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Joined: 2003/7/31
Posts: 2749
Phoenix, Arizona USA

 Re: Impossible to renew?

I’ve recently encountered a group of people who do not believe that a person can be reconciled. In their churches, if a person has been in their fellowship and testified of knowing God, and fell back into enslavement to sin, they don’t even pray for them for reconciliation because according to the Bible it is impossible (in their thinking).

What are we to make of Paul's instruction to the Corinthians to receive the incestuous man back with forgiveness and love once he was humbled?

Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many. So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow. Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him. For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things. To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ; Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.
(2Co 2:6-11)

Wasn't the punishment done in love, to reform and not ruin him? Wouldn't a heart of love at least pray for the man?

In Christ,


Ron Halverson

 2010/9/21 21:18Profile

Joined: 2006/3/15
Posts: 168

 Re: Impossible to renew?

Heb 6:4 For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,
Heb 6:5 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,
Heb 6:6 If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.

Read the verse... it say's "to renew them again unto REPENTANCE"

it does NOT say, "to renew them again unto SALVATION"

Salvation is a ONE TIME experience...

Repentance should be a Christian's DAILY experience...

Repentance is NOT salvation... you can repent and NOT be saved!!

Many unsaved people REPENT of their sin... BUT they are not regenerated.

The result of a believer "walking in the light" : REPENTANCE

 2010/9/21 22:48Profile

Joined: 2005/11/2
Posts: 3707


Gaebelein's Annoted Bible
Hebrews 6:1


1. Return to Judaism the crucifixion of the Son of God afresh (6:1-8)
2. Persuaded of better things: Comfort and hope (6:9-20)
Verses 1-8. A solemn warning follows, addressed to these Hebrews who were halting and in danger of turning back to Judaism, and doing so would crucify the Son of God afresh. "Therefore leaving the word of the beginning of Christ, let us go on to full growth; not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and faith in God, of a teaching of baptisms, and of laying on of hands and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment." It is of much importance to see that these things are not "the principles of the doctrine of Christ" (as the authorized version erroneously states). These things mentioned are the elementary things which the Jews had before Christ came and as they were still occupied with them, He exhorts to leave the word of the beginning of Christ, the Messiah, and to go on to full growth. The full growth is Christianity as revealed in the finished work of Christ, the glory of His Person, His priesthood and the fact that the believer is in Christ and complete in Him.

While these Hebrews had believed in Christ, that He had come, they had not gone on to this maturity and lacked the spiritual knowledge of what Christ had done and the blessed results of His work and priesthood. They were therefore to leave the elementary things which they had and believed in as Jews, and abandoning them, reach the true Christian maturity. And these elementary things consisted in repentance from dead works and of faith in God. This was known and taught in Judaism. But it is faith in God, but nothing is said of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. When baptism is mentioned and laying on of hands it has nothing whatever to do with Christian baptism, and much less does the laying on of hands mean "confirmation." (Confirmation as practiced in the Roman Catholic, Lutheran, Episcopal, and several other Protestant denominations is a merely ecclesiastical invention without the slightest scriptural foundation.) The word "baptism" is in the plural--"baptisms"--the different washings the Jews practice in connection with the ceremonial law, and so also the Jewish imposition of hands. These Jewish washings and purifications were only shadows of what was to come. It had come; and yet these Jews, though believing that Christ had come, still lingered in these things. Resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment, the things concerning the future were likewise the teachings they had in Judaism. But Christianity gives a higher truth, namely, "the resurrection from among the dead" and that the believer is passed from death unto life and shall not come into judgment.--"And this will he do if God permit"-- that is in the coming unfolding of true Christianity, the full growth, as given in chapters 7-10.

Before the author of the Epistle does this he shows what it would mean if these Hebrews turn back to Judaism altogether, and instead of going on to full growth would abandon the Christian ground they occupied as professing believers in Christ. Such a course would make it impossible to renew them again to repentance, for they, by falling away, crucified afresh for themselves the Son of God, putting Him to open shame. They committed the crime, which was done by them through ignorance (Lu 23:34; Ac 3:17), now knowingly of their own will and choice. For such a wilful falling away there was no remedy. The things mentioned in verses 4 and 5 show the possibility that a person may be enlightened, and have tested, and even participated, by listening to the testimony of the Spirit concerning Christ, and seen miracles, the powers of the age to come--without having fully accepted the offered salvation.

"The warning here has been a sore perplexity to many who are far as possible from the condition which is here contemplated. The description of these apostates, solemn as it is, does not speak of them as children of God, as justified by faith, or in any way which would imply such things as these; and the apostle, after describing them, immediately adds, as to those whom he is addressing; 'But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, even things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak.' This is the most distinct assurance that he had no thought of one who had known salvation incurring the doom of an apostate" Numerical Bible.

All the blessings offered upon Christian ground are to such outward professors like rain, which instead of bringing forth from the ground useful herbs, brings thorns and briers, worthless, nigh unto cursing, and then the end, to be burned. Of a true child of God this can never be said.

