STATEMENTS OF PERSUASION 12 by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel

Statements of persuasion from Hebrews (12).

In the last post, we endeavoured to see what it meant to be ‘followers of them who through faith and patience obtained the promise’. We went on to see what the promise was. We found it out to be the resurrection of Christ. Then, we observed that the promise wasn’t fulfilled in the lifetime of the patriarchs. But rather, when Christ rose from the dead.

Today, we go on to yet another statement of persuasion from the book of Hebrews. Hebrews 10:19-22, ‘Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And [having] an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.’

This is wonderful! It gives underpinnings to the call of the Gospel. There’s something interesting here. He says ‘… having boldness to enter into the holiest of all by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way…’. What many don’t understand that this is the ‘entitlement’ of a sinner. The Gospel of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is that the sinner has boldness to enter into the holiest of all. The sinner doesn’t come in shameful trepidation, he ought to come boldly, freely with Joy!

Nobody had that right under the old covenant…Not even the high priest. Hebrews 9:8, ‘The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing:’. The Holiest of all! But the call of the Gospel is that mankind has boldness to enter into the holiest of all. An interesting thing to note is that this is a call to the sinner. But we have sons of God marinating in wretched unworthiness. Men made righteous calling themselves wretches, feeling unworthy!

We that have believed have entered into the Holiest of all, our consciences have been purged, once for all! We are in the Holy place, as Holy sons of the Holy God! The unbeliever is told to ‘draw near with full assurance of faith…’. Total confidence! God is unambiguous about this! Hebrews 10:15-17, ‘[Whereof] the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before, This [is] the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.’

This is the basis for the call.. This is why the sinner can come boldly! God isn’t keeping sins in his mind. 2 Corinthians 5:19, ‘For God was in Christ, restoring the world to himself, no longer counting men’s sins against them but blotting them out. This is the wonderful message he has given us to tell others.’ (TLB).

This is how we persuade the sinner; he can come boldly before God… God’s not counting sins against them! We continue later. ?#?Dunamis?

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STATEMENTS OF PERSUASION 11 by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel

Statements of persuasion from Hebrews (11).
In the last post, we examined what it meant to leave the principles of the doctrine of Christ and move on to perfection. We saw the former to mean the prophecies of the Old testament as they pointed to Christ and the latter to mean the sacrifice of Jesus.
Today, we proceed further to yet another statement of persuasion. Hebrews 6:11-15, ‘And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end: That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises. For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee. And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.’
We have previously explained the end to mean fulfillment of the promises in Christ and the hope, the person of Christ as high priest. Here, the author of Hebrews begins to take his unbelieving audience on an Old testament trail of faith with Christ as the destination. So, standing on the thresholds of history with the patriarchs, he helps us understand the focus of all they did. He tells his audience to be, ‘.. followers of them who through faith and patience obtained the promises..’.
He then uses Abraham as example, who after he patiently endured, obtained the promise. Two key issues; what was this promise? And when did Abraham obtain the promise? Firstly, the promise(s) pointed to a singular person. Hebrews 6:17-20 Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed [it] by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which [it was] impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: Which [hope] we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; Whither the forerunner is for us entered, [even] Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
The promise was Christocentric in orientation. He is the hope the promise spoke about! Acts 13:32-33, ‘And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers, God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.’ This was the promise as well as its fulfillment.
Second question, when did Abraham receive the promises? Hebrews 11:13, ‘These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of [them], and embraced [them], and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.’ He didn’t receive the promises in his life time. He received it as Christ rose from the dead (Acts 13:33).
Hence, in the New testament, the patriarchs are given a new description. Hebrews 12:23, ‘To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,’. They have come into the perfection of which Christ is the perfector.
So, the author tells the unbelieving Jew, to follow the footsteps of the patriarchs to the final destination; faith in sacrifice of Christ. We’ll continue later. ?#?Dunamis?

STATEMENTS OF PERSUASION 10 by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel

We resume our series on Statements of Persuasion by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel
Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel is the Pastor of God’s DreamWorld Ministries.

