“Now the God of peace, who brought up from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep through the blood of the eternal covenant, even Jesus our Lord, equip you in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen. But I urge you, brethren, bear with this word of exhortation, for I have written to you briefly. Take notice that our brother Timothy has been released, with whom, if he comes soon, I will see you. Greet all of your leaders and all the saints. Those from Italy greet you. Grace be with you all.”
---End of Scripture verses---
The Hebrews writer wraps up his “brief” (verse 22) letter with a beautiful prayer for God to assist his brethren with their faithfulness, to complete (equip) them on earth, and to save them for eternity. “Peace” is not merely the absence of conflict, but is actually also the result of it. God does not promise to shield us from all struggles and skirmishes, but the battle belongs to the Lord and He does promise us the ultimate victory and eternal rest. “The God of peace” fights our battles for us and will soon “crush Satan under” our “feet” (Romans 16:20) if we remain true and faithful to Him.
If God “brought up from the dead” Jesus, “the great Shepherd,” He will bring us into His holy presence as well when He sends Christ back to retrieve the sheep of His flock. It was “through the blood” of Jesus (through His death) that the Father brought the Son back to life, and it is through His Precious, shed blood that He has given us new life and purchased our eternal redemption (Hebrews 9:12). God has gone to great lengths to secure our salvation and He will help us to keep the faith by “working in us” (verse 21), but we must do everything that is within our power to be “pleasing in His sight through Jesus Christ” our Lord (verse 22).
The moral of the Hebrews letter is stay faithful to the Lord no matter what! There will be times when Satan tempts us to give up but don’t you dare do it! We shall not escape God’s wrath if we “neglect so great a salvation” as this (Hebrews 2:3). Be sure to “draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16), and He will help you with your weaknesses and temptations. Take “refuge” and “strong encouragement” in the hope we have as “an anchor of the soul” (Hebrews 6:18-19), and remember that God is a “rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6)!
Introduction to the book of James tomorrow Lord willing.
Have a great day!
- Louie Taylor