Faithlife Sermons

Hebrews 6a

Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 1 view
Notes & Transcripts
Sermon Tone Analysis
A
D
F
J
S
Emotion
A
C
T
Language
O
C
E
A
E
Social
View more →

Hebrews 6:1-3… Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, 2 of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment. 3 And this we will do, if God permits.

Commentary

Hebrews 5:11-6:8, written to unbelievers, is a strong admonition to the unbelieving Jews in the church to abandon the shadows and types found in the OT and to look upon the substance of those shadows – Christ who had fulfilled the “elementary teaching” in the OT. The issue here had nothing to do with leaving the basic teachings of Christianity but of becoming Christians! Christians are never told to lay aside the basics of the faith like the ones listed in 6:1-2. On the other hand, unbelievers have always been taught to leave their simple worlds behind by leaving their elementary doctrines and to reach for the Christ who saves. They needed to put down their prophecies and pictures of Christ found throughout the OT and look upon the Man Himself who had fulfilled all of the “elementary teaching about the Christ.” This teaching is for unbelievers.

There are six elementary teachings about the Christ these Jews were told to put aside. These six refer to the OT sacrifices which pointed to the Messiah and His gospel, but in and of themselves are not part of the gospel. The first was “repentance from dead works.” This was a common theme throughout the OT, and in the early ministry of Jesus and of John the Baptist the message was “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Both the prophets and Jesus taught their audiences to turn away from evil and turn toward God. In the NT God is Jesus Christ!

The second elemental teaching of the OT to leave was “faith toward God.” This was elementary because God had been revealed in His Son Jesus Christ, and there is no repentance worth its salt unless it involves a turning unto Christ as Lord and Savior.

Thirdly, these unbelieving Jews were to leave the “instruction about washings.” The washings are not baptisms as the NIV translates it, for the Greek word is not about baptism per se but about ceremonial washings. In every Jewish home there was a washbasin at the entrance used for ceremonial washings, of which there were many, and these were worthless in lieu of Christ’s having made sinners righteous based upon his High Priestly work. Even in the OT there were predictions of those washings being one day replaced by a spiritual one of God’s doing, namely the baptism by the Holy Spirit which cleanses at conversion for eternity.

Fourthly, there was the issue of the “laying on of hands” – a Jewish practice whereby one who offered an animal for sacrifice would lay his hands on the animal to show his identification with its shed blood to atone for his sins. This was elementary because Jesus’ death was superior to animal sacrifices. And identification with Christ came by faith, not the laying on of hands.

Both the “resurrection from the dead” (Dan. 12:2) and “eternal judgment” (Eccl. 12:14) in the OT were not well-developed doctrines, so they were often discussed by Jews. But in Christ, these issues were settled. Whereas the OT had little to say, Christ and the apostles had spoken of the resurrection and of eternal punishment in no uncertain terms.

Food for Thought

            Orthodox Jews today (God love them!) are like little boys playing with toy cars dreaming of the day when they can drive a real one. The Hebrew Scriptures (the OT) point the way to the fact that the Car they dream about is actually here and available to drive. All they must do is look upon Jesus who is that car, so to speak. But they, along with so many others who attend pagan churches, insist on merely playing with toy cars. The Messiah has come, and He’s coming again!

Hebrews 6:1-3… Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, 2 of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment. 3 And this we will do, if God permits.

Commentary (Part 2)

There is a secondary application for Hebrews 6:1-3 that can apply to Christians. Although the passage is primarily addressed to unbelievers from 5:11 to 6:8, Christians can learn something because Christians can tend to “grow dull” in their walk with Christ. Some, though once excited about Jesus wind up getting bored with Him and not growing in their faith (cf. 2 Pet. 1:5-7). Like newborns they only drink milk and reject the solid food of deeper doctrine.

The audience addressed had been taught about Jesus Christ, but their present condition did not indicate that they were truly saved, for they were entertaining thoughts of going back into the rituals of Judaism and to their high priest who was inferior to Jesus. The solution commanded by the writer was to leave the elementary teachings about Christ and “press on to maturity” (6:1).

