Saturday, January 16, 2021

Letter to the Hebrews Volume 53

 A Better Forecast is Expected for the True Believer Part 3

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

Now the writer of Hebrews finishes his preaching to them about his concerns for their spiritual growth by exhorting them to follow after the pattern of their brothers and sisters 'in Christ' who already have grown into spiritual maturity with these words, "That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises." (Hebrews 6:12) (KJV). The writer of Hebrews last warning to them about their 'advancement in the faith' or their 'growing up into spiritual maturity' comes with these words at the beginning of this verse, 'that ye be not slothful', and the English word 'slothful' is translated by the Greek word nōthros meaning sluggish, that is, (literally) lazy, or (figuratively) stupid: - dull, slothful (its only used one other time in the entire New Testament). The writer had already referred to them as being such at the very beginning of his preaching to them on this matter of the lack of many of their spiritual growth with these words, "Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing." (Hebrews 5:11) (KJV). The English word 'dull' in Hebrews 5:11 is the one other place where this Greek word nōthros was used, so we see then that the writer of Hebrews had determined that the problem of some not growing into spiritual maturity was because of them being unwilling to do the diligent study of God's Word as others were doing, that is, those who had become of 'full age' and 'have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil' (Hebrews 5:14).

From the very beginning of his preaching to them about the need and necessity of their spiritual growth now or at the very time of his letter to them was to keep them from falling into dullness (which some had done) or laziness that would bring their spiritual growth to a complete stop. The writer of Hebrews wanted those who had become sluggish to snap out of it and become 'followers' of others who were growing up into spiritual maturity. This English word 'followers' is translated by the Greek word mimētēs meaning an imitator. In others words, the writer is not telling them to be a follower of their brothers or sisters 'in Christ' instead of Christ, but he is exhorting them to imitate what those in the Body of Christ are doing that has and is growing them up into spiritual maturity. The writer of Hebrews had just told them in Hebrews 6:11 that he wanted them to lay hold of their 'full assurance of hope' and now in this verse 12 he is surely, severely, and strongly warning them that their dullness or sluggishness or laziness will definately dim their hope, that is, that confident expectation that dwells in their inner man or inner woman if they pull back or draw back away from feeding on the Word of God. Just like the disease 'Cancer' attacks the cells of the human body and weakens the 'immune sysytem' until it becomes to weak to fight of other infections, likewise, laziness in being in the Word of God will weaken that 'hope' of eternal glory with our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ and dim our light causing doubt to replace assurance and faith.

The English word 'patience' is translated by the Greek word makrothumia meaning longanimity, that is, (objectively) forbearance or (subjectively) fortitude: - longsuffering, patience. The English word 'promises' is translated by the Greek word epaggelia meaning an announcement (for information, assent or pledge; especially a divine assurance of good): - message, promise. In other words, those who do not lose hope, that is, live in doubt of their salvation (as many 'babes in Christ' do) are those who by way of long suffering/patience in faith become not slow, slothful, or sluggish in their diligent effort to grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ by listening to Him in His Word, so as to always keep the end in view or in focus and that is the salvation of our souls no matter what trials or test we endure in our pilgrimage, as it is so elequently written here by the Apostle Peter in his first letter to the Church of God, "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see Him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls." (1 Peter 1:3-9) (KJV).

Here is what Dr. John Gill had to say of Hebrews 6:12, "With respect to hearing the word, and attendance on every ordinance; with respect to the use of means for the increase of knowledge, faith, and hope; and with respect to ministering to the saints; but on the contrary, should take every opportunity of improvement and doing good: but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises; or things promised; not the land of Canaan, nor the coming of the Messiah; but either grace and salvation by Christ; or eternal Life, which is expressed by a promise, to show that it is not by any works, or merits of men; that it is wholly of grace, and shall certainly be enjoyed: and it is expressed in the plural number, 'promises', because it is the grand promise, which is inclusive of all others; and because it has been given out at various times, and in different manners: and the possession of it being signified by 'inheriting', it shows that this is their Father's gift and legacy, which they have as children; and which comes to them through the death of Christ, and of which the Spirit is the seal; and comes not by works of righteousness done by them: and the means through which saints that are gone before are come to the enjoyment of this happiness, are 'faith and patience'; not that 'faith' is the cause of, or what gives right to the inheritance, but it designs a course and walk of believing, at the end of which, saints come to glory; and faith is connected with salvation, and salvation with that; and through faith believers are preserved unto it: and 'patience' is joined with faith, as a fruit and evidence of it; and supposes troubles which are patiently endured before men come to the possession of the inheritance: now the Apostle exhorts these Hebrews to be followers and imitators of such, in diligence, faith, and patience, when they need not doubt of inheriting the same promised blessedness they do."

