Lectionary Calendar
Monday, June 24th, 2024
the Week of Proper 7 / Ordinary 12
Attention!
Partner with StudyLight.org as God uses us to make a difference for those displaced by Russia's war on Ukraine.
Click to donate today!

Bible Commentaries
Hebrews 4

Godbey's Commentary on the New TestamentGodbey's NT Commentary

Search for…
Enter query below:
Additional Authors

Verses 1-13

ARGUMENT 2

THE TWO RESTS: REST AND PERFECT REST.

When Israel evacuated the brick kilns and mortar yards they rested from the toils of slavery and the rod of the taskmaster. When they crossed the Red Sea they escaped forever out of the dominion of Pharaoh. Egypt emblematizes sin; the taskmasters, evil habits; and Pharaoh, the devil. It is said in Deuteronomy, “God led them out that he might lead them in,” i. e., out of Egypt into Canaan. Though the congregations to which Moses preached in Egypt were all “sinners,” the great burden of his preaching was on sanctification. He said very little about the wilderness which they would enter when they crossed the sea, but much about the land flowing with milk and honey, and abounding in corn and wine. The grand incentive and culminating aspiration for which they left Egypt was the land of Canaan. Jesus, in Matthew 11:28-30, promises the sinner two rests: first, rest from his burden of guilt; and second, rest for his soul. In Old Testament symbolism the soul is typified by the body. in the emancipation under Moses, Israel rested from slavery and Pharaoh. Still their weary feet and hungry bodies found no rest in the howling wilderness till they crossed the Jordan, where comfortable houses which they had never built, and abundance of old corn which they had not reared, and delicious fruits pendant from trees which they had never planted, saluted them on all sides, and bade them rest from their long and weary wanderings in perfect peace and enjoy all the luxuries heart can wish. Pursuant to this instructive similitude, justification gives us rest from the awful slavery of evil habits and the power of Satan; but it is not the perfect rest for which the heart sighs, while it wanders through the howling wilderness of inbred sin. Old Adam, though conquered and bound, still lives in the deep subterranean jungles of unsanctified affection. He growls and rages like a sore-headed bear, and if we do not constantly watch and pray he will get loose and play sad havoc, again bringing us into bondage. The soul can not enjoy perfect rest so long as it is beleaguered with internal enemies. Entire sanctification crucifies old Adam, puts all of our enemies on the outside, expurgates evil affections from the deep interior of the spiritual organism, and superinduces the perfect rest which we lost in Eden. It is truly, significantly and pre-eminently the soul’s repose, for which the whole world has been roaming, sighing and crying for the last six thousand years. It is a sweet prelibation of the heavenly rest. It is never enjoyed in simple justification, which is the reversal of the condemnatory sentence, and always brings the peace of pardon, but never the peace of purity. Regeneration gives you a new heart, but does not exterminate the hereditary depravity from which all actual sins emanate. The heart of the whole world aches, longs and yearns for this perfect rest, but blinded by Satan they seek it in myriad ways, only to add disappointment, mortification, withered hopes and perished aspirations to the mountains of sin already crushing them into hopeless despair. Millions of blind guides throughout the whole earth raise the hue and cry, “Come this way!” only to plunge you into blacker darkness, eclipsing the last lingering ray of the forlorn hope which has impelled you on, like the ignis fatuus,

“whose delusive ray Lights up unreal worlds and glows but to betray.”