First, they were to “leave the elementary teaching about the Christ.” The Greek verb for “leaving” means “to put or place.” The verb is prefixed with the preposition “off,” so the verbal idea concerns action which brings about separation. The verb is an aorist participle (a once for all action) which means that the action of “leaving” must precede the action of the main verb which is “let us press on.” So after leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ the second command was to “press on to maturity.” The verb means “to carry or bear,” and it is in the passive voice, which means that the subject is inactive itself and is being acted upon by some outside agent. Thus, “abandoning once for all … let us be carried along into maturity.” They needed to abandon so as to be able to press onward to maturity. Their idleness had caused them to drift (2:1) because they had not been paying careful attention to what they had been taught.

Now since the passage is addressed to unbelieving Jews, this message to Christians is merely a secondary application concerning the “elementary teaching about the Christ.” First, “repentance from dead works” is listed. Repentance is turning away from sin, and to repent from “dead works” is to turn away from any futile attempt to earn one’s salvation through works. Second, to have “faith toward God” is to believe not in God per se but in God the Son, Jesus Christ. Whereas repentance from dead works concerns turning from the darkness of sin, faith in God concerns turning toward His light. Third, “instructions about washings” may concern a discussion about baptism. In the first century there was Jewish baptism, John the Baptist’s baptism, and Christian baptism. Of course Ephesians 4:5, says there is “one baptism.”

The fourth elementary teaching of Christ concerned the “laying on of hands.” This could refer to receiving the Holy Spirit’s baptism which was often bestowed upon believers by the apostles laying on of hands, but only in the first century. Fifth, “resurrection from the dead” was a basic issue which taught that all believers would rise again in the end-times – some to eternal life, some to eternal death. Which leads to the sixth elementary teaching: “eternal judgment.” Sadly, people then, as now, still debate how a God of love could allow eternal judgment.

 

Food for Thought

            God has permitted us to move forward (v. 3) and to grow, so we have the wonderful task of growing to maturity through the solid food of the Word. All the basic doctrines of the Bible are important, but they merely lay the foundation of faith that must grow upon that foundation. Amazingly all of these are still debated today by the immature who refuse to grow in their faith.

Hebrews 6:4-6… For in the case of those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit, 5 and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, 6 and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame.

Commentary

            From the day the church began almost 2,000 years ago there have been false believers who come and go. Some look like believers for at least four reasons. First, they “have once been enlightened.” To “enlighten” means to shine a light into darkness and thus bring illumination. It also means to “make known; to instruct.” In this context those “enlightened” were those who had the gospel preached to them causing them to be illumined with the Truth of Jesus Christ as the Messiah. This Truth is not said to have saved them, only to have enlightened them.

            The second characteristic of these apostates is that they had “tasted of the heavenly gift.” The “heavenly gift” is of course Jesus Christ himself, and they had “tasted” of him who is the Bread of Life. Much like the Israelites in the wilderness who ate the daily bread from heaven for 40 years but who still refused to believe, so too are apostates who merely taste the goodness of God, once delighting in it, but who lose their appetite for the real meal. These never feast on the Truth, but like one who samples food, they merely tasted Christ and rejected the meal he offered. Judas was like this, as was Balaam, but they fell away in spite of all they knew about God.

            Thirdly, these apostates “have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit.” Notice they weren’t baptized by the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 12:13) or sealed by the Spirit (Eph. 1:13-14). They were simply made “partakers” – sharers – of the Spirit. They did not possess the Spirit in that He made His abode in their hearts. These were people who had been cooperating with other Christians in the common task of ministry. But even the writer of Hebrews made it clear that true partakers are those who “hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end” (3:14).

            Fourthly, these apostates “have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come.” The wicked Herod Antipas is said to have enjoyed hearing John the Baptist preach (Mark 6:20), but he later killed him! In like manner, Jesus told a parable about those who received God’s word with joy in their hearts but later fell away (Mark 4:16-17). These also merely taste of God’s Word without eating it, digesting it, and becoming full with it and nourished by it.

            For those who fit this bill, believers who reject Christ and become apostate, it is “impossible to renew them again to repentance.” No one is able to participate in God’s pre-salvation work in their lives and then choose to go back into a life that rejects Jesus as the Messiah. To do so would put Jesus Christ to open shame. One who would do such would actually participate with those who crucified Jesus and confirm their own belief that Jesus was not the Messiah but a false Christ and a deceiver worthy of death. “Impossible” is not to be rendered “difficult” as some have proposed but as unattainable and unachievable (cf. Heb. 6:18; 10:4; 11:6). Apostasy is a serious sin, akin to the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit (Mark 3:29).

