JohnSWilson3 Blog

A Perspective of the Ekklesias of Galatia and the Hebrews
July 17, 2011, 1:29 pm
Filed under: G Letter to the Galatians, Q - Letter to Hebrews

In the letter to Hebrews chapters 5 and 6 appears to be a generalization of the previous four chapters. The author has described how great Christ Jesus is compared to angels, Moses, David, Joshua, and the high priest. Paul has given some of the greatest writings of the supremacy and centrality of Jesus Christ short of his letters to the church in Colosse and Ephesus. In regards to the Hebrews he has continued to remind the brothers and sisters to stay focused on Christ, in whom is salvation, who is merciful and faithful, in whom we can find “timely help.” Together as they hear and believe Christ, their indwelling Lord, living by His life, following what He says, they will enter His rest.

Because of the constant reminders there is a sense that the Hebrew believers were perhaps drifting back, falling back to the legalism, the religion of Judaism instead of moving forward in their life in Christ. Perhaps Paul is reminded of the problem that had occurred in the Galatian churches where Paul states in rhetorical questions:

“You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard? Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort? Have you suffered so much for nothing – if it really was for nothing? Does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you because you observe the law, or because you believe what you heard?”

It is interesting that even though in Galatians Paul does not mention the children of Israel in the desert you can perhaps see the same thing occurring with the ekklesias in Galatia. The people of Israel had seen what God had done for forty years! The Galatians had seen what Christ had done clearly among them. The people of Israel were to hear and believe God. The Galatians had received the Spirit by hearing and believing. But now the Galatian brothers and sisters were falling back to the legalism of the Law versus living by the life of the Spirit of Christ. This appears to be the same issues occurring with the Hebrew believers.

How important it is to fix our “thoughts on Jesus,” to “consider fully the apostle and high priest of our confession – Jesus.” How important it is to be involved in each others lives with Christ as our focus, “encouraging one another daily,” entering His “rest.” Hearing and believing our indwelling Lord together and loving one another is obeying and living by the life of Christ.

Jesus is “a great high priest,” He suffered, was “tempted in every way, just as we are – yet was without sin” and that He can “sympathize with our weaknesses.” Christ has destroyed the devil’s power! The devil’s power is only by his “craftinesses” in deceiving us about our life in Christ. Jesus has taken away the “fear of death” and now calls us brothers and sisters! Christ has come to be our help! He is “merciful and faithful” and has become our life! We can go to Him, when we are tempted, when we are suffering, to “the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Christ is ready to help us! He will be merciful and gracious to us! Let us encourage one another daily to hear Him, believe Him, and follow what He says, loving one another.

6 Comments so far
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There is a good reason that Paul would not mention the children of Israel in the wilderness to the Galatians, while he (or another author, if it’s not Paul) does mention them when writing the Book of Hebrews. It seems the recipients of Hebrews were Jews, while the recipients of the letter to the Galatians were primarily Gentiles.


Comment by Alan Knox

Alan, thanks for commenting, good point brother. Thinking that Paul was a bit too fired up about the ekkelsias in Galatia that it didn’t come to mind. Perhaps also Galatians being his first letter his thoughts were more towards living by the Spirit versus the flesh and a reminder of his message of the good news of Christ. Appreciate you brother, :).

Comment by John Wilson

John, the word I hear in this is “together” and the importance & necessity of our life together in Him! Ekklesia. Community! “listening to Him together”. Life!
I appreciate the encouraging reminder!
Thx bro’

Comment by Ron Kellington

Ron, thanks brother, absolutely! It really is all about community, and not just the kind that normally occurs on a Sunday morning, :).

Comment by John Wilson

John, I am reminded of Jon Zen’s latest blog when reminded of he Galatians. When things get tough people tend to fall back on the known and familiar, even if they know it is not the right path. That’s why it is so very important to be together with other like minded believers, for encouragement and building up of one another.

Comment by Pam Frazier

Pam, amen sister. Thanks for commenting.

Comment by John Wilson

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