The lessons of Abel, Enoch, and Noah in Hebrews 11 are sequential. The lesson of Abel's faith must be understood before Enoch's example can be followed.
We must not limit God's glory to something physical like fire or cloud, but rather recognize God's glory as radiating from His character, which we can share.
The primary function of a priest is to assist people in accessing God so that there can be unity with God. A priest is a bridge-builder between man and God.
Getting to know God intimately, by virtue of His enabling us to experience life as He experiences life, makes the New Covenant vastly superior to the Old.
The only possibility of attaining peace is a relationship with God—peace with God through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, which must continually be refined.
In the peace offering, Christ is the priest, offeror, and offering. Since all parties share the peace offering as a meal, it exemplifies a peaceful communion.
We can maintain spiritual contact using David's tactic of continually maintaining the Lord before him in his thoughts, prayers, and meditations.
If God is manipulating everything in His sovereignty, why pray? What does prayer teach us? Here is why God commands us to come before Him in prayer.
The purpose of prayer is not to overcome God's reluctance, but to help in yielding to His will. 'Prayer changes things' is only true if it conforms to God's will.
Prayer is not a dictating to a reluctant God, but a demonstration of our attitude of dependence and need. It is a means to get into harmony with God's will.
When Jesus warns us not to let anyone take our crown, He encourages us to endure over the long-haul and not bask in the glory of a brief, victorious accomplishment.
Since God clearly was involved in the lives of people in Old Testament times, if He does not change, should He not interact with people in the New Testament era?
God has providentially given us trials to build character, proving beyond a doubt that we believe Him and have a burning desire to be at one with Him.
Mark Schindler, reflecting that God's Sabbaths or Holy Days are inestimable blessings which should not be squandered, cautions us of the need to tend and keep these blessings, avoiding the careless use of hallowed time. Relating a true story, Mark recalls a time when, attending a wedding which took place on the Sabbath, he and …
If a foundation is flawed, the building cannot stand. God built His spiritual temple on the prophets and the apostles, and Jesus Christ is the chief cornerstone.
Abel's example of alignment with God precedes Enoch's example of walking with God, and they both precede Noah's example of faithfully witnessing for God.
The old song speaks of "Amazing Grace" but do we really understand just how amazing it is? John Ritenbaugh fills in some details on this vital topic.
Richard Ritenbaugh recounts the bitter feud which took place between two brothers, Adolph Dassler (founder of Adidas® shoes), and Rudolph Dassler (founder of Puma® shoes), stemming from a misunderstanding during a time Adolf took shelter in a bomb-shelter with his brother, who had exclaimed "Here come those dirty bastards back …
John Ritenbaugh emphasizes the infinite superiority of Christ's priesthood and one-time sacrifice as contrasted to the repetitive Aaronic sacrifices, which were incapable of remitting sin, purging consciences, or providing access to God. The shadow image of the Old Covenant could not possibly provide the clarity, dimension, or …
The subject of justification confuses a great many people. In fact, much of nominal Christianity, even theologians, do not understand the Bible's teaching on it.
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that everything about the Priesthood of Jesus Christ is superior to that of the Levitical system, which was only intended to serve as a type (a forerunner, shadow, or symbol) of the access to God that Jesus would later fulfill. As splendid as it was, there was neither provision for the forgiveness of …
The goat for azazel (complete removal) bore the sins of the nation out of sight. Jesus Christ likewise had our iniquities laid on Him, and He bore them.
The Bible shows a clear pattern of how people leave the faith: looking back, drawing back, looking elsewhere, and then going backward and refusing to hear.
Jesus' perfect offering of Himself for us fulfilled the sin offering of Leviticus 4. Our acceptance of His offering for atonement puts us under obligation.
John Ritenbaugh reiterates Christ's superior qualifications as High Priest. After the change from the Aaronic to the Melchizedek priesthood, it was also necessary to bring about a major change in the Covenant. The flaw in the Old Covenant was not in the law, but stemmed from the fleshly, deceitful, carnal hearts of mankind. All …
Justification does not 'do away' with the law; it brings us into alignment with it, imputing the righteousness of Christ and giving access to God for sanctification.
God personally handpicks individuals with whom He desires to form a reciprocal relationship. This relationship must be dressed, kept, tended, and maintained.
The blood of the Lamb grants us eternal life, as well as entrance to the Holy of Holies, enabling us to come before the throne of the Most High God.
The term "covenant" describes an agreement made by two parties and "testament" to describe the one-sided commitment made by God to improve the promises.
We dare not allow a root of bitterness to spring up in us as a result of trials - those burdens intended by God to strengthen us and perfect us.
John Ritenbaugh characterizes the spiritual condition of the recipients of the Hebrews epistle as dangerously complacent, drifting into apostasy through neglect rather than from any blatant sin or perversion. Losing their zeal and first love after the manner of the Ephesians, having a complacent disregard for Christ's sacrifice, …
Not one in a hundred knows what salvation is—how to get it or when you will receive it. Don't be too sure you do! Here is the truth, made plain.
Adam and Eve originally had a most enviable relationship with the Creator, as well as access to the Tree of Life, if they had chosen it.
Everything that we go through has been engineered by God. We are His workmanship, created for good works, a response to the faith He has given us.
The Bible makes it plain that salvation is by grace, but it is also clear that we are 'created in Christ Jesus for good works.' Grace and works fit together.
Although Christ is not the Absolute Deity, He is nevertheless the complement of the Father. He had a pre-existence as the God of the Old Testament.
Focusing upon the absolute necessity for exercising forgiveness and reconciliation, John Ritenbaugh admonishes us that receiving or using spiritual gifts should never produce an inflated ego or sense of superiority. Prideful, idolatrous, self-worship reaps a crop of bitter fruit from a root of bitterness. As God has forgiven and …
Old Testament activities picture New Testament realities, elevated to their spiritual intent. The church has been chosen as a royal and holy priesthood.
Christ's sacrifice was not merely substitutionary, but representative, with Christ giving us a pattern for life - mortifying our flesh and putting out sin.
Love doesn't become 'love' until we act. If we don't do what is right, the right feeling will never be formed; emotions are largely developed by our experiences.
John Ritenbaugh asserts that the smallest unit of government is the individual; God is dealing with each of us on this most basic of all levels of government. It is under the New Covenant that individuals are immersed or installed into His church by the Spirit of God, given only to those who willingly consent to obey Him. In …