If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...


Sincerely in Christ,


Clifford D. Tate, Sr.


Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…










Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Letter to the Hebrews Volume 52

 A Better Forecast is Expected for the True Believer Part 2

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: KJV

The writer of Hebrews begins his conclusion of the conviction he has in the then Hebrew converts to our Lord Jesus Christ of their continuance in faith and of their growing up spiritually into maturity with these words next in verse 11, "And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end:" (Hebrews 6:11) (KJV). The writer of Hebrews unvails his on personal concern, care, and conflict that he himself has in his inner man for their advancement in the faith, not only for the entire body of believers, but for each born again son and daughter of Christ Jesus our Lord individually. He uses the English phrase 'we desire' (to express his deep and strong feelings for their spiritual growth and steadfastness in the faith) which is translated by the Greek word epithumeō meaning (as used here) to set the heart upon, that is, long for (rightfully): desire. In other words, he himself is most likely also a Hebrew/Jewish convert to Christ and understands the difficulty in resisting, removing, and relinquishing the old 'Law of Moses' and the many many added rites, rituals, and religious ceremonies that the Hebrew/Jewish Rabbi's added to the 'Law' making it a bunch of religious forms that had no power to get anyone closer to God. Many of the Hebrew converts were holding on to these things and they were hindered in their spiritual growth 'in Christ' by doing so. We recall when our Lord Jesus Christ rebuked the Hebrew/Jewish Religious leaders for making their made up traditions to be equal to the Word of God/Commands of God.

As it is written here, "Then came together unto Him the Pharisees, and certain of the Scribes, which came from Jerusalem. And when they saw some of His disciples eat bread with defiled, that is to say, with unwashen, hands, they found fault. For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, except they wash their hands oft, eat not, holding the tradition of the elders. 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. Then the Pharisees and Scribes asked Him, Why walk not Thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands? He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. 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. And He said unto them, Full well ye reject the Commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition. For Moses said, Honour thy father and thy mother; and, Whoso curseth father or mother, let him die the death: But ye say, If a man shall say to his father or mother, It is Corban, that is to say, a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me; he shall be free. And ye suffer him no more to do ought for his father or his mother; Making the Word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye." (Matthew 7:1-13) (KJV).

We see how these traditions past down for many years had indoctrinated the Hebrew people into a false belief pattern that was very much a part of every Hebrew/Jewish home and even when converted to Christ was still ingrained in the hearts and minds of the Hebrew/Jewish people and could only be destroyed by their complete yielding to God the Holy Spirit's Power. Also the Apostle Paul wrote to the Colossian Church the very same rebuke with these words, "Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ. Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God. Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, (Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh." (Colossians 2:16-23) (KJV).

When the writer of Hebrews declares these words at the end of Hebrews 6:11, 'shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end', he means that this is his desire or longing for each of them that they by persevering determination lay hold of their faith 'in Christ' yielding to the Holy Spirit and stop grieving Him (Ephesians 4:30) and have entire confidence in God the Son to protect them and preserve them until the very end of their earthly sojourn. The English word 'hope' is translated by the Greek word elpis meaning confident expectation. The writers of the New Testament use this Greek word some 60 times and here is one of those times written by the Apostle Paul to the Church @ Philippi, "According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain." (Phillipians 1:20-21) (KJV). Here is what John Wesley had to say of Hebrews 6:11, "But we desire you may show the same diligence unto the end - And therefore we thus speak. To the full assurance of hope - Which you cannot expect, if you abate your diligence. The full assurance of faith relates to present pardon; the full assurance of hope, to future glory. The former is the highest degree of divine evidence that God is reconciled to me in the Son of His love; the latter is the same degree of divine evidence (wrought in the soul by the same immediate inspiration of the Holy Ghost) of persevering grace, and of eternal glory. So much, and no more, as faith every moment 'beholds with open face,' so much does hope see to all eternity. But this assurance of faith and hope is not an opinion, not a bare construction of Scripture, but is given immediately by the Power of the Holy Ghost; and what none can have for another, but for himself only."

If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...


Sincerely in Christ,


Clifford D. Tate, Sr.


Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…









Saturday, January 9, 2021

Letter to the Hebrews Volume 51

 A Better Forecast is Expected for the True Believer Part 1

Hebrews 6:9-10 But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak. 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. KJV

As we used the final words of the Apostle Peter to the Church (2 Peter 3:14-18) to close out the part of the writer of Hebrews letter where he loudly urged the Hebrew converts back then and all converts to Christ of every era and generation to keep growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ, in order that they/we would not become a spiritually barren Christian lacking in vitality, learning nothing beyond the elementary principles of salvation, and even lifeless to the point of needing to be taught again what it really means to be saved from sin and hell. The writer of Hebrews now goes on to move away from the previous direction of warning them/us into declaring to them his belief about their true spiritual condition, despite some evidence in some of their lack of spiritual growth, as it is written here, "But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak." (Hebrews 6:9) (KJV). It was the pattern used by the Apostle Paul in both of his letters written to the Church @ Corinth, that is, to warn them vehemently against certain practices that were not pleasing to our Lord Jesus Christ, yet at the same time declaring his undying, unwavering, and unconditional love for them in spite of their lack of spiritual growth into maturity, for example his warning to the Church @ Corinth against idolatry (1 Corinthians 10:1-22).

The English phrase 'we are persuaded' in Hebrews 6:9 is translated by the Greek word peithō a primary verb meaning to convince (by argument, true or false); by analogy to pacify or conciliate (by other fair means); reflexively or passively to assent (to evidence or authority), to rely (by inward certainty): - agree, assure, believe, have confidence, be (wax) content, make friend, obey, persuade, trust, yield. In other words, the writer of Hebrews is firmly convinced that they surely do belong to our Lord Jesus Christ and that their spiritual growth into maturity will be made manifest, that is, made evident soon in some but maybe later in others. The verb indicates a past hesitation or waver or relunctance completely overcome. The English phrase 'better things' is translated by the Greek word kreittōn meaning stronger, that is, (figuratively) better, that is, nobler: - best, better. In other words, the writer of Hebrews is here declaring again what we just said above and that is, their spiritual growth into maturity will be made manifest, that is, made evident soon in some but maybe later in others (Hebrews 6:1). When the writer declares these last words in verse 9, 'and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak', he means that despite the loud warning to them, that is, the then Hebrew converts to Christ of the danger that they found themselves in due to their lack of growing up spiritually into maturity which blocked or obstructed their ability (at all times) to discern good from evil, yet he is still convinced that spiritual growth will take place and they will do the work of the Lord Jesus Christ and go onward displaying the evidence of their spiritual maturity and all things that declare a redeemed life by way of the grace of God and the work of God the Holy Spirit.

The writer of Hebrews now in the very next verse declares to them what he knows of the evidence of their true faith and also of their moving on into spiritual maturity with these words, "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 6:10) (KJV). The fact that they are making themselves valuable  to the saints in whatever the capacity that is needed is evidence of their spiritual growth taking place in the direction away from being 'babes in Christ' into the direction of spiritual maturity. The Hebrew converts then had begun to show by their spiritual growth by their love of ministering in the Name of Christ Jesus our Lord, for what they actually engaged themselves in is not declared here by the writer of Hebrews, but we know it was to and for the adopted sons and daughters of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is what persuaded the writer of Hebrews that they were beginning to grow up from babes. The evidence of 'babes in Christ' would be what the Apostle Paul declared and described concerning the behavior of the Church @ Corinth in his first letter to them when he wrote these words of the evidence that had gotten back to him, "And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able. For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men? (1 Corinthians 3:1-3) (KJV).

However, now the writer of Hebrews has been persuaded that these charateristics of envy, strife, discord, and divisions have been replaced among the then Hebrew converts to Christ (as well should be no longer a part of any true believing body of believers in every era and generation) with a 'labour of love, which ye have shewed toward His name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister', that is, the opposite of envy and strife is love and respect. The little English phrase 'ye have shewed' is translated by the Greek word endeiknumi meaning to indicate (by word or act): - do, show (forth). The English phrase 'in that ye have ministered' is translated by the Greek word diakoneō meaning to be an attendant, that is, wait upon (menially or as a host, friend or [figuratively] teacher); technically to act as a Christian deacon: - (ad-) minister (unto), serve, use the office of a deacon. The motivation for their good works and labor of love to the saints in their location, as well as , saints elsewhere surely was because of their love for our Lord Jesus Christ, just as our Lord Himself declared He wanted for us and from us when He said this, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in My name, I will do it. If ye love Me, keep my commandments." (John 14:12-15) (KJV).

If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...


Sincerely in Christ,


Clifford D. Tate, Sr.


Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…








Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Letter to the Hebrews Volume 50

 The Danger of Not Advancing in the Faith Part 5

Hebrews 6:7-8 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: But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned. KJV

In these next two verses the writer of Hebrews uses an example of nature to characterize those who grow up into spiritual maturity and those who remain babes in Christ their entire life on the eartrh. The analysis the writer uses here of nature begins as such with these words, "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 6:7) (KJV). Everyone that has ever cultivated a garden (small or large) depends heavily on the gift of rain that comes from God the Father to feed the seeds planted in the earth that they might cause those seeds to grow into the tree or shrub they are meant to become and then produce the fruit or vegetables or flowers that they are supposed to produce. So is it in the spiritual realm, for the Gospel of Grace sown into the inner man or inner woman by way of drinking in the Word of God will sprout up into fruitfulness to our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ. Note: "Again let us be reminded that the writer of Hebrews is writing to Hebrew converts to Christ, and that the entire context of the writers subject matter again is spiritual growth from immaturity into spiritual maturity (Hebrews 5:11-12), therefore, he wants to shake, startle, and even shock them into recognition of their true horrid spiritual condition in order that they may be moved into action and surrender to Jesus Christ our Lord that He may facilitate their growth into spiritual maturity."

