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Hebrews 12:12-15

Context
12:12 Therefore, strengthen 1  your listless hands and your weak knees, 2  12:13 and make straight paths for your feet, 3  so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but be healed.

Do Not Reject God’s Warning

12:14 Pursue peace with everyone, and holiness, 4  for without it no one will see the Lord. 12:15 See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God, that no one be like a bitter root springing up 5  and causing trouble, and through him many become defiled.

1 tn Or “straighten.”

2 sn A quotation from Isa 35:3. Strengthen your listless hands and your weak knees refers to the readers’ need for renewed resolve and fresh strength in their struggles (cf. Heb 10:36-39; 12:1-3).

3 sn A quotation from Prov 4:26. The phrase make straight paths for your feet is figurative for “stay on God’s paths.”

4 sn The references to peace and holiness show the close connection between this paragraph and the previous one. The pathway toward “holiness” and the need for it is cited in Heb 12:10 and 14. More importantly Prov 4:26-27 sets up the transition from one paragraph to the next: It urges people to stay on godly paths (Prov 4:26, quoted here in v. 13) and promises that God will lead them in peace if they do so (Prov 4:27 [LXX], quoted in v. 14).

5 tn Grk “that there not be any root of bitterness,” but referring figuratively to a person who causes trouble (as in Deut 29:17 [LXX] from which this is quoted).

sn An allusion to Deut 29:18.



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