Sunday: Hebrews 10:32-34
Verses 32-34 (introduction): The author has just finished warning his leaders that it is possible to abandon Jesus and return to spiritual death (Heb 10:26-31), but though some of his readers are in danger of doing this, he still has hope they will repent before crossing that line. Now he explains why. He invites them to remember with him the early years following their conversion. In those days their actions proved that their faith in Jesus was real. That they had been born-again was evident from changes that took place in their attitudes and behaviors. One need only look back to see the promised miracles of the “new covenant” (Heb 8:10-12). And because of the new covenant he was certain they still wanted to please God (Heb 8:10); and knew God personally because He was living inside them (Heb 8:11); and that their sins, even the terrible steps they had taken toward abandoning Christ, were forgiven and forgotten (Heb 8:12). As long as a spark of true faith still glowed within them these new covenant promises must be at work.
Monday: Hebrews 10:32-34
Verses 32-34 (introduction): Had no such changes taken place in his readers when they became Christians we sense the author would have categorized them differently: as those who had never really been born-again rather than those in danger of abandoning their salvation. His words here remind us that when a person is born-again deep changes will inevitably occur in their attitudes and behaviors. A new living power enters them and cannot be hidden. Here is a brief summary of the indicators the author says he saw in his readers: a) (v 32) they had been “enlightened” meaning the Holy Spirit had opened their spiritual eyes to understand spiritual truth (Mt 13:11-16; 16:17; Jn 3:3; 1Co 2:10-16); b) (vs 32, 33) their zeal had been sufficient to arouse persecution; c) (v 33) their loved caused them to care for suffering believers; d) (v 34) they joyfully accepted persecution (Mt 5:10-12); e) (v 34) their love of the things of the world declined (Mt 6:19-21; Heb 11:9-16); and f) (v 34) they had faith in the rewards of eternal life.
Tuesday: Hebrews 10:32, 33
Verses 32, 33: The author says in the early days of their faith his readers had suffered like athletes engaged in a fierce struggle. They had been dragged into public arenas (lit: “theaterized”) and subjected there to verbal and physical abuse (Ac 16:19-24; 19:29). And those who were not persecuted treated those who were like members of their own family. They must have brought food, clothing and blankets to those who had been thrown in jail and opened their homes to those who had been left homeless (Ac 2:44, 45; 4:32-37).
Wednesday: Hebrews 10:34
Verse 34: During those days they refused to abandon one another but had “suffered together” with those who had been arrested and were being held in chains and stocks. And they joyfully accepted the fact that because of their faith in Jesus Christ their homes were being violently broken into and robbed and their farms were being plundered. Through all of this their faith sustained them. They remained confident that the spiritual riches they would receive from Christ were worth far more than those things that had been lost, and they knew His riches could never be taken away.
Thursday: Hebrews 10:35
Verse 35: Though his readers had started out so well in their Christian lives, somehow that zeal had declined over time to the point that they were now in danger of abandoning Christ. They had declined to a level where the author felt he must bluntly warn them not to “throw away your confidence.” The word translated here as “throw away” is a form of the same word as that which Mark uses to describe Bartimaeus “throwing aside” his cloak as he jumped up and came to Jesus (Mk 10:50). The action pictured by this word is a deliberate and complete separation. His readers were not people in danger of accidentally losing their faith. They were coldly considering throwing it away. In a plea to prevent them from doing this he reminds them that their bold confession of Christ would pay “great wages” if they continued in that confession. Of course, the “wages” he is referring to are the riches of eternal life.
Friday: Hebrews 10:36-38
Verse 36: In order for them to actually receive the fulfillment of God’s promises they must continue to do His will until the moment when they see Jesus face to face, whether through death or at His physical return to earth (vs 37, 38). Otherwise those promises would be lost. Verses 37, 38: Their faith must endure until “He who is coming will come…” (Hab 2:3, 4). Here the author quotes a passage from Habakkuk (Septuagint) in which the prophet is told by God to write down a vision of coming events so that “the one who reads it may run” (Hab 2:2). God told Habakkuk that though the fulfillment of His words might appear to take a long time from a human perspective, the events would actually arrive exactly at His appointed time. Then God told him, “The righteous will live by his faith” meaning those who would patiently wait for Him to do what He said He would do, and would not “shrink back” from obeying Him, would be counted by Him as righteous and this means given eternal life (Hab 2:4; Ge 15:6).
Saturday: Hebrews 10:37, 38
Verses 37, 38 (continued): By taking his readers back to the familiar words of Habakkuk, the author reminds them that God always told people they must wait patiently for the fulfillment of His promises. Habakkuk wrote during a time in Israel’s history when much of the nation had turned away from God, and it seemed He intended to do nothing to stop it (Hab 1:2-4). But through Habakkuk God announced He had already prepared a terrible judgment that would come swiftly (Hab 1:5-11). Those who were humble would hear His warning and obey, but those who were proud would merely continue on in their sin (Hab 2:2-4). At the end of this prophecy Habakkuk personally responds to God’s warning by telling Him that no matter what hardships were coming, he would always worship Him and trust in His salvation, and furthermore he was confident God would give him the strength he would need to go through whatever trials lay ahead (Hab 3:17-19).