Part 4) Follow: Life of Obedience
“The call of Jesus is the call to come and die” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer
- Explore your fears and what’s behind them.
- Write about a relational conflict you are experiencing.
- Recall a significant reaction, conversation, or event.
- List out all that you are grateful for.
Here are some tools to help you with the devotionals:
Bible Text: Hebrews 12:1-3
1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.
CONTEXT & COMMENTARY
The writer of Hebrews begins chapter 12 with the familiar race metaphor, presenting a forceful challenge for Christians to endure in a “marathon” commitment to Christ… this image of “running” emphasizes that Christ-followers have a course to complete or a goal to reach, and must exert effort if the Christian life is to be lived faithfully. The author has in view, however, a marathon rather than a sprint, as seen in the phrase “with endurance.” The effort called for, consequently, is a sustained effort that goes the distance, following through on one’s commitment with dogged determination. This is how we must run “the race marked out for us.”
Guthrie, George H. “Hebrews 12:1-17” in The NIV Application Commentary: Hebrews. Grand Rapids, Michigan. Zondervan, 1998.
- Paul distinguishes between weights (i.e. non-sins) and sins as the things that hinder the race set before us. What are some weights and sins that I need to lay aside?
- What causes me to “grow weary or fainthearted” in my race as a Christian?
- Consider what Jesus endured; how does this encourage and strengthen me to persevere?