“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of Witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,” Hebrews 12:1 (ESV)
Context of our verse is important. It follows chapter eleven where the author identified by name seventeen Old Testament believers and references many more who were also saved by Faith in the word of God. These examples are witnesses to us of the truth. God has given this to us in the promises He gives to us. It is worthy to believe in God and in his promises to us. Yet, we face an enemy who works to distract us by loading us down with lies so that we forget those promises. The verse we have today tells us how to overcome this attack. Trust in the example of the witnesses who, before Jesus Christ was born, lived, died and rose from the grave, believed in that Promise to come and were saved and through faith declared righteous by God. By faith, we too can lay aside the sin which binds itself to us and weighs us down. Let’s get rid of that baggage, lay it aside, and we will have freedom to run the race with endure to the end. This is all accomplished by the grace of God alone – we have but to believe.
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