Happy New Year! We say that each January 1, but what steps are we taking to make the coming year a good one? The book of Hebrews outlines twelve steps to take that can ensure benefit and blessing. Let’s look at all twelve, pray into each one, and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in the new year.
1. Let us fear lest we fail to rest in Christ.
The promise of God’s rest—His peace , confidence, and salvation—is there for those of us who consider the condition of our own heart, and see our need for a Savior.
Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. (Heb 4:1)
2. Let us be diligent.
For those of us who have heard the Word of God, comes accountability—deliberate obedience in our decision to follow Christ. Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience. (Heb 4:11)
3. Let us hold fast to our confession.
Recognize the ultimate priesthood of Christ and His position of authority and complete inherent holiness.
Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. (Heb 4:14)
4. Let us draw near to the throne of grace.
The atonement by the High Priest Christ gives us the standing to boldly draw near to the holy throne of God to receive grace and mercy—dispensed for our benefit.
Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.(Heb 4:16)
5. Let us press on to maturity.
Our salvation grows ever more all-encompassing, as we progress from the starting point of our salvation, to the perfection of our salvation through the Holy Spirit working in us.
Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God . . . (Heb 6:1)
6. Let us draw near to the Most Holy Place.
God’s complete sacrifice through Christ gives us the confidence that we are clean before Him and can draw near to Him. He created this path for us to draw near because He desires relationship with us.
. . . [L]et us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience andour bodies washed with pure water. (Heb 10:22)
7. Let us hold fast our confession without wavering.
God has given us complete secure salvation—let us be faithful in living in it fully.
Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. (Heb 10:23)
8. Let us consider one another.
Our relationship with Christ is both individual and corporate—let us remember that God has ordained a Body for the outworking of our faith.
And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works . . . (Heb 10:24)
9. Let us run with endurance the race.
As we “run the race” in our faith life, like a runner who sheds anything unnecessary that would keep them from a successful race, let us put off the weights, the sins, and the mindsets that cause us to lose our focus which is Christ.
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us . . .(Heb 12:1)
10. Let us show gratitude.
We are overwhelmed with the blessing of His Kingdom, so let us serve Him in gratitude and with holy fear.
Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. (Heb 12:28)
11. Let us go out to Him outside the camp.
Our salvation in Christ brings our focus and allegiance outside of the worldly system and into the camp of the Lord.We need to daily choose to walk away from the world and toward the camp of Christ as we live.
Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach. (Heb 13:13)
12. Let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise.
Instead of the Old Testament animal sacrifices, God calls us to offer up our praises as a sacrifice in the New Covenant. Let us incorporate a constant stream of praise to the Lord in our lives.
Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. (Heb 13:15)
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