17 September 2018

Hebrews 6
Psalm 103

Impossible for God to Lie

What a wonderful joy and promise we find here in Hebrews chapter 6 – the assurance of salvation!

God has made a powerful irrevocable promise and guaranteed it with an oath – ‘it is impossible for God to lie’ (verse 18)! This promise was made to Abraham with us in mind as the beneficiaries of the promise. The author (verse 14) quotes Genesis 22:17, ‘I will bless you…’. This promise continues: ‘all the nations of the earth will be blessed through your offspring’ (Genesis 22:18). Jesus Christ is this ‘offspring’, we have been blessed! Notice the emphasis on ‘promise’ in verses 12, 15, and 17. The promise is confirmed with an oath (verse 16) to show the unchangeableness of God’s resolve (verse 17).

This is a promise that God has made whereby it is impossible for God to lie. He has promised, and confirmed His promise with an oath. See verse 18, here we are shown the utter reliability of the promise. ‘Through two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie’! This gives us ‘powerful encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us’ (verse 18).

Here we are being encouraged to hold fast to the hope we have in Christ. This hope is described as an ‘anchor of the soul…entering into the inside of the curtain’ (verse 19). Our souls have an anchor; this anchor is based on God’s infinitely reliable promise.

Notice that the author is writing to those who ‘have fled for refuge’ (verse 18, ESV); the original word used here implies that the refuge has already been reached. Some translations say ‘have taken refuge’ (NASB, LEB). So the author is writing to those who have fled to and taken refuge in God’s promise fulfilled in Christ. This is in contrast to those mentioned in verses 4-6 who have merely ‘been enlightened’, ‘sharers’, and ‘tasted’ and who fall away. No, we are not like them, we ‘have fled for refuge’. That is why the author can confidently say ‘we are convinced of better things in your case – things that have to do with salvation’ (verse 9).

With such a sure promise and such a sure refuge to which we have fled and already arrived, we ‘may have powerful encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us’ (verse 18). This word ‘hope’ implies confidence. The author describes it as ‘an anchor for the soul, firm and secure’ which ‘enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain’ (6:19). The author here is using various descriptive methods to encourage his readers that the promise is true and reliable and that our hope is concrete.

Dear Christian, let us not waver or have doubts about God’s promise. It is impossible for God to lie, He has promised, He has confirmed His promise with an oath. We have a sure and confident hope. Let us be those who flee for refuge in God’s promise. Jesus is the fulfilment of this promise. Let us hold fast to our hope, our confidence, in Jesus.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for Your sure promise to bless all nations. Thank You that You have sent Your Son Jesus as the fulfilment of this promise. Thank you that we can flee for refuge in Him. Help us to trust that You will never let us go and that we who have fled for refuge in Christ are safe and secure forever. Help us to live in a way that reflects our security in You. Amen.