What God did for People through Jesus 1

Gods Message on the Web.

What God did for People through Jesus 1 – for our God is a consuming fire.

What God did for People through Jesus 1.  Hebrews 12:18-29 For you have not come to a mountain that can be touched and to a blazing fire, and to darkness and gloom and whirlwind, and to the blast of a trumpet and the sound of words which sound was such that those who heard begged that no further word be spoken to them. For they could not bear the command, “If even a beast touches the mountain, it will be stoned.” And so

Gods Presence on Sanai
Gods Presence on Sanai

terrible was the sight, that Moses said, “I am full of fear and trembling.” But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel. See to it that you do not refuse Him who is speaking. For if those did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape who turn away from Him who warns from heaven. And His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heaven.” This expression, “Yet once more,” denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire.

What God did for People through Jesus 1 of 5 Part Series

For a few Sunday evenings, we have focused on the conscious roles Jesus served in his earthly ministry. I stressed several times, “It is not a question of what we do for God. It is an understanding of what God did for us in Jesus’ death and resurrection.”

The focus of our faith must not be on our achievements in obedience. The focus of our faith must be on God’s achievements in giving the life of Jesus on the cross and on resurrecting Jesus from the tomb.

For a few weeks, I want us to consider God’s accomplishments (for us) in Jesus’ death and resurrection. This evening I want to focus on this accomplishment: In Jesus’ death and resurrection, God gave us an entirely new way to look at him and to approach him.

  1. To make the point I wish to make, we must begin with a basic understanding of the writing called Hebrews.
    1. First, I want to share this understanding.
      1. When we approach any scripture, we first need to ask ourselves, “What was the problem to writer addressed? How was the problem being addressed in this statement?”
        1. No writing in scripture was consciously written to 21st century America.
        2. That does not mean that scripture was not “god breathed” or inspired.
        3. That does not mean that the messages of scripture are not relevant to our lives today.
        4. It simply means that if we do not seek to understand the point the author made, we are likely to miss God’s point an make the wrong application of what was said.
        5. No scripture receives its meaning from us.
        6. All scripture means what the writer meant as he was moved by God to write–the true point is the point of the writer.
          What God did for People through Jesus 1 – most of the Old Testament books were written to Israel
      2. Originally, each book (especially in the New Testament–most of the Old Testament books were written to Israel) was written to someone or a specific group about a specific problem or set of problems in that group.
        1. The more we understand what the problem or problems were in the group who first received the writing, the better we understand the point the author of the writing made to them.
        2. The better we understand the author’s point, the more likely we are to make the correct application of the author’s statement.
        3. That simply means the more likely our lives reflect God’s values instead of our human values.
    2. Let’s make application of these principles to the New Testament writing called Hebrews.
      1. We do not know who the author is because it does not give the author
        1. While it is legitimate to be concerned about who the author is, it is not a matter of grasping the message because we “know” who the author is.
        2. At best, it is a matter of opinion.
          1. We each have the right to hold an opinion.
          2. We do not have the right to use our opinion as a standard of faithfulness.
            What God did for People through Jesus 1 – the message is written to Jewish Christians who were in spiritual difficulty.
      2. It is my conclusion and understanding that the message is written to Jewish Christians who were in spiritual difficulty.
        1. I hold that understanding for several reasons.
          1. First, the message shows the superiority of Jesus as God’s spokesman, to angels (big in Jewish first-century theology), as the means to God, to the Jewish high priest, and to Moses–all this would have special significance to Jewish people.
          2. Second, there is extensive use of the concept of covenant, which was an important part of Jewish theology–there is even a long quote from Jeremiah 31 to explain what God was doing in Jesus.
          3. Third, there is the reminder of “the former days” when these Christians made enormous sacrifices for Jesus.
          4. Fourth, there is a contrast made between the temporary nature of Jewish sacrifices and the permanent nature of Jesus’ sacrifice.
          5. Fifth, there is the role call of faith in the 11th chapter in which people and instances from Jewish history are prominent.
          6. Sixth, there is the contrast between God acting at Mount Sinai and God acting at Jesus cross and tomb (in the church).
        2. These understandings become even more significant to me when I understand the resentment of Judaism against the conversion of gentiles through nothing more than faith in Jesus.
          What God did for People through Jesus 1 – What was the problem?
      3. What was the problem?
        1. Some Jewish Christians were seriously considering leaving faith in Jesus Christ to return to Judaism.
          1. They would not be leaving God, just Jesus.
          2. Judaism worshiped the same God, just not Jesus.
          3. If they did this, they would avoid the ire and consequences of Jews who said, “You can be a part of Judaism or a part of the church, but not both!”
          4. “If you choose the church, we no longer regard you as part of the Jewish community”–and that was a huge sacrifice!
        2. The writer said in a number of ways, “You cannot do that!”
          1. “If you leave Jesus, you leave God!”
          2. “Jesus is God’s intent and purpose!”
          3. “Every blessing God intended you to have is through Jesus!”
        3. The basic point is simple: “You cannot go back by deserting Jesus! That is not the solution!”

