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The Daily Word of Righteousness
A Warning to the Backslider, #6
But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. (Hebrews 5:14—NIV)
The writer refers to these experienced believers as babies who cannot be fed the meat of the Word. Why can't they be fed the meat of the Word? Because they have not trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.
What would the writer say if he saw the churches of today? We are being told there is no evil, we are saved by an unconditional amnesty and so there is no need to worry about our behavior. We are advised that God sees us only through Christ and so whatever we do is righteous.
It is time now for God to baptize His churches with fire. We must become aware of Divine judgment so we can tell what part of our behavior is sinful and what is righteous. Whatever is sinful must be firmly denounced and renounced so the Holy Spirit can remove all uncleanness from us. Only then can Christ grow in us to the point that we can judge with righteous judgment. When we can judge with righteous judgment we will be able to digest the meat of the Word.
It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, Who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, If they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace. (Hebrews 6:4-6—NIV)
I have never read an editor or commentator who would accept the above passage, so great is the apostasy of our time. This passage is the same as all the others in the Book of Hebrews. It is warning us of the danger of turning away from Christ once we have started.
These were not new converts, as we can tell from the text. They had experienced the fullness of the apostolic power available in their day.
But are we saying if someone sins he or she immediately is cut off? We are saying nothing of the kind. We are claiming, rather, that if an individual follows Christ for a period of time, being established in the faith, and then turns and leaves all he has witnessed and goes back into the world, Christ would have to be crucified again for him in order for him to return. He is in serious trouble to say the least.
I know of one case where a brother who had been rejoicing in the Lord and working in the Kingdom fell into sin. Instead of confessing his sin, repenting, and going on with the Lord, he continued in his fallen state.
Finally his health was so bad he thought back to what he had left. I did what I could to comfort him and advised him to go to church at every opportunity in the hope he would regain the joy of salvation. But I will tell you he was a sorry sight, wearing an old coat, unshaven, trembling with fear. He was in serious spiritual trouble and he knew it.
To be continued.