Hebrews 9

Hebrews 9: Christ = The Mediator

                Paul writes to the Hebrews and explains that in times of Old (the Old Testament) a priest would come into the Holy Tabernacle once a year to “atone” for the sins of the people. However, Christ came to Atone for the sins of the people with a far greater tabernacle, which was His own body, the very same body that He sacrificed and Atoned for us. In order for this Atonement to take effect, Jesus Christ had to die for the Testament. This is similar to “last will and testament”, which is only executed upon death of an individual. Because of this it was necessary for Jesus Christ to die for our sins. Those who follow Him; “…are called [to] receive the promise of eternal inheritance.” (Hebrews 9:15)

Paul explains the divine mission of Jesus Christ;

“…Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands… but into heaven itself…. Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the scone time without sin unto salvation.” (Hebrews 9:24;28) Therefore those who follow Jesus Christ will be given salvation when Jesus Christ returns for the Second time.

 

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2 Corinthians 7

2 Corinthians 7: Repentance

                Paul invited the Corinthians to; “…cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and the spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” (2 Corinthians 7:1)

                Paul goes on to explain that sorrow from sins leads to repentance; “Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.” (2 Corinthians 7:9-10)

2 Corinthians 6

2 Corinthians 6: Today is the day to Repent!

Paul opens this letter by explaining that we as believers in Jesus Christ should not take His grace in vain. Essentially, Jesus died for our sins and made it possible for us to return and live with our Heavenly Father; we should not abuse this grace. We need to be actively engaged in doing good. We need to work hard through our afflictions and trials and learn from them! Paul delivers a wonderfully written piece that we can all live by day to day:

“We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain. (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.) Giving no offence in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed: But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings; By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned, By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true;  As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.” (2 Corinthians 6:1-10)

Paul then reminds the believers in Christ, to be around people that share their beliefs. Light and darkness should not coincide, righteousness cannot fellowship with unrighteousness.

“Be ye no unequally yoked [attached, coupled] with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness?” (2 Corinthians 6:14)

Essentially, Paul is telling us that we need to choose our friends and our spouse carefully that we might; “…come out from among them, and be ye separate…” (2 Corinthians 6:17) Separate from the world, but still living in the world. We should never cave into the temptations of the world, just because it is being “accepted”. If we do these things, Paul promises that God; “…will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:18)

 

Jeremiah 17-18

Jeremiah 17-18

Chapter 17: Keep the Sabbath Day

Judah is fatally inclined to idolatry. The happiness of the man that trusts in the Lord is contrasted with the man that trusted in man.

“…Cursed be the man that trusteth in man… and whose heart departeth from the Lord.” (Jeremiah 17:5) God alone knows the deceit and wretchedness of the heart of man. A comparison is made between a bird’s hatching the eggs of another species, which will soon forsake her, and the vanity of them is ill-acquired riches. Jeremiah talks of his sincerity, and prays that the evil intended him by his enemies may revert on their own heads. “Let them be confounded that persecute me…” (Jeremiah 17:18)

God will always fight our battles for us, if we follow His commandments. Therefore if someone is persecuting you, for what you believe… the Lord will protect you, by confounding them!

Jeremiah tells us that the people “…say unto me, Where is the word of the Lord? Let it come now.” (Jeremiah 17:15) Those who believe in the Word of God and know when something is from God, because they can feel His spirit, will know and accept the Book of Mormon as Word of God. The “Word” of God is not limited to the “Bible”, the Bible is indeed part of the Word of God, but is not His complete record or Word.

“…hallow the sabbath day, to do no work therein.” (Jeremiah 17:24)

In Jeremiah 17:22-27 we read about the importance of the keeping the Sabbath Day holy. The Lord speaks to us through the writings of Jeremiah saying that we must not do any work on the Sabbath Day. This means that we should not be working to make money or make others work. We can however serve or do things that relax us and put us closer to God.

Chapter 18: Repent and God will Repent

The house of Israel is like clay in the hands of a potter. The inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem are invited to repent; their refusal is as unnatural as someone preferring the snowy Lebanon or barren rock to a fruitful plain, or other waters to the cool stream of the fountain. Those who continue to do in evil in the sight of the Lord will be punished, and those who repent will have the anger and wrath of God withheld from them. A conspiracy is formed against Jeremiah, who appeals to God, and curses his enemies. The Jews will be scattered.

Jeremiah 7-8

Jeremiah 7-8

Chapter 7: Repent!

Jeremiah told to stand at the temple gates and order those entering to repent. The Lord says that the temple has “…become a den of robbers…” (Jeremiah 7:11). The people have rejected the prophets and reject their words, the words of God. The Lord will do to the temple what he did to Shiloh. The people perform offerings in an unacceptable foreign manner. There are high places in Judah. The voice of mirth shall go from Judah and Jerusalem.

Chapter 8: Calamities shall fall on Jerusalem

The bones of the kings, princes and priests of Judah shall be exhumed and left for dung upon the face of the earth. “Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed time; and the turtle and the crne and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the Lord.” (Jeremiah 8:7) The land will become barren. The people will proclaim that they are wise but the Lord questions this; “How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of the Lord is with us? Lo, certainly in vain made he it; the pen of the scribes is in vain… they have rejected the word of the Lord; and what wisdom is in them?” (Jeremiah 8:8-9) Serpents and cockatrices shall bite.

Jeremiah 3-4

Jeremiah 3-4

Chapter 3: Gathering of Israel

Israel is compared to an adulterous husband. In the days of Josiah, the Lord speaks about the high places in Israel, and about how Israel was punished. Judah, far from taking Israel’s as a cautionary tale, played the harlot also, and pretended to turn to the Lord.

It mentions that people “…committed adultery with stones and with stocks [wood].” (Jeremiah 3:9). Essentially people were having sexual relations with objects. These people were abusing the power of procreation for their own pleasure. An appeal is made for Israel to acknowledge transgressions, and be restored. In the last days the Lord shall gather all nations and bring them to Jerusalem. However, we learn that not everyone in a family will be gathered to Zion; “…I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion.” (Jeremiah 3:14) This means that everyone in the family will need to be righteous in order to make it to Zion in the last days.

Chapter 4: Repent!

The Lord appeals to the men of Judah and Jerusalem to circumcise their hearts. Mourn and repent – an evil is coming from the north. It mentions the people who are not following the Lord as “…foolish, they have not known me, they are sottish [drunken: in the habit of drinking far too much alcohol] children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.” (Jeremiah 4:22) The land will be spoiled. “…all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the Lord…” (Jeremiah 4:26) and the “…heavens above be black…” (Jeremiah 4:38). This will be the state of the world at the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.