Hebrew Roots/The original foundation/Perfection
GOING ON TO PERFECTION
The author of Hebrews has just exhorted the believers in Chapter five to leave childish things behind and become mature. They have been as children long enough, and they should grow up spiritually (Hebrews 5:12-14).
Because of their immaturity they are unable to assimilate the solid spiritual food which he would like to give them. As he says, when they should be teachers, they still need to be taught "the first principles of the oracles of God" (5:12).
The phrase "the first principles of the oracles of God" reads literally in the Greek, "certain principles of the beginning of the words of God". The Greek word for 'principles' is STOICHEIA which has the root sense of 'walking in line' and 'being in rows' and it came to mean 'walking in line' by means of the word of Yahweh.
Chapter 6 begins with the six foundational doctrines of the faith which have been covered in these studies and concerning which he exhorts them, to go on from these "elementary principles of the doctrine of Messiah", or, literally in the Greek "the word of the beginning of Messiah", and to go on to perfection - i.e to maturity (6: 1).
These six principles of the "the word of the beginning of Messiah" (6: 1), and the "beginning of the words of God" (5:12), are the same. These six foundational principles of the new covenant are the same as in old covenant practice, they are not new. Paul states that "the solid foundation of God stands sure" (2 Timothy 2:19).
The foundation of truth was not altered in establishing the new covenant, it merely progressed to its full expression. Thus, to go on from these is not to discard them, but to build upon them as one would build upon a foundation. But having once built the foundation, we need to go on and build the spiritual superstructure, otherwise there will never be a dwelling-place for the Spirit, the Ruach HaKodesh, to inhabit in our lives.
To remain pre-occupied with the foundational principles and their operation or to center one's life in the experiences of these truths, is to remain at first base and to leave off building one's spiritual house. Therefore each of these foundational principles is vital for a believer's spiritual growth. Each of them is the substructure for the work of the Spirit to be accomplished in one's life. But, having built the foundation, we need to go on.
THE EXHORTATION TO GO ON
Hebrews 6:1 says, "let us go on to perfection", What is it to go on to perfection?
The word 'perfection' is translated from the Greek form TELEIOTES, and denotes fullness or completion, an accomplished end. It is in the sense of coming to the end purpose for which we were called, which is to come into sonship with the Father by attaining the maturity of the full stature of Messiah, that is, to come to completion in Him.
To come to completion, is to be restored to the original image and likeness in which man was created, which is that of the Son of God. He, as the second Adam was made perfect, passing the test where the first Adam failed. Now as the first of new order, He has made this redemption from our former fallen state available for us. Hebrews 2:9-11; 1 Corinthians 15:47-49
Salvation is so much more than being saved so we can escape the wrath and judgment to come, although that may have been our motive when we first heard the truth. Yahweh's eternal purpose is that we fulfill that which was His original plan and arrive at mature spiritual 'manhood', so that He is able to share His kingdom with those 'sons' who have come to maturity.
Eternal life is a free gift. But that promise of eternal life is only secured by us going on toward the goal that is set before us.
And as the writer to the Hebrews says, "For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God; but if it bears thorns and briers, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned." Hebrews 6:7-8
What a solemn warning!
The fact is that if we, as it were, are standing still and do not go on and bear good fruit, we will stagnate. If life is not flowing through a living organism, it will wither and die. Living things grow!
And, if that which comes from our life is from the curse, i.e. 'thorns and briers', it is rejected by Yahweh and near to being cursed to destruction. The 'thorns and briers', the weeds of our life, come from the fallen nature and can never be accepted.
Continuing to live on spiritual 'milk' will result in being spiritually immature, a mere 'babe'. Spiritual milk will not produce the spiritual 'bones' to form a strong framework that will support the formation of a mature body nor support its weight.
Only by digesting solid food will we have the nutrients to form and sustain a healthy body. Our spiritual life must be sustained by a nourishing diet of good spiritual food of the right kind to supply all of our needs. Hebrews 5:12-14
FEEDING ON THE WORD
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work" 2 Timothy 3:16
"that the man of God may be complete". - Here in the Word is the resource for completeness.
In the scriptures we have every type of human need addressed that we may draw from, so as to arrive at the goal of spiritual completeness. Through these precious promises "we may be partakers of the divine nature". 2 Peter 1: 4
For, "He .. .. fed you with manna, .. .. .. that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of Yahweh" Deuteronomy 8: 3
"My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of heaven is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." John 6:32-33
"And Y'shua said to them, I am the Bread of life.. .." John 6:35 "I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread he will live forever; .. .. .." John 6: 51
Y'shua Himself is the source of life from which we need to feed, He is that 'living' bread. There is no source of life in itself in the written letter of the Word. Only as the written Word becomes quickened by the Spirit of Yahweh can it impart life to us from the source of Life, Who first spoke it to the prophets of old, and again to the new covenant apostles to write it down.
Y'shua said to the religious Jews of His day, "But you do not have His word abiding in you, because whom He sent you do not believe. You search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life." John 5:38-40
Coming to Y'shua Himself is the source of life!
INHERITING THE PROMISES
"And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises." Hebrews 6:11-12
There is the need to maintain the "full assurance of hope" until the very end, continuing to progress onwards in appropriating the promises of His Word. The word 'patience' in this verse is 'endurance' or perseverance, in other words, don't give up. Don't become 'sluggish' or lazy. Diligently go on to obtain the prize and inherit eternal life.
Part of the assurance the writer has for these believers, even though he sternly warns them of the danger of their present condition, is their labour of love for the saints (6: 9-10).
Fellowship and involvement in the work of the Lord is an essential part of continuing on in the faith. The bonding and the strengthening influence of fellowship is important and will assist in the growth process.
"And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of yourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much more as you see the Day approaching." Hebrews 10:24-25
Progressing in our personal walk as well as involvement and interaction in the Body is essential to going on with Him.
If we are not enraptured and captivated by the love of our Heavenly Bridegroom we shall not have the impetus in our life to make the necessary sacrifices and commitments to be ready to meet Him on that Day.
"Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is." Ephesians 5:17