OUT OF THE WOODS

by J.F.T. Woods

Q. Does not Hebrews 6:4-6 teach that Christians can lose their salvation?

A. Hebrews is as much the Word of God as any other book in the Bible. It has much to teach us and we Christians can benefit richly from an in-depth study of it, viewed dispensationally. First, we must recognize that, while it was written for us, "for our learning," it was written to first century Jews before the destruction of the Temple and during the Acts period while God was still dealing with Israel as a nation. It was written to address a problem that concerned them. Many Jews had witnessed the prophesied descent of the Spirit upon Israel at the Jewish feast of Pentecost, or, at least, heard of it. They had also been exposed to Paulís message of the risen, glorified Christís grace. They were now being wooed back to the Temple with its many sacrifices and away from Calvary with its one final and all-sufficient sacrifice. A people cannot be "enlightened" who are in the process of rejecting the light. Israel as a nation had "tasted the heavenly gift" and didnít like the taste. The Holy Spirit had come to Israel at Pentecost and, in this sense, the Nation had become sharers of the Holy Spirit though the Nation, and most of the individuals in it, remained unsaved. They "tasted the good Word of God and the powers of the coming (millennial) age," and rejected the King and His Kingdom. These first century Jews could not be renewed to repentance at the very same time that they were re-crucifying Christ. That they were not saved is evident from verse 9, "But, beloved, we are confident of better things concerning you, yes, things that accompany salvation, though we speak in this manner."

Those who were rejecting the finished work of Christ were committing the unpardonable sin, something only a first century Jew could do! They were trampling Him underfoot, counting His shed blood unholy, and preferring the blood of animals. In the tenth chapter Paul tells them that though they take lambs to the Temple, they will not find God there..."there remains no more sacrifice for sins." When Bible teachers take a passage that refers to Israelís setting aside, tear it from its context, and attempt to apply it to individual members of the Body of Christ they dishonor God and do us a disservice. Saved people are saved from all possibility of ever again being condemned (Romans 8:33-34). Christ died to become our Savior...not our probation officer!

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