corner graphic   Hi,    
ver. 2.0.19.05.20
Finding the new version too difficult to understand? Go to classic.studylight.org/

Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures
Hebrews 6

 

 

Other Authors
Verses 1-8

Third Exhortation: Grow in Maturity - Based upon His present-day office as our Great High Priest, the Hebrews are exhorted to grow up into maturity through the Word and to understand and walk in this revelation of their Great High Priest a means of persevering in the faith ( Hebrews 6:1-3). He then warns his readers against the dangers of apostasy ( Hebrews 6:4-8).

Christian maturity necessitates an understanding of Jesus' present-day ministry as our Great High Priest. They will accomplish this by first making sure the foundation of their faith is laid secure, and then moving into a higher level of faith, which must be directed by God; thus, he says, "If God permits." They will be able to go on into a deeper knowledge of the truth as God directs each of them into Christian service and anointings. The author of Hebrews will then explain the faithfulness of God's promises to those who go on into maturity ( Hebrews 6:9-20). He then gives them a lengthy teaching on the office and ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ ( Hebrews 7:1 to Hebrews 10:18), after which repeats his warning given in Hebrews 6:4-8 by saying, "For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins" ( Hebrews 10:26). Thus, he gives them this "knowledge" for a deeper walk with the Lord, which he exhorts them pursue in Hebrews 6:1-3 and in Hebrews 10:19 to Hebrews 13:17.

Hebrews 6:1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,

Hebrews 6:1 — "Therefore" - Comments- Since you are immature ( Hebrews 5:11-14), let us go on to maturity.

Hebrews 6:1 — "leaving" - Comments- In the previous verses the author refers to these believers as "babes" ( Hebrews 5:13) who need to grow to become "of full age" ( Hebrews 5:14). In the first five verses of chapter six, Paul summarizes the six foundational doctrines that are basic to the Christian faith, and briefly describes the five levels of Christian growth. He will say that these principle teachings should be laid in our lives before we go on to "perfection," or maturity. He desires that they come to the place where these believers can leave the basic doctrines and begin to grow in the things of God.

Hebrews 6:1"the principles of the doctrine of Christ" - Comments- Earlier in this passage, these foundational principles are called "the first principles of the oracles of God" and "milk" ( Hebrews 5:12-13).

"the principles" - The word "principles" means the beginning, the first and hence the elementary, basic or foundations of the Christian faith.

"of the doctrine" - This word means the word, sayings and hence the message or teachings.

"of Christ" - These six foundational teachings are referred to in this phrase as those taught by Jesus Christ Himself in the four Gospels. All six areas are dealt with in Jesus" earthly ministry because He laid the foundation to build the Church with these six doctrines. The apostles and prophets of the early church built on this foundation as they wrote the New Testament ( Ephesians 2:20). Therefore, the Greek literally reads, "the beginnings of the teachings of Christ". Note a similar verse:

Ephesians 2:20, "And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone."

Hebrews 6:1"let us go on unto perfection" - Comments- Strong says the Greek word "perfection" ( τελειό της) (G 5047) means, "completeness." It describes something that has been brought to its final goal. This agrees with the description of the believer described in Hebrews 6:4-5, as having partaken of the Holy Ghost, who has grown in the Word of God, and has the powers of the world to come, or "the gifts of the Spirit," at work in his life. This description of going on to perfection or maturity stands in contrast to elementary knowledge that "babes" in Christ walk in. The author has just finished commenting on "imperfect" Christians in Hebrews 5:11-14 and their need to grow to maturity. The author of Hebrews will now offer a theological discourse in Hebrews 6:1 to Hebrews 10:18 on the high priesthood and atonement of Jesus Christ as the believer's basis for growing in maturity. The believer will then understand how to freely draw near unto God ( Hebrews 10:22), hold fast his confession of faith ( Hebrews 10:23), and exhort other believer's unto good works ( Hebrews 10:24-25), allowing them to grow into maturity as described in Hebrews 6:4-5.

Irenaeus (A.D 130 - 200) was an early church father and a disciple of Polycarp, who in turn was a disciple of John the Apostle. He defines the word "perfection" to describe those Christians through whom the Spirit of God is operating with spiritual gifts and faith, thus a "spiritual" Christian.

"Now God shall be glorified in His handiwork, fitting it so as to be conformable to, and modelled after, His own Son. For by the hands of the Father, that Isaiah , by the Son and the Holy Spirit, Prayer of Manasseh , and not [merely] a part of Prayer of Manasseh , was made in the likeness of God. Now the soul and the spirit are certainly a part of the Prayer of Manasseh , but certainly not the man; for the perfect man consists in the commingling and the union of the soul receiving the spirit of the Father, and the admixture of that fleshly nature which was moulded after the image of God. For this reason does the apostle declare, "We speak wisdom among them that are perfect," terming those persons "perfect" who have received the Spirit of God, and who through the Spirit of God do speak in all languages, as he used Himself also to speak. In like manner we do also hear many brethren in the Church, who possess prophetic gifts, and who through the Spirit speak all kinds of languages, and bring to light for the general benefit the hidden things of men, and declare the mysteries of God, whom also the apostle terms "spiritual," they being spiritual because they partake of the Spirit, and not because their flesh has been stripped off and taken away, and because they have become purely spiritual." (Against Heresies, 561).

We also understand "perfection" to mean perseverance through trials. If we have been born again through our faith in Jesus Christ (Matthew to Acts) and have laid the foundation of Church doctrine in our lives (Romans to Philemon), if we have join ourselves to a local church and brought our lifestyle under its order of the Church (1Timothy to Titus), we now must learn to persevere and overcome persecutions (Hebrews to 1Peter) as well as false teachers (2Peter to Jude) in order that we might reach our destination, which is Heaven (the book of Revelation).

Thus, we see in Hebrews 6:1 how the idea of going on into maturity implies that there is a spiritual journey for every believer. He is to grow up into maturity in the Lord. The epistle of Hebrews is structured in a way that reflects this spiritual journey, which may be seen in the introductory material to this book. This passage of Hebrews ( Hebrews 5:11 to Hebrews 6:20) is encouraging the Hebrews to go on into the phase of our spiritual journey called indoctrination. Many Christians hear their calling from God for salvation and respond through faith in Christ in order to experience the initial phase of their spiritual journey called justification. This passage reveals that few believers go on into the phases of their spiritual journey called indoctrination, divine service and perseverance in order to reach glorification, or their eternal rest in Heaven.

