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HEBREWS

 

Press on to Your Sure Hope

Hebrews 6:13-17

Victor M. Eskew

 

 

I.         THE ENCOURAGEMENT (Heb. 6:4-6)

 

II.       THE EXPECTATION (Heb. 6:7-12)

 

III.      THE ENSURED (Heb. 6:13-20)

 

A.  The Example of Abraham (Heb. 6:13-15)

1.    The Promise (Heb. 6:13-14)

 

For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee.

 

a.    God made a promise to Abraham

1)     Promise

a)    Strong (1861):  to announce upon…to engage to do something, to assert something respecting oneself.

b)    Thayer:  To announce that one is about to do or furnish something, to promise (of one’s own accord), to engage voluntarily

2)    That promise is found in Genesis 22:15-17.

 

And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, and said, By myself have I sworn saith the Lord, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not with-held thy son, thine only son:  that in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of heaven, and as he sand which is upon the seashore, and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies.

 

b.    This promised was confirmed by God’s oath, an oath that He swore by himself.  This oath is found in the words “swear” and “sware.”

1)     Oaths are usually sworn upon one who is greater than the one taking the oath. 

2)    God had no greater to swear by, so he swore by Himself.

a)    The word “greater” means larger, greater, elder, stronger

b)    There is no being that is above God, or, that is greater than God.

c.    The promise was to bless and multiply the seed of Abraham.

1)     In the promise we find a Hebraism expression of intensity.

a)    The purpose is to express any thought with energy and emphasis.

b)    The meaning of the text is:  “I will very greatly bless thee, and very greatly multiply thee.”

2.    The Perseverance (Heb. 6:15)

 

And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.

a.    Patiently endured

1)     Strong (3114):  to be long spirited, that is, …forbearing, patient

2)    Thayer:  to be of a long spirit, not to lose heart, to persevere patiently and bravely in enduring misfortunes and troubles.

b.    We must remember that God may work out His purpose over a long period of time.  Thus, we must possess patient endurance.

c.    The case of Abraham is an example.

1)     Abraham saw the birth of Isaac.  He also had as his possession the cave of Macpelah in the land of Canaan. 

2)    After his death his descendants multiplied into a mighty nation.  And, they entered into the land of Canaan to settle the land in which Abraham dwelled as a stranger.

 

B.   The Efficacy of Oaths (Heb. 6:16)

 

For men verily swear by the greater:  and an oath for confirmation is to the end of all strife.

 

1.    Here, the writer turns to the normal world of mankind.

a.    Oaths were a common means of settling disputes between men.

b.    Once an oath was taken, the problem was usually settled.

c.    “The acceptance of oaths through the years has been quite amazing.  It is remarkable that declarations made under oath seem to settle the matter under consideration (Wacaster, 232).

2.    An oath for confirmation is to them the end of all strife.

a.    Oath

1)     Strong (3727):  literally a fence…a limit, that is (sacred) restraint (specifically oath)

2)    Thayer:  that which has been pledged or promised with an oath

b.    Confirmation

1)     Strong (951):  stablishment     :-confirmation

2)    Thayer:  confirmation

3)     “The Greek words here translated ‘for confirmation’ have a legal connotation to them.  If a sale of property was ‘legally guaranteed,’ their words would be used to express that bond.  By giving an oath God ‘legally’ bound himself to follow through with His promise (Wacaster, 233).

 

C.  The End of God (Heb. 6:17-18)

1.    The Confirmation (Heb. 6:17)

 

Wherein God, willing more abundantly to show unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath.

 

a.    God had a purpose in speaking forth His promise and confirming it with an oath.  Listen to the words:  “Wherein God, willing more abundantly to show…”

1)     Willing

a)    Strong (1014):  to will        :-        be disposed, minded, intend

b)    Thayer:  to will deliberately, have a purpose, be minded

2)    More abundantly

a)    Strong (4054):  in a more superabundant way

b)    Thayer:  over and above, more than necessary, superadded, exceeding abundantly, supremely

b.    God wanted to prove something in a superabundant way to “the heirs of the promise.”

1)     Heir

a)    Strong (2818):  partitioning…that is, getting by apportionment…a sharer by lot, that is, an inheritor

b)    Thayer:  one who receives by lot, or heir…in Messianic usage, one who receives his allotted possession by right of sonship

c)    We are “heirs of the promise” (See Rom. 8:16-17).

 

For the Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:  and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

 

2)    God wants to show us the immutability of His counsel.

a)    Immutability

-       Strong (276):  unchangeable, or…unchangeability

-       Thayer:  not transposed…fixed, unalterable

b)    Counsel

-       Strong (1012):  volition…advice…purpose

-       Thayer:  counsel, purpose

c)    He did this by confirming His words with an oath.

c.    Confirmed

1)     Strong (3315):  …to ratify (as surety)

2)    Thayer:  act as a sponsor or surety, to pledge one’s self

3)     “What God promises STANDS!  He CANNOT deny Himself!  So once a promise is made, we can be assured that such will be honored” (Wacaster, 234).