583 - Les Feldick Bible Study - Lesson 2 Part 3 Book 49 - Hebrews 6:1-4

583: Hebrews 6:1-4 – Lesson 2 Part 3 Book 49

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 2 * PART 3 * BOOK 49

Hebrews 6:1-4

Okay, it’s taken us 2 complete lessons to get to the last part of verse 1 in Hebrews chapter 6, but I think we’re ready for it now:

Hebrews 6:1b

“…not laying again the foundation; of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God.”

Alright, we’re just going to stop with that first phrase “not laying again the foundation.” Have you ever stopped to think what that really means? Put it into everyday life. If you’re going to build a home and you’ve got the foundation laid, what are you going to do, tear it up and pour another one? Well, of course not. You’re going to start building.

But see, what were these people doing? They were trying to tear up the old foundation and just go back where they were before. Now remember the primary subject of the book of Hebrews is Jews. Not exclusively. My, there’s so much in here for us but the primary subjects here are Jews who were still steeped in the Judaism of the past. They had recognized Jesus and His Messiahship. They had believed Who He was. They had embraced the Gospel of the Kingdom.

That’s as far as they’d gotten. And Paul is trying to move them now to progress towards this further revelation which, of course, is now not just for Israel, but now it’s for the whole human race, Jew and Gentile. And that is the Gospel of the Grace of God.

Now let me show you the term before we go further. I can come back to Hebrews so just hold your hand in Hebrews. Come back with me to Acts chapter 20 verse 24. Paul of course, refers to this Gospel of his in various forms. He’ll call it my Gospel. He’ll call it that Gospel which I preach among the Gentiles. He’ll call it the Gospel of Christ. But here in this verse, I like this one, because he calls it what we call it. Here in Acts 20, this is toward the end of his ministry as well and he said:

Acts 20:24

“But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.”

Can you get it any plainer? I don’t know how. And that is not the Gospel of the Kingdom. The Gospel of the Grace of God is that God has now through the person of the Son, died the horrible death of the Cross. Shed His blood, was buried three days and three nights in the tomb, and arose victorious over everything. That’s the Gospel of the Grace of God. And now it makes it possible for anyone to become a believer. Not just Israel, not just the Gentiles, but rather the whole human race.

That’s the Gospel of the Grace of God. That God in His mercy has seen fit to save those who simply believe – without works. Now if you’ll come back to Hebrews again. So Paul is saying now, once you’ve come through these words of Jesus in His earthly ministry establishing Who He was. Making all the promises that had been confirmed to the fathers. Because, when Israel rejected all that and crucified their Messiah, in reality, they were just simply fulfilling the Sovereign blueprint of God because Christ had to die. He had to go to the Cross. But nevertheless, in a system that we humans can’t understand, God made it a valid offer to the Nation of Israel to accept the King and the Kingdom.

But God knew that they wouldn’t. He knew that they would reject it and He knew that they would bring in the crucifixion which brought about our Gospel. Alright, so now then Paul says, don’t stay on just that foundation. Don’t try to tear it up and build another one. Or don’t try to put another foundation on top of that one. Let that one be and let’s move on.

I guess I would have to use an analogy here -I like to bring everything down to an everyday experience. I think we see it over and over especially in our mobile society. Maybe a young couple has been successful in a city. We’ll just say right here in Tulsa. And they have just made plans to build a new home. They’ve got the foundation poured. All of sudden he gets a job change. He has to go to a different part of the country for pursuit of his job.

Well, what are they going to do? Well, they’re not going to finish building it. They’ll probably try to sell it for whatever it is, but the analogy I want to make is that they are not going to build on that foundation which is no longer appropriate because they’re moving to a different city. Now when they leave Tulsa and go to his new job opportunity, all things being equal, now what are they going to do? They’re going to lay another foundation and they’re going to start building. Does that help?

Alright, that’s what we’ve got here. The foundation for the Gospel of the Kingdom was laid and we’ll be looking at some of the precepts of it. But, now we’ve got something better, so move on!

Let’s look at the foundation of the Gospel of the Grace of God that we’re going to be talking about. I Corinthians chapter 3 dropping in at verse 10. Now Paul the Apostle of the Gentiles is writing to Gentiles under this whole revelation of the mysteries which includes the Gospel of the Grace of God and he’s dealing with these Corinthians much like he does the Hebrews there in chapter 5 and 6, that they’re to come on away from their carnality and become spiritual and get into the meat of the matter.

Because he says the same thing in verse 2 of this chapter. He says, “I fed you with milk not with meat.” (why?) “Because up to this time you were not able to bear it.” See they were babes in Christ. So we’ve got pretty much the same setting. But now look at verse 10.

I Corinthians 3:10

“According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder. (the head contractor) I have laid (not a foundation, but what) the (the only) foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.” You see the picture. We had to leave that foundation that was offered to Israel under the Gospel of the Kingdom, because that is now moot. But now we move to a new foundation which is that which the Apostle Paul has laid. Now, let’s be careful. Paul isn’t claiming to be the foundation. He’s merely the master contractor. He laid the foundation. Now the next verse,

I Corinthians 3:11

“For other foundation can no man lay that that which is laid, and that is (what?) Jesus Christ.” That’s the foundation on which everything now rests. So it’s a moving, progressive thing. On your way back to Hebrews just stop at Galatians for a moment. Galatians chapter 1. Verses that we use so often. Sometimes my mind probably confuses my nightly classes in Oklahoma with some of the tapings, or the programs but I hope I don’t run some of these things in the ground. I don’t like to ride a hobbyhorse, you know, and just go, go, go and never make any headway.

But I use Galatians 1 so often in order to show again the progressiveness of Paul’s writings, and let’s begin with 11, where Paul writes primarily to Gentiles. Now we’re not leaving the Jews out – they certainly has access to the Gospel of Grace the same as we do. But, it’s primarily Gentiles who are responding. And so he says:

Galatians 1:11-13a

“I certify you, brethren, that the gospel (this Gospel of the Grace of God) which was preached of me is not after man. 12. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it,(by other men) but (here it comes now) by the revelation (what’s the other word for revelation? Revealing. What’s a revealing? Taking off the mask, see? And so) of Jesus Christ. 13. For ye have heard of my conversation (or manner of living) in times past in the Jews’ religion,…”

This is what he’s addressing back in Hebrews. He knew where those people were, because he’d been there. How do we say it today? Been there and done that? Yeah, that’s what Paul could have said, I’ve been there, done that. But now you see, he’s had these new revelations concerning Jesus Christ. Now finishing verse 13.

Galatians 1:13b

“…how that beyond measure I persecuted the church (or assembly) of God, and wasted it:” Then he goes on to say how that all of these truths that now come from his pen were revealed to him by the ascended Lord.

Galatians 1:16a

“To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen: (Gentiles)

Now we’re getting through to people. I can even tell in our letters. The Apostle Paul speaks of Christ on this side of the Cross. After the finished work of death, burial and resurrection. The Four Gospels are before the Cross and most people can’t understand that. Back to Hebrews 6.

Hebrews 6:1b

“…not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and faith toward God.”

That was the very tenets or the precepts of the Gospel of the Kingdom that Jesus and the Twelve proclaimed to Israel. And Paul says, ‘That’s moot.’ That’s no longer of any count. It is in the past. Now what are they? Six of them. In pairs. “Don’t lay again the foundation of repentance from dead works and faith toward God.”

Now goodness sakes, didn’t all the Old Testament understand those two. Why of course. Israel was told more than once to repent of their wickedness. Abraham was a man of what? Faith! So these were two concepts or precepts that weren’t new to Israel. That was part and parcel of their history, see? And so Paul says, don’t just stay on that which has now become elementary. Dead works, wow!

I take you right back to Galatians. Let’s just go back. I should have used that before I went to Hebrews. Galatians 1 where we just were, 13 and 14 again. This is why he knew whereof he spoke. And even though every word is inspired by the Holy Spirit, we’ll never take that away from it, yet Paul had firsthand knowledge of what the Spirit was causing him to write. Alright, remember now what he says, not to lay the foundation of repentance from dead works.

Galatians 1:13a

“For ye have heard of my conversation (or manner of living) in time past in the Jews’ religion,…” Most of you have been hearing me teach long enough. Religion always requires what? Works. Always. Anytime you are dealing with a ‘religion’ it’s going to be demanding works. And that’s what Judaism was, it was a works religion. Dead works, because it couldn’t generate life. Alright, looking at the verse again.

Galatians 1:13

“For ye have heard of my conversation (manner of living) in time past in the Jews’ religion, (practicing those dead works as he calls it in Hebrews.) and how that beyond measure, I persecuted the church (or the assembly of God) and wasted it:”

Stop and think. What was he doing to his fellow Jews? Killing them. Hauling them into prison and voting to put them to death. You know that has been a thing that has plagued the Jewish people from day one is that they are so prone to fight each other. They’ve done it throughout their national history. I read here, I think it’s in Josephus, that when the Roman General Titus and his ramrods were knocking on the doors of the city of Jerusalem, and the Roman hoard was ready to come in and kill them, I think up over a million Jews, what were the Jews doing inside the city? Civil war! They were fighting with each other. Over what? Religious differences. Look at Israel today. What is their primary problem? They’re fragmented. They’re a fragmented society. I was just reading an article in the Jerusalem Post the other day of a little community where it’s just nip and tuck between the secular and the religious. And they almost hate each other. And yet they’re all Jews.