Hebrews 6:1"not laying again the foundation" - Comments- Evidently, Paul or Timothy had already laid down the basic doctrines taught by Christ to these believers at an earlier time. These believers had been given the time and opportunity to understand these teachings ( Hebrews 5:12). Children are inconsistent when laying down blocks and stacking them into a shape and structure. They build them and knock them down, with no purpose or direction in their actions other than play. In contrast, an adult will focus his efforts on doing something constructive that can be developed and built into a greater work. These young Hebrew believers were being taught the doctrines of Christ, and laying them aside so as not to apply them to their lives. They would receive another teacher with excitement, listen to his message with zeal, but soon lay this message aside. They were not applying the Word of God to their lives in a way that allowed them to grow up spiritually.

Hebrews 5:12, "For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat."

Note other references in the New Testament to the foundation of the Church:

Matthew 16:18, "And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."

1 Corinthians 3:10-11, "According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;"

Hebrews 6:1 — "of repentance from dead works" - Comments- Note the depravity of man described in Romans 1:16-32. This passage lists a number of dead works. This doctrine of repentance from dead works makes a distinction between godly sorrow and worldly sorrow; for it teaches us about true repentance. Note:

2 Corinthians 7:10, "For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death."

Note how Psalm 51shows us true repentance. Also:

Acts 2:38, "Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost."

2 Corinthians 7:9, "Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that — ye might receive damage by us in nothing."

Hebrews 9:14, "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?"

Hebrews 12:16-17, "Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears."

2 Peter 2:20, "For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning."

Paul gave the example of his life as an example of true repentance:

1 Timothy 1:12-17, "And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting. Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen."

Hebrews 6:1 — "and of faith toward God" - Comments- People can have faith in many things. This is a special kind of faith that brings one into the saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Illustration- During one semester in Seminary, I was living on a tight budget. I wanted to trust the Lord to always provide enough gas money for me to get around in the car. But, just in case the money did not come, I stuck a credit card in my wallet in order to buy gas. One day, the money ran out. I drove and drove until I was driving on empty. Still no money came. It never came, and I had to borrow money from my brother for gas. My faith had been in the credit card, and not towards God alone. Song of Solomon , I cut up the credit card that I owned, and I looked God. I did not have to borrow money afterwards. The Lord always provided.

Our work is to believe in Jesus:

John 6:28-29, "Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent."

Also:

Matthew 17:20, "And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you."

Galatians 2:20, "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me."

Galatians 5:6, "For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love."

How does our faith grow?

Romans 10:17, "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God."

Luke 17:5-10, "And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith. And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you. But which of you, having a servant plowing or feeding cattle, will say unto him by and by, when he is come from the field, Go and sit down to meat? And will not rather say unto him, Make ready wherewith I may sup, and gird thyself, and serve me, till I have eaten and drunken; and afterward thou shalt eat and drink? Doth he thank that servant because he did the things that were commanded him? I trow not. So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do."

What can faith do?

Jeremiah 32:27, "Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh: is there any thing too hard for me?"

Matthew 19:26, "But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible." ( Mark 10:27, Luke 18:27)

Mark 9:23, "Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth."

Acts of faith:

Matthew 8:8, "The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed."

Matthew 9:18-25 - The centurion"s daughter and the woman with the issue of blood.

John 20:24-29 - Thomas believing in Jesus" resurrection.

Genuine faith:

James 2:14, "What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?"

It takes both faith and works. What about a person who prays a prayer of salvation, but does not change? Or the good man with a moral lifestyle, but does not know Jesus. Neither person has a genuine faith.

Conclusion:

Habakkuk 2:4, "Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith."

Habakkuk 3:17-18, "Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation."

Hebrews 6:1Comments- Note the sense of direction in Hebrews 6:1, God grants repentance from dead works and faith towards God.

Hebrews 6:2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.

Hebrews 6:2 — "Of the doctrine of baptisms" - Word Study on "baptisms" - The Greek word "baptisms" ( βαπτισμός) (G 909) means, "abolution (ceremonial or Christian)" (Strong), "a dipping, washings" (BDAG). Within the context of the New Testament doctrine of baptisms, baptism consists of the process of immersion, submersion, and emergence in water as a ceremony, being used in the New Testament (a) of John"s baptism, and (b) of Christian baptism. The TDNT says, " βαπτισμός signifying the act alone and βάπτισμα the act with the result, and therefore the institution." The primary Greek verb βά πτω (G 911) means, "to dip" (BDAG), from which this family of words is derived.

Comments- The New Testament uses this family of words both in a literal and figurative sense. 1. Literally - The Greek word "baptism" used literally means, "immersed." In classical Greek literature it was used to describe the sinking of a ship at sea. 224] However, in the New Testament this word appears to have become a common term used for ceremonial "washings" before eating as prescribed by the Pharisees' interpretations of the Mosaic Law. There are a number of verses that indicate this New Testament usage.

224] Jack MacGorman, "Class Notes," in New Testament Greek, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas, 1981-82.

Mark 7:4, "And when they come from the market, except they wash, they eat not. And many other things there be, which they have received to hold, as the washing of cups, and pots, brasen vessels, and of tables."

Mark 7:8, "For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do."

Luke 11:38, "And when the Pharisee saw it, he marvelled that he had not first washed before dinner."

Hebrews 9:10, "Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation."

Therefore, when the term "the one who baptises" was attached to John's name, it implied that John was giving the children of Israel the proper "ceremonial" cleansing for their sins. Water baptism was the perfect example of "inner cleansing" in such a culture already familiar with this term. The Lord must have revealed to John or spoken to him that a call to water baptism was the way in which a truly repentant person would demonstrate their genuineness publicly. In fact, it was used as an indicator to God of who was repenting of their sins and who was not repentant.

2. Figuratively - Used figuratively, the Greek word "baptism" means, "to be identified with."

1 Corinthians 10:2, "And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;"

1 Corinthians 12:13, "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit."

Comments- The Scriptures teach of three baptisms for the believer. First, there is the baptism by faith into the body of Christ, which happens at salvation. Second, there is water baptism that every believer is commanded to experience as an outward testimony of their salvation. Third, there is the baptism in the Holy Ghost, which Jesus promised in the book of Luke and Acts. A believer only needs the first baptism in order to go to heaven, but all three are important since they all represent the process of sanctification that every believer must go through in order to fulfill God's purpose and plan for his life.

Billye Brim tells the story of her father"s visitation by an angel. 225] In this vision her father"s father, Bill Cody, being eighty-four (84) years old, was about to die, but he realized that Mr. Cody had never experienced water baptism. Billye Brim"s father wanted to get his ill father water baptized before his death. The angel appeared to her father and explained that the elder grandfather has the first baptism, and this was enough to get to heaven.

