Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Receiving the Message of Hebrews in Head and Heart

In chapter ten of his book The Enemy Within (Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R Publishing, 1998), Kris Lundgaard suggests several ways our flesh works to douse the fire of our first love for Jesus. One of his points seems particularly appropriate for those of us at Glory of Christ Fellowship as we commence our journey through the letter to the Hebrews. 

The author of this great sermonic-letter was immensely learned and he writes in such a way as to cause us to think carefully and ponder deeply the person of Jesus Christ. However, it would be a grave error to think that he thinks thinking is an end in itself. Rather, his design in leading us to know more about Jesus is to lead us into a life-changing encounter with Jesus. He writes to wake us from our slumber and stun us into worship and obedience as we come to understand who Jesus is, what he's accomplished for us, and how he means to apply those accomplishments to our lives and churches. 

Therefore, I thought it might be good to pass on the following words from Kris Lundgaard. "'Knowledge puffs up' (1 Corinthians 8:1). When Paul said that to the Corinthians, he wasn't suggesting they stop learning the Word of God. He was condemning knowledge that seems to grow but never moves the heart. 

"A person with a big head and a small heart can learn the doctrines of sin, yet never be convicted of sin. He can learn the teachings of grace and pardon and the great atonement for sin, yet never feel the peace of God that passes understanding. When the flesh gets a person to the point that he can sit under the teaching of the Word, and even delight in it for its intellectual beauty, yet not be changed, he has snuffed out the wick of his first love" (117-18). 

May the Lord give us minds rich with the knowledge of Jesus, and heart aflame with passion for Jesus. May we receive his Word and allow his Spirit to shape our lives by that Word. 

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