BBB Class Tuesday 6-16-2015
After reading Hebrews 12, I was intrigued by how well the verses not only apply to faith but our weight loss challenge. In reading the verses I want you to have somewhat of a dual thinking. Apply the verses to, not only, your walk with the Lord but your fitness journey as well. Following a great talk about people of faith in the bible, the writer of Hebrews sets it up pretty well;
12:1-4 Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin…
The writer is using a fairly easy metaphor for us to understand. He talks about our faith/life as a race. To run this race we are to first put away anything holding us back. Interesting enough the Greek word used here is “onkos” which can mean; mass, weight, heaviness, bodily fat or fullness in general. What is keeping you from being an elite athlete in the life Jesus has set before you? On the road to weight loss, what is holding you back? There are things entangling and entrapping that prevent you from your goals.
More importantly, what is truly your goal? Life warrants goals like this challenge. Jesus himself had a goal and that was to run the race, endure the cross, and at the finish line pay the price that would ultimately provide us all with freedom from this world. The race itself is described as run with endurance. This implies that it is a marathon. You have to persevere and remain constant to finish a marathon. Lucky for us this race is already “set before us.” Jesus laid the track down in front of us and gave us a focal point. Find a focal point. See your goal finished.
As you run this race, run it with JOY. The verse states, “who for the joy set before Him endured the cross.” We are Christ’s joy. How awesome is that! As well, many examples in the scriptures say that we are to find joy in our suffering. Furthermore, Matthew 6:16 says;
“Whenever you fast, do not put on a gloomy face as the hypocrites do, for they neglect their appearance so that they will be noticed by men when they are fasting. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.”
So while “running”, fasting, or suffering do so to the glory of the Lord in humility and not to the glorification of yourself.
Finally, whether for Jesus or for yourself in a weight loss challenge, how much are you willing to give? Or better yet lose? Jesus said, “whoever loses his life for My sake will find it”. Suffering in life is a guarantee. But as already noted it is to be endured. Christ endured to the end. He did it for YOU. However as the beginning of verse four states, “you have not yet resisted to the point of the shedding of blood in your striving against sin.”
So a recap of some questions: What are your goals? What are you willing to give up? How hard are you willing to work for it? Putting down that donut won’t kill you. Can’t guarantee that following Jesus won’t, as many have died in the name of Jesus, but I can guarantee it will save you.