Well, Paul was no different. He was a Jew’s Jew. A Pharisee of the Pharisees. Of the Tribe of Benjamin. And yet what was he willing to do? See his fellow Jews put to death. Why? Because he disagreed with them on their faith system. They had embraced Jesus of Nazareth and so far as he was concerned they were now a plague to the Nation. Get rid of them! Isn’t it sad? So, you watch Israel. Just watch the little Nation of Israel. Even today they are plagued with fragmentation. They’ve got the secular, they’ve got the orthodox and they’ve got three or four groups in between and they are at each other’s throats constantly. Alright, now verse 14.

Galatians 1:14a

“And profited (see? Not spiritually – materially.) in the Jews’ religion above many my equals in my own nation, (Why?) being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.”

Paul was a religious zealot just like some of these Muslims that we’re dealing with. Religion will always do that to people. And so, he was a religious zealot and what was he zealous of? “The traditions of the fathers.” All ring a bell? Well, it should. Now back to the Book of Hebrews. And so he says, move away from that. Get away from that foundation which required repentance from dead works and of faith toward God. Now that’s of course, fundamental. We all know that without faith it’s impossible to please God. Now for the next pair.

Hebrews 6:2a

“Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands,…”

Well, that was part and parcel of again the Jewish background. My goodness, they had practiced washings, washings, washings all the way up through their national history. When John the Baptist came on the scene and demanding water baptism, that wasn’t anything frightening to the Jew. That wasn’t something they said, “Well, what’s this?” It was just another form of washing, washing, washing. So Paul says, move on. Don’t hang on to that. The laying on of hands, the same way. That was part and parcel of the priesthood and everything else. Now, the last two.

Hebrews 6:2b

“…and of resurrection of the dead and (the next part people don’t like to read) eternal judgment.”

Don’t hear that much anymore do you? The world doesn’t even think about the eternal judgment that’s coming. Eternal. How long is eternity? As long as God lives! That should make people think, shouldn’t it?

And where in eternity? That’s up to the individual. Either in bliss and glory or eternal doom. Now, lest you think that some of this was unique only to the New Testament, let’s go all the way back to Job chapter 19, cause I just want you to see that Paul knew what he was talking about even though it was Spirit inspired, that the Jews knew of resurrection. Now of course, modern Judaism, a lot of Jews do not believe in a literal, viable life after death. I was just reading something by a Rabbi again the other night, that a lot of the Jews concept of eternal life is that it will just keep going in our coming generations. In other words, your life continues with your children and your grandchildren. That’s one concept. But see, the Biblical concept was as you and I look at it – is that it is eternal life either separated from God or in His presence. Alright, now, Job of course, a believer could write it like this. Remember Job is clear back before David. I think Job is kind of an enigma, nobody has ever yet written anything to satisfy me as to when Job lived and wrote. I’ve got my own pet ideas but I’m not that sure of it.

Job 19:25-26

“For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he (the Redeemer) shall stand at the latter day (where?) upon the earth: 26. And though after my skin worms destroy this body, (in other words he goes through physical death) yet in my flesh (in a resurrected body) shall I see God.”

Now there’s resurrection life way back in Job’s day. See? Alright, let’s come on up to Daniel chapter 12, and we’ll start right up there at verse 1. I’m just trying to show you that these Hebrews to whom Paul was writing had an understanding of all these things. It wasn’t Greek to them.

Daniel 12:1-2

“And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people:(Israel) and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, everyone that shall be found written in the book (in other words, the Book of Life – believers; now here it comes) 2. And many of them that sleep (or who have died physically) in the dust of the earth shall awake, (resurrection) some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting (what?) contempt.” There are the two alternatives. It’s either a life of bliss and glory in the presence of the Lord or it’s a life of doom. Which the world doesn’t even want to think about. Now verse 3.

Daniel 12:3

“And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament: and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.” And then as you end up the book of Daniel God rehearses with him as to the timing of the resurrection of the Old Testament saints. Alright, let’s look at one more in Christ’s earthly ministry. That will probably suffice. Let’s go back again to John chapter 11, the death of Lazarus. You all know the story I trust, how that Jesus has been out of town, as we would say, and Lazarus has died and the girls are rather shook up. Why didn’t you stay around? You could have healed him from being so sick. Well, of course, the Lord did it purposely. Because He was going to prove again, some of His power. Alright, verse 23, Jesus comes back to Bethany, and He’s telling Mary and Martha,

John 11:23b

“…Thy brother shall rise again.” Now here it comes. You think they didn’t have an idea of resurrection. Why of course they did.

John 11:24

” Martha saith unto him, I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”

Just exactly what Job, and Daniel were talking about. And then Jesus went on to rehearse that He was the resurrection and the life and that any that put their trust in Him…. But the point I wanted to make was that this foundation from which Israel was now to move on, was not something new and fresh and that they had never heard before. They knew all these concepts. Alright, back to Hebrews chapter 6. And again in verse 2, that not only were they aware of baptisms, laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead. They were also aware of what? Eternal judgment. And we’ve already seen an alluding to that. They understood that there was a choice to be made and that the unbelieving element would be going to an eternal doom, separated from God.

Maybe I can show it the quickest by just flipping on over to Revelation chapter 20. This is the doom that all of human history is going for. It’s not explained this graphically in the Old Testament, it was simply a separation, but here the Revelator tells us exactly what it is in verse 14.

Revelation 20:14

“And death and hell (that is the inhabiting area of the lost) were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.”

582 - Les Feldick Bible Study - Lesson 2 Part 2 Book 49 - Leaving Milk for Meat - Part 2

582: Leaving Milk for Meat – Part 2 – Lesson 2 Part 2 Book 49

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 2 * PART 2 * BOOK 49

Leaving Milk for Meat – Part 2

Hebrews 6:1-4

Now as we began our study this afternoon, we’re going to just continue right on with our Bible study where we left off in Hebrews chapter 6. And for those of you just joining us on television who may have never caught the program before, we’re just a simple Bible study. We don’t have a lot of glitz. We’re not banked with flowers. Because after all this is just a classroom. And classrooms aren’t fancy, are they?

You know, I get such a kick out of our listeners. We were at one of our seminars. Now, I shouldn’t probably do this but, you all know me well enough and my audience knows me well enough. We were at one of our seminars and a lady was saying something that Iris just happened to overhear. And she said, “You know why I give to Les Feldick Ministries?” And the other gal says, “No. She said, “He doesn’t spend it all on clothes!” Well, that’s true. We don’t try to come in here with a fashion plate; we just simply want to teach the Word in a way that anyone can understand.

Let’s go right back into Hebrews chapter 6, we’re still in verse 1. And we’re just going to use this for a ‘jumping off’ and we’ll go right back to where we left off in the last moments of our last program.

Hebrews 6:1a

“Therefore,…”

Because of what has just been said the in last verses of chapter 5, that it was necessary to feed them milk because they weren’t ready for meat. So Paul says:

Hebrews 6:1a

“Therefore leaving (or moving on from) the principles (or the words of the beginning of Christ, and) of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection;…” (or unto a maturity)

In other words, like someone just said at break time. Les, this is just like the Bible as a whole. Yeah! It’s a progressive revelation from Genesis to the book of Revelation; it’s a progressive revealing of the things of God. Alright, so now then to take another look at the “words of the beginning of Christ” or His earthly ministry. We’re going to go right back where we left off and that was in Matthew chapter 10.

You saw in chapter 9 in our last program, that Jesus went everywhere preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom. My, very few people understand that that is not the Gospel of the Grace of God. The Gospel of the Grace of God was that which was revealed to the Apostle Paul through the revelation of the mysteries. But the Gospel of the Kingdom is what Jesus and, beginning with John the Baptist and the twelve, are proclaiming to the Nation of Israel and that is the good news that the King is here. He’s ready to give them the promised Kingdom that was promised all the way back to the Abrahamic Covenant. Now, in view of those promises then, we jumped into chapter 10 in the last moments of our program and we have the twelve disciples chosen and now here comes their marching orders. In verse 5:

Matthew 10:5a

“These twelve Jesus sent forth, and He commanded them, (now listen, when the Lord of Glory gave a command, that was not to be taken lightly. That was set in concrete and He commanded them) Go not into the way of the Gentiles,…” Did you hear that? Did you see that?

Matthew 10:5a

“These twelve Jesus sent forth, and he commanded them, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans (who were half-breeds) enter ye not 6. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

Now that’s plain language. As plain as language can get. Do NOT go to the Gentiles. Go only to the Nation of Israel, to the twelve tribes, to the lost sheep! Now let that sink in, and the next time you try to share it in your Sunday School class, they’ll run you out the back door more than likely. Yeah, I’ve got heads nodding, because you’ve experienced it. Oh, they don’t want to hear that, but see this is what Paul wrote in Romans.

Romans 15:8

“Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the father:”

And what were those promises made to the fathers? That Israel was to be the favored nation. And that God the Son would come and be a physical King as well as a Redeemer. And the Nation of Israel could come to that place of blessings. Living in peace and prosperity. Okay? Now reading on in Matthew 10. Let’s look now verse 7.

Matthew 10:7

“And as you go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Now let’s jump over to Luke chapter one for just a second and get just a little glimpse of what that was to be for the Nation of Israel. Chronologically, of course, we’re going to back up a few years because this is when the angel had announced to Zacharias and Elizabeth that they were going to have a child. Now he’s just been born. Luke chapter 1 and I’m going to drop in at verse 67. And the angel has announced that this child John the Baptist to be born of Zacharias and Elizabeth, who also were in their older years, was going to be the herald of the King, and Messiah. Now, when the King would come, you see, this is what Israel was looking for in fulfillment of the promises made to the fathers. And I’m going to repeat it and repeat it and repeat it till you hear it in your sleep. This is what Jesus came to fulfill.

