Sermon Summary and Discussion Questions | "How Should We Then Live"

Summary

In this sermon, Brian exposits Hebrews 10:19-25, encouraging us with the foundation of Jesus’ high priestly ministry and exhorting us to strive toward fellowship with God and one another. Consequently, we are shown how we should then live as faithful Christians.

Foundation of Faithful Christian Living (10:19-21)

  • The author of Hebrews is writing into a context where some Christians only sensed a superficial experience with the Lord. For others, fellowship and relationships were being neglected. Stability seemed allusive and there was confusion about how they should live out their faith. In order to encourage his readers, the author first describes the foundation for faithful Christian living.
  • 10:19—Therefore brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy place. All believers now have access to enter into God’s most holy place. This is an audacious reality that the author is claiming. The means of their access has now profoundly changed. Christians now have access into the holy place because they now enter through the blood of Jesus, their great high priest.
  • 10:20—A New and Living Way Jesus’ role as a greater high priest stands in stark contrast with the priest of previous generations. Before, the priest would stand daily and offer repeated sacrifices (10:11), but Christ offered a single sacrifice and sat down at the right hand of God (10:12).
  • 10:21—Benefits of his priestly reign Jesus is our great high priest, who reigns over the house of God (cf. Heb 4:14). Formerly, other priests would serve before God, or in the tabernacle. But no high priest was ever endowed with the position of reigning over the house of God

Three Exhortations (10:22-25)

  • 10:22—Let us draw near to God Though we have been brought near through the blood of Christ, we are called to draw near and live in the good of this reality. No longer are we to live hidden and at a distance from God (as Adam and Eve did in the Garden). This has an application point for both the non-believer and the believer. For the non-believer, this passage exhorts you to no longer hide from God because of your guilt, but to trust in Jesus as the one who offered the one and perfect sacrifice to atone for sin. For the believer, we are to drawn near and live in the good of what Jesus has done in his life, death, and resurrection as our great high priest. We can cultivate a heart to draw near of God through prayer and through preaching the gospel to ourselves.
  • 10:23—Let us hold fast the confession We are a people of the Scriptures. Though circumstances, culture, and our affections change, the truth of Christ’s work is unchanging. Through our troubles our confession finds a sure hope in his Scriptures to steady us in the storms. We can live by the truths of God’s promises through prayer, meditation, and scripture memorization.
  • 10:24—Let us stir up one another for love and good works This exhortation is a call to give consideration to the needs of those around us. There are brothers and sisters that you can encourage to endure in the faith. Moreover, our task to ‘stir up’ each other has an aim, love and good works. This is the responsibility of every Christian. Discouragement, laziness, or persecution, can lead to the danger of neglecting to meet with one another. Rather, Jesus’ salvation empowers and invites us to live faithful Christian lives.

Discussion Questions

  1. Brian showed how a faithful Christian life is first founded on the greater high-priestly ministry of Jesus. Why is the assertion of our foundation prior to our attempts at faithfulness important? How does this encourage you in your faith as you strive to live a faithful life for Christ?
  2. This passage exhorts us to draw near to God. Do you sense the nearness of God in your life? Brian mentioned that a couple ways we can cultivate a heart that draws near to God is through prayer and preaching the gospel to ourselves. How can you grow in your prayer life? How often do you preach the gospel to yourself? How can we as a small group practice a more prayerful life together? How can we as a small group remind each other of the gospel consistently?
  3. Brian mentioned who the call to “hold fast the confession” is a call to live by the truth of God’s promises through meditation and memorization of Scripture. How are your devotional times in the word? How often do set aside time to meditate and memorize Scripture? How does this exhortation convict or encourage you?
  4. Lastly, we are exhorted to not neglect to meet with one another, but to “stir up” one another for love and good works. What tempts you to neglect fellowship (e.g., discouragement, laziness, etc.)? How can we as a small group practically ‘stir up’ one another?