Meanwhile millions of preachers Protestant, papal, pagan and Moslem are vociferously clamoring and indefatigably toiling to acquiesce and tranquilize the discontented multitudes, vainly and mournfully looking to them for the great universal desideratum of fallen humanity, which they are painfully conscious of their utter incompetency ever to impart. Hence the carnal clergy of all ages and nations have done their utmost to satisfy their people without this perfect rest; meanwhile it has been their study and labor night and day to persuade them that there is no such thing. Still the insatiable longing of poor fallen humanity will not down. Like Banquo’s ghost, it haunts all nations, semper et ubique. This universal discontentment and longing after soul repose is superinduced by the conviction of the Holy Ghost, who most assuredly would never provoke this soul cry if He were not able and willing to satisfy it. The secular clergy in all ages, whether pagan, Moslem, papal or Protestant, have pertinaciously fought the doctrine and experience of entire sanctification, because it takes the people out of their hands and turns them over to God, thus interfering with their ecclesiastical organizations and enterprises, notwithstanding their utter incompetency to satisfy this universal clamor for soul rest. Their great hobby is theological complicity unscrupulously concocted, simply to effect indefinite postponement. They will have you like the boy, forever running to the rainbow’s end to find the pot of gold, only with weary limb and broken heart to learn at last the same sad lesson over and over, that pursuit and possession are different words.

18. In this verse it is stated that God hath sworn that they never can enter into this rest save by faith alone.

19. “We see that they were not able to enter in on account of their unbelief.” This refers to Israel at Kadesh-Barnea where they made the fatal mistake of all their history. Instead of entering Canaan for which they had left Egypt and traveled through the wilderness, having reached the very border, “holy delight,” they turned back again into the howling wilderness. It is not because they did not desire and intend to possess the land, for this was the great enterprise of their lives; but they felt utterly incompetent to conquer those giants, and take the land by conquest. Hence, they retreat away, thinking to wait till they get in better fix for the arduous enterprise of conquering the country. All this was because they were seeking it by their own works, and not by faith in God. As Wesley well says, “So long as you put it off you are evidently seeking it by works.” God had promised to conquer the giants and give them the land. Hence, their fatal mistake was in seeking it by their own efforts.

1. .. “Lest some one of you may be made manifest to have failed.” The Greek in this passage reveals an actual failure made manifest, not as the English would indicate, only a seeming failure. There is a fearful liability of actual failure arising from our unbelief.

2. This verse affirms a literal similitude between the ancient and modern Church. They had the Gospel preached to them, but fatally blundered through unbelief, forfeiting Canaan, and bleaching their bones on the burning sand. A similar fate awaits us if, after conversion, we turn back from sanctification like Israel at Kadesh-Barnea. They postponed because they sought it by works. This has been the fatal wooden horse which has brought the cruel Greeks into Israel’s camp in all ages.

3. “For we who believe do enter into rest.” This positive and unequivocal statement of the Holy Ghost outweighs all the gradualistic theologies of all ages. It solves the problem without possible defalcation that we enter into this rest by faith alone. Hence, it is now, and all postponement is dangerous heresy. “As I swore in my wrath: they shall not enter into my rest even though their works being from the foundation of the world.”

Mark this wonderful statement of the Holy Ghost, which you do not have in the old English. He it certifies that God has sworn that you never shall enter this soul rest by works, but by faith alone. H furthermore certifies that if you had begun your good works on Creation’s morn and labored on incessantly all these six thousand years, even then you could not enter this perfect rest by works This is a most important passage, which does not appear in King James’ Version. It sweeps forever from the field the last conceivable apology for seeking sanctification by works. In justification you enter into rest, but enemies, i. e., evil tempers, passions and appetites survive in your heart, ever and anon rising up and disturbing your rest, so the soul can not abide in perfect peace. These enemies are the works of Satan which none but Jesus can destroy. 1 John 3:8. You may spend your whole life in assiduous toil to exterminate the evil of your nature, and you will never succeed. Remember the climacteric affirmation of the Holy Ghost in this verse, confirmed by the oath of God that, if your works for the sanctification of your heart had begun with creation, and you had lived upon the earth laboring assiduously ever since, your sanctification would be no nearer than when you began. I do not wonder that the Holy Spirit gave us this sweeping and unanswerable affirmation, because He foresaw that the mammoth heresy of all ages would be sanctification by works. This world has two kinds of religion in it. God’s religion offers you salvation by the grace of God through faith, and no other way. Man’s religion, manipulated by priestcraft, couples on indefinite human works, thus vitiating the grace of God, grieving the Holy Spirit, running into idolatry, robbing Christ of His glory and plunging into hell.

