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Closing Encouragements (Part C)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
The Truth Network Radio
May 11, 2022 6:00 am

Closing Encouragements (Part C)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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May 11, 2022 6:00 am

Pastor Rick teaches from the letter to the Hebrews

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With such sacrifices, He says in verse 16, God is well pleased. Doing good includes this, time, ability. You've got to be able to do whatever it is you're going to do. Time. Well, there are those that have the ability, they just don't have the time. They cannot make time for God. I don't have time for you, Lord. I'd love to serve, but I don't have time.

Call it like it is, just face the facts. Money. You can't serve. And now, here's Pastor Rick with the conclusion of his message called Closing Encouragements in Hebrews chapter 13. If you don't know who C.S. Lewis is, he was a Christian defender of the faith and a prolific writer. Judaism, says Lewis, without the temple is mutilated, deprived of its central operation. Any church, barn, sick room, or field can be the Christian's temple. So we don't need a temple. We don't need a building. Anywhere we are, the body is a temple that houses the Holy Spirit.

Where two or more are gathered in my name, there I am in the midst. This church, we don't put an emphasis. We could have a shopping mall cathedral. We could have a glass cathedral.

Although, I don't know who's going to do all that cleaning. It doesn't matter. It's secondary to us. What is primary is pleasing the Lord. Fellowship with him. You know the word fellowship?

They continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine, in their fellowship. Fellowship includes serving the body. A lot of Christians reduce it, it seems, to just hanging out.

Some of that goes on and is not wrong, but that's not all there is to it. You see, that word in the Greek used for fellowship is koinonia. You have something in common with them.

What is that commonness? Well, it's Christ. Yes, it is serving the Christ. How do we serve the Christ? You say, well, I stand out on the corner and I hand out tracts. Well, I'm not going to condemn that, but that's not enough.

That is not enough. We'll come back to that in a little bit. It says, verse 11, for the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin are burned outside the camp. The sacrifices from the altar, the sin offering that he is speaking about here, taken outside the camp, comes from the Day of Atonement for the Jew. The high priest once a year would enter into the holy place with the blood from the lamb that was slain, but that sacrifice that was slain, it was not then eaten. It was taken outside the camp and burned, disposed of. This is everything to do with where Christ was crucified.

We'll get to this a little bit. Verse 12, therefore, also that he might sanctify the people with his own blood suffered outside the gate. You see, he goes back. He says, remember the Jews in the wilderness? It was a large camp.

It was a temporary dwelling. They had not come into the land, but while they were there, God was deprogramming them from their slavery in Egypt. When you become a Christian, for those of you who lived in the world, you come to Christ, you have to be deprogrammed. And after that, you have to constantly have the world filtered out from rubbing up against it and it against you.

It is an ongoing process. The blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin. And the Jews, when they came out of Egypt, they had to be deprogramming as a people.

It had to start and it started there. And they were given this day of atonement. And they were to take the remains of this sacrificed animal. The blood would go on the horns of the altar and then into the holy place, but the carcass, the body would be taken out and burned. And the writer is saying, our Lord Jesus was taken out of the gates of Jerusalem, likely that Damascus gate, north of the city, all particular to filling the imagery given to Moses. You look on a map and you see the location, the believed location of the Calvary, the place where Christ was crucified.

You have two of them on most maps. There's the traditional Roman Catholic one. I can tell you that one's wrong right away. Anything they say pretty much about the Scriptures is wrong. And then there's Gordon's Calvary, which is very likely right because it's consistent with the Scripture, north of the city, outside the gate, and other identifying features that make that the most viable one.

Well, this is what the writer is talking about. Jesus Christ, when they crucified him, he was not crucified in the city of Jerusalem, he was taken outside the gate to the place called Calvary. And so he says, verse 12, Therefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate, that he could save sinners. He had to suffer and die for us, though he never sinned, and he never mind doing this. Well, he didn't like it.

He despised it, as a matter of fact. The Bible tells us that, the shame that accompanied it. The sin offering, the image of the Day of Atonement.

