Daily Encouragement Net
The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
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Tuesday, June 2, 2020

A view of the Susquehanna River from the majestic White Cliffs of Conoy.
Click to enlarge

"What Not To Throw Away!"

Message summary: The key purpose of the entire letter to the Hebrews can be summed up in the exhortation and promise of the daily verse, "So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded."

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"A time to keep and a time to throw away" (Ecclesiastes 3:6). "So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded" (Hebrews 10:35).

Air plants in mirrorAir plants are pretty popular these days. Perhaps you've seen them or own a few yourself. A big contributor to their popularity is they're very easy to care for and grow in the air with no soil! Last week I bought several at a greenhouse and considered how I might display them. Then I remembered I had kept an old bathroom vanity mirror with holes where the lights had been, thinking I might be able to recommission its use someday. I went out behind my barn and cleaned it off and now it hangs from the ceiling in the corner of our office with the three air plants. Now I'm pleased that I didn't throw it away!

But I suppose we've all thrown away something mistakenly or that we later regret. A woman, from one of our former congregations, had placed her best clothing into two large bags, intending to take them to the dry cleaners. But lo and behold they accidentally were placed out to the road with the trash. When she realized her mistake she quickly went out to recover them only to find the trash had already been picked up. Ouch!

Throwing out material goods we later regret is one thing, but I want to be very intentional about holding onto key spiritual truths. The first part of today's text is a forthright command, "So do not throw away your confidence". I want this to be drilled sharply into my mind and sunk deeply into my heart.

When I teach from the book of Hebrews I have taught that this single verse summarizes the book's purpose in encouraging the initial recipients to remain faithful in the midst of the scorn and persecution they were enduring.

One of the most fulfilling aspects to this online ministry is the ability to share encouragement with believers regardless of where they live. We have heard from believers living under conditions of persecution and are grateful for the opportunity to connect and assure them of our interest followed up by prayer.

We give thanks to God as we consider our blessings in our little corner of the world. Thus far we just don't know persecution like many are experiencing. We live in a peaceful rural area and the contrast between our situation and that which so many go through is in no way comparable to our freedoms. So we pray for these brethren and their families as we read of their commitment to follow Jesus at any cost. (See Hebrews 13:3.)

The early Hebrew Christians were enduring persecution and were tempted to return to their old way of life. But the temptation to return to our old way of life has been present with or without persecution in all ages. Every generation of believers has this call to persevere. Every individual follower of Christ has this call as well. The letter to the Hebrews laboriously teaches the superiority of the way of Christ over the old religious system the initial readers had come out of.  Of course His way is infinitely superior to any system devised by man.

A key purpose of the entire letter to the Hebrews can be summed up in the exhortation and promise of the daily verse, "So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded."

The exhortation"Do not throw away your confidence." This is the confidence or assurance believers have in Christ. We are not to throw it away or cast it aside. The opposite of throwing away is holding on and several verses earlier (10:23) the writer had given this parallel (positive) exhortation "Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful."

The promise "it will be richly rewarded."  Notice the certainty of this promise, not might be or should be
but "it will be". Praise God it (our confidence in Christ) will be richly rewarded. Not just rewarded but richly rewarded! How and when will this happen our hearts cry out, especially if we are in the midst of a trial?

This answer is not given, but the writer goes on to say, "You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised" (Hebrews 10:36). Keep trusting Christ, fellow believer. Your confidence in Him will be richly rewarded!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Thankful manDaily prayer: Father, the writer of Hebrews encourages us not to throw away our confidence or abandon our faith when difficulties arise. It is during these times of testing that we prove our faith to be genuine if we persevere. We choose not to shrink back and be destroyed, but we choose to be numbered with those who believe and are saved. We thank You for the present rewards that come with diligently serving You and by faith we look forward to the eternal rewards You promise to the faithful. Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"I Will Wait For You (Psalm 130)"  Video  Shane & Shane

"Taste and See (Psalm 34)"   Video  Shane & Shane

The last several days we've had several rides along the Susquehanna River on various sections of the rail trail so we continue to share photos. Today's photos were taken on the Marietta to Falmouth section of the trail on a ride with our friend, Mike Gardner. Google map

Rail trail bridge, Lancaster County, PA 5/31/20
In some places the trail runs right alongside the river.

River sunset, Lancaster County, PA 5/31/20 (Click to enlarge)
A post sunset view of the Susquehanna River from Koser Park in Bainbridge.
Click to enlarge

Shocks Mill Bridge, Lancaster County, PA 5/31/20 (Click to enlarge)
Shocks Mill Railroad Bridge
Click to enlarge

2020 grads, Lancaster County, PA 5/31/20
A group of happy grads who might have more memories of their unique graduation experience then most of us who the traditional celebration! This photo taken at the trailhead at Riverfront Park in Marietta.

Finally today:

Regarding yesterday's photo of a planter at Funk's Greenhouse. A reader wrote: This was a tobacco baler!! You were at my uncle Leroy's Greenhouse operated by his son Dan & his kids. Grew up right next to this farm & the Funks, in their prime, farmed 1000 acres here.

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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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