to obey is better than sacrifice / obedience is better than sacrifice *
December 13, 2019 – Friday
Hebrews 3:16-19 NIV
16 Who were they who heard and rebelled? Were they not all those Moses led out of Egypt?
17 And with whom was He angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies perished in the wilderness?
18 And to whom did God swear that they would never enter His rest if not to those who disobeyed?
19 So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.
Here we are in chapter three now which begins by emphasizing again how Jesus is greater than Moses ending with 5 “Moses was faithful as a servant in all God’s house,” bearing witness to what would be spoken by God in the future. 6 But Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house. And we are His house, if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory.
Then we are on to the warning against unbelief which begins by quoting Psalm 95:7-11
7 So, as the Holy Spirit says: “Today, if you hear His voice, 8do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion, during the time of testing in the wilderness, 9 where your ancestors tested and tried Me, though for forty years they saw what I did. 10 That is why I was angry with that generation; I said, ‘Their hearts are always going astray, and they have not known my ways.’ 11 So I declared on oath in My anger, ‘They shall never enter my rest.’ ”
They never entered Canaan, the promised land, but died wandering in the wilderness of the desert. But the next three verses really cut to the chase 12 See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. 14 We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end. This is followed by repeating what has already been seen from Psalm 95 “Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.” This warning was repeated because the writer clearly wanted this warning heeded.
This is the lead to the verses we have for today as it points out those who rebelled were among those Moses had led out of Egypt. The result was that their bodies perished in the wilderness. The key verse then is And to whom did God swear that they would never enter His rest if not to those who disobeyed. Then the warning associated directly with this verse concludes this chapter So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief. So if that happened when they would not follow Moses, how bad will it be if they do not believe Jesus who is greater – much greater – than Moses? It will be worse. They will not have a home in heaven, instead they will spend eternity in hell.
Now we know the results of both belief and unbelief. This is driven home even more so in church when they teach the Word of God. Make sure you go this weekend and deepen your belief in following Jesus.
(to obey is better than sacrifice /obedience is better than sacrifice)
* To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. (1 Samuel 15:22)