(Hebrews 12:1-13) A question that ran through my mind this morning, as I read this passage, was how often has the scripture been tought to me in out of context references. What I’m getting at is that it would seem in this passage we are always stopped at Hebrews 12:3. As you continue on however in that passage it describes what it really means to persevere, working to meet God’s standards. I’m kind of going back to yesterday’s topic a little.
Verse 4 says very clearly, “In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood.”, and when you contrast that statement (and don’t feel I’m also stopping short myself here), with the first part of Hebrews 12 and the passage that talks about God not giving us more than we can endure, there is a lot higher calling there than I think we tend to want to see, or follow for that matter.
I’m not trying to say that God desires that we endure bloodshed in our perseverence, but I do believe what God is calling us to is a life that is living up to His standards not our own. Through Him we can endure more than we even realize, or desire to. The passage goes on to explain that some of the hardships we will endure are a result of our failure in sin. And it is in these times that God is disciplining us as His children. This obviously shows that there are consequences for sin, and that those consequences aren’t just worldly, but in fact may actually be God’s discipline coming on us. We ought to be thankful for that discipline for in the end we “share in His holiness” (Hebrews 12:10), and experience “rightousness and peace” (Hebrews 12:11).
I think we too easily reduce God’s standards for our life to something that seems more attainable on our own. This is complete wrong. God has standards for us as His children, and He desires us to rely on Him to meet those standards. We will fail, as we are sinful people, but God with correct us and we will persevere, or at least that is the call. How far are we willing to go? Are we simply willing to take the easy Christian life? Is our comfortable life pleasing in to God? What do you think?