Hebrews 6:4-6By Pastor Boffey on Sunday, February 15, 2009.
Hebrews 6:4-6 I. The key to understanding this controversial passage is the sole, once for all, sufficient sacrifice of Christ which is never to be repeated. HEB 7:27; 9:25-28; 1PE 3:18. II. In these verses Paul leaves the principles of the doctrine of Christ to go on to perfection. HEB 6:1-3. A. Christians must progress beyond the infant stage of the principles of the doctrine of Christ. HEB 5:11-14. B. Principle: “Origin, source; beginning; that from which something else takes its rise; a fundamental source from which something proceeds; a fundamental truth or proposition, on which many others depend.” C. Paul lists the principles which are the beginning of the Christian life. 1. The gospel calls sinners to repentance from dead works and faith toward God. ACT 20:21; 26:20. 2. The penitent believer is then commanded to be baptized in water upon which he is baptized by the Spirit into the church. ACT 2:38, 41; 1CO 12:13. 3. Water baptism is performed by a gospel minister who has undergone the laying on of hands. MAT 28:19-20; 1TI 4:14. 4. The resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment are key points of the gospel. ACT 17:30-32; 24:25; 26:6-8; 1CO 15:13-14. D. Those who achieve this deeper knowledge are able to discern both good and evil, be it in conduct or creed. II. The early church was plagued with false teachers from the Jewish community. TIT 1:10. A. These taught that in addition to the work of Christ, the works of the law were necessary to secure salvation. ACT 15:1-5. B. If salvation depends on our keeping the law, then it could be lost by our not keeping the law. C. Paul powerfully counters this error in this epistle by shewing the sole sufficiency of the work of Christ to secure salvation. HEB 1:3, 9:12; 10:10-14, 18. III. Arminians argue that this passage teaches that eternally saved people can lose their salvation through falling away. A. If this is true, then it also teaches that they can never regain eternal salvation. B. Scripture emphatically teaches the eternal security of the eternally saved. PSA 37:23-24, 28; JOH 5:24; 6:37-39; 10:26-29; ROM 8:29-39; PHIL 1:6; HEB 10:14. IV. Calvinists argue that these persons had their natural faculties wrought upon by the Holy Spirit but fell short of being regenerated. A. They thus maintain that these people never lost eternal salvation because they never had it. B. But, by comparing the characteristics given of these souls with other passages, it is clear that these are characteristics of saved people. 1. They “were once enlightened.” HEB 10:32; EPH 1:18; 2CO 4:6. 2. They had “tasted of the heavenly gift.” JOH 3:27; 6:32-33; ROM 6:23; EPH 1:3; 2:8. 3. They “were made partakers of the Holy Ghost.” ROM 8:9, 14; HEB 3:1 c/w TIT 3:5; 1CO 12:13. 4. They had “tasted of the good word of God.” PSA 119:103; JER 15:16 ct/w JOH 8:43, 47. 5. They had tasted “the powers of the world to come.” 2CO 5:5; HEB 11:1; MAR 10:30. 6. Tasting is a FULL experience. HEB 2:9; 1PE 2:2-3. 7. Those described in this passage HAD been renewed unto repentance by virtue of the word “again” (v.6). a. One must be renewed in order to repent. TIT 3:5; COL 3:9-10. b. If this renewing is ever undone, it is impossible to be renewed again. C. If a child of God can fall away from his eternal salvation (the renewing of the Holy Ghost), Christ would be crucified afresh, for they and Him are considered legally one before God. HEB 2:11. 1. Christ's sacrifice would thus be rendered ineffectual and would have to be repeated or the covenant of grace would be a lie. 2. As such, His sacrifice would be more like the ineffectual animal sacrifices of the law. D. However, Christ will NEVER be crucified afresh. He was ONCE offered, as seen earlier. E. Therefore, there can never be such a falling away of God's elect as would necessitate a fresh crucifixion of Christ. F. Note in vs.7-8 that there are only two classes: those who receive blessing and those who are nigh unto cursing. 1. The fruitful ground, such as those described in vs.4-5 IS dressed and RECEIVETH blessing. 1JO 2:29; 3:7. 2. The unfruitful ground IS rejected and will assuredly be burned. No fruit = no evidence of grace. PRO 10:17; MAT 7:21; ROM 2:13. 3. One is either dressed of God or rejected of God. There is no slipping in and out of these two classes. G. HEB 6:4-6 is actually a text which supports the security of the elect of God, not their insecurity. 1. It is setting forth an argument of the impossibility of a particular thing based on the impossibility of the factors which could bring it to pass. 2. Example: It is impossible for those who were born Negroid, if they should will their genetic makeup to change, to return to being Negroid. Note JER 13:23. 3. See also JER 33:20-21.
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