225] Billye Brim, interviewed by Gloria Copeland, Believer's Voice of Victory (Kenneth Copeland Ministries, Fort Worth, Texas), on Trinity Broadcasting Network (Santa Ana, California), television program.

It is possible that these three baptisms serve as testimonies of the three stages of our spiritual journey. For example, our baptism into the body of Christ serves to testify of our justification in Christ Jesus and identification with the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ. Our water baptism would serve as a testimony our sanctification by the Holy Spirit as we put off the old man and walk as new creatures in Christ. Our baptism in the Holy Ghost would serve as a testimony our being set apart and called into a Christian service as a work of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

In addition, it is possible that the Great Commission to "baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Song of Solomon , and of the Holy Ghost" ( Matthew 28:19) reflects this three-fold aspect of the doctrine of baptism. The experience of salvation, water baptism and the baptism of the Holy Ghost could reflect the three-fold work of the Father, Song of Solomon , and Holy Spirit in a believer's redemption.

1. The Baptism into the Body of Christ (Sanctification) - Our baptism into the body of Christ Jesus is discussed often by Paul the apostle in his epistles. When Paul teaches about our identification with Christ Jesus and with one another as one body in Christ Jesus, he is teaching about this particular baptism. We were crucified with Him, buried and raised with Him ( Romans 6:4-6) at the time we were justified, or saved. We have been seated with him ( Ephesians 2:5-6) and are able to reign with Him as we learn to use the authority of His name.

Romans 6:4-6, "Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin."

Galatians 3:27, "For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ."

Ephesians 2:5-6, "Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:"

Colossians 2:12, "Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead."

In addition, everyone who has been saved is one body in Christ Jesus.

Romans 12:5, "So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another."

1 Corinthians 12:20, "But now are they many members, yet but one body."

Ephesians 2:16, "And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:"

Ephesians 4:4, "There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;"

Colossians 3:15, "And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful."

2. Water Baptism (Sanctification) - The New Testament clearly teaches us that every new believer should be water baptized. Thus, believers, and only believers, are qualified for water baptism. Others who are baptized simply to join a church or for other various reasons have not experienced a true Scriptural baptism. The mode or method of water baptism in New Testament times required submersion and emergence from water. New converts were totally submerged during the act of water baptism.

John 3:23, "And John also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim, because there was much water there: and they came, and were baptized."

Acts 8:36-38, "And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him."

Matthew 3:13-17, "Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John , to be baptized of him. But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him. And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Song of Solomon , in whom I am well pleased."

We find in 1 Peter 3:21 that water baptism is our respond to God's saving grace by serving as our first act of obedience. In other words, it is our response to God in order to have a clear conscience towards Him.

1 Peter 3:21, "The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:"

A person can be baptized by any believer. Most often, pastors or church leaders perform the ordinance of baptism. For example Jesus never baptized His disciples. Paul baptized very few of his converts.

John 4:1, "When therefore the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John , (Though Jesus himself baptized not, but his disciples,)"

1 Corinthians 1:14-16, "I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius; Lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name. And I baptized also the household of Stephanas: besides, I know not whether I baptized any other."

We find examples in the book of Acts of water baptism preceding as well as following the experience of the baptism in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues.

Acts 10:44-48, "While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter, Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days."

Acts 19:4-6, "Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that Isaiah , on Christ Jesus. When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied."

3. The Baptism in the Holy Spirit (Sanctification) - We have numerous witnesses in the Scriptures of believers who experienced the baptism of the Holy Spirit after they were saved.

Acts 8:14-17, "Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost: (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost."

Acts 19:1-7, "And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John"s baptism. Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that Isaiah , on Christ Jesus. When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied. And all the men were about twelve."

It is our understanding of how to put off the old man and to walk in the new man that prepares us for another level of Christian service, which is ordination into the ministry through the laying on of hands with the impartation of certain gifts and anointings. Until we are identified into the body of Christ, water baptized, filled with the Holy Spirit and walking in the new Prayer of Manasseh , we are not ready for the ministry of the laying on of hands.

Hebrews 6:2 — "and of laying on of hands" - Comments- After we partake of and learn to walk in the three baptisms for the believer, we begin to learn that there are certain anointings that are imparted through the laying on of hands. Therefore, it is through the laying on of hands that a person is able to go deeper into the process of sanctification. The servant of God is then able to fulfill the ministry and calling in his life after receiving the laying on of hands. He then lays hands upon others as a way of imparting blessings; as a way for others to be filled with the Holy Spirit; as a way for the anointing for healings and miracles; and as a way to be set apart for the work of the ministry.

There is the laying on of hands to impart a blessing, as Jesus did for the little children He received ( Matthew 19:13-15, Mark 10:16).

Matthew 19:13, "Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them."

Mark 10:16, "And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them."

There was the laying on of hands to be filled with the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues.

Acts 8:17, "Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost."

Acts 19:6, "And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied."

There is the laying on of hands for divine healing.

Mark 6:5, "And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them."

Mark 7:32, "And they bring unto him one that was deaf, and had an impediment in his speech; and they beseech him to put his hand upon him."

Mark 8:23, "And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought."

Luke 4:40, "Now when the sun was setting, all they that had any sick with divers diseases brought them unto him; and he laid his hands on every one of them, and healed them."

Luke 13:13, "And he laid his hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God."

Acts 9:12, "And hath seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in, and putting his hand on him, that he might receive his sight."

Acts 9:17, "And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost."

Acts 28:8, "And it came to pass, that the father of Publius lay sick of a fever and of a bloody flux: to whom Paul entered in, and prayed, and laid his hands on him, and healed him."

There is the laying on of hands that we call ordination, or setting apart for the ministry in the new covenant. At this time gifts are imparted unto others as was young Timothy. This anointing can then be imparted to others when this ordained minister lays hands upon others. It may be for the ministry of divine healing, or to ordain others.

Acts 6:6, "Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them."

Acts 13:1-3, "Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away."

1 Timothy 4:14, "Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery."

2 Timothy 1:6, "Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands."

The doctrine of the laying on of hands has its roots in the Old Testament. For example, Jacob (Israel) laid hands upon the sons of Joseph and pronounced a blessing upon them ( Genesis 48:14; Genesis 48:17-18). Moses ordained Joshua through the laying on of hands ( Numbers 27:18) so that he was filled with the Spirit of God ( Deuteronomy 34:9). Some of the Old Testament sacrifices were presented to God through the laying on of hands ( Exodus 29:10; Leviticus 1:4).

