Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Hebrews, Day 49: Hebrews 12:25-29 - How Can We Be Unshakable?

How Can We Be Unshakable?
Hebrews, Day 49

See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven. At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” This phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire. 
- Hebrews 12:25-29, ESV

On Monday night, intense thunderstorms surrounded our house from midnight until around 4:00 a.m., as the remnants of what had been Hurricane Florence moved through our area. The thunder shook me awake several times, and it reminded me of the intense thunderstorms we would get when we lived in South Carolina. Sometimes, the thunder would be so loud and so sustained, I thought it was going to shake the roof off our house.

Being shaken is a frightening experience. When our first son was born 10 weeks early, we were shaken to our core. We didn't know what to expect or what we could do to help him, and so we prayed and clung to the Lord. He was faithful, and He saw us through, as He always does. 

Many things in life can shake us in many ways - finances, health, relationships, politics and natural disasters. How can we remain unshaken through these storms? 

At the foot of Mount Sinai, the people trembled as the mountain shook with the furious presence of the holy God of the universe. The Israelites knew they needed to take God seriously, and they quaked in fear. 1500 years later, the earth shook again, as Jesus died on the cross. The sky grew dark, the earth quaked, and the veil in the Temple was torn in two. 

The shaking of Mount Sinai at the giving of the law and the shaking of Jerusalem at the death of Jesus are nothing compared to the shaking that is coming. "Yet once more," God says, "I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens." What a day that will be! The Bible tells us that on that day of great shaking, people will beg to have the mountains fall on them and crush them, to spare them from the day of God's wrath. 

In the day of the great and final shaking of all things, how can we remain unshaken? How can we stand?

We have only one sure anchor and one way to remain stable in the storms of this life and in the coming day of wrath. Only One is strong enough to hold us and shelter us in the face of both earthly calamity and eternal condemnation: Jesus Christ.

Jesus alone sits on a throne that is unshakable, ruling over a kingdom that is unshakable. Jesus is the One whose coming will shake all things, and His kingdom is that which will stand when everything else has crumbled away. 

The good news for us, according to Hebrews 12, is that, if we belong to Jesus by faith, we are "receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken." If we are His, then we are heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ of all things eternal and unshakable. If we receive His kingdom because we are part of His kingdom, then we, too, are unshakable, and we will stand in the end, forever. 

So, let the thunder shake the roof. Let the storms of life blow. Let the great day of judgment come. If we belong to Jesus, we are safe through it all. Do you know that security for yourself? 

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