Meaningful relationships don’t just happen. They take time and effort. The “One Another” series is about developing close relationships and building community with one another. Hebrews 10 tells us to encourage one another. Everyone needs encouragement. When you encourage, you put courage in someone. When you discourage, you take courage out. Here are four ways we can give encouragement:
Hebrews 10:24 begins by saying, “And let us consider how to stir one another up….” The word consider is used one other time in the book of Hebrews. Hebrews 3:1 says, “Therefore, holy brothers, you who share in a heavenly calling, consider Jesus….” Consider means to observe, to fix your eyes attentively. When we consider Jesus, we look, think, focus, and fix our eyes on Him. The writer of Hebrews is writing to Jewish believers who were wavering over leaving Jesus and going back to Judaism. They were being persecuted, were losing friends and property, and were teetering on the edge of going back to their old life. Meeting together marked them as believers, but meeting together was worth it!
Some of you today are tempted to go back. The message here is don’t give up! Don’t go back! Keep meeting with other believers and encouraging them. Keep your eyes on Jesus! Consider Him. “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful” (Heb. 10:23).
“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works…” (Heb. 10:24). Be a hope-filled person, loving others and stirring others to love and good deeds. Do you ever question, “What is the point?” “Why get out of bed?” Consider Jesus and other people. God put us on this earth and saved us for love and good deeds. Why come to church? We don’t come just for the singing or preaching, but for the stirring, stimulating, and motivating of one another to keep going. Encouragement is not just from the preacher to the member, but the member to the member. We are all encouragers. More than just your presence, God calls for your participation! God calls us to show up to church and to stir up one another. Ask God to help you encourage someone today.
Hebrews 10:25 continues, “…not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another….” Neglect means to forsake. Americans for the most part forsake church not because of suffering, but for selfishness. It is not for persecution, but pleasure. Not the threat of poverty, but prosperity. When they do come it’s with an inward focused, consumer Christianity. “What is in it for me?” We are to assemble with an upward focus! Consider Him and stir up one another to love and good works. Are you connected or disconnected from one another? It is possible to be faithful to the church and not faithful to Jesus, but you can’t be faithful to Jesus without being faithful to His church! Everyone battles discouragement. Live on purpose, praying, “Lord, show me who I can encourage today.”
The end of Hebrews 10 says that the Christians endured a great struggle (v. 32), knowing there was “a better and an enduring” reward in Heaven (v. 34). Where did they get that kind of courage? By meeting together, they encouraged one another. They put courage in each other.
Why do we do what we do? Why do we love one another? Why do we consider one another, stir up one another, encourage one another? It is a matter of doing the will of God. We have a great reward! There is no joy like knowing you are in the will of God and knowing you have done the will of God. Verse 36 says after we have done the will of God, we will receive the promise. He is faithful!