Impossible to restore

It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. (Hebrews 10:31)

Several months ago, I had only partial understanding of some verses I was reading (Hebrews 6:4-6) and I asked the Lord to open it up to me.  After all this time, I happened to be reading that chapter on Saturday night, the day before Easter.  Suddenly the Holy Spirit made the whole thing clear to me and immediately I thought of 3 examples in the Bible and a couple of others in more recent times, in my lifetime, which might be in this category.  Let’s look at the deadly serious warnings and dire implications of these verses (Hebrews 6:4-6 in the AMPLIFIED BIBLE).  (1) - Impossible to restore and bring again to repentance those who have been once and for all enlightened, who have consciously tasted the heavenly gift and have become sharers of the Holy Spirit.  (2) - Have felt how good the Word of God is and the mighty power of the age and the world to come.  (3) – If they deviate from the knowledge of the Truth and turn away from their allegiance, it is impossible to bring them back to repentance because while they, (as far as they are concerned) nail up on the Cross the Son of God afresh, they are holding Him up to contempt and shame and public disgrace.

 I find these words ominous and terrifying.  Let’s examine them closely to see what such persons are actually doing to put themselves under the guaranteed sentence of eternal damnation.  This person may have heard the Gospel countless times for years but suddenly the Holy Spirit enlightens him and he knows the truth that sin is forgiven only by the Blood of Jesus and that eternal life is received through His atoning death.  If you put something in your mouth, your taste tells you if it is steak, apple pie or chocolate.  The Holy Spirt brings spiritual taste which causes the person to recognize the Truth of God but this person doesn’t swallow it, doesn’t take it in to himself and make it his own.  He has shared in the Holy Spirit by the enlightenment and revelation of Truth.  But it is received only as head knowledge and not personal experience.  He has understood the veracity of Scripture regarding God’s power and control in all past and future ages.  Having all this knowledge and refusing to make it personal, he is actually deviating from the very truth he knows.  Then it is impossible for him to repent because he has rejected all that Jesus accomplished on the Cross, which could have been his.  For him there is no salvation because the Cross is finished for him.  As far as he is concerned, it would take another crucifixion and death of Jesus to save him and of course that could never happen.  He tramples underfoot the Blood of Christ, and brings shame upon Jesus by his hypocrisy.

Hebrews 6:7-8) goes on to speak of Truth that produces Life and Truth that produces weeds, depending on how it is received.  The earth drinks in the rain which falls repeatedly on the soil and produces beneficial blessings for the harvester.  If the same soil persistently produces thorns and thistles, it is considered worthless and to be burned.  Head knowledge without Life.

Years ago I heard of a man who said he had heard and believed the Truth for years but kept putting off a personal decision to receive Jesus Christ as his Saviour.  Then the time came when he wanted to receive salvation but he could not repent and receive forgiveness.  He had slammed the door shut for the final time.  God’s warning is clear (Genesis 6:3) My Spirit will not always strive with man.

That man reminded me of Esau who could (Hebrews 12:16-17) find no place for repentance.  Abraham had taught Isaac and Isaac had taught both his sons.  Esau knew that from the descendants of Abraham would come the SEED (Genesis 12:7) Who would be the Messiah of Israel and the Saviour of the world.  But Esau (Genesis 25:34) despised what God loved.

Take a look at Uzzah.  Along with his father and brother he had the responsibility to care for the ark.  Overshadowing the ark were golden replicas of cherubim who represented the glory of God and the ark represented the very Presence of God.  Uzzah had lived in the same house with the ark for 20 years.  He flagrantly disobeyed God’s clear commands (Exodus 25:12-15, 2 Samuel 6:3) on how to transport the ark.  He arrogantly ignored the warning (Numbers 4:15) that to touch the holy things meant instant death.

Judas heard the teaching and saw the life and miracles of Jesus for more than 3 years.  He certainly experienced the power of the Holy Spirit when he and the other disciples were sent out by Jesus (Luke 9:1) and they healed the sick and cast out demons.  But Judas, with all his knowledge, chose his lustful greed for wealth and position, which made him the soon-to-be-discarded (Matthew 27:5) puppet of Satan.

I think these three men fit the dreadful category of the ‘Impossible to Restore’ but I’m also thinking of two other men in more recent times, in my lifetime.  Many years ago, Charles Templeton was the pastor of the Avenue Rd. church in Toronto and his sermons were all Bible-based.  Then, though he tried to keep up the sham, his life began to morally-disintegrate.  The scandal sheets got hold of it and it was big news.  The last thing we heard before his death was that he said – I never believed any of ‘that stuff’, I just did it to please my parents.

Several years ago a young man came to our church and soon claimed that he had received Christ as his Saviour (which I now strongly doubt).  Unfortunately, he was immediately put on the platform with his guitar, which is contrary to Scriptural guidelines for a novice.  Within a few weeks he left but not before he said to someone - - I’m sorry I ever became a Christian and I hate everything about Christianity.

I think these two men will have a place among the ‘Impossible to Restore’ population.

Jesus is the true Light that lights every human (John 1:9) born into this world.  Therefore, every person has an inner knowledge that there is a God, Someone higher and other than themselves.  So they all (Romans 1:20) are without excuse.  They preferred (John 3:19-20) darkness because their deeds were evil and they rejected the Light which exposes sin.  The Holy Spirit will convict (John 16:8-11) of sin, righteousness and judgement.  Of sin because they believe not on Me, reject the offer of righteousness and ignore coming judgement. Jesus Christ is the complete and final sacrifice for sin.  Those who (Hebrews 10:26-31) go on deliberately sinning after having knowledge of the Truth, there is no longer any sacrifice left to atone for their sin.  They trample underfoot the Son of God, profane His holy Blood and outrage the Holy Spirit.  There is nothing left for them but the certain, awful prospect of burning wrath which will consume those who put themselves in opposition to God.  It is a fearful, terrible thing to fall (Hebrews 10:31) into the hands of the Living God.

Jesus Christ is (Revelation 19:16) Lord of Lords and King of kings.  His Name is (Philippians 2:9-11) exalted above every name and at the Name of Jesus every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is LORD to the glory of God the Father.

To reach to the end of all the riches in the bottomless treasure chest of the Bible is impossible.  It is like trying to (Dr. C. Stanley) – “empty the ocean with a thimble”.  Keep on reading, keep on digging, there is always more.

Related Articles

A welcome mat for satan

The Holy Spirit's search