4. This verse illustrates soul rest by the rest of God from the work of creation on the seventh day. Of course, God’s Sabbath means perfect rest. Sabbath is a Hebrew word which means rest. Before you get sanctified wholly you are much encumbered with toil, physical, mental and spiritual, to bring about the great desideratum, for which the soul is sighing and the heart crying, i. e., perfect rest. Never does it come till you abandon all your enterprises, smash all your air castles, and commit the work unreservedly and eternally to God, who, in the twinkling of an eye, expels out of your heart all disturbing elements, and fills you with perfect rest.

5. Here we again have God’s oath confirming forever the utter impossibility for us to receive this perfect rest by our own good works, or the intercessions of a thousand clergymen.

6, 7. The Holy Ghost is this moment calling you into His perfect rest, and in these Scriptures importunately pleading and solemnly warning you, lest you reject His call, harden your heart go zigzagging through the howling wilderness of inbred sin and bleach your bones beneath a tropical sky; like old Israel because they turned back from Kadesh-Barnea, despite the positive promises of Jehovah to conquer their enemies and give them the land, and the terrible warnings of castigatory judgments in case of apostasy.

8. “If Joshua had given them rest he would not have spoken concerning another day after these things.” The glorious temporal rest of Canaan into which Joshua led them was not the ultimatum of their hopes and anticipations, but a glorious reminder an adumbration of the heavenly rest to which they aspired.

9. “Therefore a rest is reserved for the people of God.” In all the preceding passages the Greek word for rest is katapausis. In this verse it is sabbatismos, which means sabbatism, or the sabbath, which the soul enjoys in its unutterable and perfect repose in Jesus. Under the law of Moses the Sabbath breaker was punished with death, which is strikingly significant of the iron rule, characteristic of the divine administration in the sanctified experience. Just as every Sabbath breaker was punished with death, so God requires us to inflict death upon every intruder into the soul’s perfect repose. Nothing but sin can ever disturb this perfect rest. God’s method with sin is destruction. Hence He requires the utter extermination of every evil temper and inclination in order that we enter this glorious spiritual Sabbatism. Having entered we are to put on the whole panoply and stand guard, night and day, with glittering sword lifted high, ready on a moment’s warning, which is always faithfully given by the Holy Ghost, to execute summary destruction to every sin, daring to invade this heavenly Sabbatism. Of course this holy Sabbatic soul rest is the heavenly state in prelibation. All of our enemies have been taken out by the great Omnipotent Deliverer. Our Sabbatism is perfect, heavenly and unutterably sweet. So deep, broad, high, delectable and elysian is this rest that it beggars all description.

Amid political and ecclesiastical paroxysms, revolutions, ostracisms and persecutions, it is absolutely imperturbable. Neither poverty, disappointment, denunciation, excommunication, scandal, physical suffering, death nor judgment can disturb this blessed Sabbath of the soul. It will not only abide in this perfect rest, but shout glory amid the awful thunders of the judgment day, the tremendous earthquakes of the resurrection morn, the appalling realities of burning worlds and the precipitate sweep of eternal ages.

10. This verse certifies that the soul rest of the believer is complete as the rest which God enjoyed on the Sabbath following the creation. Of course, everything appertaining to God is perfect. Hence it follows as a legitimate sequence that the soul, in full and complete abandonment of every burden to Jesus, enters into perfect and imperturbable repose. It is pertinent to remember that this is the rest of faith. Therefore the rest can not be perfect unless the faith is perfect. What is perfect faith? It is simply faith utterly free from doubt. The same perfect faith which is the indispensable precursor of this perfect rest must be forever perpetuated in order to the maintenance of the perfect rest.

