May 7, 2018

Hebrews 12:18–21 (NLT) — 18 You have not come to a physical mountain, to a place of flaming fire, darkness, gloom, and whirlwind, as the Israelites did at Mount Sinai. 19 For they heard an awesome trumpet blast and a voice so terrible that they begged God to stop speaking. 20 They staggered back under God’s command: “If even an animal touches the mountain, it must be stoned to death.” 21 Moses himself was so frightened at the sight that he said, “I am terrified and trembling.”

These verses remind me Smaug the dragon, in the Lord of the Rings, who drove the dwarfs out of Lonely Mountain where they had amassed an enormous amount of wealth in gold. For 15o years he stayed in the mountain laying on the pile of gold. When some dwarfs along with a couple of hobbits came to reclaim the gold Smaug rose up and with smoke rolling out of his nostrils he declared with a loud booming voice that he would kill them all. And then he proceeded to belch out flames of fire from his mouth and the flames licked at the heals of the dwarves and hobbits and they ran for cover. The dragon was too formidable for them to defeat.

The law of God given to the Israelites was too formidable to overcome. The law can only convict and sentence to death. The law cannot save. The law cannot set us free because just like old Smaug it just isn’t in its character. Anybody trying to keep the law as a way of salvation is doomed to eternal death and fire. No amount of gold will buy off the law. God made the law look as terrible as possible so that the people would bow in allegiance to Him and totally trust him for their deliverance. God was setting mankind up for the coming of Jesus who was able to slay the old dragon of the law(I’m not saying the law was bad on the contrary it was good but to us it was a dragon because we couldn’t meet its demands) by keeping it perfectly and thus passing on that perfection to us so that we to might be saved!

Hebrews 12:22–24 (NLT) — 22 No, you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to countless thousands of angels in a joyful gathering. 23 You have come to the assembly of God’s firstborn children, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God himself, who is the judge over all things. You have come to the spirits of the righteous ones in heaven who have now been made perfect. 24 You have come to Jesus, the one who mediates the new covenant between God and people, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks of forgiveness instead of crying out for vengeance like the blood of Abel.

We haven’t come to Lonely Mountain with the dragon Smaug and the Law; we have come to Mount Zion, the mountain of grace and mercy where there is only joy no sorrow. Because of Jesus we come to God as our Father and we have come in perfection not fearing judgment. We have come to our savior Jesus whose blood does not cry out with a loud voice mixed with smoke and fire for vengeance, judgment or justice. NO the blood of Jesus shouts out joyfully with an encouraging voice of forgiveness, grace and mercy.

Be Inspired Hilltop!

P.S. Eventually Smaug was slain:)




  1. Mark Gundersen says

    Smaug was slain because of pride. His pride was similar to the pride of the Pharisees in the law that looked good on the outside but did not protect the heart.

  2. Mary Anne Frank says

    In our reading in Numbers I was struck by the fact that God in His mercy made provision for those who sinned unintentionally. This morning I woke up with conviction in my heart that I had sinned. The sin was completely unintentional. While reading the Word I saw that God had mercy for me in this situation and then read Ps 51. I cried out as David did to the One who can save me even from sins that are unintentional. David’s sin was intentional but when confronted by Nathan the Prophet, he immediately went to God and plead for mercy. I was in the midst of beating myself up for my sin but God showed me that there is mercy and grace for me at the foot of the cross. We all have our dragons to slay but only Jesus can win the battle for us.