• Welcome to Christian Forums
  1. Welcome to Christian Forums, a forum to discuss Christianity in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to be able to join in fellowship with Christians all over the world.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

  2. The forums in the Christian Congregations category are now open only to Christian members. Please review our current Faith Groups list for information on which faith groups are considered to be Christian faiths. Christian members please remember to read the Statement of Purpose threads for each forum within Christian Congregations before posting in the forum.

Featured Falling Away Contradiction?

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by Robert2, May 12, 2019.

  1. Robert2

    Robert2 New Member

    3
    +0
    United States
    Christian
    Private
    How does one reconcile Hebrews 6 (If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame) with 2 Timothy 13 (If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.)
     
    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. HTacianas

    HTacianas Well-Known Member

    +4,022
    United States
    Eastern Orthodox
    Single
    2 Timothy 13 describes how the grace of God works in our favor during times of weakness. Hebrews 6 describes outright apostasy. It's as if to compare poking someone with your finger to chopping off their head. They are both physical contact but one is much more severe.
     
  3. CodyFaith

    CodyFaith Well-Known Member Supporter

    +5,015
    Canada
    Baptist
    Single
    Apostasy. Meaning someone who fellowshipped with believers and experienced the goodness of Christ but was not actually saved, who turns their back on the things they experienced and accounts them as evil or not holy, cannot be saved.
     
  4. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

    +5,739
    New Zealand
    Pentecostal
    Married
    I think that if a professing believer starts to fall away, the Holy Spirit will do a lot of work in him to correct and discipline him so that he will turn back to the path. But if the person stubbornly refuses to heed what the Holy Spirit is telling him, then God can leave him to his free will choice; but the Holy Spirit will not give up on him, and if he dies without coming back to faith and obedience, he could find himself in a lot of strife at the Judgment.

    This way, both Scriptures are in harmony. God always allows us to have free will, but He provides revelation to make the gospel abundantly clear to every person, whether it is through His creation or through the preaching of the gospel. God's revelation first came through the written Scriptures, then His revelation came through the Person of Christ.

    So, there does come to a point where after the Holy Spirit has done all he can to restore a person who has fallen away, where He has to release that person to their decisions made through their free will. But God remains faithful in continuing to make the revelation of His love, grace, and mercy through Christ continuing to be clear to anyone who has gone off the path and is falling away.
     
  5. Der Alter

    Der Alter This is me about 1 yr. old. Supporter

    +2,281
    United States
    Baptist
    Married
    We are fortunate we can carry several Bibles on our devices and can instantly compare verses such as Hebrew 6 with other verses. But the early church did not have that luxury. They almost certainly did not have the OT and they did not have a complete NT. The NT was being written as they lived it.
    .....The churches may have had copies of a few of the epistles. Reproducing copies of writings by hand was laborious thus expensive so ordinary people did not have copies of any NT writings. With that in mind how would the formerly pagan new Christians have understood Hebrews when they heard it read during weekly worship services?.
    ....I am convinced they would have understood Hebrews literally.

    Heb 6:4-6
    (4) It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit,
    (5) who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age
    (6) and who have fallen away, to be brought back to repentance. To their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace.
     
  6. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

    +5,739
    New Zealand
    Pentecostal
    Married
    All the Jewish believers would have had free access to the Old Testament because they worshiped in the Jewish Synagogues before being thrown out of them. Paul told Timothy:

    "From infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for instruction, for conviction, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be complete, fully equipped for every good work" (2 Timothy 3:15-17).

    He had a Jewish mother and a Greek father. So he was taught the Old Testament right from early childhood, so if that was an ordinary home in Lystra in Asia Minor, then the Old Testament must have been freely available, and it would have been the Greek Septuagint translation. Also, Paul met him on his second missionary journey, so by that time his first letter to the Corinthians and the Thessalonians would have been in general circulation, although those original copies are now lost and the earliest copies of the New Testament are dated from the 4th Century AD. Early versions of the gospels, especially Mark's gospel, which is the first written, would have been generally available among the churches fairly early on.