 

Food for Thought

Notice that none of the normal terms for salvation are used in Heb. 6:4-6, terms like redeemed, justified, sanctified, born again, forgiven, and declared righteous. True believers are guaranteed a future redemption (Eph. 1:13-14), but false believers are only guaranteed to leave the church. You’ll notice them when they depart (1 John 2:19). Christ’s sheep, on the other hand, can never cease to be His sheep. No one can snatch them away from Christ (John 10:28-29).

Hebrews 6:4-6… For in the case of those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit, 5 and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, 6 and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame.

Personal Thoughts

In a controversial passage like this it is important to note what is NOT being taught. This passage does not teach that salvation can be lost. The author was writing to Jewish people who were a part of the early church – a church consisting of true believers who had committed their lives to Christ and false believers. The false ones had turned away from Judaism to Christ without actually becoming Christians. Their problem was that they did nothing with Jesus, and their idleness had caused them to become “dull of hearing.” Therefore, pinpointing the audience is key to understanding the author’s intent. After all, in every church in the world today there are true and false believers. True Christians commit their lives to Christ and live for him. False believers don’t. Their end will look something like those that Jesus rebuked in Matthew 7:21-23.

Salvation is a gift from God, and it is a gift He has promised to never take back. He wrote the book of life long before the earth and people were ever even created (Rev. 13:8), and it contains the names of all His elect. That book is not being edited, subtracted from, or added to. Salvation is eternal, and it cannot be lost (John 10:26-30; Rom. 8:31-39;Eph. 1:13-14). If people can lose their salvation then this passage clearly shows that it’s impossible to ever get it back!

Like a suicidal person on the edge about to jump, these Jews were in a position where they needed to make a decision regarding Jesus Christ. They had all they needed to have in order to believe. They had not yet become apostates, so the writer – because he knew how close they were – had to step in and say what he did. Having lived for so long in the OT Levitical system of pictures and ABC’s, these Jews had a tendency toward their old life. But to go back into that life and reject Christ would be a fatal mistake. The tabernacle, the priesthood, and offerings all pointed to Jesus in His Person and work. But these were mere pictures of the Christ – elementary teaching about the Christ. The writer called them to leave the pictures of Christ and look at the actual man Jesus.

Consider the Jews that Jeremiah prophesied to. After giving them ample opportunity to repent and return to God – and after they continually rejected Him – He finally told Jeremiah to stop praying for them (7:16; 11:11, 14; 14:11-12). God was finished with them! Likewise, the Pharisees got a first-hand look at the Messiah. Yet they blatantly denied Jesus and credited his deeds to the devil. This was the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit (Matt. 12:30-32; Mark 3:20-30).

People today who attend church regularly are in the same boat. They have been enlightened over and over, week after week but fail to commit their lives to Christ. In failing to do so they become dull of hearing and are in danger of shipwrecking their lives.

This passage is not talking about Christians who fall into sin, who backslide, and who later repent of their sins. Most of us will do that at some point in our lives. No, this passage is addressing unconverted Jews who have been adequately presented Jesus Christ and who have supposedly put their faith in him. They subsequently rejected Jesus as the Christ however. They claimed to have faith in Christ but were in danger of becoming apostate. And it also includes those who never really made a profession of faith in Christ but who have clearly understood the presentation of the gospel. These folks have no way of coming back to faith once they have reject Christ outright after having been given a proper presentation of the gospel.

Hebrews 6:7-8… For ground that drinks the rain which often falls on it and brings forth vegetation useful to those for whose sake it is also tilled, receives a blessing from God; 8 but if it yields thorns and thistles, it is worthless and close to being cursed, and it ends up being burned.

Commentary

            Hebrews 6:7-8 illustrates 6:4-6. Ground that utilizes the rain that falls on it by producing a crop useful for those who eat of it is blessed by God (v. 7). This illustrates those who have heard the gospel of Jesus Christ, placed their undying faith in him alone for salvation, and who continually grow in their faith (cf. 2 Pet. 1:5-7). These believers are secure in their salvation, and the fruit of their lives is seen by all – just like a field that produces crops after the rains have fallen on it and after being tilled by those who benefit from it.

            Now the illustration works both ways according to v. 8. For land that has rain falling on it and which is tilled but which produces no fruit is worthless. It’s like a team that invests millions of dollars in an athlete with great promise but who never lives up to expectations. The athlete is later waived from the team to cut financial losses. This illustrates the sinner who hears the gospel message of salvation. He may possibly attend church regularly, listen to the Scriptures preached each Sunday, socialize with true believers, and understand that the gift of Jesus Christ is eternal life. But he rejects Jesus and moves back into his old life because he became disillusioned by Christianity or because he simply decided that committing his life to Christ was not his style.

