The Book of  HEBREWS
James J. Barker


Lesson 28
DO NOT DRAW BACK

Text: HEBREWS 10:31-39


INTRODUCTION:


  1. The epistle to the Hebrews was probably written by the apostle Paul (cf. Heb. 10:34).
  2. The epistle was written to Jewish believers who were wavering between Judaism and Christianity.
  3. Often in this epistle we see the words, "Let us..."
  4. "Let us labour" (4:11).
  5. "Let us hold fast our profession" (4:14).
  6. "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace" (4:16).
  7. "Let us go on unto perfection" (6:1).
  8. "Let us draw near with a true heart" (10:22).
  9. "Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering" (10:23).
  10. There are many other similar exhortations.  But some were not holding fast (10:23).  Some were not "going on" (6:1).
  11. Some were "drawing back" (10:39).
  12. F.B. Meyer wrote, "The splendid ceremonial, venerable age, and olden associations of Judaism, were fighting hard to wean them away from the simplicity and spiritual demands of the later faith. But surely the retrograde movement would be arrested, and the impetus toward Christ accelerated, by these sublime and soul-stirring remonstrances" (The Way Into The Holiest).
  13. By "these sublime and soul-stirring remonstrances," FB Meyer is referring to three reproofs found here in Hebrews 10.

 

I. A WARNING OF JUDGMENT (10:31).

  1. There are many warnings in the book of Hebrews, and it is evident that most of them are addressed to believers (cf. 10:30 -- "The Lord shall judge his people.").
  2. David wrote in Psalm 32:4, "For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer."
  3. The LORD gave this message to King David, through the prophet Nathan "Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife.  Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house" (I Sam. 12:10, 11a).
  4. The Lord killed Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:1-11).  There is no indication they were not saved.
  5. There are many warnings in the Bible about committing the sin unto death (cf. Heb. 12:5-9).
  6. After being confronted by Nathan the prophet, King David repented.  First Samuel 12:13 indicates God would have killed David had he not repented.
  7. "And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die" (I Sam. 12:13; cf. I Cor. 11:30, 31; James 1:14-16; I John 5:16).
  8. The Bible is not very specific about the judgment seat of Christ.  However, we do know that all Christians must stand before the Lord at the judgment seat of Christ.
  9. Second Corinthians 5:11 says, "Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men..."   This reference to "the terror of the Lord" indicates the judgment seat of Christ will be a painful experience for backslidden believers.

 

II. A CALL TO REMEMBRANCE (10:32).

  1. These Hebrew Christians suffered greatly after they were first converted and "were illuminated" (enlightened --cf. 6:4).
  2. After enduring so many hardships and afflictions and persecution, it would be tragic for them to now return to Judaism (10:32, 33).
  3. We get our English word "theater" from the Greek word translated "gazingstock" (10:33). "Gazingstock" (10:33) means a "public spectacle."
  4. The author of this epistle had been in prison (10:34).  And his writing style and language is similar to Paul's.  Therefore, Paul was probably the author.

 

III. A PROMISE OF REWARD (10:34-37).

  1. If these Jewish believers were to turn back, they would lose their reward.
  2. Second John 8 says, "Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward."
  3. First John 2:28 says, "And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming."
  4. This "confidence" (cf. Heb. 10:35) is based upon Christ's death for our sins (cf. Heb. 10:19).
  5. The Lord "will come, and will not tarry" (Heb. 10:37).  The Lord is right on schedule.   This is a quote from Habakkuk 2:3.
  6. Hebrews 10:38 is from Habakkuk 2:4 (cf. Rom. 1:17; Gal. 3:11).

 

CONCLUSION:

  1. Christians frequently debate over the book of Hebrews.  They wonder if these strong warnings are addressed to believers or unbelievers?
  2. Hebrews 10:39 suggests the author is drawing a contrast between those who draw back and those who "believe to the saving of the soul."
  3. In just a few short years after this epistle was written, the Lord would allow Jerusalem to be destroyed.  The temple would be burned to the ground, and the priesthood and sacrifices would cease.
  4. How foolish to go back to something God had judged and would soon destroy.


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