Luke 1:67a

“And his father (that is John the Baptist’s father) Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost,…” He wasn’t just glibly speaking some Jewish hopefuls, but rather he was speaking the very mind of God and look what he said:

Luke 1:68

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; (Exclusive? Well, I reckon. This isn’t including the world. This is Israel.) for he hath visited and redeemed his people,”

Now, ever since Genesis chapter 12 and the giving of the Abrahamic Covenant, who were God’s people? Israel! See? You know that, and they’re still the ones we’re talking about. Now verse 69.

Luke 1:69

“And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David.” How many Gentiles are in the House of David? Not one! Now granted a few of the women came in by marriage, I’m not denying that. But largely speaking the House of Israel was Jew only. Now verses 70 and 71.

Luke 1:70-71

“As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: 71. That we should be saved from our (not sins yet but what?) enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us;” Goodness gracious, who were Israel’s enemies at the time of Christ’s first advent? Well, the same one’s tonight. It was no difference as there was Egypt, Syria, the Persians, the Babylonians, and the Gentiles all around them. They were their enemies. Alright, so they’re going to “be saved from their enemies and all those that hate us.” How many is that? The rest of the world.

See, ever since World War II we like to sort of stick our head in the sand and think that anti-Semitism is a thing of the past. Don’t you believe it. Anti-Semitism is raising its ugly head more and more every day. Now we all know why the Arab world hates Americans. And they do, they hate us! Not because of our prosperity, although that’s certainly a part of it. The liberals would like to make us think that that’s the problem, you know, we’ve got so much and they’ve got so little. No. The root problem is that they feel that we love and are going to do everything we can to support the little Nation of Israel and I think Osama bin Laden as much as said that. If Americans will quit supporting Israel then he can back off too. So that’s basically what’s behind everything is the hate for the Nation of Israel. Alright read on, and when this king would come He would come:

Luke 1:72-73

“To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, (same fathers that Paul referred to in Romans. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and the prophets and so forth.) and to remember his holy covenant; 73. The covenant (or the oath) which he sware to our father Abraham.”

Boy, it’s been a long time since we’ve rehearsed the Abrahamic Covenant on this program. Most of you hear it all the time in our Oklahoma classes, but for those of you out in television, the Abrahamic Covenant began back in Genesis chapter 12. Where God made three basic tenets to that Covenant. Maybe I should put it on the board once again, as I haven’t used the board in a long time. Maybe it’s about time.

That Abrahamic Covenant comprised, first the promise of a geographical area of land. Secondly, within that land, He would place a nation of people, the favored nation. The Nation of Israel. The third part of that Covenant was that in order to control the Nation living within the borders of a geographical area of land, He would have to establish agovernment. And this government is going to be in the person of a King and this King is going to be the Son of God. The Redeemer, the Messiah and that was all promised to Israel. Now those are just sort of the generalities.

You see, you have to kind of come through Scripture to pick this all up. Because even though this is promised back there in Genesis 15, 16 and 17, yet we do not have the revelation of Who this King is going to be until we get clear up into Samuel. And through the prophet Samuel and Nathan, God reveals that it’s going to be through the House of David. The bloodline of King David and Solomon and Nathan. And through that genealogy then of course, came Jesus of Nazareth. Now that was all part and parcel of that Abrahamic Covenant. Back to Luke, verse 74,

Luke 1:74

“That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out the hand of our enemies, (peace, prosperity. No fear) and that we might serve him without fear.” See that’s what Israel is still looking for. Oh maybe, not so much on the spiritual level but oh, how they’re longing for peace. When they can go to bed at night and not have to worry about having to dive for a bomb shelter. You know, I read some time ago that up there in Northern Israel, just below the Lebanese border, there are generations of young people who from babyhood on up never slept in their regular bed. They slept in beds in bomb shelters in order to be protected from the constant bombarding from the Hezbollah and so forth.

But oh, how Israel is longing for peace! And they’re getting just about ready to sell their soul to get it. Well, it does get kind of provoking when you can’t walk down the street without fear of being blown to smithereens. It does get frustrating when you can’t drive down the highway without wondering, well, am I next?

I was just talking to someone on the phone the other day that way back in the ‘80’s, he and his brother had flown over to Israel, just the two of them, and rented a car and spent a whole month just driving up and down the roads of Israel. I told Iris, “You know, that would be the way to tour Israel,” but, you couldn’t do that today. My land, you’d be in constant fear. But, this is what Israel is longing for, see?

Alright, “That he would grant unto us that we be delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear.” Now here comes the spiritual element.

Luke 1:75

“In holiness and righteousness before him, all the days of our life.” (That was the hope of Israel based on the Covenant promises.)

Now let’s come back to Matthew once again. And so after being commanded to have nothing to do with Gentiles, we go through Christ’s earthly ministry and you have the Sermon on the Mount and all these high moral statements. Which of course, are certainly profitable. I don’t tell people not to read the Four Gospels, for goodness sakes. All I maintain is that there’s no doctrine of Grace in these Four Gospels, this is still under the Law.

But there’s still a lot to learn. Just like we’re finding out in the book of Hebrews. Now, I’m going to bring you all the way up to chapter 16 which is the end of Christ’s earthly ministry. And even though they are as yet up in Northern Israel, at the headwaters of the Jordan River, Caesarea Philippi. Yet, they’re soon going to be making their way south and up to Jerusalem for the Passover and the Crucifixion.

Alright, now look what Jesus is doing as we read Matthew 16:13. This is all part of this Gospel of the Kingdom from which the readers of Paul’s epistle were to move on from, they are instructed to leave it, and to move on to better things.

Matthew 16:13

“When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?’”

In other words, what’s He asking? Whom do the rank and file think I am, the Jews among whom we have been performing miracles, whom we’ve been feeding the multitudes, and healing the sick. Whom do most of those people think I am? And here’s their answer. Look at this. I mean this is shocking. This was the answer.

Matthew 16:14

“And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias, and other, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.” Imagine! After three years of trying to prove to the Jewish Nation that He was the fulfillment of all those Old Testament promises. He was the Messiah. He was the Son of God, and they think anything but whom He really is. Now verse 15.

Matthew 16:15-16

“He saith unto them, (remember this is the whole twelve. Judas is included yet.) but whom say you that I am? (and Peter of course is always the spokesman and so he speaks up) 16. And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

What’s the other word for Christ? Messiah! I had a letter the other day and someone was bemoaning the fact that so much of Christendom uses Jesus Christ as a first and last name. Well, I hope you all know better than that. Christ isn’t his last name; it’s his title. And that’s why once in a while you’ll hear me slip in ‘Jesus the Christ’ which is really the most accurate. Because that’s what He was. He was Jesus the Messiah. Or if you want to reverse it, Messiah Jesus.

So now then, this is what He’s saying. “Whom do you say that I am? And Peter said, ‘you are the Christ, the Messiah, the Son of the living God’.” Did Peter have it straight? Yeah! Yeah, he did. And now look what Jesus said.

Matthew 16:17

“And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.” We are going to cover this same concept a little later in Hebrews chapter 6. Even these disciples fixing their nets on the shores of Galilee and Jesus came by. Now a lot of you know the Four Gospels better than I do. What did Jesus say to them? “Come follow me.” Did they ask a ton of questions? Well, did they say, “Who are you? What are you up to? What’s your agenda? What’s in it for me? What’d they do?” They dropped their nets and they followed. Why? Because the moment Jesus spoke, God opened up the understanding of these men. “There’s the One we’re looking for. There’s the One Who is fulfilling all the Old Testament promises.” And without question, they followed, see? And they knew that He was the Christ, and so here Jesus makes it so plain. On what basis did they know? God revealed it!

You know I’m always using the verse in Acts and I’m always saying Lord give me Lydias. Why? Because when Paul and Silas had finished presenting the Gospel to those Jewish women there at Philippi, the next verse says:

Acts 16:14

“And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God. heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul.”

Listen that’s never different. There’s not a one of you sitting in this room that can get one ounce of sense out of this Book without the Lord opening your understanding. There is not a person on this earth who has ever experienced salvation but that God didn’t open first their heart. Now, I’m not a ‘Five Point’ Calvinist. Don’t get me wrong. Nor am I a ‘Ten Point’ Armenian or whatever they call them. But I keep the thing in the middle. But yes, God does have to initiate. God does have to open the understanding and then the individual has to make his choice. That’s the way I look at it.

So Peter says, “you’re the Christ.” And Jesus said, “Blessed art thou Peter, this is all I wanted to know.” Now you know what I call this? Peter’s profession of faith. But what does Peter not mention? Death, burial and resurrection. Peter doesn’t say, “Now I understand that you’re going to go to that Cross and die for my sins. You’re going to be raised from the dead. That’s what I believe.”

No, Peter had no idea that Christ was going to go to a Cross. Now, to prove that point we go to Luke 18. We’ve used it on the program before, but like I said, we’ve got a lot of new listeners everyday so hopefully for them this is all fresh. And this again is in about the same time frame as Matthew 16. They’re on their way up to Jerusalem for the last Passover and the Crucifixion. And that most of Christendom don’t know this passage is even in their Bible and if they do, they don’t read it.

Luke 18:31

“Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished.”

Now we’ve got to be careful. These things that Jesus is referring to were back there in the Old Testament but they were in such veiled language that nobody really knew what they meant. Of course, I’m referring primarily to Isaiah 53. You all know those verses. “He is lead as a sheep to the slaughter and as a lamb openeth not his mouth,” and so on and so forth.

Well, none of the Jews in Israel understood that that was a reference to a coming crucifixion. But you see, Jesus knew. And so he says, “everything that was written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished.” Now verse 32.

