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Volume 19 - Page 59 of 154 Index | Zoom | |
and Noah, Abraham and Moses, the suffering saints of the apostle's day, and the last one
to endure under the economy of grace pertaining to the "Hebrews", shall not "prevent"
one another, but "together with them" shall enter into this better thing, this better country,
by way of this better resurrection.
We have seen the relation between the better resurrection and the better thing, we have
seen their relation with Heb. 11:; there remains only the general theme of the epistle to
be considered. In this epistle we have Christ as a Captain, leading faithful Joshuas and
Calebs unto there promised possessions. In this epistle He is seen as Melchisedec, the
Priest Who blessed the overcoming Abraham. The historic background is the failure of
Israel to go on by faith, and the warning is the possibility of drawing back to perdition.
Israel is exhorted to run with patience, and reminded of Esau. Their position is to be one
of rejection now, "without the camp", for theirs is soon to be the added glory of the
overcomer, because though they have no continuing city, they seek one to come.
Ponder the double line of endurance (verses 32-38) and set your mind on things above
where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
The author and finisher of faith (12: 1-4).
pp. 105 - 110
The long list of witnesses to faith having been written, "the better thing" emphasized,
a giving up and a patient endurance on the part of the faithful pointed out, the apostle
turns to the Hebrews to apply the lesson.
Chapter 11: may be looked upon as a great parenthesis, chapter 12:, fortified with
chapter 11:, reverts to the close of chapter 10: and gives a fresh application of its truth.
Let us refresh our memories by a revisal of 10: 32-39. We are in an atmosphere of
suffering, yet a suffering illuminated by the prospect of future joys: "Knowing . . . . . that
ye have in heaven a better and an enduring substance, cast not away therefore your
confidence, which hath great recompence of reward. For ye have need of patience . . . . ."
The immediate danger that beset these Hebrews was that of "drawing back", "growing
weary", and to encourage them the apostle puts forward three items:--
The second coming of the Lord. "Yet a little while" (10: 37).
The examples of faith taken from the O.T. (11:).
The example of Christ Himself (12: 1-4).
It is this third feature which is now before us. Words are used in this passage which
demand careful consideration, and it may be well, before attempting the whole passage,
to be a little more certain of the words that are used.
WITNESSES (Greek martus).--This word does not mean "spectator". It means one
who bears witness, even to the length of suffering martyrdom for it. The English word