Full Assurance of Hope

Hebrews 5:7-9 ESV

“In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence. Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him.”

Jesus Christ, who is God the Son, left his throne in heaven, came to earth, took on human form, suffered as we suffer, and was tempted in like manner as we are tempted, yet he did not sin. While he lived on the earth he was both fully God and fully man (John 1:1-36; Phil 2:5-11; 1 Jn 1:1-10).

Jesus came to the earth not just so he could sympathize with us in our weaknesses, and not just so he could perform miracles, heal the sick and afflicted, drive out demons, comfort the sorrowful, and encourage the downcast. He didn’t come to the earth just so he could preach repentance for the forgiveness of sins and for eternal life with God, either.

Jesus Christ came down to the earth with the ultimate purpose of dying on a cross for our sins. But since he lived in a flesh body, he pleaded with God the Father saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done” (Lu 22:42).

Even though he was God, yet because he lived in a flesh body, he learned obedience through what he suffered, and we do, too. And because he never sinned, he became our pure sacrificial Lamb to die for the sins of the entire world that he might become the source of eternal salvation to all those OBEYING HIM.

Hebrews 5:11-14 ESV

“About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child. But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.”

Some things never change. The people then, and many people now, even many who profess the name of Jesus, have become “dull of hearing.”

“Dull” means “lacking interest or excitement” and “hearing” has to do with paying attention to something, not just hearing with your physical ears, but listening with your heart with a willingness to let what you hear change your way of thinking, perceiving, believing, and behaving.

So, “dull of hearing” has to do with lacking interest in what is being said. Some people may hear with their physical ears, but then dismiss what they hear with their minds and hearts. For they are not really receiving what they are hearing nor are they applying what they are hearing to their lives.

So, what this is saying here is that Jesus became the source of eternal salvation to those OBEYING HIM, to those who make it their practice to walk in obedience to the Lord and to his commands under the New Covenant. But those who should be receiving this truth aren’t listening. They are closing their ears to that truth. And it is the same today.

Many people who profess faith in Jesus Christ have decided that they don’t have to obey the Lord but that they can still be saved from their sins and have eternal life with God. But they are believing a lie, and if they continue in that lie, they will go to hell, not to heaven.

So, although this is spoken to those who have made a profession of faith in Jesus and/or to those who genuinely believe in Jesus but need to have their ears cleaned out, Scripture does not teach that we can live in disobedience to our Lord, and that we can continue in sin and still have eternal life with God. It teaches we can’t.

So, don’t think that you can remain dull of hearing and in immaturity living childish lives full of self-indulgence and that God is just going to overlook it, and that he will welcome you into his heaven anyway. We need to grow up in Christ to maturity so that we learn to distinguish good from evil.

[Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8]

Hebrews 6:9-12 ESV

“Though we speak in this way, yet in your case, beloved, we feel sure of better things—things that belong to salvation. For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do. And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end, so that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”

The encouragement here is to move on to maturity in our walks of faith in Jesus Christ. And there is also a warning (vv. 1-8) against falling away from the faith and no longer being able to be brought back to repentance.

I don’t believe it is teaching that a true believer in Jesus can’t ever wander from the truth or if he does that he can’t ever be brought back, for Scripture gives us examples of such possibilities as that, especially in Revelation 2-3. But it appears it is possible to fall so far as to not having the desire to return and then to become unfruitful and thus to be destroyed, not saved.

For, the Scriptures teach that if we walk (in conduct, in practice) according to our flesh, and not according to the Spirit, that we will die in our sins. We will not have eternal life with God (Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Gal 5:16-21).

But then there is an encouragement here, as well, to those who are walking according to the Spirit and who are no longer walking according to their sinful flesh. These are those who have ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to their individual lives as well as to the churches. They are listening.

God sees what we are doing. He sees how we are living to obey him and to serve him and to minister his love and grace to others. Even though we may be going through difficult times, and we may be suffering for righteousness’ sake, the Lord is not absent from our lives. He is with us.

But we are still human. And we still live in flesh bodies. So, we are being encouraged to persevere, to keep doing what we are doing for the glory and praise of God, and to not get lazy, but to continue in following the Lord in full surrender to him to the very end of our lives.

For Scripture teaches that we must endure, we must persevere, and we must continue in Christ to the very end of our lives if we want to inherit salvation from sin and eternal life with God.

[Jn 8:31-32; Jn 15:1-12; Rom 11:17-24; 1 Co 15:2; Col 1:21-23; 2 Tim 2:10-13; Heb 3:6, 14-15; 2 Pet 1:5-11; 1 Jn 2:24-25]

What the Lord Says

An Original Work / February 24, 2014
Based off Isaiah 43:1-44:5

This is what the Lord says to you:
Fear not, for I have chosen you.
I have summoned you by your name.
You are mine. I died, you to save.

When you go through your trials, so deep,
I will be with you; you will not sink.
You are so precious always to me.
Trust in your Lord, Savior and King.

This is what the Lord says to you:
He who gave salvation to you;
Who delivered you from your sin;
Takes your burdens now upon Him:

Forget the former things of your life.
Give of your heart not now up to strife.
See all the new things I have for you.
Walk in vict’ry. Trust in what’s true.

This is what the Lord says to you:
He who made you; who will help you:
Do not fear what humans may do.
Walk in freedom. Follow what’s true.

Drink of my Spirit given for you.
Trust in my mercy, for I love you.
I have a plan for all of your life.
Follow my ways. Do what is right.

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