Well, we have been atoned for through his blood. In verse, well, before I go away from that, John's Gospel, chapter 19, verse 20, for many of the Jews read this title. That is Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews. For the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and it was called in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin, and so then on goes the story.

But he was taken outside the city, near the city. This outside the gate indicates that he carried my sins away from the dwelling of God. You see, the city where the temple was, the dwelling place of God, the Shekinah was, he took my sins away from the presence of God. When you die, Christian, and you stand before God, your sins have been taken away from the presence of God by Jesus Christ. Here, he says, he is saying that what Christ did is outside the framework of Judaism. He takes sinners beyond Judaism and Gentilism and any other ism you can think of. Christ brings us into an experience that can be found nowhere else except in Jesus Christ.

That's it. And it is an insult to God to appeal to Judaism's altar, that's what he's telling his audience, or anyone else's altar. We have no auxiliary places of worship and sacrifice. We go direct to Christ. You cannot say, well, Christ's death really isn't enough. I have to express it in another way.

No, you don't. That's idolatry. You express it the way it's been handed down to us from the apostles and the prophets who got himself. Verse 13, therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach outside where the sin offering was taken, outside of Judaism and everything else as I mentioned. In Christ, the world will put its disdain on you. And you will feel it.

It will be sort of a burst of shame. Maybe you're out somewhere and someone says, what did you do Sunday? And you don't want to say, I went to church to worship. This would be the more immature Christians.

I'm not saying this to hurt your feelings, but you've got to face it if you're ever going to overcome it. Whatever it is, it makes you reluctant to say, I serve Jesus Christ. You're not bearing the reproach of Christ.

And that's what was happening. And so he says, therefore, let us go forth outside the camp, bearing the reproach. We'll take it.

You want to not like us? You want to try to shame us for worshiping Christ? Bring it.

Do it. I'm not going to stop because of you. I am not going to accommodate your disdain for Christ. I will accommodate him. I will honor him. I will glorify him.

Whether you like it or not. Whether you're more intelligent than I am as men go. Maybe you're more wealthy, in a bigger position.

Maybe you can hurt me physically, financially. I am not going to deny him to satisfy you. And so the reproach we bear for Christ, it is worth it. Verse 14. For here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come.

I love this. He's saying constantly, we're not Jews anymore. Jerusalem is not all that to us anymore because Christ is better. Hebrews 10. He said this about Abraham.

He waited for the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God. Abraham saw beyond Jerusalem. In New Jerusalem there is no temple. Revelation 21 verse 2. But I saw no temple in it. For the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The dwelling place. A temple is a dwelling place. God himself is going to be our dwelling place. Revelation 21, 10. And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. So he's saying, this isn't our home. We've got a Jerusalem.

It's bigger, it's better. It is awesome because God is awesome. I adore him for that. What would happen if God were beatable? He wouldn't be awesome. He would not be worthy.

The fact that he's unbeatable, that alone is attractive. Verse 15. Therefore by him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God. That is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his name. Well, he is citing the peace offering in Leviticus 7 where it was to be accompanied with praise and thanksgiving to the Lord. But we have to pause again.

This is how we check the flesh, by pointing it out, by not letting it in where it doesn't belong. Singing songs of praise is noteworthy and it is a critical part of our worship, but it is not enough. Shallow Christians, even false believers, can come into the church and they can sing the song. The Mormons can sing the Hallelujah chorus all they want. They're still doomed for their rejection of Christ. Mere praise and mere song is not enough.

Christians must always look through this life to the work of God, to the word of God, to what pleases him. In spite of whatever we face, in spite of whatever we do not like, our praise is to include adoration built on awe. There's a difference between just adoring something because you like it. You do that to a puppy, oh, he's so adorable. That's not the same kind of adoration we have to God. God's not a puppy. He is great and awesome. In other words, there's nothing else to say at some point in the presence of God.

Word, stop. That's the awe. He's magnificent beyond speech.

