"The Unshakeable Kingdom"
This section, which starts in verse 18, helps us to see the holiness of God and the strength of His church.
The Unshakable Kingdom
A. The Hebrew writer has made it clear from the very beginning that Jesus is greater than anything this earth has to offer and greater than anything created in the spiritual realm. He has walked us through how Jesus has become both our great priest and the sacrifice for our sin. He has taught us that because of Jesus we have access to God’s throne and there no longer a veil between us and God. Oh what glorious gifts have been bestowed upon us because of the incarnation of Jesus. But it wasn’t always a great as it now.
B. There was a time when mankind needed to understand the holiness and greatness of God. Before the incarnation God revealed Himself in ways that cause people to tremble. They knew Jehovah was not some idol or fake god, but the true and living God, all powerful and His wrath was just a great as His mercy.
C. Today we see the two stories, the two covenants, the two mountains, but in the end, what we will see is that all of it is God’s unshakable kingdom.
I. The First Covenant
A. When Moses talked to the second generation of Hebrews that came up out of Egypt, he reminded them of the day when God met the people at Mt. Sinai to give the Law. Listen what Moses says (READ Deut. 4:9-14).
B. It was a day like no other. God came down and fear and trembling filled the hearts of everyone – including Moses. Listen to the telling from the Heb. 12:18-21.
C. The majesty of God, the terror of God, the unapproachableness of God all were true with the first covenant God made with Hebrew people.
II. The Second Covenant
A. But that first covenant was made to a select group of people for God to show Himself to the world. But that covenant ended because the people of God broke their covenant with God So God, through Jesus made a new covenant with all of mankind, not just one race of people. Here is way the Hebrew writer puts it (Heb. 12:22-24).
B. No longer is God at a distance. No longer is He unapproachable. Instead we come (we draw near) to Mt. Zion, the city of the Living God. It is almost a party picture with angels in festal gathering. But the point is this: We come to God. And the reason is that blood of Jesus is the greatest blood that was ever shed. The blood of Able cried out for vengeance, but the blood of Jesus is a proclamation of grace!
III. The Unshakeable Kingdom
A. We come now to the text that was read a few moments ago. Listen again to Heb. 12:25. This is a reference back to the original giving of the Law. It takes us back to Ex. 19:12-13 where God told Moses to put limits on how close they could come to the mountain. In fact, God said to tell them, “Whoever touches the mountain shall be put to death.”
B. Have you considered the meaning of this verse? God is still speaking so you and I better listen. If the people who received the first covenant perished who did not listen to God’s warning, why do you think it will be any less of a punishment if you don’t listen?
C. Yes, this is harsh statement, but it is a calling for us to hear not wrath, but the greatness of God’s covenant with us today. The calling is for you and me to do more than just come to worship, but to become a people of the book, a people who mediate upon what God says not society; a people who hear and obey because what God offers to you is greater than listening to the world telling you what’s out of date or no longer relevant. You can’t cut out the parts of the covenant you don’t like. Listen!
D. Now, with ears opened to God, bask in knowing how firm our covenant from God is. READ Heb. 12:26-28.
E. What cannot be shaken? What is this unshakeable kingdom. I know it is not the first covenant, because that came with a shaking. We lasts is the kingdom that now stands and the visible kingdom is what we call the church. We are a part of the unshakable kingdom. When time will be no more, when Jesus will return to destroy this earth, we who are in him will rise up to meet the Lord and be with him forever. There is no shaking the kingdom of God.
F. The church in this physical world may face many battles, and you may face many personal obstacles, but if you are in God’s kingdom, than, as the writer says, “Let us offer to God accept worship with reverence and awe.”
G. When I sing, I sing from heart – in key or out of tune – I sing the greatness of my God. When I pray, I pray with understanding that the creator hears my words and the words of this church – so in humility I bow before him and in awe I lift up my hands. But singing, praying, communing are all done with reverence and awe. While I absolutely gain from them, they are not about me. They may encourage my faith, but their first purpose is that of a living sacrifice to God.
A. That last verse, verse 29, throw me back to chapter 10 where the writer say, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hand of the living God.” Here he simply says, “God is a consuming fire.” Why is reverence and awe a must in our worship? Because the consequence is facing the fire of God.
B. Don’t misunderstand me. We are not talking about worship style, where something is considered contemporary or old. Reverence and awe are matters of the heart, not so much our exterior show of devotion to God. Someone can raise their hands and dance and be just a reverent as someone who kneels in public prayer and is silent most of worship.
C. Worship God with your heart, your soul, your mind and your strength. When you do that it, reverence and awe will be a part of you.
Because of Jesus,
Jeffrey Dillinger, minister