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Category Archives: Hebrews 6

The Elementary Teachings about Christ (A Brief Look at Hebrews 6)

Here is a fascinating passage from Hebrews 6. If you were asked, “What are the primary elementary teachings about Christ?, what would you say? Notice the list that the author of Hebrews gives —

Notice that he refers to this list as “the foundation” (v. 1). Just a few questions occur to me —

1. How can some Christians say that repentance is not required for salvation? Without repentance, our “acts” lead to spiritual death!

2. Without faith it is impossible to please God, we are told in Hebrews 11:6 (“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”). One of the foundation truths about Christ is that we have faith in God. Not in ourselves or our works or our religiosity. But in God.

3. I’m a bit puzzled by the third elementary truth: “instruction about cleansing rites.” I’m not Jewish and Hebrews was written with a Jewish audience’s needs prominent. Some were apparently tempted to go back to Judaism and its efforts at a works-salvation process. Perhaps that’s what’s on the author’s mind.

4. This fourth elemental truth — “the laying on of hands” — obviously has to do with leadership. God is not a God of chaos, but of order. And order in the local church involves godly, qualified pastor-shepherds who use their gifts to build up the Body of Christ.

5. Another elemental truth is “the resurrection of the dead.” How are we to “move beyond” a truth like that?! Moving beyond doesn’t mean abandoning these fundamental truths, but building on them. In our this-life-only culture, we need to remind people that there is a life beyond this life. And every person will be raised from the dead — some to eternal life and others to eternal punishment (Mt. 25:46).

6. A final “elemental truth” is “eternal judgment.” If the Bible teaches that there are two and only two eternal destinies for man (either the New Heavens and the New Earth for believers or the Lake of Fire for unbelievers), then we must resist efforts to minimize the awful truth of eternal separation from God and His Kingdom. You might find my 1st book, The Other Side of the Good News, helpful here.

Conclusion: These six truths are fundamentals for the believer. And we should thank God for this foundation of truth. And we should “move beyond” them (build on them) in the sense of growing in our walk with Christ!

 
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Posted by on August 10, 2021 in Hebrews 6

 

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Five Benefits of Salvation (A Brief Look at Hebrews 6)

Hebrews 6 is a challenging chapter. Several of my friends and I are reading through this chapter each day this week (our Bible study is described here) and then, on Sunday, we will write each other a brief email highlighting something we got out of the chapter before we move on to Hebrews 7.

I want us to focus this morning not on the possibility of one losing his or her salvation, but on the benefits of being in the family of God. Here are the verses I’m thinking about:

There is much here, but I want to list and briefly discuss each of the five benefits of salvation highlighted here by the author of Hebrews. The text speaks of

THOSE WHO HAVE —

1. ONCE BEEN ENLIGHTENED

2. TASTED THE HEAVENLY GIFT

3. SHARED IN THE HOLY SPIRIT

4. TASTED THE GOODNESS OF THE WORD OF GOD

5. TASTED THE POWERS OF THE COMING AGE

Although I don’t believe the Bible teaches that a genuine believers can lose his salvation, these expressions sure sound like true salvation, don’t they? If this is not a description of a born-again person, it certainly seems to be true of one incredibly close to the family of God.

Let’s think about each of these descriptions for a few moments. This person has —

1. “once been enlightened”– Would you describe your coming to Christ with those words? You’ve been “enlightened”? God, by His grace, opened your eyes and you saw your sin and His holiness and you fled to the Lord Jesus for forgiveness? Light broke into your soul and you saw the truth!

2. “tasted the heavenly gift” — How fascinating that the writer uses the sense of taste to describe one’s salvation. What is the “gift” to which he refers? The gift of salvation? Forgiveness of sins? A place in God’s family? And notice please that this gift is “the heavenly gift.” We don’t earn it; it is not of this earth. It is direct from heaven to us through the Incarnate Son of God.

3. “shared in the Holy Spirit” — As some of you know, I’ve been working on a book on the Spirit of God and how we can and should develop a “relationship” with Him. What do we “share” in the Holy Spirit? We share our bond in the Lord Jesus. We share God’s purpose in reaching the world for Christ. We share in the gifts the Spirit gives to build up Christ’s Body, the Church. The unbeliever does not have the Holy Spirit, is not indwelt by the Holy Spirit, cannot have fellowship with the Holy Spirit. And consequently has nothing to share.

4. “tasted the goodness of the Word of God” — This is the writer’s second reference to tasting. How fascinating! We “taste” the goodness of God’s Word. We are challenged in Psalm 34:8 to “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” If we are feasting on God’s Word, we are tasting of its goodness, its relevance, its incredible practicality in our lives.

5. “tasted the powers of the coming age” — This is the writer’s third reference to tasting. I really don’t know what is meant here, to be quite honest. Perhaps it is the idea that God’s power breaks into our present age through miracles and the conviction of the Holy Spirit in changing lives, through the powerful preaching of God’s Word, etc. Are such truths a foretaste of what heaven will be like? Your thoughts on this point?

Conclusion: Again, my purpose in this post is not to argue if a genuine child of God can get lost. I want us to concentrate on and thank God for the five benefits we have in presently knowing Christ. And why would anyone give those up?

 
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Posted by on August 8, 2021 in Hebrews 6

 

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