Bible Baptist Church

" Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." ...... John 3:3


A Willful Rejection of Christ


Hebrews 10:26-31


Introduction:

·         Before going into this section of warnings, Paul mentions those who forsake the assembling together of God’s people- church services. This was in his mind one of those sore spots that indicate imminent danger of drawing back!

·         This neglecting of Christian fellowship puts us in danger of becoming indifferent and backslidden

·         This is the fourth warning in the book of Hebrews.

·         Some Christians think these warnings teach one can lose his salvation. However, that would contradict dozens of other Scriptures

·         Every now and then the writer to the Hebrews speaks with a sternness that we don’t really see elsewhere in the New Testament. Few writers give such a sense of the danger of sin. In this passage his thoughts are going back to the grim instructions in Deuteronomy 17:2-7: If any person is proved to have gone after strange gods and to have worshipped them, bring them to the gates and stone them! (On the evidence of two witnesses or of three witnesses.) The purpose: To purge the evil from the midst of you.

·         God says there is worse punishment for that sin today!

 

I.                    (Hbr 10:26-31) The danger of a willful rejection of Jesus’ perfect sacrifice for us.

a.      To sin willfully is defined in Hebrews 10:29. It speaks of 3 things:

                                                              i.      Trampled the Son of God underfoot: We disgrace Him by rejecting His greatest work. We devalue Him by devaluing what He did.

1.      Illustr- father “You will have to go over my body!” Son pushes past and actually treads over his dad to get out! Christ comes and stands in the sinners path with a broken and bleeding body, what a sin to just pass over it! 

                                                            ii.      Counted the blood of the covenant... unholy (a common thing): We consider Jesus’ blood of no greater importance than the countless animals sacrificed under the Old Covenant. We must honor the price paid for our salvation- the precious blood of Christ!

1.      Just because it was free to us doesn’t mean it didn’t cost something!

2.      Live out of gratitude for what Christ did!

                                                          iii.      Despite (Insulted) the Spirit of grace: It is one thing to offend man’s spirit- but it’s an entirely different matter to offend the Spirit of God! We offend the Holy Spirit, whose purpose it is to present Jesus and His work to us (John 16:8-15) when we reject Jesus

1.      To shut the door on the Spirit and yet open the same door to the world; to reject the witness and conviction of the Holy Spirit is a terrible thing!

2.      The unpardonable sin today is the state of continued unbelief. The Spirit currently convicts the unsaved world of sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:8). To resist that conviction and willfully remain unrepentant is to “blaspheme” the Spirit. They cross a line by continually rejecting the Spirit’s promptings to trust in Jesus Christ

b.      Who is he writing to? Professed Christians which include both saved and unsaved (false professors)

c.       This can be applied as the sin of failure to see the sacredness of sacred things.

d.      Application: “Parents who treat church as optional shouldn’t be surprised when their kids treat Jesus as unnecessary!”

e.      For those who reject Christ: No more offering for sin- what a sharp contrast from 10:18. There it is a glorious truth of our salvation. Here it is the worst sin and its greatest punishment. If the one sacrifice has been rejected none will ever be found!

f.        If a person rejects the finality of Christ's sacrificial death for sin, there is no other sacrifice for sin available.  There is no other way to come to God (10:26).

g.      This epistle was written to Hebrews Christians.  Some of them were going back to Judaism, offering sacrifices in the temple, trying to keep the Mosaic Law, etc.

h.      To them, God says, "there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins" (10:26b). Don’t expect your sins to be forgiven any other way!

II.                  The terrible expectation- v. 27

a.      There is only the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies.

b.      Note the word "willfully" (10:26).  In the Old Testament, God made provision for sins of ignorance, but not for presumptuous sin.

c.       Those "that despised Moses' law died without mercy under two or three witnesses" (10:28).   There was no provision for them. Under the law of Moses, they were stoned to death.

d.      The application here is that there will be a more severe punishment in this dispensation of grace

e.      Sin must be dealt with -- whether it is the sin of the unbeliever or the sin of the believer.

                                                              i.      In many ways the sin of the believer is more grievous to God because he should know better; they have more light!

                                                            ii.      Ex. Uzzah and the ark of God

f.        We see that sinning against NT grace is far worse! With much privileges comes much responsibility! Greater grace does not mean less stringency or less judgment from God!

g.      You could say the NT exceeds the OT in its blessings, but also in its curse!

h.      V. 30- True believers can never trample under foot the Son of God or count the blood of the covenant an unholy thing. But we can grieve the Holy Spirit. We can quench the Holy Spirit! We cut ourselves off from God’s blessings on our lives in that way. We have seen in the OT that God is not afraid to chasten His people!

III.                IT'S A FEARFUL THING TO FALL INTO THE HANDS OF THE LIVING GOD (10:31).

a.      “To fall into the hands of the Living God is, therefore, to have resisted His love, refused His salvation, despised the warnings of His Spirit, and to have persisted thus past the point where God can consistently show further grace.” (Newell)

b.      See Proverbs 1:24ff, Micah 3:4

c.       Divine retribution- some say it contradicts God’s nature

d.      THIS SEEMING CONTRADICTION IS NOT A CHRISTIAN ONE ALONE. It is “a fearful thing to fall into the hands” of Nature, if you disobey her laws. The thunderstorm will not let you play with the lightning; gravity will not let you tempt its sympathy by plunging off the edge of a cliff! Nature will reward your negligence and ignorance- and so does God!

e.      Good and moral societies bear witness to this by punishing criminals!

f.        Christ is the ultimate witness- He took the punishment we deserve as our sacrifice for sin! He bore the brunt of God’s wrath so that we don’t have to!

Conclusion:

·         Jonathan Edwards preached his famous sermon: Sinners In the Hands of an Angry God from this text in 1741. It was a sermon describing the reality of Hell. First he preached it to his own church in Massachusett’s to no visible effect. Then he preached it again and published it not too far from here in CT. News of this message spread quickly to the other colonies and soon the Great Awakening Revival was sparked!

·         Today, we are living in a day when many are willfully rejecting Christ. False religion, humanism, and sin have blinded the eyes of many sinners May we pray that Revival sweeps through here once more!