Some ground, that is, some soil is unwatered and these are they which remain as 'babes in Christ' not growing up into spiritual maturity (Hebrews 5:13). Therefore, we read these words from the writer of Hebrews next, "But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned." (Hebrews 6:8) (KJV). The Hebrews that were born again and came out of Judaism into the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ were rescued from the useless rites, rituals, and religious ceremonies that were of no effect in their getting closer to God and the tragic end that was to come upon the city of Jerusalem by Titus in A.D. 70 and this also was what our Lord Jesus Christ spoke of when He said this to those Hebrew women who were weeping for Him as He was being led to His Crucifixion for our sins at Calvary, "And as they led Him away, they laid hold upon one Simon, a Cyrenian, coming out of the country, and on him they laid the cross, that he might bear it after Jesus. And there followed Him a great company of people, and of women, which also bewailed and lamented Him. But Jesus turning unto them said, Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for Me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children. For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they shall say, Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck." (Luke 23:27-29) (KJV).

The contrast in verse 7 and 8 is that of those 'in Christ' who drink in the Word of God and by virtue of persistent prayer grow up from the elementary principles of the Doctrines of Christ (Hebrews 6:1-2) into spiritual maturity and are able then to be taught (by God the Holy Spirit) the deeper mysteries of Christ Jesus our Lord, that is, like unto what the Apostle Paul writes of in many of his epistles, which are hard to understand and as the Apostle Peter declares many unlearned people twist to their own destruction, as it is written here by Peter in his final letter and his final words to the Church, "Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of Him in peace, without spot, and blameless. And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction. Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness. But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To Him be glory both now and for ever. Amen." (2 Peter 3:14-18) (KJV).

Likewise, those who do not drink in the Word of God become like dried up briers and thorns no longer good for anything spiritual at all and not able to teach others any of the deeper mysteries of Christ, but themselves still in need of teaching or instruction (Hebrews 5:12). Let us remember these words of Christ written or documented for us by the Apostle John, "I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. 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." (John 15:1-6) (KJV). Note: "In John 15:2 our Lord Jesus says that every branch 'in Him' and you cannot be 'in Him' without being born again by Him, so the taking away must mean by way of physical death to those who persist in rebellion, disobedience, and sin, despite His chastening Hand."

Here is what Vincent's Word Studies says of this verse Hebrews 6:8, "It puts the contrast as between two kinds of soil, the one well-watered and fertile, the other unwatered and sterile. This would illustrate the contrast between those who have and those who have not enjoyed Gospel privileges. On the contrary the contrast is between two classes of Christians under equally favorable conditions, out of which they develop opposite results. Rend. but if it (the ground that receives the rain) bear thorns and thistles, etc. thorns, from a point from three and a dart; having three darts or points. A ball with sharp iron spikes, on three of which it rested, while the fourth projected upward, was called tribulus or tribolus, or caltrop. These were scattered over the ground by Roman soldiers in order to impede the enemy's cavalry. A kind of thorn or thistle, a land-caltrop, was called tribulus. Is unapproved and enhancing the idea of rejected. It is exposed to the peril of abandonment to perpetual barrenness. The end of which cursing: but better to the main subject, the consummation of the cursed land is burning. The field of thorns and thistles is burned over and abandoned to barrenness."
 
If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...


Sincerely in Christ,


Clifford D. Tate, Sr.


Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…





Saturday, January 2, 2021

Letter to the Hebrews Volume 49

 The Danger of Not Advancing in the Faith Part 4

Hebrews 6:5-6 And have tasted the good Word of God, and the powers of the world to come, 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. KJV

Now the writer of Hebrews continues his analysis, his argument, and his answer to the theory he raised in the question of Hebrews 6:3 above with these next words, "And have tasted the good Word of God, and the powers of the world to come," (Hebrews 6:5) (KJV). Let us remember that the writer here is speaking to believers in our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ who had been born again, but had spent their entire lives following the Hebrew 'Law of Moses' with the many many added rites, rituals, and religious ceremonies written into or added into the 'Law of Moses' by many of the past high priest of the Scribes and Pharisees over the Centuries that frankly were not ever supposed to be imposed upon the Hebrew people. Remeber also how furious this practice made our Lord Jesus Christ against those Scribes and Teachers of the Law, as it is written here, "But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor! Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?" (Matthew 23:13-17) (KJV) and also as it is written here, "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity." (Matthew 23:23-28) (KJV).

