Yesterday we discussed holding tightly to our hope in Jesus Christ, not because of who we are, but because Jesus is Lord, Faithful and True. “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” (Heb 10:23) As we hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, let’s look at the next verse in the passage: “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works” (Heb 10:24).
We’ve all watched, heard and probably even participated in stirring the pot. Normally, the connotation is negative, as in to keep an argument or conflict going. Think of it like, not letting things settle to the bottom of the pot, but stirring the pot so thing stay in motion. In this connotation, we want to be heard — we want our opinion of the matter to rise to the top. We are cautioned against this: “Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.” (Gal 5:26)
As we look at this Scripture, notice only the first several words, “And let us consider one another”. Over and over again in Scripture we are admonished to look to the needs of others before ourselves. “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.” (Phil 2:3-4)
So as we look back at stirring the pot so things stay in motion, not from our own selfishness but rather to look after the interests of others before ourselves, let’s look at the full verse. “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works” (Heb 10:24). Instead of reacting to difficult times with fear or doubt, we should embrace a confident faith and look to encourage fellow believers to do the same.
This means calling other Christians to not just “believe,” but to act out in love and good deeds. We are to consider — think about, ponder, deliberate, meditate, mull over — other people, with this conscious goal: what can I do today so that they will be stirred up to love and to good deeds? The next verse gives us the “how”: “not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Heb 10:25) We aren’t to neglect to get together, and we are to encourage one another. We can’t do that if we keep to ourselves.
Holding fast to the confession of our hope in Jesus Christ, isn’t only for our benefit. It’s so that in holding on to our hope, we can take the focus off of ourselves and consider others — who they are and what they need — and stir them up for love and good works by being by their side. This world is getting darker and darker the closer we get to the day that Jesus returns, and we need to fellowship with other believers, for our benefit and theirs… and because God’s Word tells us to do so.