“If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?” (Reference: Hebrews 10:26-29 )
Lord, I really don’t know what to do! I have this really bad habit of . . . of . . . sinning! I just can’t help it! I try to do what’s right. Or at least what I think is right. I fear the Lord. And I love the Lord. I try to follow the laws of Moses, not only in word but in spirit also. I know and understand what Jesus was saying about the spirit and intent of the laws that were passed down! But sin finds me! I know judgment shall come upon me!
Beloved, do find yourself praying such a prayer as above? I think at one time or another every believer has expressed this sort of fear. The writer of Hebrews is very good at summing up the failings of humanity and delivering it in a fiery letter. But this is the same person who wrote “I don’t do what I should do. And I shouldn’t do what I do.” Or something like that.
What we need to be attentive to in this verse is the word “deliberate.” It does not mean the slip ups that we are all guilty of. No, it is the tossing out of everything we know about God, letting go completely of God’s laws, both of Moses and Jesus’ law of love. It is a calculated doing of things that is at all points contrary to what God would have us do.
The writer of Hebrews says Moses’ law called for death on small points with only a few witnesses. But that is NOT the deliberateness that the writer of Hebrews means. It is the utter rejection of God and the Son of God that will result in there being no appeal possible to God’s grace and mercy. For indeed, if someone has rejected God, then God’s grace is also not available to them.
The historic Anabaptists took sin very seriously. Their dogmatism reminds me of the writer of Hebrews – not when he was doing his internal assessment of self but when he was lashing out at others. And if you doubt what I am saying, hear the verses that come before this passage. “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds,” he also adds, “I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more.” Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin.” (Verses 16-18)
Beloved, remember both the words of the apostles and disciples of Christ and the words of our Lord Jesus and God. Remember that mercy and forgiveness were offered even before you first sinned. Honor and glorify God and Christ by living a Christian and accountable life. And may the Divine keep as free from sin as possible. Selah!