We can"t do it. In Hebrews 2:17, Jesus had already been mentioned as a merciful and faithful high priest, and it is his "faithfulness" that needed stress here. David, as the human instrument through whom the words came, is not mentioned; and thus the author of this epistle takes his place alongside other New Testament writers in making God the author of the Old Testament (2 Peter 1:21). (3) The difficulty of obedience is only multiplied and compounded by delay. The inauguration of the Law of Moses and that of Christ had this in common: that three thousand souls were involved in each case, three thousand being lost at Sinai, three thousand being saved at Pentecost (Exodus 32:38; Acts 2:38ff). "The heavens declare the glory of God" (Psalms 19:1). Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all of his house. "[7], Forty years, as mentioned in Hebrews 3:9 and Hebrews 3:17, would seem to be a delicate hint of the fact that when this author wrote, just about the same length of time, that is, forty years, had passed since the resurrection of Christ, and suggesting that the ancient defection of that generation of Israelites might be typical of what was threatening among the generation addressed in Hebrews. The first two chapters were mostly about how Jesus Christ is superior to angels. cit., p. 85. Only in the sense of his permitting it, is it ever correct to believe that God hardens hearts. Since this is a quotation from Psalms 95:7, it is possible the author means, "As long as the Bible says Today." We"re unable to go in." Also, in contrast, the Hebrew Christians, by their apostasy, would incur an even more terrible penalty in that they stood to forfeit heaven itself. Five definite facts emerge from this verse: (1) that it is possible for Christians to fall away from the living God; (2) that such a disaster is due to an unbelieving heart; (3) that an unbelieving heart is evil (not merely `smart'); (4) that God is not a mere influence but a living person; and (5) that there are adequate grounds upon which a Christian may avoid falling away. But Moses was angry. These people had been delivered from Egypt. Let people overcome their timidity and exhort their fellow-workers. [6] W. H. Griffith Thomas, Hebrews (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. (1-6) The Hebrews are warned of the sin and danger of unbelief. Always when we get our eyes off the Lord and onto the enemy, terror fills our heart, and unbelief. They"re not my children. The statement of Paul underlines the fact that life does not come to people a day at a time, but a moment at a time; hence, NOW is the day of salvation. Things just don"t happen that way, unless they"re man according to the evolutionary theory. (4) They accepted the majority report brought in by the ten unfaithful spies. (Hebrews 3:1). Moses was faithful as a servant, Christ as a Son, over God's house. The application, of course, is that, if God spared not them, neither will he spare Christians guilty of the same conduct. One cannot pass this verse without regarding the essential unity of God's children in all ages. An excellent instance of this is documented in the experience of Whitaker Chambers, who for a while was a militant atheist, but who yielded to the tender whispers of this argument when God spoke to him through the fantastic beauty and loveliness of his little daughter's ear. We are of the household of faith. And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that were disobedient? The heavenly nature of this calling is not seen merely in the fact that it came from heaven, for the Jewish system did also. They sent spies into the land, of which ten came back with an evil report bringing fear into the hearts of the people, which ultimated in unbelief. In their birth, both became sons of virgin princesses, Moses through adoption by Pharaoh's daughter, Christ by means of the incarnation, and his birth by miracle, of the virgin Mary. The Christian Hebrews reproved for their little progress in the knowledge of the gospel. A Bible Study in EasyEnglish (2800 word vocabulary) on the Book of Hebrews. Moses did not merely deliver the Judaic system of religion; but, in the sense that the flower is contained in the bud, he delivered the Christian system also, identified in this verse as "those things afterward to be spoken." In particular, the fact that Jesus Christ is fully human is what allows Him to be our ultimate example, High Priest, and the "Captain" of our salvation (Hebrews 2:10). Because He is superior over the angelic beings being the Son of God. You represented Me as being angry and upset. Wherefore as the Holy Spirit saith, Today if you will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of the temptation in the wilderness: when your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works for forty years. Such a reticence can be attributed to one's being ashamed of Christ. It is all pointing to Jesus. Why those long weeks of deathly silence, wherein even some parents speak no loving words of exhortation? It featured Peter's noble confession (Matthew 16:16); Caiaphas used it when he administered an oath to Jesus (Matthew 26:63); it was frequently in the writings of Paul (Romans 9:26; 2 Corinthians 3:3; 6:16; 1 Thessalonians 1:9; 1 Timothy 3:15; etc. The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Hebrews Commentary by A. R. FAUSSET CHAPTER 3 Hbr 3:1-19.THE SON OF GOD GREATER THAN MOSES, WHEREFORE UNBELIEF TOWARDS HIM WILL INCUR A HEAVIER PUNISHMENT THAN BEFELL UNBELIEVING ISRAEL IN THE WILDERNESS. The deceitfulness of sin extends to every conceivable phase of it. 4 For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything. People have always counted it a privilege to fight and die for liberty, if need be; but here was a generation that simply could not bring themselves to do it. Rather, here is a reference to the spiritual and eternal inheritance of Christians, as contrasted with the mortal and earthly goals of Judaism. The water came forth and the people drank. You"re going to stay here in the wilderness until you all die and your children for whom you feared, they will be the ones who will go in and take the land. I sware in my wrath calls attention to God's making an oath; and although mentioned elsewhere by Zacharias (Luke 1:73), Peter (Acts 2:30), and Stephen (Acts 7:17), it is in Hebrews that this fact receives the greatest attention, there being no less than six references to it, the others being Hebrews 3:18; 4:3; 6:13; 6:16; 7:21. Unbelief is indeed a sin, damning and destructive enough; but it is followed by overt and willful actions against the laws of God, such actions being of themselves fatal to the receiving of God's approval, no matter if founded in unbelief, as Israel's were, or not. Because of that heart of unbelief, God was provoked. In spite of the fact that the KJV translates this verse "believed not" instead of "disobedient," the English Revised Version (1885) is far preferable. Strangely enough, both of these directives lean heavily toward self-help! Moses had been hearing this stuff for forty years, and he had had it. The real substance is Jesus. 