He silences every criticism. This brings hope, creates love and praise as spoken of in verse 1, Jesus Christ the same today and forever. He says that is the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his name. You want to go and offer sacrifices? Don't go to the temple, but you don't have to go there.

You can do it right where you are. You can offer sacrifices of praise to him. Praise is gratitude. It includes gratitude. Here's a feature about gratitude.

May we all come away with this this morning? There is nothing casual about gratitude. You want to mock gratitude? Go, yeah, yeah, yeah, thanks. Whatever, thanks.

See how it chops it up, ruins it? But when you say thank you, then you're expressing what's in your heart, how you view the other person's action on your behalf. And so he says, offer the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his name.

Gratitude is not casual. 1 Thessalonians 5, in everything give thanks for this is the will of God. This is what God wants.

How plain and speak is that? For this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5, 18, in everything give thanks. Not for everything, but in the midst of it. Lord, I don't like that I'm being persecuted, but I praise you, because should they persecute me to death, I will be with you. Richard Wombran, he and others, but deciding him, he entered into these very things. And so we're not to separate the blessings from the source of the blessings.

James will get to that. He will say, every good gift comes from your father. Don't you dare separate those good things that you have from God, as though you deserve them, as though they were going to be yours anyway.

Without him, you get nothing. Daniel, when he was told, they're going to kill you, Daniel, you and every other religious figure in Babylon. Nebuchadnezzar had it with people not being able to tell him what he dreamed and what it meant. Daniel sought the Lord. I'm not going to read it all, Daniel 2, but I'll take this one passage. Once the Lord gave Daniel the answer, Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, for wisdom and might are his. When Daniel was threatened with execution, when Daniel was thrown to the lions, he did not stop praising the Lord. When the king said, Daniel, are you there? My God has saved me. Shadrach and Meshach and Abednego, their response was, you can kill us. We're not going to praise fake gods.

That's stupid. Well, let's move forward in verse 16. But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. Praise is Godward. In the context that we've been studying, praise to God. But the deeds are manward. They flow from our understanding of God to our service of men. They're back to koinonia, the fellowship. I mentioned earlier, attending church is not serving.

Not in and of itself. Sitting in the pew don't think you're serving God that way. You're just doing what your duty is. Attending church is designed by God to strengthen you to serve in the church.

Ephesians 4, for the equipping of the saints, for the work of ministry, for the edification of the body of Christ. You say, I don't like that. I don't have an alternative for you. Everybody is supposed to get a place on the wall. Should it be any other way? Should we say, if you feel like serving, if it meets with your approval, I'm not trying to make that, I know there are always those who aren't serving, and I'm not trying to hurt you. But I'm not apologizing for the scripture, and if the scripture stings you, it is God's way of saying, how else can I reach you? Maybe one day you will register, and you will understand that if you're going to get stronger, if you're going to get to the next step, then you're going to have to serve somewhere.

With such sacrifices, he says in verse 16, God is well pleased. Doing good includes this, time, ability. You've got to be able to do whatever it is you're going to do. Time, well, there are those that have the ability, they just don't have the time. They cannot make time for God. I don't have time for you, Lord. I'd love to serve, but I don't have time.

Just call it like it is, just face the facts. Money, you can't serve. You cannot build a kingdom if you don't tithe. I'm just not a fundraiser, this is a fact. I'm not going to hold it back from you, especially those of you who are penny pinchers with God's money.

If there are any here who are going to listen later online or the radio or wherever else, you have to hear these things. What would the church look like if no one tithed? You go back to C.S. Lewis' statement, you've got to be out in the field. That works on a nice day.

Problem is, you only get about 20 of them a year, and you don't know when they're coming. Well, I don't know where I am, let's go back to the beginning and start again. Verse 17, we'll finish up now. Obey those who rule over you. There it is a second time, it comes again in verse 24, we won't get that this morning. Obey those who rule over you and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable to you.

Well, we hit this all through the letters, we hit it all through the scripture, and here we are, faced with it, just right out, a blatant statement. Be obedient and submit. This is not humiliation, this is not forcing you to do something that you don't want to do.