("When once we have understood that this passage is a comparison of the power of the spiritual system with Judaism, and that it speaks of giving up the former, after having known it, its difficulty disappears. The possession of life is not supposed, nor is that question touched. The passage speaks, not of life, but of the Holy Ghost as a power present in Christianity. To "taste the good word" is to have understood how precious that word is; and not the having been quickened by its means. Hence in speaking to the Jewish Christians he hopes better things and things which accompany salvation, so that all these things could be there and yet no salvation. Fruit there could not be. That supports life" Synopsis of the Bible.)

Verses 9-20, Words of comfort and hope conclude this chapter. He addresses them now as "beloved," of whom he is persuaded of better things, the things which accompany salvation. Their true faith had been manifested by works. And God is not unrighteous "to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have showed towards His name in that ye have ministered unto the saints and do minister." These are things which accompany salvation. He encourages them to be followers of them who through patience and faith inherit the promises. He calls their attention to Abraham, the father of the faithful. He endured patiently and obtained the promise. And He gave not only the promise of His Word, but also His oath. "For when God made promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no greater, He swore by Himself." What assurance therefore--God's Word and God's oath. And this makes manifest to the heirs of promise (believers) the immutability of His counsel, so that we might have strong consolation. Therefore those who trust and hope for future glory have a strong and satisfying consolation. But there is more than that. There is a personal guarantee, for the Lord Jesus as a forerunner has entered into heaven, where He now is as high priest after the order of Melchisedec. He, who is our hope, is there as a forerunner and this is the anchor of the soul; it anchors in Him who hath entered within the vail. He who is seated in glory is the promised One, the object, bearer and dispenser of all the promises of God. In Him and His work all is made secure. His presence there speaks of the ultimate realization of all the promises of glory for His people.

This is not for the Body of Christ, this is for the apostate Jew contemplating and saying in their heart that Christ is of no avail and this would take them not into the anchor of their souls which is Christ in you the Hope of Glory, but into the very fearful hands of the living God, who has caused darkness and earth quakes and rent the Vail in their midst.

Hebrews 10:29-31 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace? For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

In Christ: Phillip


 2010/9/22 0:30Profile

Joined: 2008/10/30
Posts: 2042

 Re: renew them again unto REPENTANCE

"Read the verse... it say's "to renew them again unto REPENTANCE"

it does NOT say, "to renew them again unto SALVATION"

Salvation is a ONE TIME experience..."

Great insight "dspks", I do hope some will at least give some consideration to the few words you posted.

As one poster ignorantly states, "A lot of my well meaning reformed brethren will bend over backwards, however, to tell you that Hebrews 6 doesn't mean this."

I say ignorantly for at least two reasons;

1) Because Hebrews 6 along with the whole of Scripture does absolutely teach that none who have been born of God and made a new creature,who are His sheep,shall ever perish. He surely disciplines those sons He receives and loves who are in Christ and are His own.

2) Those who'd call themselves "reformed" are not the only ones who'd "bend over backwards" to refute the lie that one for whom Christ died,called,regenerated,justified and has given eternal life to and keeps by His Own Power, can or will ultimately perish.

There are numerous others who do not call themselves "reformed" who know this is Truth,who believe it and teach it,and call that which is to the contrary (i.e. 'losing salvation') a lie and a false teaching.

I know this has been the subject of many a thread here on S.I. and elsewhere. If someone knows how or where to direct those interested in those threads it may be of help to them.

It may be worth ones while to study and show himself approved unto God,as one Truth,just as one error, has divers ramifications.

I once believed and defended these lies and others which are intricately connected.

May all who read...

Bless God.

 2010/9/22 1:10Profile

Joined: 2010/8/24
Posts: 1032


How can people be so blind when they try to fit the Bible into their own box of theology.

If the author of the Book of Hebrews is conditioning repentance with crucifying the son of God, and is saying the reason why someone can not repent a gain is because he can not crucify the Son of God again
( the word fresh here means a second time).
We all know that when we were saved, we had an initial and major repentance of all of our past sins. The reason we were forgiven when we repented is because God took our sins and laid them on Christ. After this point we were given every thing we needed for life and godliness, that we may live a life pleasing unto God enabled by His Holy Spirit . That is not an automatic task. It is our human responsibility to live in the Spirit and to put to death the deeds of the flesh. Man can still sin against all of this and choose to live in the flesh. To those the Apostle gives the warning that this major act of repentance when they were justified by faith in the Son of God can not be repeated again.


 2010/9/22 11:43Profile

Joined: 2010/8/24
Posts: 1032


""Repentance is NOT salvation... you can repent and NOT be saved!! ""

""Many unsaved people REPENT of their sin... BUT they are not regenerated.""

I agree that people can repent and not be saved, but can they be saved without repentance. If the Apostle is saying they can not repent, then how can they be saved of the sins they have committed after they have received the knowledge of the truth, yet they went ahead and sinned against it anyway.


