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Running the Race with Discipline

12 Therefore, since we have such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also get rid of every weight and entangling sin. Let us run with endurance the race set before us, focusing on Yeshua, the initiator and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him, He endured the cross, disregarding its shame; and He has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of God. [a] Consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you may not grow weary in your souls and lose heart.

In struggling against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of bloodshed. Have you forgotten the warning addressed to you as sons?

“My son, do not take lightly the discipline of Adonai
or lose heart when you are corrected by Him,
because Adonai disciplines the one He loves
and punishes every son He accepts.”[b]

It is for discipline that you endure. God is treating you as sons—for what son does a father not discipline? But if you are without discipline—something all have come to share—then you are illegitimate and not sons. Besides, we are used to having human fathers as instructors—and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? 10 Indeed, for a short time they disciplined us as seemed best to them; but He does so for our benefit, so that we may share in His holiness. 11 Now all discipline seems painful at the moment—not joyful. But later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

12 Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble! [c] 13 And make straight paths for your feet,[d] so that what is lame will not be pulled out of joint but rather be healed. 14 Pursue shalom with everyone, and the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. 15 See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God; and see to it that no bitter root springs up and causes trouble, and by it many be defiled. 16 Also see to it that there is no immoral or godless person—like Esau, who sold his birthright for one meal. [e] 17 For you know that later, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected. He found no chance for repentance, though he begged for it with tears.[f]

Entering the Unshakeable Kingdom

18 For you have not come to a mountain[g] that can be touched, and to a blazing fire, and to darkness and gloom and storm, 19 and to the blast of a shofar[h] and a voice whose words made those who heard it beg that not another word be spoken to them. 20 For they could not bear what was commanded: “If even an animal touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.” [i] 21 So terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I am quaking with fear.”[j]

22 But you have come to Mount Zion—to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem,[k] and to myriads of angels, a joyous gathering, 23 and to the assembly of the firstborn[l] who are written in a scroll in heaven,[m] and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous ones made perfect, 24 and to Yeshua, the Mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks of something better than the blood of Abel.

25 See to it that you do not refuse the One who is speaking! For if they did not escape when they refused the One who was warning them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject the One who warns us from heaven. 26 His voice shook the earth then,[n] but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heavens.” [o] 27 Now this phrase, “Yet once more,” shows the removal of those things that are shaken—that is, created things—so that what cannot be shaken may remain. [p] 28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude—through this we may offer worship in a manner pleasing to God, with reverence and awe. 29 For our God is a consuming fire.