Jesus, the Example

12 Therefore, since we also have such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let’s (A)rid ourselves of every obstacle and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let’s (B)run with (C)endurance the race that is set before us, looking only at Jesus, the [a](D)originator and perfecter of the faith, who for the joy set before Him (E)endured the cross, (F)despising the shame, and has (G)sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

For (H)consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary [b](I)and lose heart.

A Father’s Discipline

(J)You have not yet resisted [c](K)to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin; and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons,

(L)My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,
Nor (M)faint when you are punished by Him;
(N)For (O)whom the Lord loves He disciplines,
And He punishes every son whom He accepts.”

It is for discipline that you endure; (P)God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, (Q)of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had [d]earthly fathers to discipline us, and we (R)respected them; shall we not much more be subject to (S)the Father of [e]spirits, and (T)live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, (U)so that we may share His holiness. 11 (V)For the moment, all discipline seems not to be pleasant, but painful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterward it yields the (W)peaceful fruit of righteousness.

12 Therefore, [f](X)strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble, 13 and (Y)make straight paths for your feet, so that the limb which is impaired may not be dislocated, but rather (Z)be healed.

14 (AA)Pursue peace with all people, and the (AB)holiness without which no one will (AC)see the Lord. 15 See to it that no one (AD)comes short of the grace of God; that no (AE)root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many become (AF)defiled; 16 that there be no (AG)sexually immoral or (AH)godless person like Esau, (AI)who sold his own birthright for a single meal. 17 For you know that even afterward, (AJ)when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought for it with tears.

Contrast of Sinai and Zion

18 (AK)For you have not come to (AL)a mountain that can be touched and to a blazing fire, and to darkness and gloom and whirlwind, 19 and to the (AM)blast of a trumpet and the (AN)sound of words, which sound was such that those who heard (AO)begged that no further word be spoken to them. 20 For they could not [g]cope with the command, “(AP)If even an animal touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.” 21 And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, “(AQ)I am terrified and trembling.” 22 But (AR)you have come to Mount Zion and to (AS)the city of (AT)the living God, (AU)the heavenly Jerusalem, and to (AV)myriads of [h]angels, 23 to the general assembly and (AW)church of the firstborn who (AX)are enrolled in heaven, and to God, (AY)the Judge of all, and to the (AZ)spirits of the righteous made perfect, 24 and to Jesus, the (BA)mediator of a new covenant, and to the (BB)sprinkled blood, which speaks better than (BC)the blood of Abel.

The Unshaken Kingdom

25 (BD)See to it that you do not refuse Him who is (BE)speaking. For (BF)if those did not escape when they (BG)refused him who (BH)warned them on earth, [i]much less will we escape who turn away from Him who (BI)warns us from heaven. 26 And (BJ)His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “(BK)Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heaven.” 27 This expression, “Yet once more,” denotes (BL)the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Therefore, since we receive a (BM)kingdom which cannot be shaken, let’s [j]show gratitude, by which we may (BN)offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; 29 for (BO)our God is a consuming fire.


  1. Hebrews 12:2 Or leader
  2. Hebrews 12:3 Lit fainting in your souls
  3. Hebrews 12:4 Lit as far as blood
  4. Hebrews 12:9 Lit fathers of our flesh
  5. Hebrews 12:9 Or our spirits
  6. Hebrews 12:12 Lit make straight
  7. Hebrews 12:20 Lit bear
  8. Hebrews 12:22 Or angels in festive gathering, and to the church
  9. Hebrews 12:25 Lit much rather we will not escape...
  10. Hebrews 12:28 Lit have

12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run(A) with perseverance(B) the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus,(C) the pioneer(D) and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross,(E) scorning its shame,(F) and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.(G) Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary(H) and lose heart.

God Disciplines His Children

In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.(I) And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says,

“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
    and do not lose heart(J) when he rebukes you,
because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,(K)
    and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”[a](L)

Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children.(M) For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline(N)—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits(O) and live!(P) 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness.(Q) 11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace(R) for those who have been trained by it.

12 Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees.(S) 13 “Make level paths for your feet,”[b](T) so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed.(U)

Warning and Encouragement

14 Make every effort to live in peace with everyone(V) and to be holy;(W) without holiness no one will see the Lord.(X) 15 See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God(Y) and that no bitter root(Z) grows up to cause trouble and defile many. 16 See that no one is sexually immoral,(AA) or is godless like Esau, who for a single meal sold his inheritance rights as the oldest son.(AB) 17 Afterward, as you know, when he wanted to inherit this blessing, he was rejected. Even though he sought the blessing with tears,(AC) he could not change what he had done.

The Mountain of Fear and the Mountain of Joy

18 You have not come to a mountain that can be touched and that is burning with fire; to darkness, gloom and storm;(AD) 19 to a trumpet blast(AE) or to such a voice speaking words(AF) that those who heard it begged that no further word be spoken to them,(AG) 20 because they could not bear what was commanded: “If even an animal touches the mountain, it must be stoned to death.”[c](AH) 21 The sight was so terrifying that Moses said, “I am trembling with fear.”[d](AI)

22 But you have come to Mount Zion,(AJ) to the city(AK) of the living God,(AL) the heavenly Jerusalem.(AM) You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, 23 to the church of the firstborn,(AN) whose names are written in heaven.(AO) You have come to God, the Judge of all,(AP) to the spirits of the righteous made perfect,(AQ) 24 to Jesus the mediator(AR) of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood(AS) that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.(AT)

25 See to it that you do not refuse(AU) him who speaks.(AV) If they did not escape when they refused him who warned(AW) them on earth, how much less will we, if we turn away from him who warns us from heaven?(AX) 26 At that time his voice shook the earth,(AY) but now he has promised, “Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.”[e](AZ) 27 The words “once more” indicate the removing of what can be shaken(BA)—that is, created things—so that what cannot be shaken may remain.

28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken,(BB) let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe,(BC) 29 for our “God is a consuming fire.”[f](BD)


  1. Hebrews 12:6 Prov. 3:11,12 (see Septuagint)
  2. Hebrews 12:13 Prov. 4:26
  3. Hebrews 12:20 Exodus 19:12,13
  4. Hebrews 12:21 See Deut. 9:19.
  5. Hebrews 12:26 Haggai 2:6
  6. Hebrews 12:29 Deut. 4:24