February 11, 2007
Hebrews 12:25-29


   "See that you refuse not Him that speaks. For if they escaped not who refused Him that spoke on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from Him that speaks from heaven: Whose voice then shook the earth: but now He has promised, saying, "Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven." And this word, "Yet once more," signifies the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. Wherefore we receiving a kingdom unshakable, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: For our God is a consuming fire" (Heb. 12:25-29).
   God spoke "on earth," and the earth shook! God here speaks from heaven and reminds His readers that He the next time He shakes things, even heaven will feel it! Israel felt that God's word through Moses was as permanent as anything could be, yet their prophet had warned otherwise, that He would shake and remove all types and shadows!
   The Old Covenant was passing away and giving place to the New. The tabernacle would give place to the one from heaven, which the Lord pitched, and not man. The once for all sacrifice of Christ would replace all their sacrifices and offerings and He will reign King-Priest supreme in the unshakable kingdom. Haggai had warned them long before.
   Haggai was God's prophet to the remnant which returned from Babylonian captivity. In spite of the desolation and ruin, they were to rebuild the city of Jerusalem and the Temple within. Yet they said, "The time is not come...that the LORD's house should be built." To them Haggai replied, "Is it time for you...to dwell in your paneled houses, and this house (the Temple) lie waste? Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways." (Hag. 1:2-5). The Lord had said, "Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you" (Mt. 6:33). Paul wrote the Philippians, "all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ's" (Phil. 2:21). Five times Haggai besought Israel to consider what the Lord said to them through him. How like Paul who wrote Timothy, "Consider what I say, and the Lord give thee understanding in all things" (2 Tim. 2:7). Israel, the remnant, these Hebrews, and the Philippians had a problem seemingly common to all God's people!

Ivan L. Burgener