So v. 8 speaks of ground that receives the same rain as the fruitful ground in v. 7, but it only produces thorns and thistles as opposed to eatable fruit. The passage teaches that people like this kind of land are “close to being cursed.” This is pertinent because when man’s sin caused the earth to be cursed God told Adam that the land would produce “thorns and thistles” (Gen. 3:18). If this passage is a parallel then it proves that idle “believers” are in sin whether they stand still or blatantly apostatize, and their lives are cursed. Their ultimate destination, like worthless thorns and thistles, is to be “burned.” Now that doesn’t sound at all like a good thing!

There are other passages in the Bible that speak of the same fate for false believers and show that Heb. 6:4-6 is not unique. Jesus’ Parable of the Sower (Matt. 13:1-9, 18-23) and his story about the vine and the branches (John 15:5-6) both show that the one that produces no fruit is one that is not truly saved. Of course Jesus tells a group of people in Matt. 7:21-23 that he never knew them even though they called him “Lord.” His words to them were that they were “doers of wickedness” in spite of the fact that they called him Lord.

The Apostle John may be speaking of apostates in 1 John 5:16 when he speaks of a “sin leading to death.” He even tells his readers not to pray for them! And the Apostle Peter says as much in 2 Pet. 2:20-22: “For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment handed on to them. It has happened to them according to the true proverb, ‘a dog returns to his own vomit,’ and, ‘A sow, after washing, returns to wallowing in the mire.’”

 

Food for Thought

            Biblically, it’s not a question of whether a person can lose his/her salvation. The question is “who has salvation?” Just because you attend church and know who Jesus is does not make you a Christian. So ask yourself which soil you are. Does your life produce a fruit in keeping with God’s grace? Or do you produce nothing but worldly fruit in keeping with the curse?

·         One of the pre-salvation ministries of the Spirit is to enable the unsaved who come under the hearing of the gospel, to have a certain appreciation of the blessedness of salvation. He equips them with a spiritual sense of taste with reference to the things of God. Many a sinner has been buoyed up by the message of the evangelist, has had stirrings in his bosom, has had a pleasant reaction towards the truth, and yet when the decision time came has said, “The world is too much with us,” and has turned back into sin.

·         Having left the temple sacrifices, and having identified themselves with the visible Church, from what could they fall away but from their profession of Messiah as High Priest, and to what could they fall back to but OT sacrifices?

·         “The principles of the doctrine of Christ,” must refer to the First Testament sacrifices, for these Jews are exhorted to abandon them.

·         “Perfection” must speak of the NT Sacrifice to which they are exhorted to allow themselves to be borne along.

·         The Levitical offerings were not complete in that the blood of bulls and goats could not pay for sin. Neither was their completeness in what they could do for the offerer.

·         The expression in 5:12 refers to the elementary teachings in New Testament truth, and the one in 6:1, to the teaching of the First Testament where Messiah was first spoken of.

·         στοιχεῖα τῆς ἀρχῆς τῶν λογίων τοῦ θεοῦ (5:12) “elementary truths of the beginning of the sayings of God”

·         τὸν τῆς ἀρχῆς τοῦ Χριστοῦ λόγον (6:1) “the word of the beginning of the Christ”

·         “Repentance from dead works” is OT teaching preached by John the Baptist so as to turn man’s hearts toward to coming Messiah (Matt. 3:1-12; cf. Acts 19:1-6), and is in contrast to NT teaching of “repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ” (Acts 20:21).

·         “Faith toward God” is OT and in contrast with faith in our Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 20:21).

·         Judaism stressed repentance as a regular antidote for sin, and a once-for-all kind of repentance for the turning of pagans to Judaism; Judaism naturally stressed faith as well. Although “dead” works could echo the common Jewish denunciation of idols as dead, that specific an allusion is unlikely in this context; cf. 9:14.

·         “The doctrine of washings” refers to the ceremonial cleanings of Judaism, and is typical of the NT cleansing of the conscience from dead works to serve the living and true God by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost (Titus 3:5). the most relevant to Christianity was proselyte baptism as an act of conversion washing away the former impurity of a pagan life.