This condemnation by our Lord Jesus Christ to those Hebrew Scribes and Pharisees went on for the entire Chapter 23, but I wanted these words of His to point out the hatred our Lord Jesus Christ had for those who would prostitute God's Word and His Holy Covenant with His people and at the same time show why the writer of Hebrews understood that many of these Hebrew converts were having a hard time mentally and emotionally coming out of all those religious rites and rituals some of them were falling back into them making the Gospel of Christ and the Word of God or the Word of Grace being taught to them now by the Apostles of no effect, efficacy, or efficaciousness, that is, simply of no real power in their daily lives. There was then and still is not nor will there ever be any power in rites, rituals, or religious ceremonies. However, there is mighty power in the Grace of God and the Word of God, as the Apostle Paul wrote with these words, "For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power." (1 Corinthians 4:20) (KJV).  The little English phrase 'have tasted' Hebrews 6:5 is translated by the Greek word geuomai which is a primary verb meaning (as used here) figuratively to experience (good or ill). In other words, the Hebrew converts had experienced the Grace of God when they were regenerated, redeemed, and reborn by God the Holy Spirit and it would be tragic for any of them (or any of us who are born again today or of any era or generation) to then go back to trying to please God the Father by fleshly means instead of by receiving grace from God the Holy Spirit that manifest power in their/our lives that no rites or rituals could ever make manifest, that is, make evident or visible in their/our lives as believers in Christ Jesus our Lord, as the Apostle Paul warned the Galatians with these words, "O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh? Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain. He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?" (Galatians 3:1-5) (KJV). Here is what John Wesley had to say of Hebrews 6:5, "Have had a relish for, and a delight in it. And the powers of the world to come - Which every one tastes, who has an hope full of immortality. Every child that is naturally born, first sees the light, then receives and tastes proper nourishment, and partakes of the things of this world. In like manner, the Apostle, comparing spiritual with natural things, speaks of one born of the Spirit, as seeing the light, tasting the sweetness, and partaking of the things 'of the world to come.'"

Now the writer of Hebrews goes on to warn all those professed Hebrew converts (as well as all professed converts to Christ of every era and generation) of why he is so adamant in seeing their (the Hebrews then and all of us today or of every era and generation) advancement from being 'babes in Christ' to growing up and becoming full grown spiritual adults in our Lord Jesus Christ fully able and capable of discerning good from evil (Hebrews 5:14), because some professed converts may prove or turn out to be just that 'professed', that is, not sincere but insincere converts, that is, having really never been born again at all. Just like the Apostle Paul above warned the Galatian believers, here the writer of Hebrews does the same to the apparent or the professing Hebrew converts to Christ wanting them to understand what their individual spiritual conditions are actually, so he writes these words, "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) (KJV). The words in this verse have sparked great argument and contention throughout Christendom for the past 2,000 plus years, however, it ought not be if we see and understand the complete context of this passage and not pull it out alone without seeing it in the light of what the author of Hebrews has been speaking of all the way back beginning with Hebrews 5:11. Remember these words in Hebrews 5:12-13, "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. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe." The author of Hebrews is writing to 'Christians', the Church, those who he deems to have been truly born again, however, his words here now in Hebrews 6:6 are for those who may be in the visible Church, but were insincere believers, that is, one's who had never been actually born again. The English phrase 'shall fall away' is translated by the Greek word parapiptō (used this one time only in the entire New Testament) meaning to fall aside, that is, (figuratively) to apostatize: - fall away. An Apostate is actually a person that was never born again or a true believer or follower of Jesus Christ, for example the people who deny His virgin birth do so because the Holy Spirit of God does not dwell or live in them. A sinner does not have to believe in the virgin birth of Christ to become a Christian, but when any sinner truly believes in and on Jesus Christ only for their salvation they will believe (by faith) in His virgin birth, because God the Holy Spirit 'in them/us' makes this true and real to us. Same holds true concerning His Bodily Resurrection from the dead. This belief and trust in Christ Bodily Resurrection and His virgin birth does not come from being taught it by any earthly person at all. When the writer declares, 'to renew them again unto repentance', he means that this is impossible because they have not ever received the gift of faith through grace, as Paul the Apostle describes, details, and declares with these words written to the Ephesian believers, "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast." (Ephesians 2:8-9) (KJV).

