The Berean Expositor
Volume 44 - Page 96 of 247
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Hebrews 12: 1 - 4
A1 | 1. ENDURANCE (hupomone).
Race (agon) set before us.
Entangling sin (hamartia).
B | 2-. | a | Looking away to Jesus (apo).
b | Captain and Perfecter of faith.
A2 | -2-. ENDURANCE (hupomeno).
Joy set before Him.
B | -2, 3-.
b | The right hand of the throne of God.
a | Consider Him (analogizomai).
A3 | -3, 4. ENDURANCE (hupomeno).
Opposition (antagonizo).
Sinners (hamartolos).
With so great a cloud of witnesses as is found in the Scriptures ever with us, we are
exhorted to take heart and run with patience or endurance the race set before us. Two
things are enjoined, viz. (1) "Lay aside every weight" and (2) "Lay aside the easily
entangling sin". He who would go on unto perfection must bear in mind the two sources
of hindrance, (1) Weight, (2) Sin. The first is not of itself sinful. To one it will be
riches, to another home ties, to another health, to another liberty. Each will know best
what it is that hinders in the race. The second is sin in one of its many aspects, "easily
entangling". It is not so much external "sins" that are in view, but the old man, the old
nature, the flesh. A reference to I Cor. 9: 24-27 plainly shows this:
"Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So
run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all
things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I
therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: but I keep
under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have
preached to others, I myself should be a castaway (disapproved)."
Then follows a passage dealing with Israel and the temptations in the wilderness; this
is parallel with Heb. 3: and 4:  The passage, "I keep under my body", recalls the
opposite walk of those "whose end is perdition", "whose God is their belly"; (Phil. 3:)--
another passage dealing with a prize.
The greatest encouragement however is found not by looking at the great chain of
witnesses, and certainly not by contemplating impediments and entanglements, but by the
gaze being directed away to the Lord. In Heb. 10: 37 the soon-returning Lord was the
encouragement to endure. In Heb. 12: 2 the victorious Leader at the right hand of God
is the attractive power. The word "looking" is really "looking away", looking away from
all lesser patterns, even those of Heb. 11:, and from all the weaknesses and hindrances
found in self, looking away to the Lord Jesus.
He has two titles here that are suggestive. "The Author and Finisher of faith". Author
is archegos, and we have the word already in Heb. 2: 10 translated "Captain", and in
close association with the next title, "Finisher" for that is really "Perfecter". "It became