Lamentations 3:1-66, Hebrews 1:1-14, Psalms 102:1-28, Proverbs 26:21-22
Today is the 30th day of October. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I’m Brian. It's…it’s great to be here with you, Man, one more day…one more day in this 10th month of the year and that we just keep moving on, moving forward. So, we’re reading from the book of Lamentations in the Old Testament at the moment. Yesterday we read the entire personal letter of the apostle Paul to Philemon. And, so, when we get to the New Testament today we will be beginning in the book of Hebrews and we’ll talk about that when we get there, but first we’re reading from the Amplified Bible this week. Lamentations chapter 3.
Introduction to the book of Hebrews:
Alright. As promised, we are moving into some new territory and we’ll be camping out a little bit in the New Testament here. And one of the most compelling exhortations to keep the faith endure and stay true that we’re gonna find in the New Testament. And while that’s all true, Hebrews is…is a bit of an anomaly because we don’t actually know its full origins. Often, the apostle Paul’s been credited with authoring this letter at different points in history. Most scholars would today agree that this is highly unlikely. Whoever did right Hebrews, though, was a master communicator and was clearly very well educated, particularly from a Hebrew and Hebrew culture…cultural perspective because they…they demonstrate in this letter, a skilled understanding of the Scriptures, the Hebrew Scriptures and of Judaism. So, a couple candidates that kind of bubble up to the top, although there’s no way to know for certain would be maybe Barnabas and maybe Apollo’s but no one is certain. What is certain is that the author of this letter had the authority to write this kind of a work because it comes from a place of authority and that that work then would be regarded with respect and preserved and carried forward because of that authority. Paul’s protégé and his son in the faith Timothy, and, of course, you’ll remember we just read the pastoral letters to Timothy, is mentioned in this letter. So, Hebrews is probably generally contemporary with Paul’s writings, maybe just a little bit later because Timothy was younger than Paul and he would’ve lived on after Paul’s martyrdom. So, Hebrews could have been written a little bit after Paul. It’s clear from the letter that persecution of those who believed in Jesus had begun within the Jewish or Hebrew community. So, Jewish people, Hebrew people were persecuting those who were now following Jesus, the rabbi, the Hebrew rabbi, Jesus, the Gentile Savior, which was causing all kinds of conflict. And even though…even though the fever pitch, the bloodlust hadn’t broken out to the level of martyrdom, in most cases the Hebrew believers and those who were sympathetic to the way of Jesus, they had begun to suffer the marginalization that we read about in so many of the letters. And to suffer ridicule, they were being stereotyped as irrelevant and weird, which is not so uncommon even in our day and age. Often Christians are portrayed in the media as irrelevant or backward or a bit weird. And these cultural pressures take their toll. They were causing many Hebrew believers to simply hide and withdraw, basically disappear into the woodwork, hide their faith. And others were turning their backs and walking away completely from the faith, returning to traditional Judaism. And the writer of Hebrews was observing this happening and boldly stepped forward with this letter to encourage Hebrew believers to stay faithful to Jesus, to endure, to stay true. And, as I mentioned, this is like a theme that emerges that will not leave us alone because we have to do the same thing. We have to stay faithful to Jesus and endure and stay true and not return to our former ways. And Hebrews encourages us to hold fast to the hope that we have in Christ and not waiver, which is a very important message for what obviously was a very important message for the believers then, but it is just as important a message for us today. And it’s…its a brilliant letter. It’s a very well-constructed very thought out brilliant letter that allows us to look through the lens of the Old Testament and the Jewish heritage and find Jesu in that story. And, so, we begin Hebrews chapter 1.
Father, we thank You for Your word and we thank You for bringing us into the book of Hebrews. We ask Father that You awaken our hearts and minds that we might absorb and as we explore the book of Hebrews and look through the lens of the Old Testament and see how the story works, we ask that You bring enlightenment, clarity and understanding. And even again today the Proverbs hit us right between the eyes and again its talking about the things come out of our mouth, specifically, backbiting and gossip. Gossip, You say, is…is like a dainty morsel so like a little treat to be greedily eaten, and yet it goes down into the innermost chambers of the body to be remembered and mused upon. So, Holy Spirit, we invite You today to help us be aware of what we are putting into ourselves, what we are allowing to go into the innermost chambers of ourselves. Help us Father to not pick up things that we shouldn’t be carrying around or listen to things that we shouldn’t be hearing. And Father, help us to not be a person that is passing around things through words and language that shouldn’t be passed around. Come Holy Spirit we pray. In the mighty name of Jesus, we ask. Amen.
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And that’s it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.