Today we read the last chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and one chapter of Ezekiel.
October 24: Hebrews 13, Ezekiel 15 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 13. Show love for each other, be hospitable, practice outreach, honor marriage and be content. But “the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.” Remember, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever”, and we have a heavenly altar, not made with hands, and our sacrifices are sacrifices of praise, thanksgiving, doing good and with joy. This was the last two of the “let us” in the book of Hebrews for a total of fourteen. The theology part ends with “Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.” This covenant was instituted before time began, that is why modern translations call it the eternal covenant. Finally, I add my personal thoughts on who was the author of the book of Hebrews.
Ezekiel 15. The word of the LORD: “Jerusalem is a useless vine.”
Today we read the twelfth chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and one chapter of Ezekiel.
October 23: Hebrews 12, Ezekiel 14 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 12. Let us fix our eyes to Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith. This and four other “let us” in the book of Hebrews bring us to a total of twelve, all intended to teach us how to live and bring us closer to Jesus and in so doing we get disciplined by God for our benefit. But it also comes with the fifth and final warning to us: “See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven”
Ezekiel 14. Idolatry was to be punished, judgment on the Israelis’ unfaithfulness was inescapable.
Today, back to normal. We read the eleventh chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and one chapter of Ezekiel.
October 22: Hebrews 11, Ezekiel 13 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 11 is called “the great faith chapter”. “Without faith it is impossible to please God“. In the faith hall of fame the people recorded are in order, Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses’ parents, Moses, the people crossing the Red Sea, the fall of the walls of Jericho and the innkeeper Rahab. Then the author ran out of time to mention Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets. “These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.”
Ezekiel 13 proclaims woe to the false prophets.
Today is different. We read only one chapter of Hebrews
October 21: Hebrews 10 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
This chapter deals with Christ’s sacrifice of himself “once for all“. This is what constitutes the new covenant. and since sacrifice for sins are done away with it means we must live “in a new and living way“. In the letter to the Hebrews there are eight “let us” to tell us how. After that I divert into the difference between dispensationalism with its ten covenants and covenant theology, which has only three, and the different dispensations, of which we now are in the dispensation of grace. The next question is, when did the dispensation of grace, or church age, as it is also called, start? This too is quite interesting, but that was when it hit me. It doesn’t matter, we live in “today”. This is quite fantastic, and the narrative returns to Hebrews, where it explains that the law of Moses was inferior to the new and living way. It comes with a warning though: Do not sin deliberately! Verses 28 through 31 are quite tough, and give us pause to ponder. Is it really that bad? No, there is still hope for the believer, “Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.” The verse 38 was the verse that convinced me I had to be baptized in a believers baptism, even though I had been baptized as an infant. It really had nothing to do with salvation, that was settled at the time of belief. It was an act of faith and obedience to remain in close fellowship with God. “But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.”
Today we read the ninth chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and two chapters of Ezekiel.
October 20: Hebrews 9, Ezekiel 11, Ezekiel 12 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 9 tells of the earthly sanctuary and the much superior heavenly sanctuary into which Christ entered once and thus fulfilled the new covenant. “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”
Ezekiel 11. The prophet saw in a vision hat God will bring judgment on wicked counselors, and that He will eventually regather and restore Israel!
Ezekiel 12. Things were getting worse, people would see visions of peace where there is no peace, Judah’s future captivity is portrayed and the judgment is not to be postponed.
Today we read the eighth chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and two chapters of Ezekiel.
October 19: Hebrews 8, Ezekiel 9, Ezekiel 10 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 8. Jesus, among all other things is forever the High Priest of the New Covenant.
Ezekiel 9. The prophet Ezekiel saw in a vision how the idolaters were to be slain.
Ezekiel 10. The vision continued with Ezekiel seeing the same whirling wheels as in Ezekiel 1 and while they were hovering over Jerusalem the Glory of God departed from the Temple.
Today we read the seventh chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and four chapters of Ezekiel.
October 18: Hebrews 7, Ezekiel 5, Ezekiel 6, Ezekiel 7, Ezekiel 8 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 7 tells of Jesus, the high priest, after the order of Melchizedek. Thanks to this, animal sacrifices according to the Law are done away with, and “For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore.”
Ezekiel 5. God told Ezekiel to prepare himself and prophesy that there will be a sword against Jerusalem.
Ezekiel 6, God proclaimed judgment on idolatrous Israel.
Ezekiel 7. And this judgment on Israel was to be in their near future,
Ezekiel 8, Because there were abominations in the Temple.
Today we read the sixth chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and two chapters of Ezekiel.
October 17: Hebrews 6, Ezekiel 3, Ezekiel 4 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 6 speaks of salvation: Can you lose it, or are you eternally secure? Here I do an exposure explaining the different positions taken by the Roman Catholic Church, the Arminian position, the Calvin Position and the position of the author of the letter. It is quite interesting and enlightening. The chapter ends in hope: “That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul”
Ezekiel 3. Ezekiel got the call from God to rebellious Israel and wss given the charge to be a watchman.
Ezekiel 4. Ezekiel was told by God to portray the siege of Jerusalem.
Today we read the fifth chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and the first two chapters of Ezekiel.
October 16: Hebrews 5, Ezekiel 1, Ezekiel 2 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 5. Jesus, a priest forever in the order of Melchizedek. As being forever, Jesus is God, as being born of Mary, he is man, as being adopted of Joseph, he is King, and as of the order of Melchizedek, he is Priest. Priests offer sacrifices, first for themselves because of sin, but Jesus, being without sin offered himself for our sins, died and rose again for our justification. Thanks to this, we have the hope of eternal life!
Ezekiel 1 tells of Ezekiel’s vision from God. As a 23 year old I read of the Swiss author Erich von Däneken and his wild hypotheses about aliens visiting us and mentioned the wheel in a wheel from Ezekiel’s vision. And this was before I believed! Read the chapter carefully and see what you think. Däneken was speculating widely, but what God showed Ezekiel will challenge your imagination!
Ezekiel 2 is about Ezekiel’s call to a rebellious Israel.
Today we read the fourth chapter of the letter to the Hebrews and the last three chapters of Lamentations.
October 15: Hebrews 4, Lamentations 3, Lamentations 4, Lamentations 5 (click on the chapter to begin reading).
Hebrews 4 deals with the Sabbath-rest for the People of God. The Jews in the wilderness could not enter because of disobedience, but we, thanks to Jesus, who believe can enter. Remember, “Today” is the key word. Read it carefully!
Lamentations 3 displays the Prophet Jeremiah’s anguish and hope. Great is thy faithfulness!
Lamentations 4. Trouble continues, the dirge continues with the degradation of Zion. And yet, there is a glimmer of hope.
Lamentations 5. Although this chapter has 22 verses, it is not an acrostic, it is an urgent prayer for restoration.