Hebrews 6:2 — "and of resurrection of the dead" - Comments- After a person repents from his dead works and places his faith in God, and after he experiences the three Scriptural baptisms and is set apart through the laying on of hands, his next objective is to attain the resurrection of the dead. Note Paul's desire regarding this future event:

Philippians 3:11, "If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead."

The Scriptures teach us about two resurrections from the dead in relation to the context of these six foundational doctrines. These two resurrections are found in the book of Revelation.

Revelation 20:5-6, "But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years."

The first resurrection refers to that that of the rapture of the saints. Of course, Jesus Christ is called the firstfruit of this resurrection since He has gone before us. The second resurrection takes place at the great White Throne Judgment when those who have died in their sins will be raised to fact the judgment of eternal hell.

Hebrews 6:2 — "and of eternal judgment" - Comments- The word "judgment" in this verse does not only refer just to the condemnation in hell that the sinner will face on the great Judgment Day. It also includes the eternal rewards that God will judge the believer worthy to receive. The phrase "eternal judgment" is not referring to the judgments of blessings and curses in this life, but rather, to the judgments that will take place after a person experiences the resurrection from the dead.

The purpose of God's judgment is for redemption. Every time God brings chastisement and judgment upon mankind it has been for the purpose of redeeming them. But the last and final judgment will not be redemptive. Rather, it will be to demonstrate God's holiness and implement final justice to a fallen race.

Hebrews 6:1-2Comments- The Six Foundational Doctrines of the New Testament Church- The six foundational doctrines of the New Testament Church are given in Hebrews 6:1-2.

1. Repentance from Dead Works

2. Faith toward God

3. Baptisms

4. Laying on of Hands

5. Resurrection of the Dead

6. Eternal Judgment

Every doctrine in the Holy Bible can be grouped under one of these six foundational doctrines. Note that these six teachings fall in a progressive order of events that happen in every believer"s life. God is a God of order, even in the Scriptures. Jesus Christ dealt with all six of these foundational doctrines in the four Gospels.

These six doctrines follow the events in the life of every believer.

1. Turning from sin.

2. Giving one"s life to Jesus

3. Being baptized and filled with the Holy Spirit

4. Being set apart for the ministry by the laying on of hands.

5. Our future resurrection and redemption.

6. Our final judgment before the Lord.

We can also see three major doctrines in Scripture, of justification, sanctification and glorification, underlying these six foundational doctrines. The doctrine of justification is seen in the doctrines of repentance from dead works and faith towards God. These two doctrines reveal the office of Jesus Christ as His blood provided our hope of forgiveness and justification before God. The doctrine of sanctification is seen in the doctrines of baptisms and laying on of hands. These two doctrines reveal the office of the Holy Spirit, as a person is saved, water baptized, filled with the Spirit and later set apart for Christian service. The doctrine of glorification can been seen in the doctrines of the resurrection from the dead and eternal judgment, which reveal the office of God the Father as He foreknows, calls and divinely elects those who will inherit eternal life and those who will fall under His damnation. Thus, the offices of God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son and the Holy Spirit serve as an underlying theme of these six foundational doctrines of Holy Scripture. We see this three-fold emphasis upon each person of the Holy Trinity in the first epistle of Peter.

1 Peter 1:2, "Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied."

Paul refers to this process as foreknowledge, predestination, calling, justification and glorification.

Romans 8:29, "For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Song of Solomon , that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified."

Paul used a three-fold grouping of his teachings: the foreknowledge, calling and glorification of God the Father, the justification by Jesus Christ His Song of Solomon , and the sanctification of the Holy Spirit ( Romans 8:29). In fact, the six doctrines of Christ can also be placed under the three-fold office and ministry of God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son and the Holy Spirit by placing two doctrines under each one. Therefore, we will find that the themes of each of the Pauline "Church" epistles finds itself grouped under Paul's three-fold grouping of justification, sanctification and glorification, and this three-fold grouping is laid upon the six-fold foundation of:

1. Repentance from dead works — Justification — Jesus Christ

2. Faith toward God — Justification — Jesus Christ

3. The doctrine of baptisms — Sanctification — Holy Spirit

4. Laying on of hands — Sanctification — Holy Spirit

5. Resurrection of the dead — Glorification — God the Father

6. Eternal judgment — Glorification — God the Father

The doctrine of faith towards God builds upon the doctrine of repentance from dead works, which is the doctrine of Justification. The doctrine of the laying on of hands builds upon the doctrine of baptisms, which is the doctrine of Sanctification. The doctrine of eternal judgment builds upon the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, which is the doctrine of Glorification. These are the three areas of doctrines that Jesus Christ laid down in the Gospels and Acts. Paul then builds upon these three foundational doctrines of Christ within his nine "Church" epistles.

God the Father- The epistle of Ephesians is built upon the theme of God the Father's office of giving His spiritual blessings in order to accomplish His divine purpose and plan. The epistle of Philippians reveals how the believer is to give to God so that He can fulfill His divine purpose and plan. In Ephesians , the believer is to stay filled with the Spirit in order to accomplish this goal, and in Philippians , the believer is to partner and give to support God's servants who are accomplishing God's purposes.

Jesus Christ the Song of Solomon - The epistle of Jesus Christ reveals His Lordship over the Church and His gift of dwelling within each believer. The Epistle of Galatians reveals the need for each believer to live by faith in Him as their gift to Him.

God the Holy Spirit - 1,2Thessalonians teach us the office of the Holy Spirit, which is to sanctify the believer in spirit, soul and body 1,2Corinthians emphasize how the believer is to live a crucified life in order to allow the Spirit to work in and thru them. Thus, the nine Church Epistles emphasis the office and ministry of God the Father, God the Son Jesus Christ, and God the Holy Spirit.

All three of these doctrines reveal the process that God is taking every believer through in order to bring him from spiritual death and separation from God into His eternal presence. God's will for every human being is justification through the redemptive work of Jesus Christ on Calvary and as our Great High Priest at the right hand of the Father, into sanctification by the Holy Spirit and into divine service through the laying on of hands, until we obtain glorification and immortality by the resurrection and judgment before the throne of God. If God be for us, who can be against us?

Hebrews 6:3 And this will we do, if God permit.

Hebrews 6:3Comments - The antecedent of the personal pronoun τοῦτο (this) is the phrase "leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection." God did not permit the children of Israel to go on into spiritual maturity because of their rebellion. However, the author now calls his readers into spiritual maturity.

