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Press on to Your Sure Hope
Victor M. Eskew
I. THE ENCOURAGEMENT (Heb. 6:4-6)
II. THE EXPECTATION (Heb. 6:7-12)
A. The Options (Heb. 6:7-8).
B. The Optimism (Heb. 6:9-10)
But beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though thus we 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.
1) Strong (27): beloved
2) Thayer: beloved, esteemed, dear favorite, worthy of love
b. The writer uses a term of endearment to address them.
1) This word expresses both the relationship they sustain and the love he has for them.
2) NOTE: Censure and rebuke and strong words of exhortation do not mean one does not love. In fact, the opposite can be true (Rev. 3:19a).
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten…
2. We are persuaded better things of you.
1) Strong (3982): to convince by argument
2) Thayer: be persuaded…to be induced to believe, to have faith in, to be persuaded of a thing concerning a person, to trust, have confidence, be confident
b. The inspired writer had seen and knew some things about his readers. It was his belief that they were the good ground. NOTE: He did not seem to think that they would reach that “point of no return” he mentioned in Hebrews 6:4-6.
c. In Hebrews 6:10, the writer reveals exactly what he knew about the service of these Christians.
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.
d. The description of their efforts
1) Work and labor of love
- Strong (2041): to work, toil, an act
- Thayer: an act, deed, thing done
- Strong (2873): toil (as reducing the strength)…by implication pains
- Thayer: intense labour united with trouble and toil
c) They had the right motivations for their labors:
- Done in love
- Done “toward his name”
2) The specifics: “…that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.”
3) Paul’s reminder: “For God is not unrighteous to forget.”
a) We oftentimes focus upon the fact that God sees the bad.
b) We must also remember that He sees the good that we do and will not forget it.
C. The Obligation (Heb. 6:11-12)
And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end: that ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
1. We desire
a. Strong (1937): to set the heart upon, that is, long for
b. Thayer: to turn upon a thing, to have a desire, long for, to desire
2. Three actions called for:
a. Show the same diligence
1) Strong (4710): literally “speed,” eagerness, earnestness
2) Thayer: haste, earnestness in accomplishing, promoting, or striving after anything
3) This must be done “to the full assurance of hope unto the end.”
a) The full assurance of hope, that is, the actual attainment of hope will not be had until the end (II Pet. 1:11).
For so an entrance shall ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
b) We must stay diligent unto the end to receive that hope (Mark 13:13b).
…but he that endureth unto the end, the same shall be saved.
b. Be not slothful
a) Strong (3578): sluggish, that is, (literally) lazy, or (figuratively) stupid
b) Thayer: slow, sluggish, indolent, dull, languid
2) Remember: some of them were this way in their hearing (Heb. 5:11).
Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing.
c. Be followers
1) Others had gone before them who had to manifest great faith and patience. Let’s look at Abraham.
a) When he left the Ur of Chaldees, he was promised that through his seed all families of the earth would be blessed (Gen. 12:1-3). At this time, he was 75 years old (Gen. 12:4).
b) At the age of 99, he was promised a son through Sarah (Gen. 17:16, 24).
c) Isaac was born when Abraham was 100 years old (Gen. 21:5).
2) Of men like this, the Hebrews were to be “followers.”
a) The simple definition is “imitator.”
b) A similar admonition will be given again in Hebrews 12:1.
Wherefore, seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.
3) Concluding remarks:
a) Good people can fall upon trying times.
b) We need to have faith in individuals to do the right thing.
c) This does not mean that we do not go to them and encourage them.
d) Remember: Faithfulness requires action and must be maintained to the end.
e) If we show diligence unto the end, God is not unrighteous to forget our work and labor of love.