hebrews in numbers

The book of Hebrews is just the right size. Long enough to get lost. Short enough to find a way to keep from getting lost.

Solution? Chapter-number pictures, of course. No more of this “I think that’s in Hebrews somewhere” stuff.

Alright, this is a test of your Hebrews knowledge. And a test of my ability to create logical, helpful, whimsical number-pictures. #yikes

Instructions:
1. Look at the picture.
2. Don’t look below the picture.
3. Guess what it is or what it’s about.
4. Try to recall the particular thought or verse(s).
5. Scroll down to see the answer.
6. If you answer incorrectly, blame the artist. If you answer correctly, you get a brownie point.
7. Or just scan through for a quick, incomplete summary of the book of Hebrews.

firstborn

“. . . and again, when he brings the firstborn into the world . . .” (1:6)

Long ago, God spoke through prophets. And angels.
Now he speaks through His Son. Not angels.
Actually, when He brought His firstborn into the world,
He said, “Let all God’s angels worship Him.”

crowned

“. . . we see him . . . namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor
because of the suffering of death . . .” (2:9)

A reference to Psalm 8, this verse speaks of Jesus who suffers,
who is thus perfected and perfects,
and who is placed over all things.
Including angels.

“. . . but Christ is faithful over God’s house as a son . . .” (3:6)
“. . . today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts . . .” (3:7)

This one is a double-whammy.
The 3 becomes a heart, as there are several descriptions of hearts given.
And three “H” words appear multiple times in the chapter.
In addition to the issue of the heart,
the charge to “hear His voice” is also repeated.
And the chapter begins with the illustration of the building of a house.
We are His house if we hold fast.

sleeping four

“So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from His.
Let us therefore strive to enter that rest,
so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience.” (4:9-11)

Chapter four is the chapter of rest.
Rather than have an unbelieving heart,
we should hear, obey, and believe so that we may enter His rest.

coffee

“You need milk, not solid food, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child . . .” (5:12-13)

{Okay, cut me some slack here and use your powers of imagination.
Think sideways coffee pot. Coffee. Milk.
Trust me, it works. I’ve never forgotten what chapter five is about.}

The author of Hebrews begins to get into the discussion about the high priests,
and Aaron, and the Great High Priest, and Melchizedek . . .
And then he’s like, “I would tell you more, but I don’t think you’ll get it,
because you’re still drinking milk.
Gotta wait for you to grow up a little, then I’ll try to give you some meat.”

quilloath

“For people swear by something greater than themselves,
and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation.
So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise
the unchangeable character of his purpose,
he guaranteed it with an oath.” (6:16-17)

{I’m sure oaths were written documents. With quill and ink.}

So here, the author goes from reminding them
of the elementary doctrines they ought to know already
. . . to the danger of falling away
. . . to the encouragement to persevere and imitate those who endured.
Like Abraham, who inherited the promise God made with an oath.

melchizedek

“For it is witnessed of him,
‘You are a priest forever, after the order of Melchizedek.'” (7:17)

Hebrews 7 is great for getting you caught up on your Melchizedek facts.
Jesus is this perfect Priest who goes on forever,
making Him “the guarantor of a better covenant” (7:22).

shadow

“They serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things . . .” (8:5)

{That is a shadow.}

The priests, the temple, the sacrifices, the covenant, the promises.
Those were shadows of the real thing. The better thing.

most holy place

“Behind the second curtain was a second section called the Most Holy Place . . .” (9:3)

{The thing hanging at the bottom is a curtain.
And above/behind it, a radiating Most Holy Place.}

The temple is outlined in chapter nine. But the amazing thing is Jesus.
He entered once for all into the holy places. By means of His own blood.

one offering

“For by a single offering,
he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.” (10:14)

Before? Daily. Repeated. Same thing over and over.
Pointless. Ineffective.
Nothing but a reminder of sins.

Now? Once for all. A single sacrifice. For all time.
A new and living way.
Forgiveness.

elevenarrows

“For people who speak thus make it clear they are seeking a homeland.” (11:14)
“But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one.” (11:16)
“. . . he was looking to the reward . . .” (11:26)

Faith is the conviction of things not seen (11:1).
The author of Hebrews finds it necessary to give more than a dozen examples of men and women who faced the unseen.
And had faith in the Unseen One.
Their eyes never failed to look upward.

twelve

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses . . .
Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus . . .” (12:1)
“. . . for our God is a consuming fire.” (12:29)

{I mean, what can you do with a “12” really?
So we have bookends.}

Great people of faith having gone before,
we are left with the charge to imitate the faith they possessed.
Like a runner who keeps his eyes on the finish line,
we fix our eyes on Jesus, the One who started our faith to begin with.
It’s not always painless. But discipline produces righteousness, so it’s worth it.
And so we respond by offering acceptable sacrifices of worship
to a Consuming Fire.
With gratefulness. Because His kingdom is unshakeable.

thirteen

“Let brotherly love continue . . .
Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers . . .
Remember those who are in prison . . .” (13:1-3)

{The final chapter begins with practical commands of love and good works.
Thus the heart symbol and the one-armed waiter.}

For a fitting total of 13 commands (depending on how you count them),
the book concludes with admonition and application.

This Great High Priest we’ve been talking about?
He is ours. And we are His.
We can now draw near (10:22).
We can now hold fast (10:23).
We can now consider how to stir up one another to love and good works (10:24).


Grab your colored pencils and a medium-length book and get to work.

Makes for an unforgettable experience.

[image credit: journeyoftheword.com]


6 thoughts on “hebrews in numbers

  1. This is so neat! What a great way to look at books of the Bible artistically and in a way that helps you really remember the overall message of the book! Thanks for sharing!

    God bless,
    Patty

    Liked by 1 person

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