Hebrews 6 – Live Out Goodness in the End Time 希伯來書 6 – 在末世活出美好
Wednesday, 5th April 2023
Rev Daniel Xi An Poon
It was a dark time when the Book of Hebrews was written, after Jesus resurrected, many people were still confused about what they believed. Furthermore, in the society there were full of wickedness, adultery, idol-worship… the churches were struggling, they didn’t know how the resurrection of Jesus could help their lives at the time, therefore they continued to sin in the world and to do what they wanted to do.
Section One V1-3 To Leave the Elementary 要离开开端
V1-3 “Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. And this we will do if God permits.”
V1-3 “所以，我们应当离开基督道理的开端，竭力进到完全的地步，不必再立根基，就如那懊悔死行、信靠神、 各样洗礼、按手之礼、死人复活，以及永远审判各等教训。 神若许我们，我们必如此行。”
What is the elementary principles of Christ? Isn’t it ‘the Kingdom is near, we must repent’? In the original text, the word ‘leave’ also means to ‘let go’. As Christians, we are so easy to think that as long as we repent immediately, then we can continue to sin. Then our lives become a cycle of sinning and repenting, and in our mind, we only think about how to not sin, instead of focusing on what God wants us to do. When God created the Garden of Eden in the very beginning, He never chased around Adam and Eve to see if they have done something wrong, God created Adam and Even to manage the world and to have a relationship with Him.
What is happening with the Christians nowadays is that a lot of times, we are focusing too much on what people have done wrong, we try to find faults in one another, we thought we are helping them to be better, but somehow we have forgotten the more important thing as Christians, that is to strive to go on to perfection. Jesus walked with God when He was on this earth, He lived out the best testimony for us during His 3-year Ministry. Can we also learn from Jesus, to stive to enter perfection? It’s not about finding faults but to bear fruits for God. When we don’t experience God and when we don’t bear fruits, then how can we really know what is God’s Will for us?
It’s time to leave the elementary level, don’t wait until we feel we are ready, because we can never be ready. Let us leave and let go of what we hold onto, do not think that we are not ready, do not think that we are not enough, do not think that we cannot… these are all excuses for us to stop going forward. The authority of Heaven and earth has been given to Jesus, who will give it to those following Him. We must trust in God, be willing to step out, when we start going out to preach the Gospel, to disciple the nations, to heal and to cast out demon, then we can see the authority Heaven and earth has already been given to us.
Section Two V4-12 To Be Used By God 要成为合乎主用
V4-8 “For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame. For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God; but if it bears thorns and briers, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned.”
V4-8 “论到那些已经蒙了光照，尝过天恩的滋味，又于圣灵有份， 并尝过神善道的滋味，觉悟来世权能的人， 若是离弃道理，就不能叫他们重新懊悔了。因为他们把神的儿子重钉十字架，明明地羞辱他。 就如一块田地，吃过屡次下的雨水，生长菜蔬，合乎耕种的人用，就从神得福； 若长荆棘和蒺藜，必被废弃，近于咒诅，结局就是焚烧。”
We know Jesus, we have received the Holy Spirit, and we have experienced the goodness of God, then we must be alert! God has already given all the good things to us for us to stop focusing on this world, but if we continue to stay in the world, if we still don’t walk in the Way of God, then we cannot be renewed again to repentance, because when we continued to follow this world after we have experienced God, then we are like putting Jesus to an open shame, and the end is to be burned. God wants us to stay in the high places, to be the light of the world, to inheritance His eternal blessings. But what do we choose? The way of the world which is away from the Truth? Or the Way of God? Stop being lied to, we believe in Jesus does not mean we will definitely go to Heaven, God has given us the authority not to win this world, but for us to disciple the nations. Are we preparing ourselves to be used by God?
V9-12 “But, beloved, we are confident of better things concerning you, yes, things that accompany salvation, though we speak in this manner. For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”
V9-12 “亲爱的弟兄们，我们虽是这样说，却深信你们的行为强过这些，而且近乎得救。 因为神并非不公义，竟忘记你们所做的工和你们为他名所显的爱心，就是：先前伺候圣徒，如今还是伺候。我们愿你们各人都显出这样的殷勤，使你们有满足的指望，一直到底； 并且不懈怠，总要效法那些凭信心和忍耐承受应许的人。”
What is to be saved? We thought being saved is to go onto a train that goes to Heaven. But when we get onto the train, it doesn’t mean that we will not get off the train. We need to strive to stay on this train of salvation, and the Holy Spirit comes to ensure we stay on this train. When we get on the train, we may be tired, we may fall asleep, and we may get off at the wrong station. Jesus’ salvation is once and for all, but it doesn’t mean that we can continue to sin. We must watch our lives, Holy Spirit comes to help us stay alert so we can arrive the station of Heaven. We must prepare ourselves to be used by God, do not be the lukewarm water, which is to be spited out.
Section Three V13-20 要持定相信神的应许
V13-20 “For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself, saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.” And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute. Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath, that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us. This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil, where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.”
V13-20 “当初神应许亚伯拉罕的时候，因为没有比自己更大可以指着起誓的，就指着自己起誓，说： “论福，我必赐大福给你；论子孙，我必叫你的子孙多起来。” 这样，亚伯拉罕既恒久忍耐，就得了所应许的。人都是指着比自己大的起誓，并且以起誓为实据，了结各样的争论。 照样，神愿意为那承受应许的人格外显明他的旨意是不更改的，就起誓为证。 借这两件不更改的事——神决不能说谎——好叫我们这逃往避难所、持定摆在我们前头指望的人可以大得勉励。 我们有这指望，如同灵魂的锚，又坚固又牢靠，且通入幔内； 做先锋的耶稣既照着麦基洗德的等次成了永远的大祭司，就为我们进入幔内。”
Do we believe the promise God gave to Abraham is also giving to us? God wants us to receive the great blessings, but we don’t believe because we are using our own ways to get the blessings. Our church’s teaching is to put God first, then the people, and then the land. But we have our priority wrong, we think that we are too busy with the things in our hands, we focus on being successful in this world, and we put our time with God as our last priority. God is the God of opportunity, we want to hold onto the opportunity in front of us, and we don’t see God’s promises for us are way better! We have this authority and opportunity to enter the Presence of God behind the veil, but if we choose the world before God, then we can never receive it.
God is giving us great blessings, He can make everything works for the good of us, He can open the way for us, so what is our choice? This easy way of this world, or the Way of God? We can live out God’s Goodness today, when we make the choice to follow God, to leave the elementary, to be used by God, and to hold onto God’s Promises for us.