Statements of persuasion from Hebrews (10).
In the last post, we established that the throne of Grace is the moment of Salvation. It is where the high priesthood of Jesus becomes effective for a man upon believing. Today, we proceed further to yet another statement of persuasion from the beautiful book of Hebrews. Hebrews 6:1-2, ‘Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.’
This is a very interesting portion of Scripture. Let’s see two major terms here; ‘Principles of the doctrine of Christ’ and ‘perfection’. For the first, some have inferred it to mean ‘basic Christian doctrine or foundation school teachings’. Let’s examine if this is true. The word ‘principle’ comes from a Greek word which means ‘first, the beginning’. He says the beginning of ‘the doctrine of Christ’. Let’s see a similar expression that communicates the same thought. Hebrews 5:12, ‘For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which [be] the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.’ ‘The first principles of the oracles of God’. The word, ‘Principles’ is from a word which means ‘rudiments’. ‘Oracles’ are ‘prophetic utterances, words uttered by prophets’.
Let’s see something in Hebrews 1:1-2, ‘God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by [his] Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;’. God spoke to the Jewish patriarchs by the prophets in time past and in these last days spoken in his son. Whom he hath appointed ‘heir of all (all doesn’t have a generic application here, it is purpose specific) things’. ‘Heir’ refers to ‘the one to whom all things pertain’ ..’all’ in context refers to what was spoken by the prophets. In other words, Jesus is the focus of all the prophecies of the Old testament. All points to him.
Hence, they are his ‘first principles of the oracles of God’ and the ‘principles of the doctrine of Christ’. Here, the author talks about the Christocentric nature of the Old testament revelation. Let’s look at these principles; ‘repentance from dead work and (which is) of faith towards God’ as prophesied in the old testament (Habakkuk 2:4).
The doctrine of baptisms doesn’t refer to the plurality of water baptism and Holy Ghost baptism. Rather, it refers to washings under the law. The exact same word is used in Hebrews 9:10, ‘[Which stood] only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed [on them] until the time of reformation.’ The laying on of hands refers to how the priest put his hands on the animals for sacrifice on account of the sins of the people. Leviticus 16:21, ‘And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send [him] away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness:’.
The resurrection from the dead refers to the facts of Christ’s resurrection. Psalms 16:10-11, ‘For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence [is] fulness of joy; at thy right hand [there are] pleasures for evermore.’. Peter explains this in Acts 2:30-31. Then, eternal judgement- Jude 14-15.
To move on to perfection is to put faith in the sacrifice of Christ. Perfection is in what Jesus did. Hebrews 10:14, ‘For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.’ He is the author and finisher (perfector) of faith. It’s in faith in the sacrifice of Christ that perfection comes. The author calls them to look away from the practices of the Old testament to their object and focus the redemptive work of Jesus. We’ll continue later.. ?#?Dunamis?

Protected by the Written Word by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel

We would just be taking a break from the series “Statements of Persuasion from Hebrews” by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel (just for today anyways). I think it would be a great blessing for you to read this one, and then we will continue with the series. This was taken from Divinity Today, a devotional site of his ministry. (divinitytodaydevotional.org)
Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel is the Pastor of God’s DreamWorld Ministries.

PROTECTED BY THE WRITTEN WORD

One of the benefits of writing is the fact that it preserves ideas and thoughts. By writing, the thoughts and intents of an author are safe from corruption and being misquoted. God inspired men to write to disclose his intentions for humanity and to preserve such intentions from corruption. Contrary to most opinions, the Bible isn’t a mystical book, it was written by men inspired by God in the language of men so that men may READ and understand God.

The scriptures were written for a purpose. 2 Timothy 3:15, ‘And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.’ The Scriptures make wise (skillful, adroit, adept) concerning salvation which is through faith in Jesus Christ.

We can say the Bible is THE TEXTBOOK on salvation. It is the Sole authority on salvation. If you’d like to understand salvation you’ll have to consult the Scriptures. Understanding this fact will safeguard you from ‘prophetic’ corruptions. It will preserve you from the errors of those who go on excursions to heaven and hell. Do I believe in visions? Emphatically yes! I’m a thorough charismatic who believes the gifts of the Spirit are for every believer. I see visions.. Yet, I maintain my honor for the written word. The supernatural and the scriptures shouldn’t be mutually exclusive realities. We can have them both! In fact, if you’d rightly divide the Word, you’d function in the gifts of the Spirit with greater finesse.

That being said, Paul gives us this admonition. Galatians 1:8-9, ‘But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any [man] preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.’

It doesn’t matter how fantastic the vision is, our how spectacular the encounter was…If it is contrary to what the apostles taught… Let such an one be accursed! Why was Paul vehemently particular about this? It is to preserve the Gospel from corruption.

Our convictions should be managed by the written Word, not supernatural happenings. 2 Timothy 3:16, ‘ Every Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for convincing, for correction of error, and for instruction in right doing;’, (WMTH). The scripture is useful for convincing…for persuasion!

Why did Paul say the one who preaches any other should be accursed? It was because the facts of the Gospel are preserved in the scriptures. 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, ‘Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:’.

All Jesus did …the facts of the Gospel ARE ACCORDING TO THE SCRIPTURES. Hence, Paul says everyone who believes something else believed in vain. Thank God for the written word! As we study it in its Christocentric focus, we gain clarity in our hearts about who God is and what his salvation plan is all about! Thank God for the written word!

