Hebrews 2:1-4 – Listen and Look

Read Hebrews 2:1-4

Now the Preacher, how I’ll refer to the writer of Hebrews, takes our focus off the majesty of Jesus to give us a warning about own lives. Maybe you can recall a time in your life when you felt far from Jesus? The evil one lures us to drift away from God. Being reminded of that is so helpful.

We experience daily attacks from the evil one attempting to take control of our lives and forget about God. The Preacher gives us two paths to take to keep ourselves on track. We need to “listen for God” and “look for God” every day.

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Hebrews 1:5-14 – What About the Angels?

Read Hebrews 1:5-14

Have you ever seen an angel? I used to love the show, “Touched by an Angel.” “Highway to Heaven” was another favorite back in the day. Those are just cheesy television, but the message was always uplifting, a “feel good” kind of show. But my picture of angels has been influenced by those kinds of examples. We uncover a lot more of the mystery surrounding angels in this reading.

Here, the writer is quick to distinguish a hierarchy between angels and God’s Son, Jesus Christ. The focus on Christ’s superiority continues. Words like throne and justice are powerful and signify importance. Jesus is Lord, creator, and God. God himself calls Jesus out as God, “Therefore, O God, your God has anointed you,” There is nobody greater than Jesus. Angels may have an audience with God, but their authority and power is not equal to Jesus.

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Hebrews 1:1-4 – Encounter Jesus

Read Hebrews 1:1-4

If you’ve spent any time at all reading prophecies in the Old Testament, you are very familiar with the salutation to the book of Hebrews which talks about how God speaks to us through the prophets. It’s true that God’s prophetic messages are still relevant and applicable to us today. Many of those prophecies point directly to Jesus.

The book of Hebrews is like an eloquent sermon burning with passion. The author is unknown but appears to draw from eyewitness accounts of Jesus’ life of ministry. Several main themes dominate. One is that Jesus Christ is superior to everyone and everything. We will see descriptions showing how Jesus fulfills prophecy and the promises of God. The other focus is simply to give encouragement to the Jewish Christians, likely 2nd or 3rd generation. Not all Jews had accepted Jesus as their Messiah, so the Jewish Christians needed this encouragement, so they didn’t fall back into their old ways.

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Jonah 4:1-11 – Being Angry at God

Read Jonah 4:1-11

We can shake our head at Jonah’s response, but then we should probably look at the mirror. We, too, have had times in our life when we have been angry at God for one reason or another. Have we, like Jonah, ever been angry at God because of God’s mercy and grace?

Jonah seemed appalled that God changed his mind. Was it because now Jonah looked “bad” for delivering a false message? Nobody wants to look stupid, especially when doing work for God. I suppose that’s why a lot of believers keep their mouths shut because they don’t want to say the wrong thing or look unprepared when spreading the gospel. In reality, I’m sure the people of Nineveh were delighted that God had given them a reprieve. They didn’t give the messenger another thought.

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Jonah 3:1-10 – Are You Ready?

Read Jonah 3:1-10

We don’t see people today wearing burlap as a sign of cleansing and repentance. But in Jonah’s time, it would have been amazing to see, even the king, listening and responding to the warning from God. What Jonah proclaimed was destruction. He didn’t give them an “unless.” That is, Nineveh will be destroyed unless you repent! But the people showed their respect, and their tears of sorrow melted God’s heart.

It was quite unexpected to see the people of Nineveh believing God’s word. I think of the Israelites who went on and on living their idol worshipping lives despite the efforts of Jeremiah, for example. He told them to repent because their worship of other gods angered the one true God.

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