11. “Therefore let us labor to enter into that rest, lest any one may fall by the same example of unbelief.” Thus the writer holds up before the eyes of the Palestinian Christians the sad example of their ancestors who, through unbelief, turned back at Kadesh-Barnea, lost their inheritance, and found graves in the burning sands, assuring them, as well as the Christians of all ages, that the only available panacea for unbelief, apostasy and death is this perfect rest, which he constantly holds up as the glorious privilege of the Christian. The metaphor in this verse is transcendently forcible. The conception of the writer is that we have become so habituated to, and even enamored of, this toilsome, laborious religion, in which we sweat, sigh and cry, night and day, enduring penances to expiate our guilt, and expurgate our impurity, sanctify ourselves and get ready for heaven, that it becomes the hardest task that we ever did in all our lives just to let go, fold our arms, tilt back, give Jesus the job, leave it forever in His hands, believe without a doubt that He doeth it, and raise the shout of victory. When the rustic, riding along the road, going to mill with a sack with corn in one end and a big rock in the other, was persuaded by the cottager to drop out the rock, lie went on his way rejoicing over the lightness of his load. But on his return, seeing that old smooth rock, which lie had carried twenty years, lying by the roadside, he was moved with compassion for the companion of his toils. Consequently, dismounting, he put his meal in one end of the sack and the old rock in the other, strained it up on his horse again, mounting, went on his way. How extremely difficult to prevail on people to abandon all their burdens to the Good Samaritan! While multiplied thousands, having cast woes, sorrows, troubles and trials on Him, anon take them out of His hands, again piling them on their own shoulders.

12. “The word of God is living and powerful, even sharper than any two- edged sword.”... How pertinently this declaration follows the importunate appeal of the Holy Ghost for our complete and eternal abandonment of all labor and burden to God! The Omnipotent Savior wields this wonderful two-edged sword which is none other than the inspired Word of the Infallible God. Long and hard has been the battle between your poor soul and Adam the first. Terribly have you suffered in this devastating war.

Fast are you wearing out, while the trend of conflict is decisively against you. What a glorious privilege to turn over your incorrigible enemy to another. Adam the Second in His heroic majesty is smiling on you, anxious to take the fight off your hands. The moment you turn over to Him the old man of inbred sin, He draws His glittering sword and hews him all to pieces, like Samuel hewed Agag before the Lord. Oh reader, beware of this wonderful two-edged sword, which is none other than the blessed Bible! But do not forget it has two edges, both sharp a lightning. If you receive the salvation edge, it will cut out all your sins. If you reject the salvation edge, you are bound to receive the damnation edge which will cut out all your hopes of heaven. We live in perilous times when men will not endure sound doctrine. It is almost a rare thing now to find a popular church whose members will receive the truth as it is in Jesus. As a rule, if a man preaches the Bible as it is, fearless of men and devils, he will either soon see a general stampede of the members or himself closed out. This, of itself, is a striking, universal and most obvious fulfillment of the latter day prophecies. In this verse the Holy Ghost clearly discriminates between the soul, or mind, and spirit. This is one of the innumerable Scriptures confirmatory of Biblical trichotomy. Man is a trinity, similitudinous to God, and not a dichotomy, as the great majority of preachers teach. The result of substituting dichotomy for trichotomy in the popular pulpits, is to feed the people on mentalities, instead of spiritualities and actually derail the church from the orthodox gospel track into intellectualism. and materialism. Total depravity, which is fundamental in revelation, does not appertain to mind and matter, but only to spirit. In the fall Adam did not forfeit physical life nor mental perspicacity, but only spiritual life. Hence the feasibility of propagating religion and building up churches indefinitely on material and intellectual lines, with no spirituality in them and, of course, no salvation, is nothing but wholesale delusion Satan’s greased planks on which to slide people into hell.

