This is part of the 66 in 52 Bible Journaling Challenge. Over the course of the 52 weeks in 2018, I will focus in on one verse from each book of the Bible with many others who have signed up to join me. Each week I will be posting a summary page with some thought about that week’s book(s) of the Bible along with some links that may help our reflection. Click here to sign up if you want to join us at any point along the journey!
The Big Picture of Hebrews:
While not much is known about the context of Hebrews including the author, it was likely written sometime between AD 64 and 69 (before the fall of Jerusalem in AD 70). The purpose though is clear: to encourage Christians in a time of trial. I once heard a Pastor talk about how this reads someone more like a sermon than a letter and encouraged everyone to read it out loud or listen to it in one sitting to sense more what it was like to hear it the first time. A key focus in this book is Christ as Priest, showing that Jesus was not only completely human but also 100% God. He was the High Priest, but also the sacrifice. This was likely written to Jewish Christian community due to all the references to Old Testament practices and the sacrificial system. As these Christians in Rome were suffering under Nero’s persecution, the message of these words helped them persevere.
Tips for Enduring Hard Times from Hebrews:
- Pay attention and listen to the truth (2:1-4)
- Don’t let your hearts get hard (3:7-4:16)
- Don’t stop growing and maturing (6:1-12)
- Patiently endure, hold tight to hope, don’t turn away (10:19-39)
- Follow the example of those before you (11:1-12:1)
- Keep running the race (12:1-29)
- Love each other (13:1-7)
- Remember that Christ never changes (13:8-9)
A Few Key Verses and Possible Reflection Questions/Prayers:
Some of us are planning to read through the whole book or books each week, while others are just focusing in on one verse per book. This section of the weekly intro post might help you narrow down a verse to reflect on for the week, but you do not have to choose one of these verse, pick any section of the book you want! These are just some ideas.
- “This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary. (Hebrews 6:19) “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” (Hebrews 10:23)
REFLECTION: Where in your life do you need to hold tight on to hope this week and let it anchor you? How can you do that?
- “See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled.” (Hebrews 12:15)
REFLECTION: Where is bitterness threatening to take root in your life or you family or your church? What can you do to ruthlessly destroy that weed?
Some Other Resources:
- The Bible Project summary video for Hebrews
- A Pinterest board with resources and pictures for Hebrews
- The 66 in 52 Schedule and Tracking Sheet
So now it’s your turn! Pick a verse and settle in this week, or read through the whole book. If you post any picture or blogs on social media, tag them with #66in52challenge so we can all share in this journey together!