    But Paul would have been referring to the Old Testament when he wrote to Timothy the second time and said that the Scriptures were inspired of God.
     
  7. Der Alter

    Der Alter This is me about 1 yr. old. Supporter

    +2,281
    United States
    Baptist
    Married
    1-2 examples does not make a general rule throughout throughout the entire Mediterranean area. Paul was a Jew and he was persecuted throughout his ministry. Former pagan gentiles would not have been welcomed in the synagogues. Jesus said His followers would be thrown out of the synagogues and killed, not welcomed. Paul got in Peter's face because he would not fellowship with gentiles when Jews from Jerusalem came around.
    John 16:2 They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service
    Galatians 2:11-14
    (11) But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.
    (12) For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.
    (13) And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation.
    (14) But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?​

     
  8. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

    +5,739
    New Zealand
    Pentecostal
    Married
    You have quite rightly said that Gentiles would not have been welcomed into Jewish synagogues. This was one of the reasons why there was an angry mob who were going to lynch Paul because they saw that he brought Titus, a Gentile into the Temple.

    But your references do not support the notion that Gentile believers did not have access to the Old Testament Scriptures.
     
  9. Butch5

    Butch5 Newbie Supporter

    +478
    Christian
    Married
    It seems this passage gets misunderstood. Prior to this Paul wrote, referring to Christ, "if we deny Him, He will deny us." When Paul says that Christ remains faithful, He cannot deny Himself, he's talking about what Christ preached. He's faithful to Himself. He said that those who disbelieve will be cast into Gehenna. Paul is telling Timothy that Christ will be faithful to that.
     