·         “Laying on of hands” refers to the imposition of the offerer’s hand upon the sacrificial offerings of the Levitical system (Lev. 1:4), and is typical of the act of a sinner today laying his hand of faith upon the sacred head of the Lamb of God.

·         “The resurrection of the dead,”

·         “Eternal judgment” of the old dispensation is in contrast to the “no judgment for the believer in Christ” of the new.

·         Thus, these Hebrews are exhorted not to return to OT teaching, but to go on to faith in the New Testament Sacrifice.

Διὸ ἀφέντες τὸν τῆς ἀρχῆς τοῦ Χριστοῦ λόγον ἐπὶ τὴν τελειότητα

Wherefore having sent off (AAPtcp) the of the beginning of Christ word upon     the completeness

φερώμεθα, μὴ πάλιν θεμέλιον καταβαλλόμενοι μετανοίας ἀπὸ νεκρῶν

we might carry (PPS), not again  foundation          throwing down (PMPtcp)         repentance from             dead

ἔργων καὶ πίστεως ἐπὶ θεόν, 2 βαπτισμῶν διδαχῆς ἐπιθέσεώς τε χειρῶν,

works          and    faith            upon      God,           baptisms                 teaching       setting on              and of hands

ἀναστάσεώς τε νεκρῶν καὶ κρίματος αἰωνίου. 3 καὶ τοῦτο ποιήσομεν,

resurrection             and     of dead         and   judgment               eternal.                  And this we will do (FAI)

ἐάνπερ ἐπιτρέπῃ θεός. 4 Ἀδύνατον γὰρ τοὺς ἅπαξ φωτισθέντας,

if indeed       might allow (PAS) the God.        Impossible         for    the ones once  having been enlightened (APPtcp)

γευσαμένους τε τῆς δωρεᾶς τῆς ἐπουρανίου καὶ μετόχους γενηθέντας

having tasted (AMPtcp) and of the gift           of the         on heaven          and     sharers          having become (APPtcp)

πνεύματος ἁγίου 5 καὶ καλὸν γευσαμένους θεοῦ ῥῆμα δυνάμεις τε

in the Spirit          of holy          and      of good      having tasted (AMPtcp) of God word     in powers       and

μέλλοντος αἰῶνος 6 καὶ παραπεσόντας, πάλιν ἀνακαινίζειν εἰς

being about to be (PAPtcp) age     and    having fallen from (AAPtcp), again to renew (PAIn)        into

μετάνοιαν, ἀνασταυροῦντας ἑαυτοῖς τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ

repentance,          crucifying again (PAPtcp)      to themselves the      Son           of      God         and

παραδειγματίζοντας. 7 γῆ γὰρ πιοῦσα τὸν ἐπʼ αὐτῆς ἐρχόμενον

exposing publicly (PAPtcp).                  For land the   having drunk (AAPtcp) the on it coming (PMPtcp)

πολλάκις ὑετὸν καὶ τίκτουσα βοτάνην εὔθετον ἐκείνοις διʼ οὓς καὶ

frequently             rain         and  giving birth (PAPtcp) vegetation   suitable           to those through whom also

γεωργεῖται, μεταλαμβάνει εὐλογίας ἀπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ· 8 ἐκφέρουσα δὲ

it is farmed (PPI),    takes with (PAI)               good word             from of God.                 Bringing out (PAPtcp) but

ἀκάνθας καὶ τριβόλους, ἀδόκιμος καὶ κατάρας ἐγγύς, ἧς τὸ τέλος εἰς

thorns                    and        thistles,             rejected       and      cursed                near         which  the end     into

καῦσιν. (burning)

ONCE ENLIGHTENED

·         Numbers 24:3… He took up his discourse and said, “The oracle of Balaam the son of Beor,

·         And the oracle of the man whose eye is opened…”

·         Numbers 24:15-16… He took up his discourse and said, “The oracle of Balaam the son of Beor, And the oracle of the man whose eye is opened, 16 The oracle of him who hears the words of God, And knows the knowledge of the Most High, Who sees the vision of the Almighty, Falling down, yet having his eyes uncovered.”

·         Hebrews 10:32… But remember the former days, when, after being enlightened, you endured a great conflict of sufferings,

TASTED THE HEAVENLY GIFT

·         Matthew 7:21-22… " Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22  " Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?'

·         Luke 10:19-20… "Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing will injure you. 20  "Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are recorded in heaven." 