It is God"s will and desire for every believer to grow in the knowledge of God; but He only allows us to lay aside foundational doctrines and go on to more revelation if we first ground ourselves in the basics. If God sees that we are rooted and grounded in the basics, then He will give us more revelation and greater responsibility in the ministry, as Paul mentions in 2 Corinthians 12:1, "I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord." This principle is reflected in Luke 16:10 and 1 Timothy 1:12 as well.

Luke 16:10, "He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much."

1 Timothy 1:12, "...for that He counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry."

Kenneth Hagin teaches that we are not going to get any more light from God until we walk in the light that we already have. He gives the testimony of his struggle as a young Christian on his deathbed to overcome worry. At first, he would skip over Matthew 6 and read other passages; but he found his understanding of other Scriptures dim as long as he refused to deal with these verses on worry. Only when he decided to trust the Lord in this area of his life did the Lord deal with him about going on and finding fresh revelation in other truths in the Scriptures. 226]

226] Kenneth Hagin, Following God's Plan For Your Life (Tulsa, Oklahoma: Faith Library Publications, c 1993, 1994), 134.

God"s Word can only be revealed by the revelation of the Holy Spirit ( 1 John 2:20; 1 John 2:27).

1 John 2:20, "But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things."

1 John 2:27, "But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him."

We are kept by His power by faith ( 1 Peter 1:5).

1 Peter 1:5, "Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time."

Thus, Hebrews 6:3 is referring to permission from God to go on to a more mature level of revelation and anointing.

Another way of interpreting Hebrews 6:3 is to understand that God does not permit a person to go on in the things of God if he has fallen away or if he is bound with a stronghold of sin. He will not permit a believer to reach the state of maturity described in Hebrews 6:4-6 while abusing His grace because it would then be impossible to renew him back through repentance. It is impossible to renew those to repentance who have grown mature in the Lord and then walked away from Christ. For those, it is impossible to bring them back into a walk with the Lord, seeing that there is no method of repentance for such people.

Because the author of Hebrews is about to take his readers into a theological discourse that reveals the full extent of Christ's redemptive work on Calvary, revealing the completeness of ours cleansing from sins, past present and future, some believer may be tempted to abuse such grace, and continue in sin because the blood of Christ is sufficient for its cleansing. However, such reasoning will lead a believer down the path of bondage to the same sins from which he was delivered at the time of his salvation. It can lead a believer into a state of mind where he chooses to renounce his Christian lifestyle and even his faith in God. Thus, Hebrews 6:4-6 describes such a person who takes full advantage of Christ's eternal cleansing of our sins. Such believers who turn back into sin and renounce Christ will suffer the fate of impossible redemption, a condition where it is impossible for them to return to Christ by their own will. As with the fallen angels, they have sinned willfully after having known the truth. Thus, the doctrinal discourse of Hebrews 6:1 to Hebrews 10:19 is followed in Hebrews 10:26-31 by a repetition of this same warning delivered in Hebrews 6:4-6. However, placed between these two warnings is the greatest revelation on Christ's work of atonement found anywhere in the New Testament.

Scripture References- Note similar verses:

1 Corinthians 4:19, "But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord will, and will know, not the speech of them which are puffed up, but the power."

James 4:15, "For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that."

Hebrews 6:4 For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,

Hebrews 6:4 — "For" - Comments- The Greek conjunction γά ρ (G 1063) can be translated "because." Why does this passage of verses 4-6 come after verses 1-3: because the recipients of Hebrews had experienced the things listed in verses 4-5. If they do not go on to maturity, they might tend to fall away.

In addition, if God freely allowed divine revelation and the operation of the gifts of the Holy Spirit to operate, those believers who are not mature would not know how to handle them faithfully. Nor would you give a person in a business a promotion to a person who was handling his duties with immaturity. He would first have to prove himself faithful in the smaller areas of responsibility ( Hebrews 5:13-14).

Hebrews 6:4 — "it is impossible for those who were once enlightened" - Comments- The phrase "those who were once enlightened" refers to the state of a believer just before he receives salvation. This is confirmed with its use in Hebrews 10:32 in reference to believers who have been saved, after having been enlightened to the revelation of Jesus Christ through the preaching of the Gospel. The Holy Spirit is a work enlightening him to the truth of the Gospel of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.

John 1:9, "That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world."

Ephesians 1:18, "The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,"

Ephesians 3:10, "To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of — God,"

Hebrews 10:32, "But call to remembrance the former days, in which, after ye were illuminated, ye endured a great fight of afflictions;"

Hebrews 6:4 — "and have tasted of the heavenly gift" - Word Study on "tasted" - Strong says the Greek word "tasted" means, "to taste, eat," and figuratively, "to experience." Some examples of its literal use are:

Matthew 27:34, "They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink."

Luke 14:24, "For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper."

Acts 20:11, "When he therefore was come up again, and had broken bread, and eaten, and talked a long while, even till break of day, so he departed."

Acts 23:14, "And they came to the chief priests and elders, and said, We have bound ourselves under a great curse, that we will eat nothing until we have slain Paul."

Colossians 2:21, "Touch not; taste not; handle not;"

It has the figurative meaning of "experiencing" something. Some examples of this use in the New Testament are:

Matthew 16:28, "Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom."

Mark 9:1, "And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power."

Luke 9:27, "But I tell you of a truth, there be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the kingdom of God."

John 8:52, "Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death."

Hebrews 2:9, "But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man."

1 Peter 2:3, "If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious."

Comments- The phrase "tasted of the heavenly gift" is a reference to the experience and gift of salvation as one places his faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord said to Kenneth Hagin regarding this phrase, "I am the heavenly gift. A man under conviction is enlightened, but he has not tasted of Me." 227]

227] Kenneth Hagin, I Believe In Visions (Tulsa, Oklahoma: Faith Library Publications, c 1984, 1986), 79.

John 4:10, "Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water."

John 6:32, "Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven."

Ephesians 2:8, "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:"

Hebrews 6:4 — "made partakers of the Holy Ghost" - Word Study on "partakers" - Strong says the Greek word "partakers" ( μέ τοχος) (G 3353) means, "participant, sharer, associate." Note a similar use of this Greek word.

Hebrews 3:1, "Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;"

Hebrews 12:8, "But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons."

The substantival use of this verb means "partners, companions, or fellows."

Luke 5:7, "And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink."

Hebrews 1:9, "Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows."

