Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings, for it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not by foods, which have not benefited those devoted to them. We have an altar from which those who serve the tent have no right to eat. For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the holy places by the high priest as a sacrifice for sin are burned outside the camp. So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own blood. Therefore let us go to him outside the camp and bear the reproach he endured. For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name. Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.
Comment: It starts out as if the author is going to talk about human leaders of the believers but after two short sentences He gets back to our Champion, Jesus. Our leaders’ faith should be able to be imitated, but even if they waver, Jesus will never change, nor has He from the beginning of eternity.
With another brief summary of the previous highlights of the book, the author again stresses the glory of our faith in the Messiah. A faith from which we are not to deviate. Comparing the old covenantal ways of sacrifice, with the perfect sacrifice of Jesus, He encourages us to go where He has gone. He didn’t, like the released sacrificial goat, wander into the wilderness outside the camp, but suffered on a cross (outside the city wall) and having been the perfect sanctifying sacrifice, has won the eternal victory. Not all this is said here but is inferred. And we are encouraged to be prepared to suffer for Him, and let our lives be a sacrifice of praise to God.
Prayer: The background to this challenge is so clear, O Lord. Please help me to accept it and live up to it.