In other words, you cannot renew someone to repentance who has never received the gift of faith unto repentance in the first place. The true believers entire sojourn and pilgrimage here on the earth is a faith walk (consisting of a lot of repentance of our sins) with God the Father by virtue of God the Son's death, burial, resurrection for the forgiveness of our sins, through the power we receive from God the Holy Spirit when we are not grieving Him. Again as we stated in the previous Volume 48 those of us who are true believers by virtue of the 'new birth' (John 3:3) can never lose our salvation, however, we can lose out on all the spiritual blessings made evident and visible in our lives that are ours 'in Christ' by the power of the Holy Spirit, for if we are grieving Him then He will become silent in our inner man or inner woman and everything we do when this occurs will be done in the 'flesh' and not in the Spirit's power. Amen! Here is what Vinvent's Word Studies had to say of Hebrews 6:6, "The passage has created much discussion and much distress, as appearing to teach the impossibility of restoration after a moral and spiritual lapse. It is to be observed: (1) That the case stated is that of persons who once knew, loved, and believed Christian truth, and who experienced the saving, animating, and enlightening energy of the Holy Spirit, and who lapsed into indifference and unbelief. (2) The questions whether it is possible for those who have once experienced the power of the Gospel to fall away and be lost, and whether, supposing a lapse possible, those who fall away can ever be restored by repentance - do not belong here. The possibility of a fall is clearly assumed. (3) The sin in the case supposed is the relinquishment of the spiritual gifts and powers accompanying faith in Christ, and rejecting Christ Himself. (4) The significance of this sin lies in the mental and spiritual condition which it betrays. It is the recoil of conviction from Christ and the adoption of the contrary conviction. (5) The writer does not touch the question of the possibility of God's renewing such to repentance. He merely puts his own hypothetical case, and says that, in the nature of such a case, the ordinary considerations and means which are applied to induce men to embrace the Gospel no longer appeal to the subjects supposed. He contemplates nothing beyond such agencies, and asserts that these are powerless because the man has brought himself into a condition where they can no longer exert any power. Whether God will ever reclaim by ways of His own is a point which is not even touched. Destruction of the faculty of spiritual discernment is the natural outcome of deliberate and persistent sin, and the instrument of its punishment. Note, 'renew unto repentance.' God promises pardon on penitence, but not penitence on sin."

If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...


Sincerely in Christ,


Clifford D. Tate, Sr.


Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…





Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Letter to the Hebrews Volume 48

 The Danger of Not Advancing in the Faith Part 3

Hebrews 6:3-4 And this will we do, if God permit. 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, KJV

The reality of leaving the elementary principles of our faith in our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ and growing up into spiritual maturity doesn't just depend on each of us, but it depends on us cooperating with the Holy Spirit of God (not continually grieving Him) and the Grace of God that comes to us through Him as the writer of Hebrews declares in the next verse with these words, "And this will we do, if God permit." (Hebrews 6:3) (KJV). It is only because God the Father permits or allows the willing son or daughter to grow up into spiritual maturity that actual spiritual maturity (for any believer) happens or takes place. We see then this explanation further discussed by the author of Hebrews in the next few verses, for in them we will find that some believers never grow up out of spiritual immaturity, but instead remain 'babes in Christ' their entire sojourn or pilgrimage on the earth. Why is this true? The writer of Hebrews begins his answer to verse 3 with the next words here in verse 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) (KJV). The English word 'For' that begins this verse is translated by the Greek word gar which is a primary particle; properly assigning a reason (used in argument, explanation or intensification; often with other particles). In other words, the reason for the argument, analysis, or analytic reasoning given in the next couple of verses is in response to what the writer has previously written above, which is, If God permits spiritual growth or spiritual maturity. God the Father permits growth for those sons and daughters who want and desire growth and He allows those who persist in rebellion, sin, and disobedience to remain babes spiritually. The Apostle Paul wrote these words to the Corinthian Church with this same or similar point made as to the rewards of the believers, "Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire. Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are." (1 Corinthians 3:13-17) (KJV).

The question then is what is impossible for God? The obvious answer of course is nothing, therefore, the impossibility doesn't dwell  with God but with the rebellious son or daughter of God and that is because The Holy Spirit is not a force or a wind that is inanimate, that is, non-living, but instead He is a Person and the third (3) Person of the GodHead and He can also be grieved by us as it is written here, "And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption." (Ephesians 4:30) (KJV). What happens when we grieve God the Holy Spirit? He does not leave us, but instead He stops working through us and His Power that can and could flow through us does not any longer until we genuinely turn from our sin and rebellion, that is, repent and walk or live in newness of life, as it is written by the Apostle Paul with these words, "Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into His death? 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. For he that is dead is freed from sin." (Romans 6:3-7) (KJV). In other words, when we live our lives as being dead to sin, then God the Holy Spirit can teach us His Word and we can grow spiritually, however, when we allow our 'old man' or 'old woman' to rein and rule, then we cannot hear what God the Holy Spirit wants to teach us and we remain stagnant, that is, not growing or changing; without force or vitality or power. Here is what Vincent's Word Pictures had to say of Hebrews 6:3, "An ominous hint is conveyed that the spiritual dullness of the readers may prevent the writer from developing his theme and them from receiving his higher instruction. The issue is dependent on the power which God may impart to His teaching, but His efforts may be thwarted by the impossibility of repentance on their part. No such impossibility is imposed by God, but it may reside in a moral condition which precludes the efficient action of the agencies which work for repentance, so that God cannot permit the desired consequence to follow the Word of Teaching."