Also:

Hebrews 3:14, "For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;"

Comments- The phrase "made partakers of the Holy Ghost" refers to the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

Hebrews 6:5 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,

Hebrews 6:5 — "have tasted the good word of God" - Comments - The phrase "tasted the good word of God" means that a believer has begun to grow in maturity as he gains understanding in the Word of God. It is important to understand that a lost man does not receive enlightenment into deep spiritual truths ( 1 Corinthians 2:14). He can only be initially enlightened to the message of salvation. The sinner"s first enlightenment by the Holy Spirit to the things of God is in the areas of sin, righteousness, and judgment ( John 16:8-11). He must realize that he is a sinner, that God is righteous and holy, and that God will judge the ungodly. Only after a sinner acknowledges this truth and accepts that sacrifice of the blood atonement of Jesus on Calvary can a sinner then be filled with the Holy Spirit and received guidance and understanding into the Holy Word of God.

1 Corinthians 2:14, "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."

John 16:8-11, "And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me; Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged."

Scripture References- Note:

Hebrews 10:26, "For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,"

If we know to do good and do it not, it is sin.

James 4:17, "Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin."

Luke 12:47, "And that servant, which knew his lord"s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes."

Hebrews 6:5 — "and the powers of the world to come" - Comments - The phrase "have tasted…the powers of the world to come" means that this believer has begun to operate in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. In heaven God will still be exercising these powers as a normal occurrence, powers which we call miracles today.

Hebrews 6:6 If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.

Hebrews 6:6 — "seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh" - Comments - The phrase "seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh" means that Jesus Christ would have to suffer on the Cross a second time since His first sacrifice has become insufficient when they renounce Christ Jesus as their Saviour. Hebrews 9:26 says, "For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world." In other words, Jesus would have to suffer over and over in order to accommodate those who renounce their faith in Christ.

The fact that these people do this "to themselves" shows man"s will is involved in making this decision to reject the Lord Jesus Christ.

Hebrews 10:26, "For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,"

Hebrews 6:6 — "and put him to an open shame" - Word Study on "put him to an open shame" - Strong says the Greek word "put him to an open shame" ( παραδειγματί ζω) (G 3856) means, "to show alongside, to expose infamy." For example, Joseph refused to put away Mary publically when he learned of her divine conception in order to avoid bringing shame upon her and her family ( Matthew 1:19).

Matthew 1:19, "Then Joseph her husband, being a just Prayer of Manasseh , and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily."

Comments - When a believer falls away, the world find a reason to mock ( 2 Peter 2:2). Beck reads, "and hold Him up for mockery."

2 Peter 2:2, "And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of."

One of the purposes of the Roman style of crucifixion was to publicly shame the victim. This is why Hebrews 6:6 refers to crucifixion in relation to public shame.

Hebrews 6:6Scripture Reference- Note a similar verse:

Hebrews 10:29, "Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?"

Hebrews 6:4-6Comments- Definition of Genuine Apostasy - Hebrews 6:4-6 provides a clear definition of a person who has truly committed apostasy as a warning for the readers against falling away from Jesus Christ. This type of backslider cannot repent and be restored back to God because he backslides willfully and knowingly after rising to maturity in his faith in Christ. This definition is restated again in Hebrews 10:26-27. The basic-line sentence of Hebrews 6:4-6 says, "it is impossible to renew those...unto repentance." This is perhaps the most sobering passage in the entire Holy Bible. It simply says that if God permits faithful believers to go on to maturity, and they meet the five following qualification of Christian maturity, and they then fall away from God, there remains no more repentance and redemption for them. This terrible judgment falls only on those believers who meet the five qualifications mentioned in these two verses and then fall away:

1. Those who were once enlightened.

2. Those who have tasted of the heavenly gift.

3. Those who were made partakers of the Holy Ghost.

4. Those who have tasted the good word of God.

5. Those who have tasted the powers of the world to come.

This five-fold description of a true apostate is not that of an immature believer, but of a Christian who is mature in the faith. An immature believer can backslide and find repentance, but a mature Christian who willingly turns from Christ and renounces his faith cannot find repentance and salvation. Andrew Wommack gives an excellent illustration by saying when he was a child he started to run away from home. He wanted to renounce his relationship with his parents and the Wommack name. After getting down the road a ways, he repented because of the fear of having no place to go and find food and shelter. By law, he was too young to change his name; however, if Andrew had been an adult of legal age, he had the legal right to leave home and change his name because the laws not hold him accountable for such actions. 228]

228] Andrew Wommack, "Sermon," Andrew Wommack Leadership Conference, Serena Hotel, Kampala, Uganda, 18 July 2009.

Since the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the proclamation of the Gospel, God no longer winks on, or overlooks, man's ignorance. He now holds all men accountable for their knowledge of the truth ( Acts 17:30).

Acts 17:30, "And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:"

Old Testament Examples of True Apostasy- The author gives us Old Testament examples of this type of apostasy, of the children of Israel in the wilderness whom God destroyed after believing ( Hebrews 3:7-19), and of Esau who found no repentance, though it sought it with tears ( Hebrews 12:16-17). Perhaps the departing of the glory of God from Israel serves as an additional Old Testament example ( 1 Samuel 4:21).

1 Samuel 4:21, "And she named the child Ichabod, saying, The glory is departed from Israel: because the ark of God was taken, and because of her father in law and her husband."

Perhaps the departure of the Holy Spirit from King Saul after his second offensive act against the Lord ( 1 Samuel 16:14), which was offering a priestly sacrifice ( 1 Samuel 13:1-14), and failing to utterly destroy all of the Amalekites ( 2 Samuel 15:1-35).

1 Samuel 16:14, "But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him."

Perhaps the departure of the glory of God from the Temple in Jerusalem during the time of Ezekiel's ministry serves as a type and figure of apostasy ( Ezekiel 8-11).

We have similar statements in the New Testament ( Matthew 12:31, Hebrews 3:13; Hebrews 10:26-31; Hebrews 12:15; Hebrews 12:25, 2 Peter 2:20-22, and 1 John 5:16).

Matthew 12:31, "Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men."

Hebrews 10:26-27, "For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries."

2 Peter 2:20-22, "For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire."

1 John 5:16, "If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it."

Hebrews 6:4-6 helps us understand why no plan of redemption was made for the fallen angels ( 2 Peter 2:4, Jude 1:6). The angels already knew what it was to know God and to be in his presence. They lived in His presence with divine wisdom and supernatural miracles. Therefore, when they sinned, they did so willfully, knowingly, and fully aware of their evil acts.

2 Peter 2:4, "For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;"

Jude 1:6, "And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day."

Hebrews 6:7 For the earth which drinketh in the rain that cometh oft upon it, and bringeth forth herbs meet for them by whom it is dressed, receiveth blessing from God:

Hebrews 6:7Comments - The blessing from God is an abundant harvest for those who have cultivated the field that God watered with rain from heaven.

