Hebrews 12:2 – The Disciple’s Race: Look to Jesus (Part 5)

Part four of five in the series, “The Disciple’s Race.” Catch up with parts: 123, & 4.

We’ve come to the end of our series about the disciple’s race in the book of Hebrews.

So far, we’ve learned:

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Today, we’re going to look to Jesus in Hebrews 12:2. We’ll see that the disciple’s life is a race that costs us everything, that we may gain even more.

…looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

Hebrews 12:2 ESV

Some of you reading this devotion are tired. You’re frazzled and frayed.

You have a million responsibilities—maybe as parents, teachers, professionals, caring for sick loved ones, and the list goes on.

Add onto this the call to be disciples running a difficult race through enemy territory.

If this describes you, you’re in the same sandals as the original readers of Hebrews. They were ready to throw in the towel and trade their cleats for slippers. But in today’s verse, the writer of this letter helps us see the ultimate encouragement.

He tells us all: look to Jesus! He means fix your attention solely on Jesus.

For one minute get tunnel vision, forget the chaos of your life, and simply look to Jesus right now.

What did he do?

He *endured* the horror of Roman crucifixion.

Why did he do it?

“…for the joy that was set before him…”

Jesus looked right through the cross and pursued the joy before him. The joy David wrote about in a Psalm:

You make known to me the path of life;

in your presence there is fullness of joy;

at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 16:11 ESV

Because where does Jesus sit today?

At the right hand of the throne of God.

You see, life as a disciple of Jesus Christ is hard. This is a difficult race we run. However, we’re not running a hopeless, joyless, drudgery-laden race!

We are looking forward to everlasting joy in the very presence of God! Joy unending.

Eternal peace. An end to sorrow, suffering, and death itself.

And yes, we do have this awaiting us on the other side of the grave… But did you know it’s also available to us right now?

In John 15:11 Jesus told the Twelve: “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.”

What does it mean when something’s full? It means nothing can be added to it to make it complete.

In the person and presence of Jesus Christ we have complete joy. Joy that needs nothing else to make it better.

We need no spiritual weight, no sin that clings so closely…

…we simply need to “abide” in him. To live in and dwell with him.

If you trust Jesus as Master, Savior, and Lord, then trust that he was looking toward real joy. Joy that was worth enduring the cross for.

As Warren Wiersbe, said: “…in Jesus’ battle against sin, He shed His own blood.” [1]

  • If you are a tired disciple, abide in Jesus and receive his joy.
  • If you are on the brink of giving up, look to the author and perfecter of our faith.
  • If you are enduring persecution, trust that Jesus, as the God-man, knew the true path to eternal joy… And follow him.

Fellow disciple, put on your tunnel vision glasses, and look to Jesus today as we run the disciple’s race side by side.


[1] Wiersbe, Warren W. The Bible Exposition Commentary. Vol. 2. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1996. Print.


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