My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.
We are in two in-depth books in the New Testament, John, and Hebrews. Both are loaded with truth. Jesus is in the last year of His ministry, with much of His time recorded being spent in Jerusalem. Hebrews is all about our High Priest, Jesus, and how the Lord has established Him by oath forever. In 2 Chronicles we witness the dedication of the temple, Solomon’s prayer, and the Lord’s answer. It is a prosperous time for Israel.
John 7 -12
In Chapter seven, we see Jesus go up to Jerusalem during the Feast of Tabernacles in the fall before His crucifixion confounding the people and making the promise of the Holy Spirit’s coming. Chapter eight is the next day after the Feast and a woman caught in adultery is dragged before Him to force Jesus into a misstep. Jesus has believers with Him, whom He seeks to become His disciples through abiding in His word with the promise of freedom, but they refuse. Chapter nine continues the same day, and the miracle of the man born blind is now seeing and all its controversy. In Chapter ten, Jesus shares His calling as the good shepherd, in verse 22 Jesus is back during Hannukah (Feast of Dedication) and declares these words, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. John 10:27
Chapters eleven and twelve bring us to the death of Lazarus and His resurrection, and Jesus following the Father and not His own friendship, all for the glory of God. Lazarus’ resurrection is the final blow to the religious leaders, as Lazarus’ testimony brings many into faith. The anointing at Bethany fills the house with the fragrance of the oil. The next day (Palm Sunday), Jesus makes His entrance into Jerusalem. Jesus predicts His death, which is to the glory of God, and verses 37-50 are a bit of an epilogue of Jesus’ earthly ministry and the reasons so many would not believe.
Hebrews 6 – 12
Hebrews six states the problem of needing only milk and not the meat of the word. But God has better things in mind, things that accompany salvation, and reminds us that with faith and patience, we inherit the promises. Promises made with His oath give us a refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us. Now Melchizedek, God the Son, who met Abraham and blessed him is greater than the Aaronic priesthood. This priesthood now given to Jesus the Son of God at His glorification is a better hope, and a better covenant by an oath of God and the power of an endless life, so that He now ever lives to make intercession for us.
Chapter eight is the main point of all this. “We have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens.” Hebrews 8:1 A better covenant established on better promises. The covenant is stated in Chapter eight and again in Chapter ten, the covenant the Lord promised through Jeremiah to Israel (Jeremiah 31:31-34).
Chapters nine and ten share the details of the better sacrifice of Jesus that has cleansed our conscience from dead works, to serve the living God. No more consciousness of sins because Jesus had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, and by one offering has perfected forever those sanctified. Hebrews 10:19-25 explains how we are now to approach God in the Holiest of Holies and then we are charged not to neglect these truths and not to cast away our confidence in all that the Lord has done for us in His High Priest. We need endurance.
Chapters eleven and twelve call us to faith that pleases God, and to discipline that calls us to partake in our Father’s holiness. We are sons who must be disciplined if we are to share in His nature. We have not come to the law and Mount Sinai but to the new covenant and Mount Zion, the blood that speaks better things than that of Abel. We must not refuse His voice that now speaks from heaven.
2 Chronicles 5 – 12
The dedication of the Temple. The priests bring in the Ark, and then the priests sound their trumpets, the Levites play their instruments and praise the Lord as one voice. The glory of the Lord fills the temple, and no one can stand to minister. Solomon prays a prayer of dedication asking that the Temple be a place where prayers are heard, and heaven would hear and forgive. In Chapter seven, the Lord answers Solomon in a dream and declares “Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place.” 2 Chronicles 7:15
Chapters eight through nine are Solomon’s additional achievements, the visit by Queen Sheba, his wealth, and then his death. Rehoboam, his son, reigns in his place and Jeroboam leads a revolt and takes the ten northern tribes with him according to the word of the Lord prophesied.