As you asked me to make this separate thread Jac I did, I want you to explain to me what seems to be some of your discrepencies in your interpretations of the following verses;
Here is the link;
Source: http://acts172.wordpress.com/2010/07/24 ... ebrews-64/
First off, lets look at the verses in hand;
Hebrews6:4 For it is impossible to restore again to repentance those who have once been enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5
and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, 6
and then have fallen away, since on their own they are crucifying again the Son of God and are holding him up to contempt. 7
Ground that drinks up the rain falling on it repeatedly, and produces a crop useful to those for whom it is cultivated, receives a blessing from God. 8
But if it produces thorns and thistles, it is worthless and on the verge of being cursed; it's end is to be burned over.
We will take the verses section by section as Jac interprets them, and examine his other scriptural references that he uses in support of his interpretations(s).
Contrary to popular belief, this passage does not teach that one may lose their salvation. All theological argument aside, this is proven by one very simple observation: salvation is not mentioned in these verses.
Now the verses clearly state those who, 'shared(past tense) in the Holy Spirit,' but yet have fallen away. Paul mentions in Ephesian4:30 that the gift of the Holy Spirit is an indicator of those who will be redeemed on the day of redemption.
Ephesians4:30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked for the day of redemption.
The same sentiment is echoed in Ephesians1:13;
Ephesians1:13 In him you also when you had heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and had believed in him, were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit; 14
this is the pledge of our inheritence towards redemption as God's own people, to the praise of his glory.
So clearly the giving of the Holy Spirit is a pledge by God towards our redempton as God's own people. Therefore the passages in Hebrews6:4-8 clearly do allude
to the issue of salvation.
Jac then goes on to write;
The passage does teach that genuine Christians can lose their faith. If we wish to assert that losing one’s faith results in a loss of salvation, he must demonstrate that from other Scripture. The idea is simply not found here.
Surely Jac you are familiar with one of the most common verses cited by protestants;
John3:14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up. 15
That whoever believes in him
may have eternal life.
Where does that leave those who don't
believe in him? Well strangley enough the bible answers that one for us too.
Mark16:16 The one who believes and is baptized will be saved; but the one who does not believe will be condemned.
John3:36 Whover believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever disobeys the Son will not see life but must endure God's wrath.
Hebrew11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, for whoever would approach him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
And possibly the most damning verse of those without faith;
Revelation21:8 But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the polluted, the murderers, the fornicators, the sorcerers, the idolaters, and all liars, their place will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.
Well Jac I've just demonstrated to you from scripture how the loss of ones faith can result in the loss of one's salvation, do you wish to interpret these verses for us any differently?
Jac goes onto write;
On the other hand, the passage actually supports “once saved always save.” Note that if the believer falls away (we are taking the references “enlightened,” “tasted” and “shared” as qualifying genuine Christians) that they cannot be brought back to repentance. That is, they cannot be restored to the confession they once held. The issue, then, is not the loss of salvation, but the loss of one’s confession and, by extension, the loss of one’s fellowship with the church.
Here Jac loses me slightly, Christ clearly gave the disciples the power to forgive sins;
John20:22 When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23
If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any they are retained."
If you mean by losing one's fellowship with the Church that they no longer belong to the Church, then they are no longer part of the Body of Christ. There is no salvation without Christ;
Acts4:12 There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among mortals by which we must be saved."
And how are we incorporated into Christ, through his Church;
Ephesians1:22 And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, 23
which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
To suggest that you can be saved while losing your fellowship with the church, and therfore not belonging to the Body of Christ is completely contradicted in scripture.
Jac goes on;
The Christian under discussion is compared to a crop of farmland. If it is well tended, it is expected to bear fruit, but if it bears weeds instead, the farmer has no choice but to burn the land. The purpose of this burning is not to destroy it, but to allow him to start over. The fire does not, then, represent Hell. It represents God’s discipline (cf. Heb. 12:1-11).
Jac's quote here is in relation to Hebrews6:6-8.
Why does Paul write then, "it is worthless
and on the verge of being cursed; it's end
is to be burned over."
Paul does write in other parts of a purifying fire that saves(1Corinthians3:15), which Catholic's usually interpret to mean purgatory. But Paul doesn't suggest this fire is, 'the end,' but a purifying fire. He also doesn't decribe those who will be saved as being worthless or on the verge of being cursed?
Jac goes onto write in his final paragraph;
This passage teaches that the consequence of falling away is not Hell but rather God’s discipline in our lives. As the author of this book says in Heb. 10:31, “It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” This passage is actually teaching the same thing that Paul said on I Corinthians 5:5, “I have decided to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of his flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” Let us, then, strive to hold fast the confession of our faith!
No they don't, for a start many interpreted 1Corinthians5:1-5 to mean excommunication, and this is supported by 1Peter5:8. You are more susceptible from attacks from by the devil when you are outside the confines of the safety of the Church. Hence Peter's analogy, lions hunt by seeking out weaker prey who have been separated from the pack. Although I am open to suggestions that 1Corinthians5 could mean something else. Secondly 1Corinthains5:1-5 is primarily dealing with sexual immorality, the verses proceeding the one you mentioned in Hebrews deals with wilfull apostates, and their destruction
if they remain wilfully apostate to the end Hebrews10:26.
Over to you Jac.