Read for This Week’s Study: Hebrews 6:4–6, Matthew 16:24, Romans 6:6, Hebrews 10:26–29, Hebrews 6:9–13, Hebrews 6:17–20.
Memory Text: “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both secure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil, where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek” (Hebrews 6:19-20, NKJV).
Hebrews 5:11-6:20 interrupts the theological exposition about Jesus’ priesthood in our behalf. Paul inserts there a severe warning about the danger of falling away from Christ.
Apparently, the people were in real danger of going down the slippery slope of self-pity and faithlessness. The apostle Paul is concerned that his readers and hearers may have had their spiritual senses dulled because of the difficult situations they were facing, and thus they had stopped growing in their understanding and experience of the gospel.
Is not this a potential danger for us all, getting discouraged because of trials, and thus falling away?
The severe warning culminates, however, in an affectionate encouragement. Paul expresses faith in his readers and exalts Jesus as the embodiment of God’s unbreakable promise of salvation to them (Hebrews 6:9-20). This cycle of warning and encouragement is repeated in Hebrews 10:26-39.
We will study this cycle and focus on the strong words of encouragement that Jesus provides for us.
Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, February 12.