Luke 18:32-33

“For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, (the Romans) and he shall be mocked, spitefully entreated and spitted on: 33. And they shall scourge him, and put him to death; and the third day he shall rise again.”

Did Jesus know the end from the beginning? Well, of course! I think I’ve said it before even on the program. He knew exactly which Roman soldier would wield the whip. He knew exactly where the soldier was at this particular moment in time who would drive the spikes. He knew exactly what the high priest was going to do. There wasn’t anything hidden from him.

I think I pointed it out in the last taping. When He was sweating those drops of blood there in the Garden of Gethsemane and the disciples were sleeping. What did Jesus know? All of this. He knew it was coming. That’s why He said, “Father if it be possible let this cup be taken from me.” He knew the suffering that was lying ahead, and He did here in this passage. But now look what the disciple’s knew.

Luke 18:34

“And they (the Twelve) understood none (my, highlight that word, or underline it) of these things and this saying was hid from them.” Who hid it? God did! It wasn’t time for them to know. Then why did Jesus say it? I don’t know. Except to prove to us that He knew and they didn’t.

And if you have an argument with that, you know what I always come back and tell people. If you don’t believe this, then tell me, why weren’t these believers, these followers of Jesus in His earthly ministry, why weren’t they parked outside the tomb waiting for His resurrection? Well were they? No! They’d long given up. They’d even mentioned at least, that they were going to go back to their fishing. But here they are completely unaware that Christ was going to be going to the Cross. Why? Because they were all hung up on His bringing in the Kingdom.

Alright, now I think I’ve got one more verse we’ve got time for. Come all the way to Acts chapter 1 lest you think that this whole idea of an earthly kingdom was a figment of my imagination or someone else’s. No, this was on the apostle’s mind constantly. Acts chapter 1 verse 6. Now this is after His resurrection. And He’s been with the eleven. Judas of course, is gone. He’s been with the eleven now 40 days, and He’s ready to ascend back to Glory. And He tells them to wait ten days until the Holy Spirit would come on the day of Pentecost.

But look what’s on the mind of these eleven men. That’s what I want you to see. After three years of earthly ministry, proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom. The Good News to Israel, that the King and the Kingdom were ready to be presented:

Acts 1:6

“When they therefore, were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore the kingdom again to Israel?”

What’s on their mind? The Kingdom. When Israel could live at peace and prosperity. And I haven’t got time in this program but you remember back in Matthew 19, Peter said, “Well now we left all. We left our fishing nets; we left our families to follow you. What are we going to have therefore?” What was Jesus’ answer? “You twelve,” that’s why Peter was in such a hurry to fill Judas’ slot. He says, “You twelve are going to sit on twelve thrones ruling the Twelve Tribes of the Nation of Israel.”

Pie in the sky? Fictitious words? No! That’s exactly what was ahead of them and it still is, because the Kingdom is still coming!

581 - Les Feldick Bible Study - Lesson 2 Part 1 Book 49 - Leaving Milk for Meat

581: Leaving Milk for Meat – Lesson 2 Part 1 Book 49

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 2 * PART 1 * BOOK 49

Leaving Milk for Meat

Hebrews 6:1-4

Let’s pickup where we left off in the last lesson in Hebrews chapter 6. Here in verse 1 we are faced with that word Paul uses over and over:

Hebrews 6:1a

“Therefore…”

You know, I can almost stop and teach thirty-minutes on just the word ‘therefore,’ because you see, he’s reminding us of what he had just covered in those previous verses in the last part of chapter 5. You remember in our last program, we were talking about Paul lamenting the fact that these people were not skilled in the Word of God. They were not able to go out and teach others. But rather they were like babes on the milk-bottle, and they still had to be fed.

What a dilemma. The average believer has not made enough effort to search the Scriptures to get skilled with them, to be comfortable in sharing it with someone else. Now we hope that this is what we’re accomplishing in our kind of teaching. That we are getting people to have enough understanding of the Scripture to be able to sit down with someone who is totally ignorant and just show them.

I shared in our last taping that I had just had a couple of phone calls from men who worked in corporate situations and someone came in and asked the appropriate question of both of them! Both of them said that they just got out a sheet of paper and drew the timeline – what a glorious way to share the Scriptures. And, oh, that everyone could be able to do that when someone asked a question. And so this is what Paul was lamenting in those previous verses, that you’ve got to get off the milk-bottle. You’ve got to get into the strong meat, and be able to teach others also. “Therefore” since that’s what he has covered, look what the verse says:

Hebrews 6:1a

“Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrines (or the teachings) of Christ, let us go unto perfection….”

Now I’m going to stop right there. And I’m thinking, I’ll cover the whole next thirty-minutes on just these few words. Maybe the next sixty-minutes, I don’t know. But there is so much right there, that the casual reader just reads over it. You know, that’s the other response we’re getting in so many of our letters. “You’ve taught me how to read!” Well, not that they couldn’t read as reading goes. But, people don’t stop to analyze what it really says, see? And this is what we have to do. So, “Therefore,” since we have to come away from that milk-bottle environment and get into the deep things that we can share with other people, we have to start someplace and what’s the next word? “Leaving.” Now what do you suppose leavingmeans? Well, it means what it says!

Come back with me to Ephesians chapter 5 and here we have the whole marriage situation for us in this Age of Grace. The husband and wife relationship, so I want you to drop in at verse 31. And all I’m doing this for is so that you get the meaning of the word leaving.

Ephesians 5:31

“For this case shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.”

Now, look at that a little more than just seeing a beautiful wedding ceremony. What really happens when a young couple gets married and sets up their own home? What happens between them and their parents? Well, they don’t forsake them. They don’t say, “Bye, Dad! I’ll see you in Glory!” That isn’t what marriage does. Marriage is still connected with both generations.

But, what does that young couple suddenly realize? The rent is due, car payments have to be made. Groceries have to be bought. The electric bill, and the phone bill are staring them in the face. Hey, they’ve never had this before, for the most part. And so what is it? It’s a whole progressive step from living in the home nest, to all of a sudden establishing a home of their own. But they don’t forsake that which has gone before, they merely move on away from it, still keeping the ties to the home folks. Now isn’t that understandable?

Now that started back in Genesis. You have the same word; “therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and cleave to his wife.” And so that’s the whole concept. But the point I’m trying to make, it’s not a matter of totally forsaking the parent, it’s simply moving on. In fact, the more I study Hebrews getting ready for these programs, the more I’ve come to the conclusion under the heading of the letter to the Hebrews, they could have added a letter promoting progression, because that’s what Hebrews is all about. To keep moving and moving. And as I was studying a little bit last night, I couldn’t help but think, that in the world around us, isn’t that exactly true? There is no status quo, at least not until you retire. And Iris and I were talking on the way up. I wonder what it’d be like to be retired? We have no idea! But for the average person going through life, there is no status quo if you’re going to succeed in life.

What am I saying? Whether it’s a sports team, a pro-football team, a college program, a business, a marriage, or an education, you have to either keep moving forward, be it ever so infinitesimal, you’ve got to keep moving forward or else what? Back you go!

You know I’m always using the analogy of paddling a canoe up stream. Oh, you may not be making much headway but I’ll tell you what, the minute you pull that paddle out of the water you’re going to make some movement! But it’s going to be back down stream.

Alright, now that’s exactly the way we have to look at Scripture. There is no such thing in this progressive unfolding of the Word of God as a status quo. We have to either keep moving on and learning and getting deeper into the Word or we going to get careless and lose interest. And so it always holds that we have to leave that which has gone before for the purpose of moving on. And that’s exactly what it’s talking about. Now, let’s look at the verse again.

Hebrews 6:1a

“Therefore leaving…” In other words, don’t forsake it. You don’t turn your back on it saying, “I don’t want anything more to do with that.” You move from that one place into a progressive unfolding of that which lies ahead. But what is the Apostle admonishing these people to leave?

Hebrews 6:1a

“…the principles of the doctrine of Christ….”

All the Greek that I can find and the various dictionaries and commentators, all use the same thing. And if you have a good marginal help in your Bible, it would be in your margin. This word principles is better translated “the words of the beginning of Christ.”

Think about that for a minute. I’m know I’m taking this slow, because I just reminded myself all night long last night, “Now Les, don’t get in a hurry. Take this chapter slow!’ I don’t care if we have two or three books on chapter 6. We’re going to take it slow. Because this is so important that people understand that here we have to see these Hebrews, to whom of course, the letter is primarily written understand now that they cannot rest on the status quo. They certainly don’t want to be left slipping back. But rather they’ve got to move on ahead in their experience and their knowledge of the Word of God. And the only way they could do that would be to “leave the words of the beginning of Christ.” Now that just flies in the face of most of Christendom. Doesn’t it? What were the “words of the beginning of Christ?” What are the ‘principles of Christ?’ Well it’s the Four Gospels! His earthly ministry!

Alright, now let’s look what Paul says concerning that in Romans chapter 15 verse 8. And again I imagine the vast majority of people who read their Bibles skim over this verse and never really understand what it says. But oh, it’s loaded! This says it all – of what we’re looking at now today, that we’re going to have to move away from the first words of Christ, and His earthly ministry. Because, here’s the purpose.

Romans 15:8

“Now I say, that Jesus Christ was (past tense) a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made to the fathers.”

Just look at that! You know, I read the Jerusalem Post from cover to cover. And, quite often, there’s an article in there with regard to these young Jewish men who are in Yeshiva. And of course, that’s part and parcel of Israel’s history. Now what do these young Jewish men do in a Yeshiva? Well, they’ll sit there day in and day out and contemplate maybe one verse of the Torah. And they’ve been doing it for centuries. And what do they still hope to do? Pull something out of there that some previous Rabbi had never seen.

