Thursday, September 23, 2010

NT75 Day 11: Hebrews 4-6

There are some of my favorite phrases in the entire NT in these chapters.  Jesus is a sympathetic high priest, we are called to enter God's rest, and move on to solid food, the kind for the mature.  I think probably my favorite phrase in these three chapters is in 6.19, where the author speaks of a "sure and steadfast anchor of the soul."  

I love that phrase because of the solidity of it.  My soul, at times even though I'm a "professional Christian" and leader of other Christians, is stormy.  My boat gets rocked.  My tolerance, patience, faith, hope, love, self-control, emotions, perseverance, and life go up and down, blown here and there.  What do I need in that moment?  An anchor, sure and steadfast.

And God has provided one in Jesus.  The promised one, given by an oath and guaranteed by His character since He cannot lie, has come and given His life as a ransom for many.  And, wonderfully, He's taking all refugees.  

But what about Hebrews 6?

Just a note for those who wonder about that confusing little passage at the front of Hebrews 6.  It appears from the words in v.4-8 that a person can lose their salvation, their relationship to God.  I don't want to go into a lot of detail here and would be willing to have some email traffic with those who want to discuss it further, but let me say that I think it's a warning passage.  What I mean by that is because I understand Hebrews to be a sermon (before a written document), we have to keep in mind that the author can be saying these things to warn the congregation.  What would he be warning them about?  Primarily, the warning is to those who are in the congregation but not in the congregation.  They're physically taking part but not spiritually taking part.  Those who sit in church services but have no spiritual connection, yet think they are in good shape because of the room they're in.  And inevitably, when persecution or temptation gets too great, they fall away and do not repent.  He does a similar warning in chapters 3 and 10.  Although it probably sounds foreign to American Evangelical ears, warnings are a part of the Bible and need to be heard and heeded.  If you have questions, email me.

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