Every word in Scripture is inspired by the Spirit of God. “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God” (2
Timothy 3:16a). When the Lord spoke a person's name twice in calling him, He did it for greater
emphasis. Consider seven examples.
“Abraham, Abraham!”—a call for deliverance ~
“But the Angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, ‘Abraham, Abraham!’ So he said, ‘Here I am.’ And He said, ‘Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.’ Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son” (Genesis 22:11-13).
“Jacob, Jacob!”—a call for blessing ~
“Then God spoke to Israel in the visions of the night, and said, ‘Jacob, Jacob!’ And he said, ‘Here I am.’ So He said, ‘I am God, the God of your father; do not fear to go down to Egypt, for I will make of you a great nation there’” (Genesis 46:2-3).
“Moses, Moses!”—a call to reverence ~
“So when the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, ‘Moses, Moses!’ And he said, ‘Here I am.’ Then He said, ‘Do not draw near this place. Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground’” (Exodus 3:4-5).
“Samuel, Samuel!”—a call to service ~
“Now the Lord came and stood and called as at other times, Samuel! Samuel!’ And Samuel answered, ‘Speak, for Your servant hears’” (1 Samuel 3:10).
“Martha, Martha”—a call of reproof ~
“And Jesus answered and said to her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her’” (Luke 10:41-42).
“Simon, Simon!” (Peter)—a call of warning ~
“And the Lord said, ‘Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren’” (Luke 22:31-32).
“Saul, Saul” (Paul)—a call for conviction and conversion
~ “Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?’ And he said, ‘Who are You, Lord?’ Then the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ So he, trembling and astonished, said, ‘Lord, what do You want me to do?’ Then the Lord said to him, ‘Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do’” (Acts 9:4-6).
~ Robert Lloyd Russell, ABUNDANT LIFE NOW
Reprinted from "Abundant Life Now,” a free blog which offers inspiring moments, thought-provoking comments, and solid Biblical insight (http://robertlloydrussell.blogspot.co.uk/)
4/7/2013 0 Comments
Lay Aside Every Weight
The verse before us, Hebrews 12:1, gives the Christian a very practical application for winning the spiritual race that is "set before us", the race of faith which occupies every aspect of our lives. We often have a tendency to overlook key portions of Scripture to our great loss, and in this familiar verse the focus of our attention usually centers upon "the sin that so easily besets us", yet I'm afraid that such a focus has actually "beset" us from the deeper and more practical application of this passage.
Notice the division the Spirit makes between "weight" and "sin": "let us lay aside every weight, and the sin
which doth so easily beset us". Without carefully reading, these two are often blurred together as one, but it should not be so. The Bible is speaking of two very different hindrances that bog us down and prevent us from running in such a way "that ye may obtain." (1 Corinthians 9:24) Most of us are well aware of the meaning of sin and its frustrations, but are we just as aware of this other besetter indicated here by the inspired apostle?
WHAT IS A WEIGHT?
A weight is anything and everything that slows us down from our prescribed run. The expression "every weight" tells us that weights are manifold; there can be many, and they can be diverse.
A weight is not sin. There are many things we do as Christians that hinder our run even though those things
in and of themselves are not wrong. The apostle Paul put it this way: "All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not." (1 Corinthians 10:23) There are no rules about how you must dress when participating in a race, but simply because it is lawful for you to wear what you will, that certainly does not advocate donning a heavy coat and cumbersome footwear! Such choices, while legal, do nothing but oppress the runner from running to win.
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