Alright, now I don’t expect anybody to do that. We’re not in Yeshivas but goodness sakes let’s take a verse like this now again, and pick it apart. What does it really say? Well it says that Jesus Christ was the ministry of the circumcision. Who is the circumcision? Israel! So Paul that great Apostle of the Gentiles, is reminding us, that Jesus Christ in the “beginning of His words” here on earth was to what people? Israel.

You know I’m always stressing every word that Jesus said in His earthly ministry with two exceptions was always to the Jew under the Law. Oh goodness, that rankles people. I get a kick out of how it does, because it just sort of makes me smile that people can get so shook up with truth. That reminds me on our last cruise, we had a couple from out east someplace. I’m not going to identify them. But anyway one of the clergy of their particular denomination was on the ship with us and they had gotten acquainted with him and they had gotten him to come to one of our Bible studies.

Well, it didn’t take me two minutes to see that the guy was just enraptured with what he was seeing. Oh, he was just eating it up for the whole two-three hours that we were together that evening. So this couple said, “We’re going to make sure that he’s back tomorrow night.” But tomorrow night came, and he wasn’t there. And I said, “Well, goodness sakes, what happened?” “Ah,” she says, “he didn’t want to be confused with the truth!”

Isn’t that right? People say, “Don’t bother me with facts. I’m satisfied with whatever flies.” But listen, we’re going to look at this in truth. Not what Les Feldick says, but rather what does the Book say? “Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision.” And then what’s the next statement? “For the truth of God.” Now that just nails it down. This wasn’t something that flippantly came of the lips of the Apostle Paul. This was in accord with the whole Sovereign working of the Creator God, that Christ should come to the Nation of Israel. And then what does the rest of the verse say? “To confirm the promises made to the fathers.” Who were the fathers? Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and all the rest of the Old Testament patriarchs. David, see? Solomon, Isaiah, Jeremiah you name them.

They were all talking about the coming of this Messiah King. And that’s what Jesus came to proclaim. That He was the fulfillment of those promises made to the fathers of Israel, see? And that’s so hard for people to comprehend. They think that Jesus came – like I had one guy explode in one of our classes in Israel, “Ah,” he said, “What do you do with John 3:16, throw it away?” No, John 3:16 was the fulfillment of Christ coming to His earthly people. And then when He was rejected, yes, then He went to the whole world.

But for three years, He was the minister of the circumcision, for the truth of God to confirm the promises made to the fathers. Now see when you pick it apart and take it slow, doesn’t it make sense. Sure it does. Just as sensible as it can be that He came to fulfill those Old Testament promises. He never once told those twelve disciples, “I’m going to be going to the Cross and be crucified and raise up another Apostle and send him to the Gentiles,” – at least not in a way that they could understand it.

Now then, let’s go back and see some of those “words of the beginning of Christ.” And let’s just jump all the way back to the Book of Matthew. We’re going to jump in first at Matthew chapter 5 and verse 17. And this of course, is the beginning of His earthly ministry. And Jesus said:

Matthew 5:17

“Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but (what?) to fulfill.” Well, isn’t that exactly what Paul just said in Romans? Why did He come? To fulfill the promises made to the fathers. Now, back in Exodus, what did God promise that the Jewish people could be individually? Priests of God. Every Jew was to become a ‘go-between.’ Well, between God and who? The Gentiles. Those pagans out there around them. Now it wasn’t going to be tomorrow or next month. But some way, after the hundreds of years, Israel was going to have that opportunity and responsibility to announce their Messiah and King and also the Redeemer of the Gentile world.

Alright then you come all the way up, based of course, on that Abrahamic Covenant in Genesis 12. Isaiah writes so plainly that the Nation of Israel is to be a light to the Gentilesand then Daniel introduces us to the whole concept of an earthly kingdom over which the stone, cut out without hands, which of course, is always a reference to Christ, would take over and rule the whole planet.

Zechariah tells us as plain as day, that when He would return and stand on the Mt. of Olives, He would set up a kingdom. He would rule from Jerusalem and He would be King over all the earth.

See, those were all promises that the spiritual Jew at least, probably not all of them, but the spiritual part of Israel understood, that this was what was in their future. That God Himself in the person of the Messiah, the Son of God, would be coming and establishing an earthly kingdom with His capital in Jerusalem and Israel would enjoy all those promises of Deuteronomy 27 and 28. And what are those promises? Oh, you’ll not be the tail; you’ll be the head! You’ll be blessed when you go out; you’ll be blessed when you come in.

Those are the promises that Israel was longing for. And oh, they’re looking for them even today. Maybe not in the right quarters, but in their heart. Now those of you who read anything at all of the Jewish people. In the heart of every Jew, for centuries, has been that longing statement ‘next year’ what? Yeah, you got it. ‘Next year Jerusalem.’ Sounds like farmers. You know farmers are always waiting for next year. But, that was the heart of the Jew. ‘Next year Jerusalem.’ Next year peace! Jerusalem. The Prince of Peace ruling and reigning.

Alright, those were the promises that Christ came to the Nation of Israel to fulfill. And that’s what he’s talking about. He’s not talking about the Cross here. He’s talking about fulfilling those Old Testament promises. But He wasn’t coming to destroy the Law. He wasn’t coming to destroy the prophets. He came to fulfill everything that they’d been writing about. See? ‘To confirm the promises.’

Now, turn with me ahead a couple of pages to chapter 9, still here in Matthew and just drop in at verse 35. Now don’t lose sight of what I’m trying to show here. We’re looking at the“words of the beginning of Christ.” His earthly ministry. What was He telling these Jewish people, and that these people that Paul is addressing now in the book of Hebrews had evidently embraced, they had become followers and believers of Jesus of Nazareth. Also don’t forget your time setting. The Book of Hebrews is being written at a time when most of these people to whom Paul is writing were certainly adults during Christ’s earthly ministry, even as Paul himself was. So he’s talking about people who had probably become believers during Christ’s earthly ministry. And now the whole idea of the Book of Hebrews is ‘move on.’

You know when I first started the book way back in chapter 1, remember I reminded you that throughout the Book of Hebrews it says “that was good, but this is better.” Sure. And what is that? That’s a progression. Moving out of that which is good and going to something better. But now we’re still back here at the beginnings of the words of Christ.

Matthew chapter 9:35a

“And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching (now if you haven’t underlined it before, underline it today) the gospel of the kingdom,…” Now what does that word Gospel always mean? Good news! He was announcing the good news of the kingdom.

What did that mean? Hey, He’s the King! He’s here! On the earth! Ready to fulfill the promises. So He’s preaching the good news of the kingdom of heaven. Now along with that Gospel of the Kingdom of course, we have, read on.

Matthew 9:35b

“…and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.”

None excepted! That’s the difference. When Jesus healed the multitudes, He healed them all, but they weren’t all believers. Don’t ever get that idea. The press, as we sometimes refer to it, those multitudes in upon Him, hey, they weren’t following Him because of His spiritual offer. They were following Him for what I said before, the free lunch! Nothing they liked better as when He came out with that loaves and fishes.

And I’m going to be making reference to it sometime as I go into the book of Hebrews, but remember back in John’s Gospel, when the disciples had been fishing all night and caught nothing? And they came to shore and there the Lord was. And He asked them, you remember, “Have you any food, any meat?” “No,” they replied, “Haven’t caught a thing all night.” But, in the next verse it tells us that while He was standing there on the shore. What was also beside Him on the shore? “Bread and fish on the fire.”

You know, when I rehearsed that again the other night, a thought struck me, that never had before. Since He’s the Creator, He’s the perfect operator of everything. Have you ever stopped to think, He must be the best chef the world has ever seen? I’ll bet that was the best tasting fish and bread that those disciples had ever tasted! And that gave rise then to the Lord’s question. “Peter do you love me more than – those?”

And I bet it was kind of tough to say, why yes Lord, because that must have been mighty good tasting food. Well, that’s beside the point. But He came to fulfill all these promises given to the Nation of Israel. And when He did He healed every sickness. Every disease. See? Because after all what was He proving? That He was the Christ! That’s what these “words of the beginning of Christ” were to do. To prove to Israel Who He was. Now you’ve heard me say that a hundred times, haven’t you?

Now then, let’s skip over into chapter 10. And you have no idea how mad people can get when you show them these verses. You wouldn’t think people would get angry at the Word of God, would you? Oh but they do. If it flies in the face of what they’ve always thought and known. Oh, they get angry. I’ve got heads nodding all over the place. Sunday School teachers you know what it’s like. Oh they can get angry. But look what it says, I probably haven’t got time to do it justice. I don’t think I do, but anyway. Chapter 10 verse 1,

Matthew 10:1-2a

“And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease. 2. Now the names of the twelve apostles are these;…”

See that? He’s imparting to them the same power that He had. Now we’re not going to go through and rehearse them because you all certainly know who the Twelve disciples were but alright we’ll come all the way down to verse 5, and we’ll be ready to pick right up there in the next lesson.

580 - Les Feldick Bible Study - Lesson 1 Part 4 Book 49 - Hebrews 5:1-14 - Part 2

580: Hebrews 5:1-14 – Part 2 – Lesson 1 Part 4 Book 49

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 1 * PART 4 * BOOK 49

Hebrews 5:1-14 – Part 2

Hebrews chapter 5 verse 10. We’re still dealing with the high priest after the order of Melchizedek and how Christ suffered and died and rose from the dead and then as we saw back in chapter 1 verse 3:

Hebrews 1:3b

“…when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;” Which indicated when He sat down that the work was finished. And never forget that. That twice in God’s dealings throughout the human history, He finished a work that was so perfect that He could sit down. The first one of course, was the work of Creation. Then the last verse of chapter 1 said, “and He saw that it was (what?) very good.” It was perfect and then you get into chapter 2, it doesn’t say He sat down but it says “He rested.” And I make the point that if you’re tired and you’ve had a long day what do you do to rest? Well, you sit down, and take a load off, as we say. And so God rested.