 2010/9/22 11:45Profile

Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC


I have been meaning to do it, but time has not permitted, but I would like, for the sake of this discussion, to carefully walk through Hebrews 6:4-6, and examine it verse by verse, and then quickly look at the verses that follow it, as a means of giving it greater context.

Examining the Verses:
Hebrews 6:4 For in the case of those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit

"In the case of..."
The author of Hebrews, when writing this passage, has in mind actual real people who fit the criteria of the scenario he is talking about. These people are not theoretical individuals. He has in mind a case study involving real people, real faces, real names, and real souls.

"those who have once been enlightened"
In other words, the author of Hebrews has in mind people who were once blind, but began to see.

"AND have tasted of the heavenly gift"
Prior to their tasting of the heavenly gift, these people would have been without the experiential knowledge that is conveyed to one who tastes.

"AND have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit"
These people have also been made partakers (partners) with the Holy Spirit.


Hebrews 6:5 and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come,

"AND have tasted the good word of God"
These people have also come to have an experiential knowledge of God's word.

"AND the powers of the age to come"
These people have also come to know something of the new heavens and earth in the here and now. The experience has been nothing less than powerful.


Hebrews 6:6 and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame.

"AND then have fallen away"
Though these people have experienced everything as outlined in verses 5-6, that is, having been saved, these people have also fallen away. The word for "fallen away" conveys the idea of turning away from the right path. That is, these individuals were on the right path, but at some point, they deliberately turned away.

"it is impossible to renew them again to repentance"
These people are now entirely without any hope whatsoever. Hope is impossible for them. A hope to what? To get them back on the narrow path that leads to life. They can no longer "renew" themselves. There is no "again" for their faith. Having deliberately turned away from the right path, they can no longer turn to the right path. Thus, they cannot "again" experience "repentance." Repentance being that "change" of heart and mind that always accompanies saving faith. Here we have a picture of a man who had experienced all the things of verses 5-6, but has deliberately now, turned his back on Christ.

"since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame."
This is the reason why there is no possibility of them finding repentance again, and getting back on the right path of faith. To attempt to do so is like trying to crucify the Son of God all over again. And God simply will not have that.

Then the author of Hebrews in verses 7 & 8 goes on to give an analogy of this entire thought: If the ground drinks rain from heaven, and yields fruit, it is blessed. But if the same ground drinks rain from heaven, and produces thorns and thistles, it is cursed and "ends up being burned." Far from using this analogy as many do to somehow soften the exegesis of verses 4-6, this illustration is only used to reinforce the terror of these verses.

Which is why in verses 9-12, the author of Hebrews has to become very pastoral and say he is believing the Lord for better things regarding these people. For he had undoubtedly scared them to death in his manner of speaking. So much so that even some of you have been so terrified after reading a passage like this. Indeed, some people have been so terrified over the meaning of this passage, that they have resorted to changing its meaning altogether to avoid the dreadful implications.

And, instead of leaving them feeling as if they were hanging on the edge of a cliff, with the dreadful fear of falling away and becoming apostate (as some people actually had done in the past), the author of Hebrews exhorts these believers to become imitators of those who didn't fall away, but instead, persevered with endurance, and finally, inherited the promises of God. And indeed, these believers need not fear this thing for themselves, for though it could happen, why should they find any reason to turn from God? Just look how at how awesome He is! For when we keep our hope in Him, that hope becomes an anchor to the soul, and will keep us from going anywhere but where we are. (vv. 13-20)

At any rate, that is my full careful take on this controversial passage. May God speak to you through it.

Jimmy H

 2010/9/22 22:46Profile

Joined: 2010/8/24
Posts: 1032





 2010/9/22 23:45Profile

Joined: 2005/10/28
Posts: 246
Logan City, Queensland, Australia


4 For it is impossible to restore again to repentance those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5 and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, 6 if they then fall away, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt. 7 For land that has drunk the rain that often falls on it, and produces a crop useful to those for whose sake it is cultivated, receives a blessing from God. 8 But if it bears thorns and thistles, it is worthless and near to being cursed, and its end is to be burned.

9 Though we speak in this way, yet in YOUR CASE, beloved, we feel sure of better things—THINGS THAT BELONG TO SALVATION.
Hebrews 6:4-9 (emphasis added)

It would indeed seem that v9 clarifies that the preceding verses do not necessarily refer to saving grace, even though there is an experiential element to the issue at hand.

Furthermore, if one wants to take v4-6 alone and say outright that renewal is wholy impossible, what do you do about the passages that admonish believers to actually seek to restore brethren that have stumbled and fallen?

22 And have mercy on those who doubt; 23 save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.
24 Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, 25 to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.
Jude 22-25

1 Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. 2 Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
Galatians 6:1-2

20 let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
James 5:20

Benjamin Valentine

 2010/9/23 6:37Profile

Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC


[Quote]Futhermore, if one wants to take v4-6 alone and say outright t about the passages that admonish believers to actually seek teek to restore brethren that have stumbled and fallen?

I believe Hebrews 6 is specifically talking about apostasy/blasphemy of the Spirit. It does not include other sins.

Jimmy H

 2010/9/23 6:50Profile

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