13. It is the province of this wonderful sword, the living Word, when honestly received amid the illuminations of the Holy Ghost, to literally dissect the entire spiritual organism, interpenetrating the remotest fibers and fasciculi of the deepest recesses and darkest jungles throughout the fallen spiritual organism, unearthing all the hidden things of darkness and revealing to the illuminated spiritual eye everything in his heart disconformatory to the divine image and will, and simultaneously unveiling the wondrous fountain of radical and complete expurgation. Reader, if you ever expect to live in heaven, begin now to bare your bosom to the glittering sword of God’s infallible Word. Satan will compass you with myriad temptations to evade it. If you do, mark it down, you will land in hell. You will hear people on all sides actually “handling the Word of God deceitfully,” blindly manipulated by Satan for the damnation of all who hear them. Remember, your creed will not be mentioned when you stand before the great white throne. You will be judged by the Bible alone. Look out, for your soul is certainly in imminent peril. So it is the current policy of the popular churches to close out, and even ecclesiastically decapitate, the man who refuses to soften God’s hard truth, and to smooth God’s rough truth, and thus “handle the Word of the Lord deceitfully,” but, true to the Holy Ghost, lifts up the two-edged sword, scores deep and hews to the line, regardless of consequences. If you are too cowardly to preach the Word as it is, regardless of creeds, councils, ostracism and decapitation, God will excuse you, but another more worthy will take your crown. Earth and hell are now combined to handicap the preachers. These are perilous times, which try men’s souls. Few have the courage to stem the popular tide, brook official carnality, and ignore the castigations of the hierarchy. Under these terrible gatling guns of earth and hell, preachers are going down in solid platoons. Yet God is not going to want for voices to cry aloud and spare not. If the cultured clergy will not be true, God will excuse them and fill their places ten to one with the rustic laity, uncouth, from the slums and jungles, washed in the blood, and baptized with fire, filled with the perfect love, which makes them like Gideon’s braves, competent to put to flight one thousand to one. The world must have the Gospel, and will have it speedily. The Lord is nigh, and the King’s business requireth haste. The Holy Ghost wants none to bear His message who will not cry aloud and spare not, giving to saint an sinner his portion. As Paul and Wesley both said, it is only by declaring to the people all the counsel of God that we can be clear of the blood of all men.

Verses 14-16

ARGUMENT 3

THE TWO MEDIATORSHIPS:

THAT OF MOSES AND THAT OF CHRIST.

This argument is not only well authenticated in 3:1-6 and 4:14 to 5:10, but especially is it involved in the general consensus of the entire epistle. The old dispensation under the mediatorship of Moses was on the plane of justification, whose normal attitude is that of spiritual infancy or ecclesiastical minority, while the new dispensation is on the plane of entire sanctification, its normal attitude Christian perfection, its crowning glory the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and its legitimate status ecclesiastical adultage. During the period of her minority, the Church peregrinated but slightly beyond the limits of an isolated nation. On the arrival of her majority, she received the commission, “Go disciple all nations, teaching them to observe all things which I have commanded you, and lo, I am with you alway.” When Satan succeeded in derailing the Apostolic Church from the glorious doctrine and experience of entire sanctification, he dragged her down from the Delectable Mountains of full salvation, where she walked with Jesus in cloudless sunshine above mosquitoes and malaria, into the low grounds and malarious swamps of carnality and worldliness. Consequently, with an exception here and there, clergy and membership about the time of the Constantinian apostasy dropped back into the Mosaic dispensation. We must remember that Moses himself, with other patriarchs and prophets, lived and died in advance of his dispensation, having been gloriously sanctified at the burning bush, after a curriculum of forty years in God’s theological seminary the crags and precipices of Mt. Sinai. While the patriarchs and prophets of the former dispensation, with their supernatural faith, inspired by the Holy Ghost, looked through type and prophecy, received and appropriated the perfect work of Christ, thus triumphing in the glorious experience of entire sanctification, the body of the Church only entered it as nowadays in the article of death, thus forfeiting the victory, blessedness, glory and triumph a heaven in which to go to heaven. If the Christian Church had not retrogressed into the Mosaic dispensation, the Gospel would have flooded the earth like a shoreless ocean long centuries ago, and Jesus have come down on the throne of His glory, belting the globe with the splendors and triumphs of the millennial reign. This explains the almost universal antagonism of the popular clergy to the glorious experience of Christian perfection. They stand in the attitude of Moses, and want the people to follow them, as they followed Moses. In the dispensation of Christ we no longer follow Moses, but Jesus only. That is the reason why the Roman Catholics in all ages have done their utmost to keep the Bible out of the hands of the people. They are afraid they will become unmanageable. During the moonlit dispensation of type and symbolism the people needed mortal men like Moses to guide them through the darkness, but since the glorious Sun of Righteousness has risen on the world with healing on His wings we no longer need Moses and Aaron, but Jesus only. The truly sanctified man desires no following. His only effort is to get the people to follow Jesus.