The work of the Cross is the same way. It was so perfect, there was not a flaw in that work. There was nothing that needed yet to be done. And so when He had purged our sins, He sat down. It was finished. And you know, ever since, what has mankind been trying to do? Add to it! One thing or another, adding to it. And, I think God is almost beside Himself that mankind cannot accept the fact that it was a finished work. Now let’s begin with verse 10.

Hebrews 5:10

“Called of God an high priest (not after the order of Aaron but) after the order of Melchizedek.” Who, remember, was the high priest of the Most High God, which was the definition of God concerning the non-Jewish world. Now we’ll move down into verse 11 and we’re going to again depart from the priesthood of Melchizedek for a little bit and we’re going to come down into the life of the ordinary believer. The ordinary Hebrew in this case, but we’re no different.

Hebrews 5:11

“Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing you are dull of hearing.” What is Paul referring to? It was hard for him to talk to them about the priesthood of Christ and after His finished work. Why? Because they were so thick-headed. They just couldn’t get it through their heads. And so he says, “You are dull of hearing.” Now verse 12, why were they dull of hearing? Well it was a malaise, I think – it was just no real interest. In fact, I think, I can safely say, anyone of you, I don’t care what church you go to, it’s no different denomination by denomination. Large churches or small. How many of your fellow-church people have a hunger for the Word of God? How many of them can honestly say, I just can’t wait until I can get into another Bible study.

Oh, I had an interesting call from a lady out in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. She’s going to be tickled to death when she hears this. But she called the other morning, she’s started a prison ministry amongst women prisoners there in Bethlehem and she had kind of a hassle getting started from the powers that be, but anyhow, they finally gave her a place where she can meet. Well, a few weeks ago she had her first lesson and she uses a half-hour of our tape and then has some singing and so forth. Well, the first time they met there were three ladies, and she was excited to have three. But the next week she had, I think, nine if I remember right, and yesterday morning she called, she was so excited she could hardly talk, she had 19 ladies attending that class. And she said, “Les, the best part is we’re meeting on Monday and now they want a second one during the week!”

Well that is exciting. Because once people get an appetite once a week isn’t enough. And so I said, “Well, Daisy, one of these days, maybe you can go almost five nights a week like I’ve been doing, and you’ll just get filled up!” But you see this is the whole idea that Paul is expressing here. Most professing believers have no hunger for the Word of God. They’re dull of hearing. As long as they fulfill their obligation and they’re there for an hour or two a week, they think that’s all that’s necessary. But see, Paul is dealing with that when he says in verse 12:

Hebrews 5:12

“For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, (what does that mean? You should be sharing it with people but instead, Paul says,) you have need that one teach you again which are the first principles of the oracles of God.” So right there between the lines what is the process that God hopes to see happen? That after you’ve been taught, you share it with others. Now that doesn’t mean you have to collar them and preach at them or anything like that, but be ready to open the Scriptures.

Another phone call I had just the other morning – a gentleman was so excited he could hardly talk. He said, “Les, I’ve always hoped I could have an opportunity to share all this with somebody. And the other day a fellow came into my office and asked just the right question. I did like you have said so often, I grabbed a sheet of paper and I drew the timeline. I went through the whole timeline with that fellow and he left on cloud nine, as he had never seen the Scriptures opened like this before.”

Well, it wasn’t but another day later had another one almost exactly the same, but his inquirer was a Russian who was over here visiting in America on business. And he had asked the same thing. This was a different individual, but he did the same thing. Took out a sheet of paper and just laid out the timeline to that young Russian. He had never seen anything like it before in his life.

You see this is the whole idea. If you learn these things then it is so easy to share it with others. You don’t have to get out on the street corner and preach at people or collar them. But when they ask a question, and you’ve heard me say it before even on the program, you have both barrels cocked. Now, I’m going back to the old double-barreled 12-gauge shotgun that I grew up with. And when we were pheasant hunting, I know it was probably not the safest thing to do, but when we knew that there were birds not too far away, we walked with the barrels cocked and ready. Well, you see, this is what people should do, when someone asks you a question and it opens up, be ready! Be ready! Don’t hem and haw and say “Well I’m afraid to say something for fear I’m wrong.”

Hey, if you’ve studied, and if you’ve done your homework, the Lord will give you what it takes to share. And it will be the most exciting thing you’ve ever experienced. Well, that’s what Paul is dealing with. But these people weren’t ready. And he said, “You need to be taught again the principles.”

Now what are principles? The foundation. See? I’ve got kids, grandkids, unbelievable; they’re all three in algebra this year. My granddaughter is in college algebra and my older grandson is in an advanced algebra and my youngest grandson is in a second year algebra, but all three of them are struggling with algebra. Well, I wish I had the time and the where-with-all to just sit down and teach all three of them. But you see, there’s no use trying to teach algebra unless they’ve got what? Plain old basic math. There’s no use trying to learn algebra unless you know the principles of mathematics.

Well, it’s the same way with Scripture. People have to know the basics. That’s why when people call and they want to start a home Bible study and they ask what I recommend, I tell them to start in Genesis. Get people an understanding of Who God is, and how it all came about. How did it all start? What happened? How did sin enter? How did the need of salvation come about? And so you start with the principles and Paul says, “you people haven’t even got that. You cannot pass on the principles of the Word of God.” Now, look what he says next.

Hebrews 5:12b

“…and are become such as have need of (what?) milk,…”

Goodness sakes, who starts out on milk? Babies! We all know that babies start on milk, because they can’t handle beefsteak. They can’t handle the stronger foods, so they must start on milk. Well, it’s the same parallel spiritually. You don’t take a new believer and take him into prophecy, because he’s not ready for that. But you take a new believer and you build him on the oracles, the basics of the Word of God, and that’s why I like to teach the way I do starting in Genesis and just come on up through the Scriptures. And have people mature progressively in a knowledge of the Scriptures.

Alright now, Paul, the tremendous apostle that he was, had problems teaching people, too. Go back with me to I Corinthians chapter 3. The Corinthian Church was the congregation with the most problems. They were the most unspiritual, because they were believers that were so fleshly minded. They had not, as Hebrews says, gone on into the deeper things. They too, were guilty of not even understanding the principles of the Word of God. So, if Paul has the problem, don’t feel bad if you and I do. It’s not easy to overcome some of these obstacles but you just keep repeating and repeating and repeating and finally it starts soaking in.

I Corinthians 3:1

“And I brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, (or fleshly) even as unto (what?) babes (or babies) in Christ.” Now they were believers and they had been believers for quite some time but they were still in their infancy so far as spiritual things were concerned. What were their problems? They were too hung up on tongues, prophecies, healings, going to law of pagan courts against each other. They were too busy arguing between themselves who was the greatest, Jesus or Peter or Apollos or Paul. See? And what was that? Carnality. That’s carnal thinking and so he says, “even after all these years I have to treat you as babes in Christ.” Now verse 2:

I Corinthians 3:2a

“I have fed you with milk,…” He understood when they were new believers fresh out of paganism that they needed the milk of the Word and so that’s what he gave them. And so he says:

I Corinthians 3:2

“I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: (or the deeper things) for hitherto you were not able to bear it, (that was understandable. But, what does the rest of the verse say?)neither yet now are ye able.”

He says “and you still can’t!” Isn’t that something? He says, “I understood that at the beginning when you were new believers that you had to be treated like babes in Christ, but, you haven’t grown a bit and I’m still having to treat you like babes in Christ.” Alright, now verse 3, what was their problem?

I Corinthians 3:3a

“For ye are yet carnal:…” You are more hung up on material things than you are on spiritual. Does that ring a bell? Here it comes now; I’ve already repeated it.

I Corinthians 3:3b

“…for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal and walk as men?” In other words, you walk like the unsaved world, and I’ve already referred to this. Some in the Corinthians Church would argue who they would follow. Some would say, “Well, we follow Apollos, or we think Paul’s the greatest.” Others thought it was Peter, and then we had all their other problems. In fact I remind people constantly, that this Corinthian letter was written to confront problems.

The Book of I Corinthians does not admonish spirituality and position like Ephesians and Philippians do. So Paul had to deal with problems in that Church because they weren’t growing. Oh, they were saved – he refers to that. They were believers but they were more concerned with fleshly and material things than they were the spiritual. But, Paul was absolutely right in starting them out on the milk of the Word and I’m going to take you all the way back to Peter’s little epistle and see what he says about this.

As you are turning to I Peter chapter 2 verse 2, I’ll never forget a pastor – Iris and I enjoyed his ministry when we were first married and he too, I’m pretty sure, is listening to our program now in his retirement, and hopefully, this will put a feather in his hat, it will make his day. Because this is one of the verses that we first memorized under his pastorate. He’d have us try to memorize a verse a week. And I still remember memorizing this verse.

I Peter 2:2a

“As new born babes, (see the illustration? Just like a newly born infant, a human infant.) desire the sincere milk of the word,…”

Now goodness sakes, I imagine every last one of you have been around newborn babes. Usually when they cry, what do they want? They want milk. They’re hungry! And that little body is just crying out for nourishment. Well that’s the way a believer should be – so hungry.

