Christian’s Prep Rally – Hebrews 6

Continuing on with Hebrews Chapter 6 NASB

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, of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment. And this we will do, if God permits. 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, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, 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. 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; but if it yields thorns and thistles, it is worthless and close to being cursed, and it ends up being burned.

But, beloved, we are convinced of better things concerning you, and things that accompany salvation, though we are speaking in this way. For God is not unjust so as to forget your work and the love which you have shown toward His name, in having ministered and in still ministering to the saints. And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope until the end, so that you will not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.

For when God made the promise to Abraham, since He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself, saying, “I will surely bless you and I will surely multiply you.” And so, having patiently waited, he obtained the promise. For men swear by one greater than themselves, and with them an oath given as confirmation is an end of every dispute. In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us. This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.

Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!

18 comments

  1. Hi Bruce, I’ve just read your post. The first paragraph makes me think of what happens to backsliders . . . but I have to take the dogs out now before they start crossing their legs (!), so I’ll return later. 😀

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    • The Hebrews posts are straight Scripture so I can’t take any credit for that! Just got tired of all the posts on accusations and counter accusations so I thought countering the flood with God’s Word seemed like the right thing to do. And very few would argue that Hebrews isn’t a faith builder! Blessings Jeff.

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  2. I’m back . . . it was a long walk! lol
    I’ve been reading more of the bible than usual because of all the madness going on in the world just now and it’s doing me a power of good.

    “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, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, 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.”
    This is the part that got me thinking about people who backslide. Does this mean that they have lost their salvation, even if they are completely filled with remorse and are repentant at some later date?

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    • I don’t think this is backsliding in the normal sense of the word, we are talking totally walking away, renouncing etc. If it was just ordinary backsliding there would be a lot of us in the hurt locket. Hope that helps.

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      • I’m still not completely sure, Bruce. There was a time when I totally walked away from God. In fact, I hated Him and sought out other sources for ‘spiritual’ satisfaction, including the Tarot, Wicca, nature worship, etc. At the time, I was working in a hospital for the physically and mentally ill. It was in the days when those people were shut away in institutions away from the world – the old type of asylum building.

        There were sights that haunted me. People who were so mentally afflicted that they had to be kept in locked wards because they were a danger to themselves and others. People who were so badly disfigured that no one wanted them. And, to be honest, they were often humiliated and treated very badly. It still makes me feel like crying now when I think of them. I kept thinking to myself that God only needed to say the word and they would be healed, but they never were.

        So I turned away from God, for quite a long time. It was a chance meeting of two sincere Christian people, many years later, that got me thinking that perhaps I could turn back to God. I did, but it was only after much searching the scriptures and consulting books that helped me to understand why God often allows suffering. I realise now that my faith was lacking then and I should have been praying for those poor people instead of allowing myself to be overcome with hate and anger at God. But, that conclusion has only been reached with the benefit of hindsight. Had I died in those dark times, I wonder if my salvation would have been lost.

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      • I hear what you are saying Lesley, there are many stories like yours, including my own. I will ask you a question. How does your faith now differ from the faith that you walked away from before? I already know the answer. Does the word “superficial” sound about right? The faith that I have now is not even close to the faith that I had in the beginning. There was no real relationship, no comprehension, very little appreciation for the worth of God’s being active in my life. There were a lot of holes that God needed to fill in and that takes time. Many of us have done things like you did, the particulars don’t really matter, there were lessons that we all had to learn. I will ask you another question. Do you think God would ask of us what He Himself in not willing to do? Remember when Peter asked Jesus how many times we should forgive our brother? It was not seven times but seventy times seven, which basically means when ever in truth we are asked to forgive. And if we are asked to do that, do you think God says no when we ask to be forgiven by Him. We are forgiven because of our faith and trust in Christ but even when we mess up, which we all do, even those sins are forgiven when we acknowledge them and ask to be forgiven. God does not ask us to do what He does not do Himself. If you are like me, I bet you have acknowledged those sins and have asked to be forgiven. They are forgiven. I could never have gotten to where I am today if I had not gone through many things that I had to learn. It never really stops, yet His love still covers us. Think of how you react when your own children get mad or angry at you and say things and do things because of their frustration and lack of understanding. Do you or did you stop loving them? Nope. If we, in our frailty can comprehend why our children do and say what they may say, I’m pretty sure that God’s comprehension and understanding is much better than ours. All of us walk down paths that we did not need to walk down but even when we did, God turned it to our good in the end. He knows our end from the beginning and He allows us to learn from our mistakes and those mistakes are important to go through. Forget the past and keep your eyes on Jesus who walks before you. That is what Paul said. Do not doubt that you are loved by God. What happened, happened because we needed to learn something that is unique to each of us and ALL OF IT, helped us to get where we are today. In essence, we are all prodigal sons and daughters, if we return. You and I both returned and there are many others who also returned. And there are some who have not returned, but you and I are not among them. One more question. Could you walk away now? I could not and cannot. The relationship has changed, the value is much more, the assurance is greater than. Many years ago God allowed me to taste of His love. He is Holy, I was not. I was different than Him BUT the overwhelming love that emulated from Him surpassed anything you can even imagine and that love is there because we acknowledged His Son Jesus and what Jesus did for us. Since that time I have tasted of God’s love, even this morning in prayer, but never like the intensity of what He once showed me. I haven’t got a clue why God showed me what He did but I can tell you, you have no idea how much He loves you. God is the source of all good things. You know this now in your heart, keep walking towards His goodness because His love is there for you. Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world. God’s Spirit resides within you. Lean unto Him. I prayed and asked God to help me answer your question, I’m trusting He did in these words He gave me for you. You are His daughter and He loves you. Blessings Lesley.