In the Mosaic dispensation, Israel had twelve tribes. The Apostolic Church was a unit, and would ever so have remained if human rule had not superseded the Holy Ghost, dragging the Church down from the heights of spirituality and unanimity into the fogs of schism and ecclesiasticism. The unsanctified preacher at the present day is two thousand years behind the age, blundering along in the moonlight of the old dispensation.

14. While Moses was typical of Christ in his mediatorship, Aaron typified Him in his priestly office. So Moses and Aaron, in their respective capacities as leaders of Israel, are both forever superseded by Christ, who not only verified the typical characters of all His predecessors, completely expiating the sins of the whole world by the sacrifice of Himself, but has carried our glorified humanity into the very presence of God, where, fully and eternally accepted as our substitute, He ever liveth to intercede for the lost millions of earth. “Let us hold fast our confession.” This word “confession” is from homos, like, and logos, speech. Hence it means that we are to speak like God henceforth and forever. The speech is the exponent of the heart, and necessarily hypocritical if the heart is not like God.

15. Here the Holy Ghost certifies for our comfort that Jesus was tempted in all points as we are, but without sin. Satan with his utmost capacity tempted Jesus physically to satisfy His hunger; intellectually, to possess the whole world, and spiritually, to vitiate his faith by presumption in the leap from the pinnacle of the temple. So the devil will do his utmost to throw the lasso of his temptations around our physical appetites, and make us brutish; or our intellectual faculties, and make us worldly; or our spiritual experiences, and make us devilish. In all these assaults we have nothing to do but answer Satan in the language of Jesus when under the same temptation, and the victory comes.

16. Here we are importuned by the Holy Spirit to come boldly to a throne of grace, assuring us that we shall receive all needed help in every possible emergency.

1-3. Here we see the vivid picture of the Aaronic priest in his sacerdotal office’ ministering in the temple, offering sacrifices for the sins of the people. Meanwhile, it is absolutely necessary that he first offer sacrifices for himself, since he is encompassed with infirmity as well as the people. How decisive the contrast between Aaron, encompassed with infirmity, and Jesus, perfectly free from the slightest contamination of the violated law, and eternally triumphant over the world, the flesh and the devil. He is our Paragon. Inspired Paul says,

“Having been made free from sin we have our fruit unto sanctification, and the end everlasting life.” (Romans 6:22.)

Our great High Priest stands ready to wash us with His blood, and impart to us His own purity. An unsanctified preacher comes into an unsanctified church to hold a protracted meeting in order to get sinners converted. As I have observed on sundry occasions, they have to preach, pray and sing about ten days to get their own souls revived before they can do anything to rescue the perishing. The Aaronic preacher away back in the Mosaic dispensation has to pray and toil and work till he gets his own soul revived before he can help anybody else. I know this by sad experience, for I preached fifteen years unsanctified. Oh, what a contrast with sanctified people! They open the campaign with shouts of victory ringing from their lips. They do not need a protracted meeting to revive themselves, for they are already revived. Hence, in their first service they open their batteries on the devil’s works, and the salvation of the Lord is the normal order of every service.

4. This verse settles forever the divine call to the ministry. Without the call of God the most superb education is an essential failure.

5, 6. God’s call to the ministry is abundantly corroborated by the example of Christ Himself, whom God called and “made a priest forever, after the order of Melchisedec.”

