured by God’s promise and God’s oath. He will hold us fast!
2. Jesus knows exactly what we face
“Therefore He had to be made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful High Priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.” (Hebrews 2:17-18, ESV)
Jesus is able to identify with our weaknesses and needs because He was “made like unto his brethren” in that He experienced the sinless infirmities of human nature. He knew what it was to be a helpless baby, a growing child, a maturing adolescent. He knew the experiences of weariness, hunger, and thirst. He knew what it was to be despised and rejected, to be lied about and falsely accused. He experienced physical suffering and death. All of his was a part of His “training” for His heavenly ministry as High Priest.
When I became a believer in Christ, I remember often feeling overwhelmed that there were so many demands and expectations to meet. I was to be a good testimony at work to my colleagues, I was also expected to do my work well, and I often felt very tired and weary. Knowing that Jesus faced many temptations and trials in human flesh in infinitely greater proportions than I could ever have experienced in my own life, and that He is able to help me when I am tempted, has been a truth that has comforted me deeply.
When I fail, it is most often because I try to live out the Christian life in my own strength, rather than to turn to my merciful and faithful High Priest who is always there for me.
3. Jesus is our hope of salvation
“We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.” (Hebrews 6:19-20, ESV)
The Christian’s hope is in the person and saving work of Jesus Christ. It is a hope that has entered the “inner place behind the curtain”. The “curtain” is the veil in the tabernacle separating the inner place, the Most Holy Place (Heb 9:3) from the rest of the tabernacle, where the Levitical High Priest was allowed to enter into the veil, into God’s Presence, once a year.
Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf and opened the veil, preparing the way for us to enter into the presence of God. We can therefore come boldly to His throne and receive all the help that we need.
Since God has made it possible for us to do so, let us not drift from the Word, doubt the Word, become dull to the Word. Let us hold fast to Christ, our most sure and steadfast anchor of our souls, and press on towards spiritual maturity!