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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Conestoga River, Lancaster County PA Photo by Mike Book (click to enlarge)
Conestoga River in Lancaster County, PA
Taken by our friend Mike Book
(Click on photo to enlarge)

"The Captain Of Our Salvation"

Message summary: Today we encourage our readers to follow the Captain of our salvation. As the old hymn states, "Where He leads me I will follow."

Note: Audio version not prepared for this message.

"For it became Him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings" (Hebrews 2:10).

Nine years ago this month Captain "Sully" Sullenberger made an emergency landing on the Hudson River after the airliner he was piloting was struck by a flock of Canada geese. All on board were saved. It was a wonderful outcome especially considering how tragic it might have been. I am sure many of us have hoped to have a captain with such poise and skill when we fly.

Yesterday's message considered an Old Testament that refers to "the captain of the Lord's hosts" one of two Bible passages that uses the word "captain" in a spiritual sense. Today let us consider a New Testament passage that also uses the word captain in a spiritual sense. Of course not all versions use the word captain. It is also translated Author, Pioneer. (See here for a page that shows this verse in virtually all English translations and paraphrases.)

The underlying Greek word is "archēgós" which means "the chief leader, prince of Christ, one that takes the lead in anything and thus affords an example, a predecessor in a matter, pioneer, the author" (Thayer).

Hebrews 2:10This is one of the more difficult passages to understand. Bible teacher Kenneth Wuest explains it this way - "The fact that God the Father decreed that it must be through the blood of Christ’s Cross that the Captain of our salvation would become the Saviour of sinners, did not find its origin in a divine fiat, but in the very constitution of the nature of God. A holy God cannot look upon sin with any degree of allowance. A righteous God cannot but require that the demands of the violated law be satisfied. And a loving God cannot but provide the very payment of the penalty which His law demands. Thus, the writer shows the sweet reasonableness of the Cross. And because only God can satisfy the demands of God, so only the Messiah who is one of the Persons of the Godhead, could in the great plan of salvation, provide the sacrifice. God the Father provides the salvation, God the Son procures it, and God the Holy Spirit applies it."

Pastor David Guzik makes these points that I find so very encouraging concerning our heavenly Captain, drawing an analogy of Him being the leader and we His troops.
  • A captain makes all the arrangements for the march, and Jesus makes the arrangements for our progress as Christians.
  • A captain gives the commands to the troops – “Go” or “Stay” or “Do this.” Jesus commands us as our captain.
  • A captain leads the way and is an example to his men, and Jesus does this for us.
  • A captain encourages his men, and Jesus encourages us.
  • A captain rewards his troops, and Jesus rewards His followers.
"Now, seeing that it is the will of the Lord to lead us to glory by the Captain of our salvation, I want you to be worthy of your Leader. Do you not think that, sometimes, we act as if we had no Captain? We fancy that we have to fight our way to heaven by the might of our own right hand, and by our own skill; but it is not so. If you start before your Captain gives you the order to march, you will have to come back again; and if you try to fight apart from your Captain, you will rue [regret] the day." (Spurgeon)

Today we encourage our readers to follow the Captain of our salvation. As the old hymn states, "Where He leads me I will follow."

Be encouraged today.

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Thankful manDaily prayer: Father, the battle lines were drawn between the hosts of heaven and rulers of darkness here below. We thank You for the spiritual armor listed in Ephesians 6 that equips us for battle, both offensive and defensive, as the flaming arrows from the devil are hurled in our direction. We thank You for Jesus, the captain of the spiritual army, who sounds the warning throughout Scripture and through godly and courageous messengers of the gospel. Keep our ears tuned, our minds alert, and our hearts fully surrendered and trusting in You. May our words be in accordance with Scripture and our lives reflect that which we speak so that we consistently "sound a clear call" to follow Your commands and honor You above all others. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"The Enduring Word Bible Commentary"   Pastor David Guzik

"Where He Leads Me I Will Follow/I'll Say Yes"  Video   Brooklyn Tabernacle Singers

"Marching To Zion"  Video  Homecoming singers

Higher Ground (I'm Pressing on the Upward Way)  Video  Smucker Family  We work with the Smucker family but not this one, although they are probably distantly related!

"For All He's Done"  Video  Greater Vision

"Now I Know Him"  Video  Joseph Habedank

"I Choose to Be a Christian"  Video  The Erwins

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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