You have no problem doing this with your employer because he pays you to do it. You have no problem in the military doing it because you'll face judicial punishment if you don't. Military justice. But when Christ comes along and says, why can't you do this because you said you love me? And if you love me, you keep my commandment.

I don't get this, can you explain it to me? And so there it is, right out. Some of you here have watched this church do things that maybe you didn't like, but you've stuck by the Lord. The Lord didn't tell you to move and you didn't move and the Lord didn't tell you to start trouble and you didn't start trouble, you just stayed obedient to him.

And fruit comes out of that. There's no need to tell you to obey and be submissive if everything we do is going to please you. We got to get that as adult Christians.

If you think every time we make a decision, you've got to be right with it for that decision to be implemented, you are a child, you are a baby, you belong in the nursery. Adult Christians understand that obedience causes pain and honor and blessings and righteousness and fruit and it hurts the devil and it hurts your flesh and so it should. So be a man of Christ, be a woman of Christ and own up to what the scripture says and watch God do his thing.

Or try to make it say what it doesn't say. Church is not a democracy. We're not a corporation. We're not interested in their tactics and methods as far as where the church goes because we follow the good shepherd. He has put under shepherds in place to carry out his orders. And if a man of God is serious about the judgment he is going to face one day for how he followed those orders, he's going to do it with or without you and you should love that it's that way.

I would love that it's that way. Church is not also this place where everybody just does their thing. We'll read the book of Judges, every man did according to his own might because there was no ruler.

There's no king in those days. So may it never come off your lips. Teach me the Bible, just don't enforce it because that's par for the course nowadays. He says, for they watch out for your souls as those who must give account. This is the way it is, Christians. It's in your Bible and you run high risk of hurting yourself if you mess with this.

The emblems of authority and enforcement, they are good. Don't be afraid of them, embrace them. Why do the cults, the people in the cults, why do they do it? They submit to these heretics. Come to a church of truth, as Paul said, though they smack you on the face, you're fine with it.

As Paul goes on to say, no, we weren't wise enough for that, sarcasm. Let them do so with joy and not grief. Career Christian critics do not believe those words.

They tell Jesus you're wrong, maybe not outright, but then their behavior. Listen to this proverb. You have to have a teachable spirit and this proverb says it. Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid. That's what it says, Proverbs 12, 1.

Go read it for yourself. Some of your translations may try to dumb that word down. And I don't know how you dumb down the word stupid.

Except don't be it. That means you could have done better, but you chose not to. That's what stupid is. If you had a choice, you picked the wrong choice and you defend the wrong choice.

Wise is not making the wrong choice, at least not consistently. Well, I've got plenty more to say. I don't have time.

We have to close with, for that would be unprofitable to you. Let's reverse this verse again, verse 17. Disobey those who lead over you. Be combative. Let them do so miserably with aggravation and grief.

Well, that would be wonderful for you. Paul told the Romans to submit to the civil authorities that they don't bear a sword for nothing. And they submit because of that sword. Pastors don't bear a rod for nothing. No pastor serving the Lord enjoys using the rod on the flock. Never.

I don't think any pastor that loves the Lord and loves the flock, I can't wait to straighten this person out. It's more like, oh, man, why can't, like, Lord, you've got a line to their head. Why can't you tell them?

And he says, he said to me, well, sometimes I do, but this one's for you. I don't want to. I just want to teach the Bible.

I don't want to enforce it. May these things make us all, each and every one, better servants of our King. May you not run from these things.

May you run to them. You've been listening to Cross Reference Radio, the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia. As we mentioned at the beginning of today's broadcast, today's teaching is available free of charge at our website. Simply log on to That's We'd also like to encourage you to subscribe to the Cross Reference Radio podcast. Subscribing ensures that you stay current with all the latest teachings from Pastor Rick. You can subscribe at or simply search for Cross Reference Radio in your favorite podcast app. Tune in next time as Pastor Rick continues teaching through the book of Hebrews, right here on Cross Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-20 13:04:07 / 2023-04-20 13:13:39 / 10

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