Hebrews 2 Devotional – Day 4

ADORATION – Reflect on God’s Greatness

GOD IS MERCY, GRACE, AND PATIENCE 
God’s mercy, patience, and grace may be seen as three separate attributes, or as specific aspects of God’s goodness. These three characteristics of God’s nature are often mentioned together, especially in the Old Testament. When God declared his name to Moses, he proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness” (Exodus 34:6). David says in Psalm 103:8, “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.”

Praise the God who is Merciful, Gracious and Patient
Think for just a moment about mercy. God has not given you what you deserve. Consider saving grace for a moment. God has given you what you could never earn; salvation and freedom from sin. Think now about God’s patience. He waited for you to repent. He is patient now in leading you to become like His Son. Praise Him and thank Him for His mercy, grace, and patience towards you.

CONFESSION: Confess your sins to God and receive his continued mercy.

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

THANKSGIVING: Giving thanks to God for his specific blessings in our lives.

“Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.” Psalm 100

SUPPLICATION: Bringing our requests to God.

  • Bring your personal prayer requests to God.
  • Pray for the youth at River. Today is their last full day at Super Summer. Pray for students who do not know Christ to turn to him. Pray for students to yield fully to Christ.

SCRIPTURE READING:
Hebrews 2 – The Message
1-4 It’s crucial that we keep a firm grip on what we’ve heard so that we don’t drift off. If the old message delivered by the angels was valid and nobody got away with anything, do you think we can risk neglecting this latest message, this magnificent salvation? First of all, it was delivered in person by the Master, then accurately passed on to us by those who heard it from him. All the while God was validating it with gifts through the Holy Spirit, all sorts of signs and miracles, as he saw fit.

The Salvation Pioneer
5-9 God didn’t put angels in charge of this business of salvation that we’re dealing with here. It says in Scripture,

What is man and woman that you bother with them;
why take a second look their way?
You made them not quite as high as angels,
bright with Eden’s dawn light;
Then you put them in charge
of your entire handcrafted world.

When God put them in charge of everything, nothing was excluded. But we don’t see it yet, don’t see everything under human jurisdiction. What we do see is Jesus, made “not quite as high as angels,” and then, through the experience of death, crowned so much higher than any angel, with a glory “bright with Eden’s dawn light.” In that death, by God’s grace, he fully experienced death in every person’s place.

10-13 It makes good sense that the God who got everything started and keeps everything going now completes the work by making the Salvation Pioneer perfect through suffering as he leads all these people to glory. Since the One who saves and those who are saved have a common origin, Jesus doesn’t hesitate to treat them as family, saying,

I’ll tell my good friends, my brothers and sisters, all I know
about you;
I’ll join them in worship and praise to you.

Again, he puts himself in the same family circle when he says,

Even I live by placing my trust in God.

And yet again,

I’m here with the children God gave me.

14-15 Since the children are made of flesh and blood, it’s logical that the Savior took on flesh and blood in order to rescue them by his death. By embracing death, taking it into himself, he destroyed the Devil’s hold on death and freed all who cower through life, scared to death of death.

16-18 It’s obvious, of course, that he didn’t go to all this trouble for angels. It was for people like us, children of Abraham. That’s why he had to enter into every detail of human life. Then, when he came before God as high priest to get rid of the people’s sins, he would have already experienced it all himself—all the pain, all the testing—and would be able to help where help was needed.

Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson

SCRIPTURE REFLECTION:

Exactly what power does Satan have in the world? The Bible, for good reason, doesn’t focus a lot of attention on Satan, and neither should we. The Bible, for good reason, doesn’t ignore Satan, and neither should we. We should glance at the reality of Satan and gaze at the reality of the gospel. Satan’s power, for the Christian, is largely that of accusation. We tend to give him more “credit” for our problems than our own sinful desires, but this is a mistake. To “blame” him as an outside source of our problems versus taking personal responsibility will not lead to healthy and happy life choices. Satan is real but his impact on believers is severely restricted by our own choices to follow Christ. His greatest weapon is the power of accusation. “Sticks and stones can break my bones but words can never hurt me” is patently false. The truth is that bones can heal in time but the wounds of words may never heal. Satan brings accusations like, “Did God really say?” as he undermines our confidence in God and his word. Satan accuses us by reminding us of our sins and failures. We must pay careful attention to what Jesus has said. He has the final word not Satan. If our three enemies, the world (human culture), the flesh (human sin nature), and the devil come after you with doubts about God, his word and his love for you, it is vitally important that you pay attention. The gospel, the good news of Jesus must have the final word in your life.

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