Here is what Vincent's Word Pictures had to say of Hebrews 6:4, "It is impossible to dilute this word into difficult. Those who were once enlightened Rendered 'once for all enlightened' is frequent in the Epistle. Indicating that the enlightenment ought to have sufficed to prevent them from falling away; not that it does not admit of repetition. Enlightened, through the revelation of God in Christ, the true light, and through the power of the Spirit. Usually to teach or instruct; see Psalm 119:130; 2 Kings 12:2; 2 Kings 17:27. Compare in the New Testament  John 1:9; Ephesians 1:18; Ephesians 3:9; Hebrews 10:32. Erasmus gives the correct explanation: 'Who once for all have left the darkness of their former life, having been enlightened by the Gospel teaching.' There is no ground for explaining the word here of baptism, although the fathers from the time of Justin Martyr used phōtizō in that sense, and this usage continued down to the Reformation. Tasted of the heavenly gift: The meaning is, have consciously partaken of. Compare 1 Peter 2:3, and eateth, John 6:56. The heavenly gift is the Holy Spirit. It is true that this is distinctly specified in the next clause, but the two clauses belong together. Partakers of the Holy Ghost: 'Heavenly gift' emphasizes the heavenly quality of the gift. The Holy Ghost is the gift itself which possesses the heavenly quality." Note: "The author of Hebrews from Hebrews 5:11-6:12 is giving a warning to the then Hebrew converts and to we converts today and of every era and generation to not live in open rebellion to God the Father so that spiritual growth can take place in every believers life, because it is only the believers disobedience that causes non-growth. This part of Hebrews is not teaching that any true born again believer in our Lord Jesus Christ can lose their salvation, for no earthly baby born into any family can ever be separated from that family blood line, likewise, no true son or daughter of God the Father (by spiritual birth) can ever be separated from His spiritual blood line. Remember above what the Apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesian believers in Ephesians 4:30, the word of emphasis in that verse is 'sealed', that is, established irrevocably, secured and determined."

If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...


Sincerely in Christ,


Clifford D. Tate, Sr.


Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…




Saturday, December 26, 2020

Letter to the Hebrews Volume 47

 The Danger of Not Advancing in the Faith Part 2

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

The writer of Hebrews in the next verse continues on with his list of what the elementary elements of our faith in Jesus Christ are as he declares with these words, "Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment." (Hebrews 6:2) (KJV). The beginning principles of Christianity are those listed in verse 1 of this Chapter and these listed for us here in verse 2 and the writer of Hebrews is doing this to stir them, that is, the Hebrew converts to Christ at that time in History to growing up into complete spiritual maturity and not continuing to remain babes, as the Apostle Paul declared many of the Corinthian Church to be as we documented in Volume 45 with the verses from 1 Coritnthians 3:1-7. This too also is what the writer wants for we Christians today and of every era and generation. The English phrase 'of the doctrine' is translated by the Greek word didachē which means instruction (the act or the matter): - doctrine, hath been taught. The English phrase 'of baptisms' is translated by the Greek word baptismos which means ablution, that is, the ritual washing of a priest's hands or of sacred vessels (ceremonially): Christian baptism. So here, the writer of Hebrews wants the then Hebrew or Jewish converts to understand and recognize that Christian water baptism (although it does not save any sinner) is not at all to be connected with, confused with, or compared with the ritual washing of cups or other vessels used by the Hebrew or Jewish high priest before the death burial and resurrection of our Great High Priest our Lord Jesus Christ. Somehow many of the Hebrew converts were still confused about what Christian baptism truly was done for and thought of it as equal to or the same as the ablution done in the Jewish Temple for so many centuries. Note: 'Christian baptism is simply an identification with our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ and it is symbolic of each one of us (who have been born again by Him) going down under the water (dying to our old life) and coming up out of the water to our new resurrection life in Christ.' Here is what Matthew Henry had to say of baptism, "The doctrine of baptism, that is, of being baptized by a minister of Christ with water, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, as the initiating sign or seal of the covenant of grace, strongly engaging the person so baptized to get acquainted with the new covenant, to adhere to it, and prepare to renew it at the table of the Lord and sincerely to regulate himself according to it, relying upon the truth and faithfulness of God for the blessings contained in it. And the doctrine of an inward baptism, that of the Spirit sprinkling the Blood of Christ upon the soul, for justification, and the graces of the Spirit for sanctification. This ordinance of baptism is a foundation to be rightly laid, and daily remembered, but not repeated."

