It is good to know that you receive a Kingdom that is unshakable. In Christ, you are called to be thankful as you please God by worshipping Him with holy fear and awe, see Hebrews 12:28. The author of Hebrews ends his book with additional insight into what life should look for believers in God’s Church. Go ahead and read Hebrews 13.
You learn applicable ways of living each day, ways that please God where you are worshipping Him from your heart. How are you to live according to verse 1? God never stops loving you, even when you turn away from Him. He calls you to continue loving other believers. In God’s family, love is the glue that binds you and I together. Protect it with all your might.
In verse 2, you are called to show hospitality to strangers. Why should you do this? When you show grace, kindness, and love towards those you don’t know, you are exhibiting the love of God. God loves all people, whether they choose His Son or not.
Why would God want you to remember those in prison or who have been mistreated, see verse 3? Look at Psalm 34:18, 147:3, Revelation 21:4, and 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 for help. You are the hands and feet of Christ as you represent His light in this dark world. You and I are called to share in one another’s burdens, see Galatians 6:1-3.
Marriage is important to God. What do you learn about it in verse 4? Look at the following scriptures for added insight: Matthew 19:3-9, 5:31-32, Luke 16:18, and 1 Corinthians 7:10-11. It appears that the breaking of the marriage covenant is running rampant through the Church. This should not be. God never divorces you, even when you are hard to love. He remains faithful to you. Psalm 89:2 says, “Your unfailing love will last forever. Your faithfulness is as enduring as the heavens.”
If you are finding yourself in a difficult marriage, I want to encourage you. Read my book, “God Hears My Heart.” God has taught me His wonderful, gracious, unconditional love through my marriage to Rob. Rob and I are far from perfect, yet God in His faithfulness makes a way for us to continue on in our relationship. We made it to 32+ years, and this empty-nesting stage as well as the looming retirement years feel so uncertain, but we know God will lead us home to Him for He has been faithful to us so far.
“Don’t love money; be satisfied with what you have.”5 When life is comfortable, you and I tend to become self-sufficient, self-reliant on the wrong things. What does God want you to know from this verse to help with this problem that plagues so many people? What does verse 6 say that should encourage you?
Who do you know that walks by the Spirit and exemplifies Christ? Verse 7 encourages you to place yourself amongst mature believers. Learn all you can from them. Watch how they live life, and follow the example of their faith.
A believer keeps his focus on Christ. Why can you be so confident in doing this, see verse 8? You have at your disposal, 24/7, all of heaven, its angels, and the Creator on your side when you walk in God’s ways and worship His Son first and foremost.
There is a warning for you in verse 9. When you lose your focus on Christ, what will happen? This world is full of false ways that appear good and useful but in the end, they will entangle you in its snare.
“Your strength comes from God’s grace.”9
Stop and let this sink in.
How does the rest of verse 9 help with this great truth? God wants you to know that who you are is rooted in Him. He is your strength. “The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust Him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.” (Psalm 28:7) He also wants you to not focus on outward rules, like what to eat and when to eat it. God changes your heart. He changes you from the inside out. Everything about you comes from God, and God alone.
In verses 10-14, you see how Jesus overcame man’s ways of trying to save himself. What are you to do based on verse 13? When you go to Calvary, broken and repentant, you will bear the disgrace Jesus bore. Remember, Christ died for you even though He did not sin Himself. The world hated Him, yet He died for you. You, too, shall bear His name as you walk in this sinful world.
He will separate you for His glory.
This world is not your home anymore when you follow Jesus. Keep looking up and remain focused on Him as He leads you home. “Therefore, let us offer through Jesus a continual sacrifice of praise to God, proclaiming allegiance to His name.”15 What are two sacrifices that please God according to verse 16?
What is another trait that reveals Jesus is first in your life in verse 17? Do you take the time to get to know those in spiritual leadership in the Church? Are you serving at your local church, just taking up a seat in the pew on Sunday, or are you not bothering to even go?
The apostles and prophets in Jesus’ day asked for prayer constantly, see verse 18. You are to pray constantly too. God has time to listen to you. Why is it good to have a clear conscience?
Living for His glory means living an honorable life in everything you do.
The author gives a snippet of Christ’s wonderful story in verses 20-21. Study each word and phrase, and allow God to help you to see Him more clearly. He also tells you to pay attention to what is written, see verse 22. Notice the unity between brothers and sisters in Christ from the final verses. May you and I become living sacrifices for His glory.