  10. Der Alter

    Der Alter This is me about 1 yr. old. Supporter

    +2,281
    United States
    Baptist
    Married
    Then how about these references from the Jewish Encyclopedia.
    Jewish Encyclopia-Gentiles
    Gentiles May Not Be Taught the Torah.
    Inasmuch as the Jews had their own distinct jurisdiction, it would have been unwise to reveal their laws to the Gentiles, for such knowledge might have operated against the Jews in their opponents' courts. Hence the Talmud prohibited the teaching to a Gentile of the Torah, "the inheritance of the congregation of Jacob" (Deut. xxxiii. 4). R. Johanan says of one so teaching: "Such a person deserves death" (an idiom used to express indignation). "It is like placing an obstacle before the blind" (Sanh. 59a; Ḥag. 13a). …
    Resh Lakish (d. 278) said, "A Gentile observing the Sabbath deserves death" (Sanh. 58b). This refers to a Gentile who accepted the seven laws of the Noachidæ, inasmuch as "the Sabbath is a sign between God and Israel alone," ... Rabbina, who lived about 150 years after the Christians had changed the day of rest to Sunday, could not quite understand the principle underlying Resh Lakish's law, and, commenting upon it, added: "not even on Mondays [is the Gentile allowed to rest]"; intimating that the mandate given to the Noachidæ that "day and night shall not cease" ((Heb.)Lo yshabti = "have no rest ") should be taken in a literal sense (Gen. viii. 22)—probably to discourage general idleness
    "The Torah outlawed the issue of a Gentile as that of a beast" (Miḳ. viii. 4, referring to Ezek. l.c.)
    Johanan bar Nappaḥa … the Torah was given as a heritage to Israel, a non-Israelite deserves death if he studies it (Sanh. 59a).
    Gamaliel also expresses himself to the same effect, adding that the Gentiles, by their impure motive, incur the penalty of Gehenna. Eleazar of Modi'im sides with him, saying that "the Gentiles practice benevolence merely to taunt Israel."
    Eliezer b. Hyrcanus is …, the mind of every non-Jew is always intent upon idolatry (Giṭ. 45b). The cattle of a heathen is unfit for sacrifices ('Ab. Zarah 23b). Explaining Prov. xiv. 34, he maintains that the non-Jews only practise charity in order to make for themselves a name (B. B. 10b; Pesiḳ. 12b; Gamaliel is credited with the same opinion in B. B. 10b).
    Joshua b. Hananiah, … as a rule Gentiles cling to vain things and are rejected (Prov. xxviii. 19; Gen. R. lxxxii.).
    Eleazar of Modi'im, in reference to Micah iv. 5, explains that Israel, though guilty of the same sins as the Gentiles, will not enter hell, while the Gentiles will (Cant. R. ii. 1). .. On the whole, he is very bitter in his condemnations of the heathen. "They profit by their deeds of love and benevolence to slander Israel" (referring to Jer. xl. 3;B. B. 10a).
    Among Akiba's disciples Tarphon is noted for his antipathy to the Judæo-Christians, whose books he would burn without regard for the name of God occurring therein, preferring the temple of idolaters to them (Shab. 116a).
    Simon ben Yoḥai is preeminently the anti-Gentile teacher. In a collection of three sayings of his, beginning with the keyword (Heb.) Shob (Yer. Ḳid. 66c; Massek. Soferim xv. 10; Mek., Beshal-laḥ, 27a; Tan., Wayera, ed. Buber, 20), is found the expression, often quoted by anti-Semites, "Ṭob shebe-goyyim harog" (="The best among the Gentiles deserves to be killed").
    On the basis of Hab. iii. 6, Simon b. Yohai argued that, of all the nations, Israel alone was worthy to receive the Law (Lev. R. xiii.). The Gentiles, according to him, would not observe the seven laws given to the Noachidae (Tosef., Soṭah, viii. 7; Soṭah 35b), though the Law was written on the altar (Deut. xxvi. 8) in the seventy languages. Hence, while Israel is like the patient ass, the Gentiles resemble the easy-going, selfish dog (Lev. R. xiii.; Sifre, Deut., Wezot ha-Berakah, 343).
    Judah ben 'Illai recommends the daily recital of the benediction. "Blessed be Thou . . . who hast not made me a goi" (Tosef., Ber. vii. 18: Men. 43b, sometimes ascribed to Meir; see Weiss, "Dor," ii. 137). Judah is confident that the heathen (Gentiles) will ultimately come to shame (Isa. lxvi. 5; B. M. 33b).The Gentiles took copies of the Torah, and yet did not accept it (Soṭah 35b).
    Eliezer, the son of Jose the Galilean, calls the Gentiles poor "goyyim dawim," because they would not accept the Torah (Mek., Yitro. 62a), referring to Hab. iii. 6 and Ps. cxlvii. 20
    Josiah holds that every idolatrous heathen is an enemy of Israel (Mek., Mishpaṭim, 99a).
    Jonathan insists that eclipses are of bad augury for Gentiles only, according to Jer. x. 2 (Mek., Bo, 19b).
    Simon ben Jose likens Israel to a stone, and the Gentiles to a potsherd (Isa. xxx. 14), applying the proverb: "If the stone falls on the pot, wo to the pot; if the pot falls on the stone, wo to the pot." This he offered as a consolation to persecuted Israel (Esther R. iii. 6).
    Hezekiah b. Hiyya deduces from II Kings xx. 18 that he who shows hospitality to a heathen brings the penalty of exile upon his own children (Sanh. 104a).
    Johanan bar Nappaḥa … lays stress on the fact that God offered the Law to all nations, who refused to accept it ('Ab. Zarah 2b); therefore while the virus of lust that the serpent injected into Eve was neutralized in Israel, the "nations of the world" still have it in their blood (Shab. 145b; Yeb. 103b; 'Ab. Zarah 22b)…. the Torah was given as a heritage to Israel, a non-Israelite deserves death if he studies it (Sanh. 59a).
    Assi is the author of the injunction not to instruct the Gentile in the Torah (Ḥag. 13a).
    Tanhuma …likens the nations to wolves and Israel to a lamb (Pesiḳ. R. ix. [ed. Friedmann, p.32a]).
    The seven nations in the Holy Land were to be exterminated for fear they might teach the Israelite conquerors idolatry and immoral practises (Deut. vii. 1-6, xviii. 9-14, xx. 16-18);
    The Gentiles were so strongly suspected of unnatural crimes that it was necessary to prohibit the stabling of a cow in their stalls ('Ab. Zarah ii. 1).
    GENTILE - JewishEncyclopedia.com
     
