Thursday, January 14, 2010

Hebrews 3: 1-11

Often we are tempted to choose sides or pick favorites; vanilla is better than chocolate for instance. The truth is, there is plenty of room to enjoy them both, and each has its place.

When the letter to the Hebrew’s was written, people were saying that Moses was better than Jesus or that Jesus rendered Moses irrelevant and out of date. In effect, they were forcing a choice between the two—and incidentally, there are still plenty of people trying to that today. (Ever hear anybody say “The New Testament is about a God of love but the Old Testament is all about a God of wrath!”)

The writer to the Hebrew’s says, in effect, that “there’s plenty of room for both.” Both Jesus and Moses’ have an important role to play in the life and history of God’s people. Neither can be ignored or discounted.

Still, he is careful to distinguish between roles of Jesus and Moses, and to make sure his readers realize that Jesus is to be given the place of greater honor. This is not meant to denigrate Moses. Only when we fully realize who Jesus really is will we then realize what a glorious thing it is to be counted his faithful servant.

The point seems to be that we need to recognize and value God’s work both in Moses and Jesus so that we can recognize and value God’s work in ourselves and in one another. There is continuity there, a consistent revelation of what it means to be a fully devoted God-follower.

In other words, if we are ever going to get where God is trying to lead us in the future, we must keep our minds on what God has done in the past. That, of course, is what God is still doing: reconciling the world to Himself in Jesus Christ as we do our part in spreading the message of His grace and love.

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