Shepherd's Cross Christian Helps Ministry
(1 Corinthians 12:28)

Following in the footsteps of the Acts of the Apostles, written by St. Luke, Shepherd's Cross Christian Helps Ministry exists by the grace of God to further the first century Apostolic tradition serving in the Great Commission.

(St. Matthew 28:16-20)

Looking For A City Which Hath Foundations Who’s Builder And Maker Is God

A Great Cloud of Witnesses

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, we must get rid of every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and run with endurance the race set out for us, keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith. For the joy set out for him he endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God Think of him who endured such opposition against himself by sinners, so that you may not grow weary in your souls and give up. You have not yet resisted to the point of bloodshed in your struggle against sin.” Hebrews 12:1-4

“A great cloud of witnesses” Of who is the writer of the Book of Hebrews speaking?

These “cloud of witnesses” are children of Abraham. They are children of faith, who have followed the example of Father Abraham when he was willing to sacrifice his dear son, Isaac. Hebrews Chapter 11 describes the doctrine of saving faith. In addition, this chapter also describes the actions of believers who lived by this saving faith before the coming of the promised Messiah, the Lord Jesus.

In referring to the Gospel according to St. Luke, St. Luke, the physician, penned these words, “I wrote the former account, Theophilus, about all that Jesus began to do and teach until the day he was taken up to heaven, after he had given orders by the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen.” Acts 1:1-2.

Under God the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, St. Luke then composed a manuscript later to be called, The Acts of the Apostles. Here, he penned a true historical account of the acts of the faithful. The acts of God’s remnant faithful continue today being written on the tablets of men’s hearts.

“You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone, revealing that you are a letter of Christ, delivered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on stone tablets but on tablets of human hearts.”
2 Corinthians 3:2-3

Pilgrimage in Ancient Times

“By faith he, (Abraham), sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.” Hebrews 11:9-10

I recently studied the subject of pilgrimage, as it applies within the framework of Holy Scripture. I have uncovered that Old Testament Saints, (faithful believers of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob before the resurrection of the Messiah of Israel, the Lord Jesus), as well as New Testament Saints, (faithful believers immediately following Messiah’s resurrection), recognized that this current earth was not their home.

Pilgrimage in Hebrew

This was what the word pilgrimage meant in the Hebrew language for the early faithful believers.

Maguwr translated in English is pilgrimage and it refers to seeking a dwelling-place, sojourning for a lifetime. These Old and New Testament Saints were sojourning for a lifetime, “… looking for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.” Hebrews 11:10

Strong's Hebrew Lexicon Search Results

4033 maguwr maw-goor' or magur {maw-goor'}; from 1481 in the sense of lodging; a temporary abode; by extension, a permanent residence:--dwelling, pilgrimage, where sojourn, be a stranger

Nothing Gold Can Stay
by Robert Frost

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

In the words of Robert Frost’s poem, “Nothing Gold Can Stay”, Frost states, “that Eden sank to grief” and “nothing gold can stay.”

God gave Adam the opportunity to choose life or death. Adam willed to follow death.

“…but concerning the fruit of the tree that is in the middle of the orchard God said, ‘You must not eat from it, and you must not touch it, or else you will die…” Genesis 3:6-7

“She also gave some of it to her husband who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them opened, and they knew they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.” Genesis 3:6-7

Israel’s Charged Directive

During the time of Joshua, the people of Israel were bidden to choose allegiance to and to follow either their Lord God, or other false gods.

“If you have no desire to worship the Lord, choose today whom you will worship, whether it be the gods whom your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living. But I and my family will worship the Lord!”
Joshua 24:15

The People’s Choice

“The people of Israel responded, “Far be it from us to abandon the Lord so we can worship other gods!” Joshua 24:16

He Came Unto His Own

“But when the appropriate time had come, God sent out his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we may be adopted as sons with full rights. Galatians 4:4-7

Yet, when the Messiah did in fact arrive, Holy Scripture states that the result was, “He came to what was his own, but his own people did not receive him”
St. John 1:11

The Messiah’s Lament

"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those who are sent to you! How often I have longed to gather your children together as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you would have none of it! Look, your house is forsaken! And I tell you, you will not see me until you say, ‘Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!" St. Luke 13:34-35

The Apostle St. Paul …

“I solemnly charge you before God and Christ Jesus, who is going to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: Preach the message, be ready whether it is convenient or not, reprove, rebuke, exhort with complete patience and instruction. For there will be a time when people will not tolerate sound teaching. Instead, following their own desires, they will accumulate teachers for themselves, because they have an insatiable curiosity to hear new things. And they will turn away from hearing the truth, but on the other hand they will turn aside to myths. You, however, be self-controlled in all things, endure hardship, do an evangelist’s work, fulfill your ministry. For I am already being poured out as an offering, and the time for me to depart is at hand. I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith! Finally the crown of righteousness is reserved for me. The Lord, the righteous Judge, will award it to me in that day – and not to me only, but also to all who have set their affection on his appearing.” 2Timothy 4:1-8

O that we took head to the words of the Apostle St. Paul.
O that we would be as the five wise virgins spoken of in the parable of the Ten Virgins. (Matthew 25:1-13)

The Coming of Jesus

No one knows the hour.
No, not even the Son –

In the hour you think not, the Son of Man shall appear.

We spend our lives focused on our dust.
Dust that blows in the wind which burns
in the presence of Thy coming.

What will be left when You O Messiah shall appear?
Only that which is spiritually wrought.

Oh, that my spirit would be conformed to Thy image.

Oh, that Thy image would conform me.

In Jesus name,

Brother Richard, MS Ed
Brother Richard, MS Ed

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