Hebrews 6:8 But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned.

Hebrews 6:8 — "But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected" - Comments - The implied subject of ἐκφέρουσα (that which beareth) is the earth. It is the earth that brings forth thorns and briers.

The Greek word ἀ δό κιμος (G 96) (rejected) is the same word that is used in 1 Corinthians 9:27.

1 Corinthians 9:27, "But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway."

Hebrews 6:8 — "whose end is to be burned" - Comments- When a piece of agricultural land is full of weeds and thorns, the farmer must burn the vegetation in an effort to purge the land for new crops. This type of controlled burning must have been a common practice in ancient times.

Hebrews 6:8Scripture References- Note a similar verse:

John 15:2-6, "Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned."

Hebrews 6:7-8Comments- Illustration of the Fruit of the Ground- Hebrews 6:7-8 serves as an illustration for Hebrews 6:4-6, similar to the branches and the vine analogy given in John 15:1-6, or to the Parable of the Sower in Mark 4:1-20. Those believers who have received God's blessings, and reject the Lord, are like the earth that receives rain. The soil represents the heart of man. When God plants His Word in our hearts and waters it with the Holy Spirit, and when we cultivate this precious seed in obedience, we are blessed with an abundance harvest. If we neglect to cultivate the soil of our heart, it produces thorns and thistles as does an unattended field as it also takes in God's rain and sunshine. Such a field must be burned to destroy the seeds produced by these weeds. Thus, the earth can either produce a harvest of beneficial crops, or it can grow weeds and thorns. The ground that produces weeds must be burned in order to purge it and prepare it for future crops, which is like God judging those who have received His divine blessings and produce an ungodly lifestyle must be condemned to Hell. Note the similar curse on man with the fall in the Garden of Eden.

Genesis 3:17-18, "And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;"


Verses 1-18

Indoctrination: The Superior Priesthood of Jesus Christ - Hebrews 6:1 to Hebrews 10:18 places emphasis upon our indoctrination as a part of our need to persevere in the Christian faith. This passage of Scripture offers us a theological discourse unlike any other in the Holy Scriptures. In order to persevere Jesus Christ made access to God's throne freely available to all believers, by which we are exhorted to grow and mature in our spiritual journey ( Hebrews 6:1-8). The author supports this exhortation with a doctrinal discourse on the analogy of the priesthood of Melchizedek with that of Jesus Christ ( Hebrews 6:9 to Hebrews 10:18).

Outline - Here is a proposed outline:

1. 3rd Exhortation: Grow in Maturity — Hebrews 6:1-8

2. 3rd Doctrinal Discourse — Hebrews 6:9 to Hebrews 10:18


Verses 9-18

Third Doctrinal Discourse: The Superior Priesthood of Jesus Christ - The author then leads the Hebrews into a revelation of the priestly office of the Lord Jesus Christ ( Hebrews 6:9 to Hebrews 10:18), which reveals the need for indoctrination in order to persevere in the faith. He begins his doctrinal discourse by reminding them of their sure hope and promise by God of receiving eternal life ( Hebrews 6:9-20).

Outline - Here is a proposed outline:

1. God's Sure Promises in Christ Jesus — Hebrews 6:9-20

2. Jesus Offers Better Covenant Thru Superior Order — Hebrews 7:1 to Hebrews 10:18


Verses 9-20

God's Sure Promises in Christ Jesus ( Hebrews 6:9-20) - Hebrews 6:1-3 exhorts the readers to press on into maturity, which necessitates an understanding of Jesus' present-day ministry as our Great High Priest. If God permits, they will be able to go on into a deeper knowledge of the truth. After explaining to them the faithfulness of God promises to those who go on into maturity ( Hebrews 6:9-20), the author will give them a lengthy teaching on the office and ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ ( Hebrews 7:1 to Hebrews 10:18), after which he repeats his warning given in Hebrews 6:4-8 by saying, "For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins" ( Hebrews 10:26). Thus, he gives them this "knowledge" for a deeper walk with the Lord, which he exhorts them follow in Hebrews 10:19 to Hebrews 13:17.

Hebrews 6:9 But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak.

Hebrews 6:9 — "though we thus speak" - Comments - In paraphrasing the phrase "though we thus speak," the author is saying, "although we are warning you against the dangers of apostasy…"

Hebrews 6:9Comments - Paul makes a similar statement later in Hebrews 10:39 that declares his confidence in their willingness to persevere in the faith.

Hebrews 10:39, "But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul."

Hebrews 6:10 For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.

Hebrews 6:10Comments - Love is a noun of action in Greek grammar. This means that love is an action someone does, not just an intangible feeling. The true love of God has labor, just as God-kind of faith has works. BDAG translates this phrase, "loving service" (see κόπος 2).

When we study the definition of love found in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, we see that all of these are "labors of love." It takes effort to make them happen. The greater the toil, the more the love.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7, "Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things."

Note this same phrase found in the Paul's epistle to the church at Thessalonica.

1 Thessalonians 1:3, "Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father;"

Mike Murdock said the Lord spoke to him these words, "Anything you do in an attempt to obey Me will not go unrewarded." 229]

229] Mike Murdock, interviewed by Rod Parsley, Breakthrough (Columbus, Ohio: Rod Parsley Ministries), on Trinity Broadcasting Network (Santa Ana, California), television program, 23May 2010.

Illustration (1) - In the mid-1980's I was attending a Kenneth Hagin crusade in my home town of Panama City, Florida. While taking a seat, I spotted a man that I had met in college. Since I did not attend church regularly as a college student, the Lord had used him to minister to me and bring me to church. Once I rededicated my life to Jesus after graduating, I deeply appreciated the sacrifices that he had made on my behalf. I quickly got out of my seat and went over to greet him. After introducing myself, to my dismay, he did not remember me. I made my way back to my seat a little disappointed. When I sat down, the Lord quickened this verse to me to let me know that although man forgets, He will never forget. I may be heaven before this man is brought to remembrance of the kind deeds that he did to me in the name of the Lord. For God has written a book of remembrance for just such an occasion.

Illustration (2) - In November 2002, the Chairman and directors of Lighthouse Television came to Kampala, Uganda on their annual visit to see the work that was being done by their Christian television station. I had worked long hours in preparing for and hosting them on this trip. Pastor Bob Nichols, the chairman, leaned over to me one night at a restaurant and said that he hoped that they were not putting me through too much work, since it was obvious I was putting in long hours. I opened my mouth that replied that my work was a labour of love and that it was fine. I was not thinking about this phrase as it came out of my mouth. This incident helped me to understand what Paul was referring to in this phase.