1. Because He is superior over the angelic beings being the Son of God. And if I would try and snow you and say, "Nobody built that house, just one day it appeared there. We"ve got to know that there is greater power with us than that which is against us. It was in view of this unity that Jesus said. (1-3) And in his superiority to all the holy angels. There are many examples in all languages where such has occurred. Today, if ye shall hear his voice is an appeal for action NOW. Every house has a builder, the cause and effect, and the builder of all things is God. It promises joy, but delivers wretchedness, shame, misery, and remorse. [4] F. F. Bruce, The Epistle to the Hebrews (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. He took his rod and he smote the rock. This verse is engraved in letters of stone over the principal portal of the Central Church of Christ, Houston, Texas. Oh, that we would recognize the presence of God as He comes to dwell among His people. "I was angry." To report dead links, typos, or html errors or suggestions about making these resources more useful use the convenient. I"m cognizant of their need. And with whom was he displeased forty years? "Oh, please!" Respect to such a unity does not contradict the fact of progression in the will of God as he moved to abolish the old covenant and establish the new. He built God’s house just as he was commanded to do. For who, when they heard, did provoke? To be sure, all the things that happened to ancient Israel were ensamples for them that believe (1 Corinthians 10:1-11); but even more is apparently intended here. Keith Simons. And so they wandered for forty years as an example of what happens when we, by our unbelief, fail to receive the promises of God. He said, "Speak to the rock." In fact, "confidence" contains the thought of "glorying"; and this is indicated by the translation "in this confidence of glorying" (2 Corinthians 11:17). Perhaps the words "to the end" are unspecific on purpose in order to cover a range of meanings such as: (1) the end of a particular period of temptation; (2) the end of life; (3) the end of the world; and (4) perhaps even "the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls" (1 Peter 1:9). In the Old Testament Israel was the house of God and the temple was known as the house of the Lord. The Greek margin (English Revised Version (1885)) shows these words to be literally, "if they shall enter into my rest"; but the context demands a translation of such an idiomatic phrase in words that cannot be mistaken. This singles out the principal superiority of Christ over Moses and affords another glimpse of the deity and Godhead of Christ, making Christ to be the builder of the house in which Moses served. Moses' miracles were inferior to those of Christ, as in the changing of the water already noted, and because Christ raised the dead. Chapter Contents. It says that Moses was a follower of God. Unbelief does not exist apart from antecedent evil in people's hearts. The statement that "all they" rebelled is hyperbole, exaggeration for the sake of emphasis; and, while it is true that Caleb and Joshua refused to be with the majority and survived to enter Canaan, "The exception was so small that the apostle had no scruple in saying that they all provoked God by their disobedience," as Barnes put it. Wherefore, even as the Holy Spirit saith, Today, if ye shall hear his voice, Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, Like as in the day of the trial in the wilderness, Where your fathers tried me by proving me, And saw my works forty years. Christ's representation here as High Priest is a part of the argument for his superiority over Moses, who was not a high priest. Instead of glorying in their faith and exhorting one another daily to maintain it, they permitted themselves to drift away from it, until in an evil hour they found themselves in a state of rebellion against God. The issue isn"t the deliverance from sin, the issue is the entering into the fullness that God has for you. An evil heart of unbelief contains another intimation of the moral basis of faith. One of the great heresies of the Reformation appeared in the doctrine of salvation by "faith alone" and the attendant notion that the only sin, actually, is unbelief. That rest will be deeply detailed in the next chapter. Any end whatsoever! It has already been noted that this physical judgment against them did not compromise their right of eternal salvation, based upon their faith, repentance and obedience subsequent to their apostasy. Hebrews 3 - Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible . For he hath been counted worthy of more glory than Moses, by so much as he that hath built the house hath more honor than the house. That Israel deserved to die instantly for their sin appears in the fact that God was ready thus to punish them but yielded to the intercession of Moses (Exodus 32:32). Both Moses and Jesus were faithful to deliver God's message to people, each in his own way, and each in his own capacity. (1) Some perhaps fail through natural timidity, but that is a weakness that should not be allowed to stand. There are many people who have peace with God because they have been delivered from the power of sin from darkness into the kingdom of light, but they don"t have the peace of God. Hebrews chapter 3 makes an important shift in topic. In a serious pathetic exhortation that this great high priest, who was discovered to them, might be seriously considered by them (v. 1-6). Moses could not lead them into the Promise Land. You have to have one that built the church. 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