In Hebrews 6:4-8, the author wrote some serious words about people who decide to oppose God. God has shown his goodness to them, but their reaction is completely evil. God will certainly punish them.
Of course, we all do some wrong things (1 John 1:8). And we know that those things offend God. But there is no need to worry. God forgives when we confess our evil deeds to him (1 John 1:9).
And God gives us evidence that he has saved us. That evidence is love. We love God when we obey his commands. And when we love God, we love his people too (1 John 5:1-3).
In the Bible, love is not merely an emotion. It is something that we decide to do. The first readers of Hebrews showed love for God when they served other Christians. And this was not just something that they did in the past. They continued to do it.
God knew about their work, and he would certainly reward them for it. God even rewards the person who merely gives a cup of water to one of his people (Mark 9:41). And he has great rewards for the person who gives everything to serve him (Mark 10:28-30). But Godís greatest gift is when he saves a person. However, that is not a reward for the personís hard work. It is Godís free gift for those people who invite him into their lives. They confess their wrong deeds to him and they put their trust in him.
So good works are the result of what God has done in our lives. After he has saved us, we show love to him by our actions.
Hebrews 13:1-3 tells us about some good things that the original readers of this book were doing. They shared their homes with people that they did not know. Those other people were usually Christians from other towns. Enemies often forced Christians to leave their homes (Acts 8:1) and they had to go to other towns. So it was important that other Christians helped them.
Another good thing that they did was to help prisoners. Again, enemies often put Christians in prison. They did that because they wanted to make the other Christians afraid. But in fact, the other Christians were bold. They took food into the prisons, as well as anything else that the prisoners needed.
These good works were evidence of Godís work in the lives of those Christians. God had shown his goodness to them. And their reaction was to do good things that pleased God.
Next part: The importance of hope (Hebrews 6:11)
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© 2014, Keith Simons.