1So let us stop going over the basics of Christianity F29 again and again. Let us go on instead and become mature in our understanding. Surely we don't need to start all over again with the importance of turning away from evil deeds and placing our faith in God. 2You don't need further instruction about baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. 3And so, God willing, we will move forward to further understanding.
4For it is impossible to restore to repentance those who were once enlightened—those who have experienced the good things of heaven and shared in the Holy Spirit, 5who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the power of the age to come—6and who then turn away from God. It is impossible to bring such people to repentance again because they are nailing the Son of God to the cross again by rejecting him, holding him up to public shame.
7When the ground soaks up the rain that falls on it and bears a good crop for the farmer, it has the blessing of God. 8But if a field bears thistles and thorns, it is useless. The farmer will condemn that field and burn it.
9Dear friends, even though we are talking like this, we really don't believe that it applies to you. We are confident that you are meant for better things, things that come with salvation. 10For God is not unfair. He will not forget how hard you have worked for him and how you have shown your love to him by caring for other Christians, as you still do. 11Our great desire is that you will keep right on loving others as long as life lasts, in order to make certain that what you hope for will come true. 12Then you will not become spiritually dull and indifferent. Instead, you will follow the example of those who are going to inherit God's promises because of their faith and patience.
God's Promises Bring Hope
13For example, there was God's promise to Abraham. Since there was no one greater to swear by, God took an oath in his own name, saying:
14 "I will certainly bless you richly,
and I will multiply your descendants into countless millions." F30
15Then Abraham waited patiently, and he received what God had promised.
16When people take an oath, they call on someone greater than themselves to hold them to it. And without any question that oath is binding. 17God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise could be perfectly sure that he would never change his mind. 18So God has given us both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can take new courage, for we can hold on to his promise with confidence.
19This confidence is like a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain of heaven into God's inner sanctuary. 20Jesus has already gone in there for us. He has become our eternal High Priest in the line of Melchizedek.
F29: Or the basics about Christ.
F30: Gen 22:17.