A “Not Yet” Perspective

“For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin” (Hebrews 12:3-4).


Perspective is an important ingredient to spiritual stamina. Very rarely, if ever, does the heat of our spiritual battles reach the intense temperature which others have had.

For Abel, faithfulness to God cost him his life (Hebrews 11:4). Some have been tortured; others have experienced mockings, scourgings, chains, and imprisonments. Some have been stoned, sawn in two, or slain with the sword. For still others, faith has required them to be destitute, afflicted, and tormented (Hebrews 11:35-38). Jesus endured the cross, despising its shame, and enduring the hostility of sinners against Himself. Since He had not yet sat down at the right hand of the throne of God, it was not yet time for Him to cease His obedience (Hebrews 12:2-3).

In contrast to this cloud of faithful witnesses, the first century readers of Hebrews had “not yet” lost a drop of blood in their spiritual warfare. (The same could also be said about its twenty-first century readers.)

This “not yet” perspective serves as a powerful antidote to spiritual lethargy. It stiffens the spine and hardens the set of your jaw. It reminds you of your ongoing duty to endure.

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Author: jchowning

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