Obviously, the title of this article is a play on words. From the time that a child is weaned, parents have the opportunity to introduce different foods to the diet. Often times it is not difficult for the child to enjoy foods that are sweet and tasty. However, the introduction of certain vegetables might be met with more apprehension.
The parent knows that the vegetables are good for the child to grow healthy and strong. Therefore, it is good to continue to include the vegetables in meals. Hopefully over time, the child will grow accustomed to eating such. It might even be that the child develops a taste and enjoyment for those things that he once disliked.
All of that is meant to be an introduction to the study at hand. I want to know if we have “eaten” our “let us”! No, that is not a misspelling of the word, lettuce. Even an old country boy from Tennessee knows how to spell lettuce! Instead, it is a question related to three verses in the fourth chapter of the book of Hebrews. The first of which is “Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it” (Heb. 4:1). The second is “Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief” (Heb. 4:11). Finally, there is “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16). Just like the child can benefit from his vegetables, Christians can benefit from “eating” our “let us”.
The writer of Hebrews had just finished what we call chapter three of the book. In that chapter, a great lesson was taught about Israel’s lack of faithfulness. By examining the mistake of the Israelites, Christians can prepare themselves so that they do not make the same mistake. The first “let us” is that we “fear”. We must be careful not to believe that all “fear” is being mentioned in verse one. After all, if that were the case, then there would be a contradiction with verses like Revelation 21:8 and 1 John 4:18-20. Christians should not be cowardly! Instead the “fear” that is commanded entails the warning that will come for unfaithfulness. Truly, being lost is something that should motivate a man to obedient faith. When speaking to His apostles, Jesus taught, “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matt. 10:28). We, unlike Israel of old, should stay faithful to reach “the promised land” of Heaven.
The second dose of “let us” is “labour”. The idea of works being necessary for salvation is upheld by this verse. Every child of God should diligently be involved in doing the works of obedience that are commanded in the New Testament. James very proficiently explained this truth in James 2:14-26. Likewise, Jesus indicated, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matt. 5:16). Jesus also taught, “Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed” (John 6:27). It is plain that Christians must work hard while on this Earth. If we choose not to do such, then we will forfeit the inheritance that God will give the faithful. We should take the admonition that is found in the book of Proverbs, “Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established” (Prov. 16:3).
Then there is that last “helping” of “let us”. Christians are given the privilege of “boldly” approaching “the throne of grace”. The reason for such is because we have “a great high priest” (Heb. 4:14). At any time, the child of God can pray to the Father. Think about that! Christians have the opportunity to speak to God Almighty whenever we choose. Not only that, but we have assurance that our prayers are not only heard, but also answered. “For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil” (1 Pet. 3:12). Ultimately, if Christians remain faithful, then we will literally be in the presence of God. What an amazing prospect that is. John wrote, “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:2).
I hope that Christians do not reject “eating” the “let us” that God provides. Just like eating vegetables is good and nourishing to a physical child, the “let us” that is put before us will help us to remain faithful and grow spiritually (2 Pet. 3:18).
~ Corey Barnette