  11. yeshuaslavejeff

    yeshuaslavejeff simple truth, martyr, disciple of Yahshua

    +8,202
    Anabaptist
    They do not contradict each other (no Scripture contradicts any of God's Word, Plan and Purpose in Christ Jesus),

    Therefore , there is no so-called "reconciling" needed, is there ?
     
  12. Jonaitis

    Jonaitis Well-Known Member

    +1,609
    United States
    Reformed
    Single
    US-Republican
    Hebrews 6:7-9 is the most neglected verses when Hebrews 6 is discussed.

    "Though we speak in this way, yet in your case, beloved, we feel sure of better things - things that belong to salvation" (v. 9).
     
  13. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

    +5,739
    New Zealand
    Pentecostal
    Married
    This was from an non-Christian Jewish perspective. As you can see by reading the book of Acts, the Jews were totally opposed to Christianity, and were responsible for the persecution, assaults on, and the imprisonment of Paul. So you are correct in that the Jews would not give Gentiles access to the Torah, but the Jewish Christian believers would have because once Paul and Peter had convinced the Apostles at Jerusalem that Jesus was converting Gentiles as well as Jews, they would have supported the dissemination of copies of the Septuagint to Gentile believers.
     
  14. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

    +5,739
    New Zealand
    Pentecostal
    Married
    The spanner in the works of your last sentence is the word 'yet'. This means that Paul's comment about the faithfulness of Christ is not about the sentence before it, it is in contrast to it. Therefore, my comment about the Holy Spirit continuing to strive with a person who is falling away is consistent with the Apostle's comment about the faithfulness of Christ. He continues to be faithful to His promises to us even when we are unfaithful to Him at times.

    Also, the Apostle makes a distinction between "they" and "we", signifiying two separate groups of people. Therefore if the faithfulness of Christ does not apply to the 'they" who have trodden the crucifixion of Christ underfoot, it does apply to the "we who do not believe".
     
  15. Der Alter

    Der Alter This is me about 1 yr. old. Supporter

    +2,281
    United States
    Baptist
    Married
    I'm sick of the unthinking response that this or that writing should be rejected because it was written by non-Christian Jews. What better source for how the Jews thought about and treated non-Jews than their own writings? Yes Jews who became Christians would not be so selfish about the Tenakh as unconverted Jews. But private possession of the complete Torah would have been very rare due to the expense. And to copy the Torah possession of a complete copy of the Torah would have been necessary.
     
  16. yeshuaslavejeff

    yeshuaslavejeff simple truth, martyr, disciple of Yahshua

    +8,202
    Anabaptist
    If someone unfaithful, anyone unfaithful, subject to the prince of the power of the air (Ephesians 2) , ever did or wrote anything,
    how could it ever be trusted then ?
     
  17. Der Alter

    Der Alter This is me about 1 yr. old. Supporter

    +2,281
    United States
    Baptist
    Married
    Not sure how this addresses my post. I said nothing about unfaithful, etc.
     
  18. Butch5

    Butch5 Newbie Supporter

    +478
    Christian
    Married
    I didn't write the word "yet". Not sure what you're getting at.
     
  19. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

    +5,739
    New Zealand
    Pentecostal
    Married
    It was in the Scripture quote. The "yet" in the quote shows a contrast between the reference to "they" who have trodden Christ underfoot, and "we" who are subject to the faithfulness of Christ.
     
  20. Butch5

    Butch5 Newbie Supporter

    +478
    Christian
    Married
    The word "yet" isn't in that passage. It was added by the translators.
     
Loading...