          Free Audio Book of Wayne Jacobsen’s the Naked Church is available for download here.

  2. Now let me call your attention to the text that was read earlier.
    1. The contrast is between God’s actions at Mount Sinai resulting in the nation of Israel and God’s actions in Jesus’ cross resulting in a kingdom of people called the church.
      1. The contrast is not between a nation and an institution.
      2. The contrast is between two kinds of people–the people who responded to Mount Sinai and the people who responded to Jesus.
    2. In Hebrews 12:18-21 a reminder of what occurred at Sinai is given.
      1. There was the mountain the could not be touched, the fire, the darkness, the storm, the blast of the trumpet, and the sound of words–all designed to create an atmosphere of fear.
        What God did for People through Jesus 1 – Consider Exodus 19:16-21
      2. Now consider Exodus 19:16-21:
        So it came about on the third day, when it was morning, that there were thunder and lightning flashes and a thick cloud upon the mountain and a very loud trumpet sound, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. And Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Now Mount Sinai was all in smoke because the Lord descended upon it in fire; and its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked violently. When the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and God answered him with thunder (or a voice; literally a sound). The Lord came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain; and the Lord called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up. Then the Lord spoke to Moses, “Go down, warn the people, so that they do not break through to the Lord to gaze, and many of them perish.”
    3. The text says that was not the experience of those who come to God through Jesus.
      1. Christians come to the city of the living God, to the heavenly Jerusalem, to the Judge of all Who perfects the righteous, to Jesus who is superior to anything before him.
      2. Realize the superior thing God did through Jesus!
      3. Realize how serious it is to reject Jesus!
    4. In the context of the entire book, the point is simple: Jesus provides you a whole new way to approach God. Consider this chart.
      What God did for People through Jesus 1
      What God did for People through Jesus 1

      What God did for People through Jesus 1 – We do not appreciate how evil people were prior to Sinai.
      1. Sometimes I think we just do not appreciate how evil people were prior to Sinai.
        1. The Israelites were so evil they did not even appreciate what God did for them in releasing them from slavery (see Exodus 32).
        2. Under no consideration did the bulk of those people love God!
      2. What do you do with people who are so wicked they are out of control?
        1. You try to bring them under control.
        2. How do you do that?
        3. You fill them with the fear of the consequences of being out of control.
      3. Yet, if the goal is to create a relationship of love that allows you to bring yourself under control because in love you appreciate what is done for you, the fear of consequences is only the beginning of the journey.
    5. The point is not that God is some great big teddy bear you snuggle up to.
      1. The nature of God had not changed.
      2. The nature of those who come to God through Jesus has changed.
      3. God is still a consuming fire, but those who come to him through Jesus have no reason to be afraid of Him.
        What God did for People through Jesus 1 – Christians must not abandon Jesus.
  3. To me, Hebrews 4:14-16 states this powerfully and beautifully.
    Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

    1. Jesus represents us to God the Father.
      1. He represents us because Christians acknowledge and trust who he is.
      2. Therefore, Christians must not abandon Jesus.
    2. Jesus knows our weaknesses.
      1. He has experienced human limitations and temptation.
      2. Yet, he refused to sin.
    3. Because of him, God can look at us with grace and mercy.
      1. Because of him, weak we can go to God in confidence.
      2. The confidence is not in us, but in Jesus.
      3. We can go to God when we are really struggling and know we will receive grace and mercy in our struggles.
    4. That is an enormous blessing we can live with!

The point is simple. We are not saved because we are so good. We are saved because of what God allows Jesus to do for us that we cannot do for ourselves. Because of Jesus, we have a new way to come to God.

DAVID CHADWELL

If you love Bible Prophecy check out The Final Countdown by Pastor Billy Crone.

Author: Greg

Welcome to Gods Message on the web. My name is Greg and I want to welcome you. I started doing these Podcasts, MP3, and Audio Books back in 2007. Stay awhile and make yourself at home. The Christian Podcasts here are free and for everyone to enjoy. I’m doing a complete series on David Chadwell who is a retired minister from Fort Smith, Arkansas. I’ve also done an Audio Book for Wayne Jacobsen’s the Naked Church. Plus a series of MP3s for Pastor Billy Crone and his The Final Countdown series.

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