IT IS IMPOSSIBLE (HEBREWS 6:4-6)
For it is IMPOSSIBLE for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.
The difficulty of the above scripture is in the construction of the language. A person who has not studied the book of Hebrews as a whole will find it difficult in understanding this verse. We shall therefore use the same style the author of the book of Hebrews used using very familiar scenario to know what impossible thing being discussed here.
“For it is impossible for those who were once president of Ghana, and have gone through successful election and were winners and have successfully served their full two terms of eight years and have enjoy all the privileges of the constitution and the powers of the presidency, if they shall stand for election, to be voted back again into presidency; seeing they write to themselves a new constitution, and put the old constitution to contempt”.
What are the impossible things here?
1. It is impossible for any person who have stood for election, won and have become president of Ghana and have fully served his two terms to stand for election.
2. It is impossible to write a new constitution while the old constitution is in place, which will be putting the old constitution to contempt.
NOW ON HEBREWS 6:4-6: For it is IMPOSSIBLE for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.
What are the impossible things here in HEBREWS 6:4-6?
1. It is impossible for those who were once enlightened and have tasted the heavenly gift and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost. And have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the world to come to fall away.
2. It is impossible to crucify the son of God afresh and put him to an open shame.
So what the author of the book of Hebrews is saying is: Christ’s offering and sacrifice is what brought about the salvation of the believer which is eternal. This implies the salvation was once and for all. If it is possible for the man in Christ to fall away, then it is also possible for Christ to be crucified afresh and bring him to an open shame.
But since it is impossible to crucify the son of God afresh, it is therefore impossible for those who have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come to fall away. Falling away of the believer therefore is the impossible situation of Hebrews 6: 4- 6.
The interpretation that if a believer who has experienced so much of God’s power and knowledge falls into sin or “backslide” it is not possible for them to repent or renew their mind and be restored is inaccurate.
LOGICAL REASONING • I have seen and heard of many well informed, gifted and Holy Ghost filled believers or ministers of the gospel who fell into sinful lifestyle which you may call “fall away”. These ministers later renewed their mind or repented and became very fruitful ministers even than before the “fall away”. So if God said it’s impossible, then God’s word is not universally true.
• Secondly, if God said it is impossible for such people to come back to repentance, it puts limit on God’s love. It shows the partiality of God’s love. Why will God give up on some “fallen away” people on earth while they are still alive? This also means that we must investigate the history of people to find out whether they are not part of the “fallen away” believers who God said cannot come to repentance before we preach or pray for them.
SCRIPTURAL REASONING • Example of Apostle Peter: Apostle Peter was chosen by Christ Jesus himself, he was the one who had the personal revelation of Jesus as the Christ, (Matthew 16: 13- 19). This disciple walked with Jesus, saw many miracles of the Lord. This disciple walked on water and also worked miracles. During the period of the crucifixion of Jesus, he emphatically denied the Lord and went to fishing. This disciple later repented and became one of the foundational apostles of the New Testament.
• Statement of Jesus: My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand, (John 10: 27- 28).
• Statements of Apostle Paul: In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, (Ephesians 1: 13). For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8: 38- 39).
• Statement by Apostle Peter: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time (1Peter 1: 5).
• Statement by Jude: Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen. (Jude 24- 25).
• Statement made by the author of Hebrews: But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them (Hebrews 7: 24- 25). For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. (Hebrews 10: 14).
CONCLUSION: There are many scriptures that prove the popular interpretation of HEBREWS 6: 4- 6, that the believer can fall away and when that happens it’s impossible for him to come to repentance is NOT scriptural. This is not a scripture to scare believers to live right. It’s a scripture assuring the believer of his eternal security in Christ.
There are scriptures we can use to discourage sinful lifestyle of believers but not this one. The man in Christ is forever saved. His salvation is secure. He cannot lose his salvation.
# Disseminating the truth
# Bringing freedom
# Perfecting the saints