Lamentations 3-5 Hebrews 10:19-39
“And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:24-25 NCV)
These two verses could be introduced by saying that the author of Hebrews was telling his audience: “Now that you’ve got this salvation thing settled with God, here’s how you need to get going in life. (see verses 19-23) In short, the admonition is to work together as God’s children to encourage each other. We should stir up love and good works – not to become saved, but because we are saved. Because we have that relationship with God based on what He’s done, we need to work together as brothers and sisters in Christ; we need to be together in fellowship, and we need to encourage each other as we use the gifts God has given us.
When my wife was going through chemo treatments, every Sunday after the treatment she would feel awful. She slept the Saturday before, but she refused to miss church. She sat there covered in a blanket. She didn’t stand for the songs. She didn’t stand for the Scripture reading. She sat there bundled up in her blanket. For her, it wasn’t a legalistic view that told her she needed to go to church or God would get her. She drew strength from being with brothers and sisters in Christ. She drew encouragement from the music, even though she couldn’t participate. She encouraged others as they saw the strength she exuded in the midst of her physical weakness. Too often in the church, we find ways to criticize others. We compete against each other instead of realizing that we’re working together on the same team. Our job is to minister to people and to share the good news of Jesus with them. We are called to make disciples of those who make decisions to follow Jesus. We’re called to encourage them in their walk as they grow in Christ. The only negative in this section is to the idea of trying to go it alone. We’re in this together, so let’s encourage and love each other.
Lord, we live in such a negative world. Teach us, Your people, to love and encourage each other. Let our word and our deeds be pleasing in Your eyes as we share Your love and grace with a lost and dying world.
Scripture taken from the New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.