When the writer of Hebrews speaks next of 'the laying on of hands', it was done for the purpose of ordination of a man into the Service of our Lord Jesus Christ as was done when the seven (7) men were chosen by the Apostles to serve, as it is written, "And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch: Whom they set before the Apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them." (Acts 6:5-6) (KJV). Also it was done when men were selected and sent out for a special task or work of Lord in another place, as were Paul and Barnabas, as it is written, "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." (Acts 13:1-3) (KJV). Also it was done by the Apostles then to bestow the Holy Spirit upon a new believer in Christ Jesus (perhaps as an outward testimony of the authenticity of their conversion and inner man or woman new birth to the remaining unbelievers around them), as it is written, "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 is, 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." (Acts 19:1-7) (KJV).  

When the writer of Hebrews declares 'and the resurrection of the dead' and 'of eternal judgement', he is saying that every person that has died throughout human History will have their bodies raised up by God and reunited with their souls for everlasting joy in heaven with Christ for we believers, as it is written, "And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And He that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And He said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. And He said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be My son." (Revelation 21:3-7) (KJV) and also this, "But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him." (1 Corinthians 2:9) (KJV). But it shall be everlasting woe, suffering, affliction, and misery in the lake of fire for all those who rejected, refused, and resisted the Gospel of Grace or the Gospel of Jesus Christ, as it is written, "And I saw a great white throne, and Him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire." (Revelation 20:11-15) (KJV) and also this verse, "But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death." (Revelation 21:8) (KJV).

Here is what the Expositor's Bible Commentary had to say of Hebrews 6:2, "Wherefore--that is, inasmuch as solid food is for full-grown men--'let us have done with the elementary doctrines, and permit ourselves to be borne strongly onwards towards full growth of spiritual character.' The Apostle has just said that his readers needed some one to teach them the rudiments. We should have expected him, therefore, to take it in hand. But he reminds them that the defect lies deeper than intellectual error. The remedy is not mere teaching, but spiritual growth. Apart from moral progress there can be no revelation of new truths. Ever-recurring efforts to lay the foundation of individual piety will result only in an apprehension of what we may designate personal and subjective doctrines. The Apostle particularises. Repentance towards God and faith in God are the initial graces. For without sorrow for sin and trust in God's mercy God's revelation of Himself in His Son will not be deemed worthy of all acceptation. If this is so, the doctrines suitable to the initial stage of the Christian life will be--(1) the doctrine of baptisms and of laying on of hands, and (2) the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead and of eternal judgment. Repentance and faith accept the Gospel of forgiveness, which is symbolised in baptism, and of absolution, symbolised in the laying on of hands. Again, repentance and faith realise the future life and the final award; the beginning of piety reaching forth a hand, as runners do, as if to grasp the furthest goal before it touches the intermediate points. Yet every intermediate truth, when apprehended, throws new light on the soul's eschatology (the branch of theology that is concerned with such final things as death and Last Judgment; Heaven and Hell; the ultimate destiny of humankind). In like manner civilization began with contemplation of the stars, long before it descended to chemical analysis, but at last it applies its chemistry to make discoveries in the stars. This, then, is the initial stage in the Christian character,--repentance and faith; and these are the initial doctrines, baptism, absolution, resurrection, and judgment. How may they be described? They all centre in the individual believer. They have all to do with the fact of his sin. One question, and one only, presses for an answer. It is, 'What must I do to be saved?' One result, and one only, flows from the salvation obtained. It is the final acquittal of the sinner at the last day. God is known only as the merciful Saviour and the Holy Judge. The whole of the believer's personal existence hovers in mid-air between two points: repentance at some moment in the past and judgment at the end of the world. Works are 'dead,' and the reason why is that they have no saving power. There is here no thought of life as a complete thing or as a series of possibilities that ever spring into actuality, no thought of the individual as being part of a greater whole. The Church exists for the sake of the believer, not the believer for the sake of the Church. Even Christ Himself is nothing more to him than his Saviour, Who by an atoning death paid his debt. The Apostle would rise to higher truths concerning Christ in the power of His heavenly life. This is the truth which the story of Melchizedek will teach to such as are sufficiently advanced in spirituality to understand its meaning."

If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...


Sincerely in Christ,


Clifford D. Tate, Sr.


Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…