·         John 3:27… John answered and said, " A man can receive nothing unless it has been given him from heaven.

·         John 4:10… Jesus answered and said to her, "If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water."

·         John 6:32… Jesus then said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven.

·         Acts 8:20… But Peter said to him, "May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money!

·         Acts 10:45… All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also.

·         Acts 11:17… "Therefore if God gave to them the same gift as He gave to us also after believing in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God's way?"

·         Romans 1:11… For I long to see you so that I may impart some spiritual gift to you, that you may be established;

·         1 Corinthians 13:1-2… If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of  prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.

·         Ephesians 2:8… For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is  the gift of God;

·         Ephesians 3:7… of which I was made a minister, according to the gift of God's grace which was given to me according to the working of His power.

·         Ephesians 4:7… But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ's gift.

·         1 Timothy 4:14… Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you, which was bestowed on you through prophetic utterance with the laying on of hands by the presbytery.

·         James 1:17-18… Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. 18 In the exercise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures.

·         They had tasted of the heavenly gift, and in such a way as to give them a distinct impression of its character and quality, for the words “once for all” qualify this word also. These Hebrews were like the spies at Kadesh-Barnea who saw the land and had the very fruit in their hands, and yet turned back (4:1–13). One of the pre-salvation ministries of the Spirit is to enable the unsaved who come under the hearing of the gospel, to have a certain appreciation of the blessedness of salvation. He equips them with a spiritual sense of taste with reference to the things of God. Many a sinner has been buoyed up by the message of the evangelist, has had stirrings in his bosom, has had a pleasant reaction towards the truth, and yet when the decision time came has said, “The world is too much with us,” and has turned back into sin.

PARTAKERS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

·         Acts 15:8… God, who knows the heart, testified to them giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He also did to us;

·         Galatians 3:2… This is the only thing I want to find out from you: did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?

·         Hebrews 2:4… God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.

·         We must be careful to note that the Greek word translated “partakers” does not mean “possessors,” in the sense that these Hebrews possessed the Holy Spirit as an indwelling Person who had come to take up His permanent abode in their hearts. The word is a compound of the Greek verb “to have or hold”, and a preposition meaning “with”, thus “to hold with.” It is used in Luke 5:7 where it is translated “partners,” signifying one who co-operates with another in a common task or undertaking. It is used in Hebrews 1:9 where the angels are “fellows” of our Lord, partners or associates with Him in the work of salvation. It is used in Hebrews 3:1 where the recipients of this letter are called participators in the heavenly calling. That is, they participated together in the heavenly calling. These Hebrews had left the earthly calling of the nation Israel, and had identified themselves with the Church which has a heavenly calling. It is used in Hebrews 3:14, where it speaks of those who participate together in the Lord Jesus.

TASTED THE GOOD WORD OF GOD

·         Matthew 13:20-21… "The one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, this is the man who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21  yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away.

·         Mark 4:16-17… "In a similar way these are the ones on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy; 17  and they have no firm root in themselves, but are only temporary; then, when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately they fall away.

·         Mark 6:20… for Herod was afraid of John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he kept him safe. And when he heard him, he was very perplexed; but he used to enjoy listening to him.

·         Luke 8:13… "Those on the rocky soil are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no firm root; they believe for a while, and in time of temptation fall away.

·         1 Peter 2:3… if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.

·         2 Peter 2:20… For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first.

RENEW THEM AGAIN:

·         Psalms 51:10… Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.

·         Isaiah 1:28… But transgressors and sinners will be crushed together, And those who forsake the LORD will come to an end.

·         2 Timothy 2:25… with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth,

CRUCIFY TO THEMSELVES THE SON OF GOD:

·         Zechariah 12:10-14… "I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn. 11 "In that day there will be great mourning in Jerusalem, like the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the plain of Megiddo. 12 "The land will mourn, every family by itself; the family of the house of David by itself and their wives by themselves; the family of the house of Nathan by itself and their wives by themselves; 13 the family of the house of Levi by itself and their wives by themselves; the family of the Shimeites by itself and their wives by themselves; 14 all the families that remain, every family by itself and their wives by themselves.

·         Matthew 23:31-32… "So you testify against yourselves, that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. 32  "Fill up, then, the measure of the guilt of your fathers.

·         Luke 11:48… "So you are witnesses and approve the deeds of your fathers; because it was they who killed them, and you build their tombs.

·         Hebrews 10:29… How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace?

Related Media
Related Sermons