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No Choice

Hebrews Series  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Hebrews 13:1–17 NKJV
Let brotherly love continue. Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels. Remember the prisoners as if chained with them—those who are mistreated—since you yourselves are in the body also. Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge. Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we may boldly say: “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them. We have an altar from which those who serve the tabernacle have no right to eat. For the bodies of those animals, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp. Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach. For here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come. Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.

I have spoken openly and unapologetically throughout this series, and that may have or may not have sat well with you!
But, in the words of the Apostle Paul:
“For even if I made you sorry with my letter, I do not regret it; though I did regret it. For I perceive that the same epistle made you sorry, though only for a while. Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing.”
2 Corinthians 7:8–9 NKJV
For even if I made you sorry with my letter, I do not regret it; though I did regret it. For I perceive that the same epistle made you sorry, though only for a while. Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing.
I do not take pleasure in rebuke, but have come to realize that it is part of a well balanced spiritual diet!
I would also have you remember that, I don’t construct the message in such a way, but only preach what the passage is saying.
It might just be that we have lost our taste for sound Biblical teaching?
Now today, as we move into this thirteenth chapter of Hebrews, we find the encouragement of the writer toward these brothers and sisters of the faith.
This section of seventeen verses is an opportunity as well as an encouragement to allow that which is most natural to the Christian to come forth, i.e. Our walk with Him!
Now when I say natural I do not mean natural to the sinful nature, but the new nature given in salvation.
Yes, we have two natures, and well does the Apostle Paul speak to this dilemma in Romans chapter seven!
So we are encouraged to follow the Lord here in all righteousness, but find ourselves in a quagmire of choices!
Now, you might be wondering just what then do I mean by the Title of this message, “No Choice”?
Let me explain the seeming contradiction.
First, anyone who is in Christ is a new creation. ()
Secondly, we now think differently and are guided by the Spirit. (; )
Thirdly, we still have the flesh (sin nature) which fights for dominance. ()
So, there is a battle going on within!
There is too much Biblical evidence to refute these things.
But, ultimately there is no choice to make, whether we should or should not follow in righteousness, because we belong to Christ if we are in Him!
And if we belong to Christ, we are obligated to follow Him, and if we are not then we are disobedient, and will be chastened by Him!
But, if there is no conviction, then there has never been any change in us, and we have only one nature, which is sinful, and we will follow that nature without chastening right into hell!
And no manner of feel good experience, sensitivity preaching, or human philosophy will ever change the truth of this statement.
True Disciples of Christ have no choice but:
True Disciples of Christ have no choice but:

I. To follow Morally.

A. With true compassion. vs. 1-3

“Let brotherly love continue, and entertain or provide compassionate hospitality to strangers.
Abraham did this, and it turned out that the men were God!

B. In physical purity. vs. 4

Notice that the scripture here lifts up marriage as the representative example of holiness.

B. In physical purity. vs. 4

Regardless of a persons belief, marriage is to be honorable in all, and the bed is to be undefiled.
That means every other type of relationship involving sex, is not honorable and will bear the fulness of God’s wrath.
And that means so called “open marriages”, as well as “same sex marriages”.
Not to be mean, but impossible to sweep under the carpet.

C. Without covetousness, but with contentment. vs. 5-6

C. Without covetousness and with contentment. vs. 5-6

Simply put, if Jesus isn’t enough for us, then we are not fulfilling our moral obligation to Him.
Because, covetousness is idolatry!
Colossians 3:5 NKJV
Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
All of these are moral obligations every follower of Jesus is compelled to emulate.
This is what sets us apart from humanity.
True Disciples of Christ have no choice but:

II. To follow Religiously.

A. In submission to leadership. vs. 7, 17

I think most people are either mixed up about this, or they just don’t like being accountable!
The Writer speaks twice in this passage about leaders and our responsibility under them.
Remember them and obey them!
i.e. contemplate what they do and how they do it, and willingly submit to their leadership, for man did not put them there, God did!

B. Pursuing doctrinal purity. vs. 9

We need to guard our hearts against being drawn away with false doctrines, which good leadership warns and trains against.
Some say, I don’t want to hear about doctrine, just give me some scriptures to help with my relationships, money, job, happiness!
In other words, they come for different reason than God intended.
And they spread their disdain for sound teaching like cancer to the rest of the flock!
No, when our doctrine is sound, so is our heart and mind, and those other things will correct themselves!
So my brothers and sisters, allow brotherly love to continue, as you minister to all, and be ready for every moral and proper work as you consecrate your lives to God!
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