And that’s what thrills Iris and I as we read our mail – we’re seeing it. People are hungry for the Word. They’ve been in these dead churches for so long and when all of sudden they taste of the Word of God they can’t get enough of it. I had a young man call just last night, and he watches the program in the morning, tapes it, watches it again when he gets home at night. Well, he gets 60 minutes a day of the Word.

You’d be amazed at what that young man knew. I was just telling Jerry Pool about this guy at break time. The guy just blew me away with his knowledge and he had never had any of this before in his life. Boy, I mean he just laid it out, one item after another. And I said, “You’ve learned all this just in the last few months?” He said, “I’d never heard it before!” So it’s possible to learn a lot in a short time if you’re hungry.

We as believers, we start out as newborn babes desiring the sincere milk of the Word. The principles, as Paul said in Hebrews, of the Word of God, the very foundations, the basics. And what’s the purpose to be? That you grow. Now babies don’t stay on milk. There comes a point in time when they can handle more solid food, because it’s a growth process. Well, the Bible is the same way. You start out with the basics and you grow in your desire and your knowledge. Alright verse 3.

Peter 2:3

“If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is (what?) gracious.”

My, when you begin to taste of the goodness of God, it just whets your appetite. See? Well anyway, now we’ve got to come back to Hebrews, our time is going fast and we only have a few moments left. So back to chapter 5. Remember, the whole connotation is again, that instead of being ready to teach the Word to others, most believers are still on the milk bottle, and not ready for strong meat. As soon as you start talking some of the deep things of Scripture what do they do? They say, “I can’t understand that anyway, it’s over my head.” Well, whose fault is that? It’s their own.

The reason these deep things go over their heads is that they haven’t taken the time to study the simpler things and to progress. Just like in our secular education, it’s a direct parallel. Would you take a kid and put him in a calculus or a physics class if he never had fourth and fifth grade arithmetic? Of course not! That would be impossible. And so our whole secular education is a progressive thing to bringing up our young people to the place where they can comprehend the deeper concepts of whatever discipline. Now then, let’s move on to verse 13 of Hebrews chapter 5.

Hebrews 5:13a

“For every one that useth milk…”

They’re still on maybe Christ’s earthly ministry, at least let’s hope maybe they’ve gotten that far. They understand that Jesus of Nazareth had a ministry, and his miracles and so forth, but that’s as far as they can go. All they know is just simply His earthly ministry, and consequently, they are unskillful in the Word of righteousness.

Most of the deeper concepts come from the pen of the Apostle Paul, and I imagine that the vast majority of church members know nothing of those concepts. For example, the first one that comes to my mind is that the old Adamic nature is bent to sin. “We’re not sinners because we sin, but rather we sin because we’re sinners.” Most people don’t even know what I’m talking about, and Paul enlightens us on that subject.

You see, the old Adamic nature that we’re born with, is hell-bent. And the only way you can overcome that is by the regeneration brought about by the power of God. And once we’re regenerated, then we can begin to understand spiritual things, but until that happens we can’t.

And most Church members can only rehearse Christ’s earthly ministry. I mean, they’ve heard that in Sunday School for years and they know that pretty much, but beyond that, they just don’t know. When it comes to end-time events as we see them rolling up around us, most people don’t have a clue as to what all this is about. They’ve never gotten off the milk bottle. They’ve never gotten any further than Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Then Paul goes on to say here in Hebrews:

Hebrews 5:13

“For every one that useth milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.” They’re babes!” And even in believers, they may have been saved for years and years but they’ve never gotten beyond the baby stage spiritually and so Paul is admonishing them. Get off the baby bottle! Now verse 14 and I guess hopefully this will take us to the end.

Hebrews 5:14

“But strong meat (this adult food, see?) belongs to them who are of full age, (that is spiritually mature) even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.”

What does all that mean? Well, after the rudiments of salvation and we’re babes in Christ, we begin to study the Word, and we begin to understand some of the basics. I think one of the first things we have to realize in this Age of Grace is that the moment we’re saved the Holy Spirit comes in, and indwells us. He then becomes our teacher. The Holy Spirit is the One Who opens up an understanding of the Scriptures. I guess I’d better use Scripture to define that. Come back to I Corinthians 2 and verse 10. This is where we start as a new believer with an understanding that we’re not just left out there to our own devices but we have that indwelling Holy Spirit Who is ready to reveal these things if we will ask Him to. Now I think we have to simply pray and ask God, “Give me understanding. Teach me. Give me wisdom.” And the Lord will do it.

I Corinthians 2:10

“But God hath revealed them (that is, the things that are only for believers to understand) unto us by his (what?) Spirit: for the Spirit (the Holy Spirit) searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” Alright then come all the way down to verse 13,

I Corinthians 2:13

“Which things also we speak, (Paul says) not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, (see? You don’t go by what men say) but which the Holy Spirit teacheth. (And here’s how you study.) comparing spiritual with spiritual.”

This is why I use as many Scriptures as I possibly can because we have to understand that the Word of God dovetails. Everything fits and we compare Scripture with Scripture. And then verse 14. My if this doesn’t just tell us everything,

I Corinthians 2:14

“But the natural (the unregenerated, the unsaved) man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: (why?) for they are foolishness unto him:”

And why are they foolishness? Because he has no hunger, he has no desire to learn. And so we have to understand that it is a spiritual life that we have to feed the Word of God.

579 - Les Feldick Bible Study - Lesson 1 Part 3 Book 49 - Hebrews 5:1-14

579: Hebrews 5:1-14 – Lesson 1 Part 3 Book 49

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 1 * PART 3 * BOOK 49

Hebrews 5:1-14

Before we begin our lesson let me share with you that we get letters from here to Timbuktu and some of them catch our program in the middle of the night, whereas some are early in the morning, and some are in the afternoon. So wherever you are, we appreciate the fact that you welcome us into your home.

Alright, we’re going to go right back into Hebrews chapter 5 and now verse 7. Speaking of this Priest after the order of Melchizedek. I’m not going to spend any more time on His Melchizedek priesthood because when we get to chapter 7, that whole chapter will be dealing with it and so I’m going to save a little for when we get there. But now moving on with regard to Christ being a Priest after the order of Melchizedek, verse 7,

Hebrews 5:7a

“Who in the days of his flesh, (in other words, his earthly ministry) when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him who was able to save him from death,…”

Boy have you ever read that before – carefully? What is it telling us? That here again, God the Son, in His humanity, there in Jerusalem after His three years of earthly ministry, as He had gone down into the Garden of Gethsemane knowing that in a short period of time the Romans would be coming to make their formal arrest. And He knew exactly what was coming. You know I always like to let people understand that Christ knew the end from the beginning.

Come back with me to Luke chapter 18 for a moment. Now, most of you are aware this is the way I teach. When a verse comes to mind, I feel it’s the unction of the Spirit and we’re going to go back and look at it, because even though He was in the flesh, He suffered in the flesh. Yet, He was God. He knew the end from the beginning. Absolutely nothing took Him by surprise. Now the setting is Northern Israel up there at the headwaters of the Jordan River and it’s just at the end of His three years of earthly ministry. They will soon be making their way up to Jerusalem for the Feast of Passover and His crucifixion.

Luke 18:31-33

“Then he took unto him the twelve, and he said unto them, behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets (the Old Testament) concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. 32. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, (the Romans) and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spit on: 33. They shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again.” Did He know what was coming? Absolutely! Absolutely, every detail. He knew every Roman that would be a part of it. He knew every Jewish voice that would be coming up against Him. He knew it all! But how much did the Twelve know? I don’t dare go without reading the next verse.

Luke 18:34

“And they (the Twelve) understood none of these things: and this saying was hid from them, neither knew they the things which were spoken.”

See that’s how God can keep things from people’s understanding. And so when they get to Jerusalem in a few days with all the hubbub of the Passover, did the Twelve have any idea of what was about to happen? No! They had no idea He was going to die. They thought He was still ready to bring in the Kingdom offered to Israel. But, the Lord knew.

Alright, now back to Hebrews chapter 5 and maybe that will help just a little. And so during the days of His flesh, while He’s there in Gethsemane when He had sweat drops of blood, and He asked the Twelve to pray with Him. And instead of praying what’d they do? Hey, they slept. And He woke them up and He told them to pray with Him, and He went a little further distance from them, and again what did He find the Twelve doing? Sleeping!

But oh, He was going through the agony knowing what was coming. Alright, and so He did, He prayed and made supplication to God the Father from His humanity. Now, we always have to stop and realize. By the same token, He wouldn’t have had to ask God to bring ten legions of angels, He could have commanded it Himself. And He said it in so many words. “If I wanted to be saved from this, God the Father would send those legions of angels.” But, He never asked for that, see?

Hebrews 5:7

“Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared:”

Now the fear here is the beginning of wisdom. Godly fear is the beginning of wisdom. And so it wasn’t that He was afraid of what was coming, but in His respect for all that was involved in His death and He cries out to God the Father. In fact, you know what some of His prayer was. “If it be possible, Let this cup be taken from me.” What cup was He talking about? The cup of suffering. But it wasn’t possible. It had to happen. And again this is beyond my understanding and I think it is so for any human. How that through all this suffering God was able to save, to the uttermost, those who believe. This is just beyond us. But, nevertheless, this was part and parcel of the suffering that He went through leading up to the Cross.

Alright, let’s go back to Philippians chapter 2 and we’ve used these verses so often. And I don’t think there’s any way I can wear them out. But come back with me to Philippians chapter 2 verse 5 through 8. My, periodically, just in your own devotional time read these verses. Where Paul writes:

Philippians 2:5

“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus;”

Now another verse comes to mind. I won’t make you go back and find it but in Romans 12 verse 1, what does he say?

