New on the Blog
Tonight we will discuss these passages from the Old Testament, and discuss where Jesus can be found within these passages. (And, remember that the name “Jesus” is simply the Aramaic version of the Hebrew ”Joshua” and that in the Septuagint they would have had the exact same name.)
In this section, the writer explores the superiority of Christ to Moses in that only through Christ can we gain the Promised Land.
For William Barclay, the great theme of the letter is how we access God, and how the barriers are removed and the doors opened through Christ so that we may forever dwell in God’s presence.
Be disloyal to the powers and expectations of the world. Be disloyal to the wealth and privilege given to you. And go to debtors. Go where you are called to serve. For there you will find Christ. For there, you will find your eternal home.
The writer of the Letter to the Hebrews takes us through the Hebrew Scriptures and shows us the superiority of the New Covenant in Jesus Christ over the Old Covenant of Moses and the prophets.
Jesus promises three groups of people the kingdom of heaven: the poor in spirit, those persecuted for righteousness, and those that show compassion (Matt. 25:46).
When we look at this final beatitude, Jesus does not call all persecution “blessed.” Rather, it is only that persecution that arises out of a righteousness grounded in interpersonal relationships and the rights and duties we owe to one another and to God.
This is the greatest of the beatitudes, for to be a peacemaker is to be adopted as the child of God. – St. Gregory of Nyssa
Here the Lord honors those who find pleasure in diligently trying to make peace, not only so far as they are themselves concerned, but also among other people, that they may help to settle ugly and tangled disputes, endure contention, guard against and prevent war and bloodshed. – Martin Luther
Although the pure in heart cannot see God’s Essence, we can see God’s “energy”, such as his Goodness or his sanctifying Grace. Once our hearts are pure, our eyes are open to see the Divine throughout all of his Creation and especially his interaction with us.
This Beatitude draws our attention to the purity of the internal, not the external. For “the LORD does not judge on outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Sam. 16:7.
Mercy is the very essence of who God is – “merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.” Exodus 24:6