Christ is Superior to Moses.
(Read Hebrews 3:1-19)
In Chapter 3 and 4, the author compares and contrasts between the role of Christ and with Moses. Israel's journey from Egypt to the promised land is a picture of Christian life. Moses led Israel from bondage to promised land. Israel was constantly looking back. Moses could not lead them to their eternal resting place. In this chapter we are warned not to follow their example. The author wants the Hebrew Christians to focus on Christ who is superior to Moses. Christ is able to lead them to their eternal resting place of heaven. They are the holy brethren because of their identification with Christ. They are the members of the family of God and separated for God's use (John 1:12). They are partakers with those who are called to heaven. They are exhorted to consider Jesus Christ who is the apostle and the High Priest of their confession. They are saved to say no to sin and yes to righteousness. Christ is the merciful high priest who has suffered and tempted like us so that he could help us when we are being tempted (Hebrews 2:18). Christians should fix their focus on Christ to guard them from unbelief and discouragement.
Christ is the Apostle and High priest of our confession.
(Read Hebrews 3:1)
This is the only time Christ is referred to as Apostle in the New Testament. This title indicates that Jesus was sent with authority to represent God. He is the messenger and message. As high priest Christ represents us before the Father. Moses was a great leader. From Adam to Moses, there was none greater than Moses. He led Israel from captivity and did many miracles among them. God spoke to Moses face to face and gave the law through him. He is the author of the first five books of the Bible. Moses was the meekest among all men and faithful in the house of God as a servant but was not perfect (Numbers 12:3, 7). Christ perfectly reveals the Father to us and represents us before him. So He is greater than Moses.
Christ is the faithful Son.
(Read Hebrews 3:2-6.)
Here, the author presents a contrast between Moses and Christ. Moses served God faithfully but it was limited by his death. But Christ is our eternal and faithful high priest. Moses served faithfully in the house of God and was a faithful messenger. But Christ is the messenger and message as well. Moses was faithful as a servant in the house of God but Christ is faithful as Son and the builder of the house. Christ has far more honor than Moses in the same way the builder of the house has more honor than the house itself. Moses was a faithful servant who loved God but Jesus is God who built everything. The Old Testament is all about Jesus Christ (Luke 24:27). Jesus told the Jews that "If they would have believed Moses, they would have believed him as well" (John 5:39, 46). Therefore the Son has more honors than the servant. Here the household is the entire family of God. So the author exhorts us to be loyal to Christ and remain confident in our hope in Christ (Hebrews 3:6). We must fix our thoughts on Christ and not be casual and careless about Christ. We must look to Him carefully to gain confidence to follow him (John 21:22).
Do not harden your hearts .
(Read Hebrews 3:7-14)
The author warns believers against unbelief. Verses 7-11 is a quotation from Psalm 95:7-11. Even true believers at times struggle to obey God. Those who are truly saved will "Hold fast their confidence in Christ knowing that he is the author and perfecter of their faith". Christians should guard their heart so that they do not develop an evil heart of unbelief (3:12). Heart is prone to wander. Only a good heart produces good crops (Luke 8:15). Those who live in sin lack assurance of salvation. Someone has said "The proof of salvation is the steadfast faith in Christ to the end". The writer gives a solemn warning from the tragic example of Israel. The children of Israel wandered in the wilderness for 40 years. Despite all that God has done for them they rebelled against him. About 600000 of them perished in the wilderness. Only two men over the age of 20 had entered the promised Land in that generation. Unbelief led them to hardness of heart. Hardening of the heart is caused by sin. This can lead to apostasy. Apostasy means willful departure from the truth. This prevents people from experiencing God's best for their lives. God always saves people. The ground of our salvation is the atoning sacrifice of Christ. But the proof of salvation is our patient endurance in the faith. The author warns his readers not to have a heart of unbelief. Willful disobedience and assurance of salvation will never go hand in hand. The antidote to unbelief is mutual accountability and daily encouragement of one another (Hebrews 3:13). So the author encourages readers to hold on to their initial confidence in the Lord and remain faithful to the end (Hebrews 3:14). In Christian life what matters is not how we started but how we finish. The best way to remain faithful is to keep our eyes on Jesus. Pray that God would give you a church family to help in your Christian life.
Encourage one another daily.
(Read Hebrews 3:15-19)
The author exhorts the readers to encourage one another daily because we are susceptible to the deceitfulness of sin. Sin is pleasurable to our senses and can seduce our soul. Soul is the seat of emotion. Sin is deceitful and can harden our heart. We have the responsibility to encourage one another because we are members of one body. You are your brother’s keeper. The antidote to unbelief is mutual accountability and daily encouragement from the Word of God. This chapter ends with a series of questions and answers. Israel could not enter their promised land because of unbelief. The sin that keeps us from God’s rest is our unbelief in the Son of God. The church family plays an important role in encouraging believers to remain faithful to God. Christians must be willing to help those who struggle in their walk with the Lord. Take note of early warning signs and identify the danger of unbelief? Is there any forgetfulness that we are accountable to God? Is there a gradual loss of private holiness in life? Is there a tendency to avoid fellowship with believers? Is there lack of interest in public worship? Is there a tendency to find fault with other believers? If we see these signs in life, we are in greater danger than we realize. So let us give attention to the exhortation given in the epistle and encourage one another so that none will be deceived by sin.