Romans 12:1

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”

Well, this is all the same concept see? You know what, I have to be so careful and I just went through it again on one of my recent phone calls. When I explain salvation by faith and faith alone. By just simply believing that Christ died, was buried and rose again. I have to immediately follow that up with, but this is not license. Now that you’ve made yourself fit for eternity; you don’t have to worry about anything else. Can you go and live any way you want? NO! That is not the way it works. And the first thing I try to impress on people, especially older people that are up in their 40’s and 50’s and 60’s, I say, now look, just because I maintain that you are saved the moment you believe – remember that when you’re saved, God’s going to change you. You’re not going to be the same person that you were.

And the Scripture makes it so plain, that as soon as we believe, God makes us a new person with new appetites, new desires, and we’re going to hate the things we once thought we had to have. And that’s what people have to realize. That when we talk about a salvation by faith and faith alone, it’s not a salvation that permits no change in lifestyle. There has to be a change in lifestyle or there’s not a salvation. It’s one or the other.

So this is what Paul is admonishing here. Back to Philippians chapter 2, that if we have the mind of Christ, it’s not going to be that satanically driven process. It’s going to be the opposite side of the coin. We’re going to be driven now through the very thought processes of the One Who loved us and gave Himself for us. Alright, now verse 6. So the very first word of verse 6 is Christ Jesus of verse 5:

Philippians 2:6-7a

“Who being in the form of God, (the visible manifestation of God) thought it not robbery (and if you have a margin, I think the best way is ‘something that he could grasp at’) to be equal with God. 7. But (instead he) made himself of no reputation, and took upon himself the form of a servant,…”

He was born in a manger, raised in a carpenter’s shop, went through three years of earthly ministry with no place to lay His head. Don’t let these television preachers convince you that He had wealth untold. Not in His earthly ministry He didn’t. He said, “Foxes have holes, birds have nests but the Son of man hath no place to lay his head.” That’s exactly what it was. He had nothing of this world’s goods. And so this is the reason, “He made himself of no reputation and took upon himself the form of a servant.”

Now that’s a kind translation. What’s a better word? Slave, or bond-slave! “He took upon himself the form of a bond slave.” How many rights did a bond slave have in antiquity? None! They were treated like dirt, and cast aside at a moments thought. Alright, and so He took upon himself the form of a bond slave:

Philippians 2:7b

“…and was made in the likeness of men:”

Now you know we’re always trying to make that analogy that in order for God to be the Savior of mankind, in order to be the High Priest of the order of Melchizedek, what did He have to do? He had to become one of us. He had to walk as men walked and He had to suffer the same passions of hunger and hurt and fatigue that we do, in order to fully understand what it was to save mankind to the uttermost. See? So, “made in the likeness of men” so that He could become one of us and thereby not only become our great High Priest but also the Savior and the Captain of our salvation. Now then verse 8,

Philippians 2:8a

“And being found in fashion as a (what?) a man,…” A man! He didn’t look bazaar or different. He looked very ordinary and He could walk though a crowd and strangers couldn’t pick Him out by His bazaar appearance. He appeared as an ordinary man.

Philippians 2:8a

“And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself,..” How could He? Because He was God! He could do this to Himself. He could take Himself from the realms of Glory from the power of the Creator and He could bring Himself down to be like mortal men. And so He humbled Himself and by becoming that epitome of humility,

Philippians 2:8b

“…and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” What does the word obedient imply? There was a requirement laid upon Him. He had to die. There was no way out, because without His death humanity would have been totally destitute of salvation. Even the Old Testament believers would have been simply wiped out of all of it had He not died. Because you want to remember even the Old Testament saints, the greatest of them, Moses, Abraham you name them – without that finished work of the cross, their salvation wasn’t complete either. See?

And that’s why when Christ went down into Paradise and set those Old Testament captives free, why were they kept down there instead of going on to Glory? Because their sins hadn’t been atoned for. Animal blood didn’t take away their sin. But it was when Christ’s blood was shed, that’s when the salvation of the Old Testament saints was complete. Their atonement was now complete and Christ could take them on up to Glory. But not until. Now back to our text, and reading verse 8 again.

Philippians 2:8

“And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, (and not just an ordinary death of maybe being killed with a sword, or beheaded as Paul was, but something far worse) even the death of the cross.”

Now you see most of us just take that so glibly. And we say, oh yeah, Christ died for me. But listen that’s not the half of it. We can never comprehend the suffering that He had to go through beyond the physical.

A verse is coming to mind, and I think it’s II Corinthians chapter 5 – let’s go back and look at it. Let’s just jump in at verse 17. I may have shared it before on the program, I know I have with my classes in Oklahoma. Some time ago, I think it was probably back in the summertime, I read an account of a pastor in the Chicago area years ago, so I know he’s long gone to glory, but he was a pastor of a large church in the Chicago area of over a thousand people and one Sunday morning (that’s what made me think of it) he read this verse II Corinthians 5:17. And I’m going to take the time to rehearse it because it shook me to my bootstraps and I think it should everybody. He read verse 17 of chapter 5 and he said

II Corinthians 5:17

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: (or creation. Go right back to what I said three, four minutes ago) old things are passed away: behold, all things are become new.”

Our old desires, our old appetites, they have to go. “Behold, all things are become new.” Now that’s what happens when we believe. Alright, this pastor asked his huge congregation including everyone in the balcony, “If you are a Christian this morning please stand.” How many stood? Everybody. Not a one stayed seated, they all stood.

He says, “Alright, please be seated.” He read the verse again, “Therefore if any man be in Christ he is a new creation” and so forth. Now he said, “If you know that you are in Christ and you are a new creation, please stand.” How many stood? Just one here and there, just precious few. Well, what does that tell you? That’s typical, that’s why I’ve said on this program, others have said it, and the other night I shared it with my class in Oklahoma and lo and behold somebody brought me a clipping out of a newspaper where some famous pastor had said almost the same thing. “Our churches are full of unsaved church members. They’re not in Christ. They haven’t experienced a new life. They’ve still got the old appetites. There’s nothing different.”

And that won’t fit see? Alright, so now then reading on, this isn’t where I intended to come, I just happened to see the verse as I was turning to it. Reading on, he says in verse 18:

II Corinthians 5:18

“And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;” In other words, all the things that have set us apart from God have now been bringing us back to Him. Now verse 19:

II Corinthians 5:19

“To wit, God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; (in other words, because when we become a believer our sin debt is paid)and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.”

We’re to tell a lost world, we’re to tell lost friends, lost co-workers, “Hey, Christ has already reconciled you if you’ll just believe it.” Now verse 20,

II Corinthians 5:20

“Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.” By believing it! Now here’s a verse I came back to read. Verse 21:

II Corinthians 5:21a

“For he (God) hath made him (Christ) to be sin for us,…”

Now don’t read that too casually. What does that really mean? God laid all the sin of the world, including mine, including yours, on Him. And here again I can’t comprehend that, and I don’t think that you can. God laid all the sins of the world on Christ as He hung on that Cross, see? That’s what Philippians means “That He died even the death of the Cross”knowing that the sins of the world would be laid on Him. Alright reading on in this verse: He Who became sin for us, He Who knew no sin. He was perfect. He was sinless. And He went through the whole process for you and I.

II Corinthians, 5:21b

“… that we (as lost hell-bound sinners) might be made the righteousness of God in him.”

And this is what we have to believe. We take it by faith. And when we believe for our salvation that He died, was buried and rose from the dead, then God imparts His righteousness unto us and we’re a new creation and we’re a new person. Now back to Hebrews again, and verse 8 still in chapter 5.

Hebrews 5:8a

“Though he were a Son,…”

Again, you have to remember how we stressed that term Son in the first two chapters of Hebrews. He was not just a carpenter’s son, He was not just Mary’s son, He was the very Person of the Godhead that created everything. He was the One to Whom the rest of the Godhead imparted all the responsibility of creation and of this work of the Cross. And so:

Hebrews 5:8

“Though he were the Son, (He was all powerful,) yet he learned (what?) obedience (to respond to the responsibility that had been given to Him by the Godhead as a whole) yet he learned obedience by the things which he suffered;” There in that agony leading up to and going through that death of the cross. Now verse 9,

Hebrews 5:9

“And being made perfect, (complete, I think, is a better word. A complete Savior, a complete Reconciler, and One Who forgives and saves us to the uttermost) he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.”

Now back up a page or two – we covered almost the same identical word “author” in Hebrews chapter 2 verse 10. I like to use all these Scriptures because they all compliment each other.

Hebrews 2:10

“For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain (same word) of their salvation perfect (or complete, but what did it take?) through suffering.”

Christ had to suffer in order to become then the Captain of our salvation, or as it says here, now come back to chapter 5 verse 9, the “author of our salvation.” Without the suffering it could have never happened. Now verse 9 again.

Hebrews 5:9

“And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;”

Well what’s another word for obey? Believing. In fact, I just ran across a verse in Acts and I didn’t remember ever stressing it in my teaching and it just hit me like a thunderbolt as I was teaching the other night in my Tahlequah class. Come back with me to Acts chapter 13. My, this is a verse I’ve missed all these years.

Acts 13:35-39a

“Wherefore he saith also in another psalm, Thou shalt not suffer thy Holy One to see corruption. 36. For David, after he had served his own generation by the will of God fell on sleep, (he died) and was laid unto his fathers, and saw corruption: 37. But he, whom God raised again, saw no corruption. 38. Be it known unto you therefore, my and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: (and here it comes in the next verse) 39. And by him all that believe are justified…”