7. This verse describes the memorable agony of Christ in Gethsemane. The clause, “in that He feared,” in the English should read, “because of His piety.” Of course He had no fear, as He was always free from sin. Many have been astonished over the terrible agony of Jesus in Gethsemane, especially contrastive with the heroic fortitude of the martyrs, who went joyfully and exultantly to the burning stake. The case is in no way parallel. The martyrs were free as angels, Jesus having carried all their burdens. No human being has ever been competent to sympathize with the Son of God in Gethsemane, because He there carried on His spotless soul the sins of a guilty world. His agony was homogeneous to torment. There His human will passed the terrible ordeal of consecration for Calvary, acquiescing submissively to His Father’s will, i. e., that He should redeem the doomed world by His vicarious sufferings and substitutionary death. We see Him come to the cross without a sigh or a groan, submissively and acquiescently bleed and die. Gethsemane solves the problem. There the battle was fought with the powers of darkness and the victory won. Whereas He was made perfect in His Messianic office and character by crucifixion, i. e., sanctified, to the redemptive scheme, He was fully consecrated in Gethsemane. He is our Paragon. When we perfectly submit to God in the Gethsemane of entire consecration, sanctification becomes easy and almost natural as breathing. The great trouble with seekers of sanctification is in consecration. They recoil from the terrible ordeals of Gethsemane. A preacher is convicted and proceeds to seek holiness. He soon enters the Gethsemane of consecration. The Holy Spirit holds up before his illuminated gaze ecclesiastical ostracism, humiliation, financial embarrassment, ejectment and decapitation. Then the bloody sweat breaks out and the bitter cup is presented to his lips. His courage fails, collapse follows and all is lost. Or, fortunately for him, grace prevails, and he says, “O God, give me the front of the battle and the thickest of the fight; let me die in the war and be buried on the battlefield; anything and everything for Jesus’ sake.” Then God turns on him a river from the heavenly ocean. He sinks, dies and floats, forever oblivious to his former troubles. Old friends have all skedaddled away, but God has given him more new ones than he knows what to do with, and they ‘re a thousand times better than his old ones.

8. What a wonderful condescension for the Son of God to suffer the terrible agonies of Gethsemane and the tortures of Calvary! This was not only indispensable to the redemption of a lost world, but preeminently pertinent for our exemplification. We must all, like Jesus, learn obedience from suffering.

9. “Being made perfect He became the Author of eternal salvation to all them that obey Him.” The Greek word is the same for faith and obedience, and for unbelief and disobedience. This is positively confirmatory of the lexical synonymy of faith and obedience, and unbelief and disobedience, because true faith is always obedient and unbelief disobedient. Faith is the cause and obedience the effect. Unbelief is the cause and disobedience the effect. Hence you see the nonsense of imputing salvation to obedience, which is simply the normal fruit of justifying and sanctifying faith. You also see the pertinency of the Scriptural imputation of damnation to unbelief. This verse certifies that Jesus was made perfect by His crucifixion. Hence it follows as a legitimate sequence that He did not claim perfection in His Messianic office and character till He suffered crucifixion on the cross. This was His sanctification, the Gethsemane being His consecration. Therefore it follows as a logical sequence that we are all imperfect Christians till Adam the first is crucified. Jesus is our great Exemplar. We must follow Him to the manger and be born in utter obscurity, then to the cross and be crucified with Him (Romans 6:6), if we would ascend and live with Him in glory. Before Christ was crucified justification was the normal status of earthly saintship. Since He has been crucified and thus made perfect, Christian perfection, or entire sanctification, has become the normal status of Christian discipleship. What a deplorable pity to see the Christian world this day plodding along in the dispensation of Moses three thousand years behind the age, the preachers sitting in Moses’ seat jealous lest the rod of their clerical authority be broken by the sanctification of their members!

10. In chapter seven we give a full exegesis of Melchisedec.

Bibliographical Information
Godbey, William. "Commentary on Hebrews 4". "Godbey's Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ges/hebrews-4.html.
 
adsfree-icon
Ads FreeProfile