Monday, May 23
There’s a huge contrast between Heb. 11:2-3 and Rom. 1:18-21. The most obvious thing is that Paul deals with the vast majority of humanity that rejected God and who are justly condemned. Hebrews deals with the minority group that exercised faith in God and are redeemed and graced with an eternal life with God. A second distinction is that Paul is dealing with natural revelation and Hebrews is dealing with special revelation. Third, Paul is simply giving a resumé of historic truth to prepare his readers for the special revelation that God brought to the world. In Hebrews, the gospel has already taken effect, the church is established, and the message is to Christians who now have a high priest to make eternal intercession for them. Fourth, the Romans passage looks forward to salvation, while Hebrews looks forward to eternity. But there are commonalities, too. These are not all specified in the two texts, but are germane to the messages. 1) There is life after death. Every human being has a future, some will be confined to hell and separated from God, and others will enjoy the delights of heaven. 2) Sin is a problem. God is holy and can’t accept anyone into heaven who is not holy. 3) God is revealed. He has revealed himself in nature so that man, who cannot make himself holy, must turn to One who can. 4) A remedy for sin. God also had a remedy for the sin problem. He sent his son to die in man’s place. 5) Belief required. The remedy only becomes effective by belief in Christ as our sin bearer. The two messages mesh perfectly.