Last week’s text was the great warning passage of Hebrews 6.4-12, where the author continued to encourage the readers to “go on to maturity” (6.1), to not become lazy (6.12), and to show diligence in making their hope sure (6.11). If you recall, at the beginning of the sermon, I framed the discussion with the four words: preservation (God keeps the saved to the end), perseverance (the saved continue in their faith and fruit bearing until the end), assurance (we can know that we have eternal life), and apostasy (the departure of the faith from those who profess to be believers). I said that our ability to understand the warning of 6.4-12 depended upon our ability to hold all four truths in tension.
The warning text of 6.4-12 focused more on the perseverance/apostasy coupling of the four words. But immediately afterwards, the author emphasizes the preservation/assurance pair in 6.13-20. He moved from “make your hope sure” (6.11) to “we have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure” (6.19). I have been meditating this week on how our hope can be both firm and secure and also be something that I need to make sure. At this moment, I think the answer lies in the “unchanging nature of God’s purpose” (6.17).
The question of the day is: “What is the unchanging purpose of God’s nature” and how does knowing/embracing/experiencing this unchanging purpose relate to the hope we have taken hold of?