Confession
I hold fast to the Words contained in scriptures considering them to be my preservation from fale doctrine

Further Scriptures
Romans 1:1-4; 16:25-27

STATEMENTS OF PERSUASION 9 by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel

Statements of persuasion from Hebrews (9).
In the last post, we looked at the call of the Gospel vis a vis the eternal priesthood of Jesus. The unbeliever is to do nothing about his sins but to believe in the propitiation of the High priest for our sins.
Today, we proceed to yet another statement of persuasion. It’s found in Hebrews 4:16, ‘Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’ Let’s see the pre-text, post-text and read it into the context. Hebrews 4:14-5:2, ‘Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast [our] profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as [we are, yet] without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. For every high priest taken from among men is ordained for men in things [pertaining] to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins: Who can have compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way; for that he himself also is compassed with infirmity.’
Here, he discusses the priesthood of Jesus with respect to sin. He puts forth Jesus as the high priest who by his perfect sacrifice and endless life has obtained eternal salvation for those that believe (Hebrews 5:7). What then is the throne of Grace? Is it a place for supplication and prayers as some have thought?
Let’s study carefully to see what really he is saying. Hebrews 4:16, ‘Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’ What happens at the throne of Grace? Man obtains mercy and finds grace IN THE TIME OF NEED. The phase, ‘The time of need’ in the originals mean, ‘an opportune time, better put as THE ACCEPTED TIME’.
What is the accepted time? 2 Corinthians 6:2,’ (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now [is] the accepted time; behold, now [is] the day of salvation.)’. The ACCEPTED TIME is the day of Salvation. Hence, the throne of Grace refers to what a man receives from God at salvation. He obtains mercy (an eternal reprieve from judgment deserved for sins) and finds Grace (the divine benevolence undeserved).
In this, we see the character of the call of salvation; to obtain mercy and find grace’. It is not a message of doom and gloom. It’s a glorious invitation into divine forgiveness and goodness! ?#?Dunamis?

STATEMENTS OF PERSUASION 8 by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel

Statements of persuasion from the book of Hebrews (8).
We have been studying awesome statements of persuasion from Hebrews, discovering how the Gospel was presented to unbelieving Jews and understanding better what salvation is all about.
In the last post, we looked at what it meant to ‘labour to enter into his rest’. We discovered it to mean, ‘an earnest desire, a strong zeal towards’ the Gospel. This describes what faith is, as this is the antithesis of ‘falling after the same example of unbelief’. We’ll move on to yet another statement of persuasion. Hebrews 4:12-14, ‘For the word of God [is] quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and [is] a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things [are] naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast [our] profession.’
The Word of God exposes! It exposes faith or unbelief. The Gospel which is the revelation of the Word of God, Christ, reveals what faith is or what unbelief is, in a man. What’s the statement of persuasion here? Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast [our] profession…’Our’ is in italics here.
It’s a call to ‘hold fast’ ‘profession’. ‘Profession’ in the Greek is actually ‘confession’. It refers to the confession of faith. It’s a call to believe the Gospel. The High priesthood of Christ is in focus in the light of making this profession. His High priesthood was for sins- Hebrews 5:1-2. And his high priesthood was substantive! It is eternal! It is the real McCoy!
The unbelieving is called unto something of eternal consequence! He is called unto an already worked propitiation for sins. He’s not called to atone for sins.. He’s not called to ‘do something ‘ about his sins. He called to receive the high priesthood of Jesus which was a consummate price and the death blow to the wages of sin. We’ll continue later. ?#?Dunamis?

STATEMENTS OF PERSUASION 7 by Pastor Olawunmi Abraham Marcel

Statements of persuasion from Hebrews (7).
In the last post, we studied what it meant to enter into the rest of God. We also endeavoured to see that God couldn’t have given the law. His plan before the world was for man to enter into his rest, his finished works.
Today, we look into another statement of persuasion from Hebrews 4:6-11, ‘Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts. For if Jesus (Joshua) had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day. There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God [did] from his. Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.’ Here, he describes the result of unbelief.
This is not something that applies to a believer. Hebrews 4:3, ‘Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said, “So I declared on oath in my anger, ‘They shall never enter my rest.'” And yet his works have been finished since the creation of the world.’ (NIV). The believer HAS ENTERED into the rest! Glory to God. We believed into God’s own works. In this rest, we cease from our endeavors..our endeavors to be righteous, holy, pleasing etc. We enter into God’s own makings! In his makings, we become God’s own righteousness, his sanctification! We are accepted in him! Glory!
Let us see the statement of persuasion here; Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief. The use of ‘labour’ appears a contradiction to the ‘rest’ the author talks about. But, that’s not the case. The word, ‘labour’ is from a Greek word, ‘spoudazo’. It means ‘eagerness, to be earnest’. Let’s see another version: ‘Because of this, let us have a strong desire to come into that rest, and let no one go after the example of those who went against God’s orders.’ (BBE).
It talks about the expression of the will towards the rest. This is faith! This is why he says, ‘lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief’. In other words, the antithesis of ‘labouring to enter into his rest’ is ‘to fall after the same example of unbelief’. This is call to faith in the Gospel. But, bless God, we that have believed have entered into his rest and we have ceased from our works. Our faith granted us entrance.. that’s all we ‘do’..we do nothing else to maintain our stay in his rest! Our one act of faith granted us entrance into God’s faithfulness…his Grace! Glory! We continue later.. ?#?Dunamis?