The Race

Aug 28, 2022 By: Pastor Joseph LoSardo Series: Hebrews: Greater Than Scripture: Hebrews 12:1-4
Moving on from the descriptions of enduring faith demonstrated by the “great cloud of witnesses” in Hebrews chapter 11, the author links us to them by saying that we too are in the very same race; and he exhorts us to faithfully endure in like manner as they. As we learned in the end of chapter 11, the believers receiving this letter, as well as we, have an advantage that the previous witnesses did not have. We have Jesus. Jesus is the final witness of enduring faith who takes our attention away from the prior characters and fastens it on Him. It is with “eyes on the prize,” that we as Christians can run this race to completion, without giving up. We learn in verse 2 that the motivation for Jesus’s enduring the cross was “the joy set before him.” This refers to more than just His final exultation in glory, but the joy of having his brethren see all this and enjoy it with him forever. Just as our Lord endured the hostility of sinners, we too are called to endure and finish this race in which we too will find resistance and hostility. There is one enemy that our text highlights that will resist and drag us down – it is sin (vs. 1,4). In verse 1 sin is likened to a weight, holding us back, tiring us out, and, if possible, keeping us from finishing the race. In verse 4, we find that the race is not easy; there is a struggle. If you are not struggling against sin, then you better start, lest it get the best of you. Sin is powerful, dreadful and insidious; the only way we could ever be set free from its power was for God to intervene and do the necessary work to declare us holy.