Summary: A look at who Jesus is through the book of Hebrews

Jesus Is...!

Hebrews 12:1-5

September 24, 2017

Have you ever exercised wearing weights? It sounds kind of strange, but people do this. In fact, we have a weighted vest we bought to use to workout. The vest weighs 20 pounds. On the one hand, it may not sound that bad, but do 20 push ups wearing the vest, and after a few it begins to feel like more than 20 pounds.

If you’ve been jogging, maybe you wore ankle weights to force your legs to work harder. Throw a medicine ball in the air a few times, then throw a basketball in the air and it feels lighter than it normally does.

When I swam, believe it or not, firstly be glad I didn’t come out in my speedo! We used to wear panty hose after we shaved our legs. It made our legs work harder, and when we took them off, we felt our legs were as light as a feather.

That’s kind of our theme for today, but it’s not to hold onto the weights, it’s to get rid of the weights. The goal is to lighten the load, not make it heavier and heavier and harder and more difficult as we move down the road. So, that’s what we’re looking at today. And as we move along, I’ll talk about some of the different weights we hold onto which truly weigh us down. And the one main weight we cling to - - according to Hebrews 12.

We’re now on week 17 of our journey through the book of Hebrews! Personally, I have found it enriching and invigorating to move through this book. I’ve come to appreciate the book of Hebrews all the more. Again, our quest has been to learn more about who Jesus is in our lives and how we can utilize this great high priest to aid us in our journey through this world.

Let’s look again at the first verses of Hebrews 12 ~

1 TSLIDEherefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses,

let SLIDEus also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely,

andSLIDE let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,

2 loSLIDEoking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith,

wSLIDEho for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross,

SLIDEdespising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God

3SLIDE Consider Him who endured from sinners such hostility against Himself

sSLIDEo that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. – Hebrews 12:1-3

Now, I don’t want to repeat last weeks message, but I do want to give a quick review, because that leads into today’s message.

We only looked at verse 1a and 1c ~

InSLIDE short the writer told us we’re surrounded by this great cloud of witnesses. These witnesses are more than your loved ones who are in heaven, who are your cheerleaders. These are the saints of the OT. People like Moses, Aaron, Abraham, Sarah, Rahab, Jacob, Jeremiah, Hosea, Deborah and 1,000's of faithful servants for God.

They’re encouraging and cheering you on through the difficulties of life. The beauty and the power is the fact that not one of these Bible characters were perfect. They all had faults, they all needed Jesus, YET none of them ever attained the glory of meeting Jesus in this world - - - yet they never gave up on their faith, they still trusted, believed, and had faith that the God who called them was not going to abandon them. That’s why they’re in the Hall of Fame of Faith!

TSLIDEhe 3rd part of verse 1 tells us we should run with endurance the race which God has set out before us. Remember the Greek word for race is our English word AGONY. It means conflict and struggle. It means that race which is life is going to be filled with difficulties and struggles. God never promised us that life would be clean and easy. It can be dirty and difficult. Yet, God calls us to stay on the path He’s set out for us.

And we run that race with endurance. We don’t give up, we don’t give in, we don’t say this hurts, so it must not be God’s will. It might not be . . . but it may also be part of God’s plan. Remember so many of those in the stands cheering you on lived lives filled with struggle, pain and suffering. We’re no different than these saints. And I look around this room at so many of our beloved saints and I see the struggles, I see the concerns, I see the hurt . . . YET at the very same time, I see the hope, the grace the mercy and the power of the risen Christ in your eyes and hearts. And that my friends gives me tremendous hope!!

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