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      • Bruce, I am so sorry that I’m only answering you now. I did read your reply earlier, but have only managed to get online to answer you. Thank you so much for spending the time to share such a comprehensive response.

        Yes, I can see that, even though I’ve loved Jesus from being a small child, it has taken a lifetime to learn and understand things (I’m still learning) and for my faith to grow to what it is today. When I turned away from God before, I would have been an immature Christian. I’m so blessed that He didn’t give up on me. I suppose that’s the thing with God – He knows our hearts and He knows when someone will repent and when someone’s heart grows so hard that they will never repent. I did and I know that He has forgiven me for the times I’ve hurt Him.

        When you asked the question, “Could you walk away now?”, I felt my eyes tearing up and my heart hurt at the thought of hurting Him again. No, I know I could never turn away from Him now.
        Blessings to you, Bruce.

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      • And that indeed is the difference between where you were and where you are now. Then I didn’t know Him, now I do and that makes all the difference. So to answer your original question, I think once you have come to know Jesus, and I acknowledge it is only partial, but it is always enough, because Jesus continually stretches our faith in Him, and to then turn away, that is the backsliding from which there is no return because you know and you still turn away. I can’t envision that happening but I am sure for some that it does and that is truly sad. I ran across this quote recently from J.P, Moreland that struck a cord. “God maintains a delicate balance between keeping His existence sufficiently evident so people will know He’s there and yet hiding His presence enough so that people who want to choose to ignore Him can do it. This way, their choice of destiny is really free.“ In my case, every time, without exception, when I really need God to let me know He is there, and I don’t need that kind of assurance every day, but when I really do need to know, He lets me know. So many beautiful examples over the years but you know and it melts our hearts. I’m pretty sure you know what I mean Lesley. It’s a hard thing to put into words but it is oh so precious and it never ceases to blow my mind. Love in Christ – Bruce

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      • I think that we all have the chance right up to the very last moment before death, like the sinner on the cross next to Jesus, to repent . . . but yes, it’s a choice we have to make and, if our heart has become so hardened, we wouldn’t make the choice to repent, no matter how open it is to us.
        I do know what you mean about those special moments, Bruce. During times of conflict, I used to despair – now I’m beginning to relax because I’ve found that things get turned round very quickly, and I know God’s hand was in it.
        Thank you for this discussion, Bruce. It’s helped me to understand the situation more clearly and I’ll be more inclined now to pray for those whose hearts are becoming hardened.
        Love in Christ x

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  3. Part of my daily reading, meditation and prayer time with the Lord each day is in Hebrews. I feel enriched, rich and a foundation has been laid for the day when I meet with the Lord in this way. Otherwise, I can be like a wave in a sea of who knows what…driven by to many other non-essential urgencies that are not important.

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    • To go through Hebrews came to me while in prayer, a good number of my posts also come to me while in prayer, “In Spite Of” was one of them. I love how the Holy Spirit leads. I also have sought that grounding. Thank you Gary for sharing. God bless you brother.

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