Summary of passage: The Hebrews writer says it is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, tasted the heavenly gift, shared in the Holy Spirit, and tasted the goodness of God’s word and powers to be brought back to repentance if they fall away. Land that drinks in the rain and produces a crop is blessed. Land that produces thorns is worthless and cursed.
Things that accompany salvation is God’s love and mercy as you work to love his people to the end with faith and patience. God kept His promise to Abraham and swore by himself to make the unchanging nature of what he promised very clear to Abraham’s heirs. This shows it is impossible for God to lie and should offer us hope and encouragement. This hope is the anchor for our soul, allowing us access to the inner sanctuary (God) because Jesus went before us.
13a) Been enlightened, tasted the heavenly gift, shared in the Holy Spirit, tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age
b) Apostasy according to Webster’s Dictionary means renunciation of a religious faith or abandonment of a previous loyalty; defection. According to Zondervan’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary by Douglas and Tenney, apostasy means the abandonment of one’s religion.
c) I’m not for sure I think it is impossible. If you accept Jesus into your heart and then one day you wake up and renounce him, I would call that apostasy (the abandonment and renunciation of your faith). The question then becomes: is this person still promised eternal salvation (which is NOT what BSF is asking)?
I think this would be between God and the person to determine if the person really did accept Jesus in His heart and then decide to one day forsake Jesus. God never abandons us but would He abandon this person? We also have Free Will. Free Will to choose Jesus and then to change our minds. I’m not for sure the Bible addresses this.
A rationale person who genuinely partook of spiritual experiences would not commit apostasy I believe because once you accept Jesus into your heart you are transformed with the Spirit of truth (John 14:15-17) and therefore it would be impossible to rescind the Lord Jesus. (1 Corinthians 3:16 and 6:19) tell how we are now His and not ours any more.
Hebrews 10:26-27 “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.”
The Hebrews author believes even if you have been enlightened and then you fall away (commit apostasy or continue to willingly and deliberately sin) then you will not be saved. Over. Done. Toast.
Only God knows if people have truly accepted Him and His Son or not or if they are going through the motions and abandons Him in the end.
The issue is complicated by Free Will.
In the end, it’s not up to us to judge anyways.
14) Personal Question. My answer: Basically, it says God will reward us for our faithfulness and diligence to Him, His word, and His commandments (to help others). So even though it seems daunting (our life here on Earth and its myriad of challenges we each face) we must remain diligent and faithful to God and His calling. Have patience and we will inherit the Promised Land.
We must remember Him when everything else in the world comes against us.
15a) Hope offered to us (eternal salvation through Christ) and encouragement (by God’s purpose, promises, and knowledge He give to us).
God doesn’t lie at all so I’m not sure why we’re even debating this fact. But since the Bible talks about God lying, I would project this is due to man’s thinking God lies, giving God man’s qualities when they shouldn’t, and man’s overall insecurity in who God is.
This tells me that God’s deepest desire is for us to be with Him and He has done everything throughout time to make that possible. It’s definitely heartening to say the least.
b) It tells me that no matter what (what mistakes I make) I will be in Heaven as God has planned it all along because my soul is anchored in Him.
Conclusions: This was a challenging lesson because it required me at least to think through implications. In the end, I gained a deeper understanding of God’s heart as I see more how everything is laid out for us. A greater picture of God’s love. And I do feel as if my soul is anchored just a little bit deeper in Him. Praise God!