Hebrews 6:11 And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end:

Hebrews 6:11Scripture References- Note similar exhortations in this epistle:

Hebrews 3:6, "But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end."

Hebrews 3:14, "For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;"

Hebrews 6:12 That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.

Hebrews 6:12 — Comments - The writer of Hebrews uses the same Greek word νωθρό ς in Hebrews 5:11 and Hebrews 6:12 to warning his readers not to be sluggish in their faith towards God. Faith works together with patience to produce the harvest of God's promises coming to pass in our lives. Very often when we sow a seed into the work of the Lord, we do it in faith, believing that we will receive a reward. However, faith is not always enough. We must learn to be patience, because very often, the harvest takes time to grow. Patience is just as much of the process of receiving as faith in God.

Illustration- For example, we promise our children that we will do something, and a child will automatically believe us. During the day or so of waiting for the promise to come, the child expresses impatience by continually asking when the promise will come. This is because a child may have faith in his parent's promise, but he lacks patience. Cecil Stewart says, "Patience, like faith, is a mighty weapon against the devil while we are waiting for the manifestation of our answers to prayer." 230] The author of Hebrews will then use the example of Abraham as a man who inherited God's promises through faith and patience, which will show us the certainty of His promises ( Hebrews 6:13-15). He will later give us many examples in Hebrews 11:1-40 using the men and woman from Old Testament to explain true faith and patience.

230] Cecil Stewart, Life Giving Leadership, African edition (Whiteabbey, Northern Ireland: Christian Communications Network, 2009), 12.

Scripture Reference - Note:

Luke 21:19, "In your patience possess ye your souls."

Hebrews 6:13 For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself,

Hebrews 6:13Comments - David Allen offers a great illustration of how God swore by Himself using the example of the modern judicial system of swearing an oath of testimony. As the Judge of the universe, He stepped out from behind His judgment seat, placed His mighty hand upon the Bible and said, "I swear to tell the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help Me, Me." 231]

231] David L. Allen, "Class Lecture," Doctor of Ministry Seminar, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, 4August 2011.

Hebrews 6:14 Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee.

Hebrews 6:13-14Old Testament Quotes in the New Testament - Hebrews 6:13-14 is a quote from Genesis 22:16-18.

Genesis 22:16-18, "And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy Song of Solomon , thine only son: That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice."

Comments- In the Hebrew text, this blessing is an emphatic Hebrew construction. That Isaiah , it is a way to emphasize the promise of a blessing, by repeating, "In blessing I will bless."

Hebrew Hebrews 6:13-14 reveals the tremendous love God has for His people by His intense desire to bless His children. As parents, we also intensely desire our children to be blessed if we genuinely love them.

Hebrews 6:15 And Song of Solomon , after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.

Hebrews 6:15Comments- The promise referred to in Hebrews 6:15 is the multiplication of Abraham's seed into the nation of Israel. Abraham could only have obtained this promise by the fact that he was still alive when Israel became a nation. Although Abraham physically died at the age of one hundred and seventy five ( Genesis 25:7), he continued to live in Heaven to see this promise fulfilled ( Matthew 22:32).

Genesis 25:7, "And these are the days of the years of Abraham"s life which he lived, an hundred threescore and fifteen years."

Matthew 22:32, "I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living."

Hebrews 6:16 For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation is to them an end of all strife.

Hebrews 6:16Comments - Today we make promises or use contracts to ensure the fulfillment of men's agreements.

Hebrews 6:17 Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath:

Hebrews 6:18 That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us:

Hebrews 6:18 — "That by two immutable things" - Comments- Hebrews 6:18 refers to the immutability of God's divine nature. There are a number of verses in the Scriptures that refers to these divine attributes.

Psalm 33:11, "The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations."

Malachi 3:6, "For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed."

Romans 11:29, "For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance."

Titus 1:2, "In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;"

Hebrews 6:18 — "in which it was impossible for God to lie" - Scripture References- Note:

Numbers 23:19, "God is not a Prayer of Manasseh , that he should lie; neither the son of Prayer of Manasseh , that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?"

1 Samuel 15:29, "And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a Prayer of Manasseh , that he should repent."

Hebrews 6:18 — "we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us" - Comments - "who have fled for refuge" - The reference to a place of refuge for believers to flee echoes the cities of refuge in the Old Testament Scriptures ( Numbers 35:9-34). An Israelite who committed a killed a man by accident could flee to such a city and receive a fair trial. He was to live in this city until the death of the high priest, at which time he was free to safely return to his home. Of course, our Great High Priest never dies, so we have found our eternal city of refuge in Christ.

"to lay hold upon" - The idea of "laying hold of" ( Hebrews 6:18) and "holding fast" ( Hebrews 4:14) stands in contrast to "letting them slip" ( Hebrews 2:1).

Hebrews 4:14, "Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession."

Hebrews 2:1, "Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip."

"the hope set before us" - The hope that is set before us refers back to Hebrews 6:11, which assures us we can be certain of obtaining eternal life by holding our confession of faith in Christ Jesus.

Hebrews 6:11, "And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end:"

Hebrews 6:19 Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;

Hebrews 6:19 — "which entereth into that within the veil" - Scripture References- Note:

Hebrews 4:16, "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need."

Hebrews 6:19Comments - Secular society often defines hope as wishful thinking. However, the New Testament concept of hope ( ἐ λπί ς) is based upon the Messianic hope of Jesus' Second Coming. This is a hope characterized by certain expectation of future events. It serves as an anchor to which one chooses to fasten his faith in God.

Hebrews 6:20 Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

Hebrews 6:20Word Study on "forerunner" - The TDNT says the Greek word πρόδρομος literally means, "running before." It refers to those who go before with others following. The TDNT says the classical writers of antiquity used this word in reference to people (messengers, troops, athlete), and to impersonal objects (wind, fruit, and ships).

 


Copyright Statement
These files are copyrighted by the author, Gary Everett. Used by Permission.
No distribution beyond personal use without permission.

Bibliography Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Hebrews 6:4". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghe/hebrews-6.html. 2013.

Lectionary Calendar
Monday, May 20th, 2019
the Fifth Week after Easter
ADVERTISEMENT
Commentary Navigator
Search This Commentary
Enter query in the box below
ADVERTISEMENT
To report dead links, typos, or html errors or suggestions about making these resources more useful use our convenient contact form
Powered by Lightspeed Technology