|.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,|| 1
- Doctrine The Greek word is logos which basically
means "word." In verse 2 "doctrine" is translated from didache meaning
"teaching." Paul may have intended us to read "words" in verse 1 to emphasize
his idea of simplicity.
Perfection Or "maturity."
Not laying again the foundation A call to serious study of the Scriptures.
Repentance from dead works The first of several foundation principles. The works were maybe "dead" in the sense that they lead to death. On "repentance" see 2co0709, 2co0507. Repentance is moving away from evil and faith is the same action moving toward confidence.
|2 Of the doctrine of baptisms,
and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal
3 And this will we do, if God permit.
Baptisms From baptismoi. Elsewhere in the Bible, the Greek word appears only in mr0704,8, and he0910. The usual word for baptism is baptisma. The author may have been saying that people were considering the baptism after Christ's example as only a necessary ritual rather than a symbol of the new life in Christ ro0604. I suggest that, although not a teaching of Christ v1, the Jewish Christians were continuing to practice the various Jewish washings believing it to be part of their duty.
on of hands This was done in connection with baptism as well
as a gesture of receiving or requesting the gift of the Holy Spirit ac0817,
and for committing people to sacred service ac0606,
Compare The ceremony, however wasn't an end in itself. It seems that
some today who believe they are authorized to give the spirit are not practicing
all the truth of the Scriptures and that the unholy spirit may be answering.
Jesus did not send people into hysteria or a trance in His ministry.
Resurrection Clarified in 1co15.
Eternal judgment The doctrine has been misunderstood in our day. It was clear to the Jews who studied the Old Testament (OT) ps00904, da0709, jude14. It is clear also in the NT lu1131.
This ends the list of six fundamentals that the Hebrew Christians were to move beyond. They knew them from the OT. Their serious need was to understand the truths that Christ had made clear.
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,
5 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,
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.
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:
8 But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned.
| 4 -
This is a sad picture of one who has committed what we call the unpardonable
Many like to think that sometime in the future things will be different
or that the people described really do get saved. This text disagrees.
Major comments at jn10.
Of course, many resist the Holy Spirit. The case without hope is for those
who have totally rejected spiritual things.
6 - Renew them again unto repentance They have lost all desire for holiness. The unpardonable sin. no pardon is desired. Compare mt1232, re1609,11.
7,8 - Earth drinketh ... but thorns The argument is a comparison to verses 4-6. Receiving the gift then choosing to fall away rejecting Christ is like the earth's receiving rain for good food but the ground failing like thorns rejecting the rain. We may see the people who choose to reject the gift acting like the thorns. See mr0401-20.
¶ But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things
that accompany salvation, though we thus speak.
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.
11 And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end:
.12 That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
- Better things of you In comparison
to those who have rejected light v4. There the apostle speaks of "they"
but now it is "you."
10 - Not ... forget He keeps track of the small deeds of kindness mt1042, ps05608.
11 - Same diligence They needed to do more than minister. They needed to seek their salvation. See ph0106, 2pe0110,
For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater,
he sware by himself,
14 Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee.
15 And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.
16 For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation is to them an end of all strife.
.17 Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath:
.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:
.19 Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;
.20 Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
- Sware by himself Reference to ge2216.
14 - Blessing I will bless A Hebrew form of emphasis. "Certainly I will bless you."
19 - Hope ... entereth ... veil Beautiful promise. We may, by faith, enter into the sanctuary following Christ v20. Also he1019, he1222.
19&20 - Entereth within the vail These verses have been used by some to argue that there is no holy-place ministry after the cross – that Christ began the second ministry then. This places the ministry of forgiveness earlier which is a problem because His blood was not shed until just before He returned to heaven where it was needed for the holy-place ministry. For more see re0308e.