HEBREWS – Chapter 6 - The Hope Set Before Us.

Tuesday, March 6,2024, November 15, 2011

Pastor Carolyn Sissom


The writer of Hebrews now exhorts his readers to advance beyond rehashing the elementary truths of the Gospel and press toward maturity.  This is the most solemn warning thus far in his letter as he shows the tragic end which may befall a person who has made his Christian confession but has failed to move forward beyond an elementary knowledge of God’s intent for mankind that we are made in His image and are to be in His Presence and have dominion as Sons of God.


He feels that the doctrine of Christ’s priesthood is the very thing they need, if they will but reach for it, grasp it and obtain the promise.


The doctrines listed in verses one and two are the very foundations of our Christian faith.  However, nothing will be accomplished by going back over the basics again.  They’ve been doing that long enough, even to the point where it was harmful.  Just as a building cannot be erected by endless work on the foundation, neither can Christian maturity be reached by an endless rehashing of the basic truths.


On the morning of 11-11-11, I awoke having had a dream that the Lord is moving by His Spirit to transition the church from childish things into the fullness of the maturity of Christ.   


DREAM:  I was seated on the front row as a guest in a Pentecostal denominational church.  Also on the front row were parents with their children.  They were all playing around.  The building was a very nice facility, and about 1/3 of the pews were filled with people.  There were more men in the congregation than women.  The Pastor came in and went to his pulpit but he was not prepared.  He had to keep going back to his office to find material for his sermon.   The service ended rather abruptly since nothing had been prepared.  I start to exit a side door where someone is supposed to drive around to pick me up.  Inside the sanctuary close to the door is a large accumulation of children’s toys (childish things).  I start to try to gather the toys to remove them from the sanctuary, but there are too many for me to carry. 


I then walk out the door to ask the driver to come around to help me take these items out of the sanctuary.  Right outside the door, I walked face-to-face with a prominent and world famous leader of that denomination.  He was shorter in stature than he is in the natural.  When he saw me, he was elated and embraced me.  He asked me, “Carolyn, Do you have the Word of the Lord for me?”  I did and spoke the Word to him.  Then I asked him if he had a prophecy for me.  He did.  When he finished prophesying, I broke down weeping in great joy.  I can’t remember the exact words as they were in the dream, but I know that the essence was that people are going to be coming in to the fullness of Christ and embracing His Presence. (END OF DREAM GIVEN TO PASTOR CAROLYN SISSOM)


This particular Christian leader is well known to have persecuted the prophetic, apostolic, Third Day (Glory) Church, i.e., the revelation of the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in Heaven.


The number eleven has multiple prophetic meanings.  However, I will consider that since I was given this dream on 11-11-11, that the meaning of “end, finish’ last stop: is applicable.  After the death of Judas, there were eleven apostles.  They were still worshipping in the Old Covenant order in the Temple which ended with the death and resurrection of the Lamb of God; our Chief Priest; who is the fullness of the Tabernacle; fulfillment of the feast days and all the sacrifices of the temple.  It was Paul, the 12th apostle, who was given the revelation of the New Covenant Church which was birthed out of the type and shadows of the Old Covenant. 


Over the past 24 years, there has been the emerging of an apostolic company of ministers who have been “called out.”  These have been given the revelation of  transitioning  the church into the maturity of the dominion of the Kingdom.  Eph. 4:13: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.” Sadly, I have seen many who started well, but have fallen by the wayside.  When a person fails to advance in Christ, they will very often become burned-out, disinterested, and possibly even abandon the faith.


Deut. 11:11:  But the land which you enter to possess is a land of hills and valleys which drinks water of the rain of the heavens.


Hebrews 6: 1-2:  Therefore, leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on to perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of dead and of eternal judgment.


These six truths are our Christian basics.  Our writer considers them to be baby truths.  These six topics are the main themes of many ministers today!  These are those who pride themselves on preaching a” simple gospel.”  In reality they are neglecting to lead the church into the fullness of the Kingdom of God.




1.     Salvation – receiving Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.  There is nothing man can do to save himself.

2.     Salvation is a relationship with God which comes only through faith in Christ.

3.     Different kinds of baptism: (a) Baptism in Water; (b) Baptism in the Holy Spirit; (c) Jewish baptism, i.e. in the cloud and in the sea; Mosaic washings.

4.     The laying on of hands, which signified transferred blessing; the receiving of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit as well as ordination into public ministry.

5.     The bodily resurrection of Jesus and the future resurrection of the saints.

6.     Eternal judgment for those who will not receive Christ.


6: 4-6: For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again to repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put Him to an open shame.


This is a shocking warning to learn how far people can go in experiencing Christ---and still fall away.  The readers of this letter had both the basic truths of Christ and the basic experience of Christianity, and yet in spite of this the author deems it necessary to warn them that persecution could cause them to turn their backs on Jesus.  The great sin of Hebrews is denying Christ after experiencing the power of God working in them.  That the author considers these as basic experiences shows us how much more Christ has for us.




1.     Enlightenment:  having heard the gospel, they knew what Christ had done for them, they had a complete inner illumination.  There was nothing lacking in the truth they had received.  They understood everything needed for a full commitment of their lives to Jesus.

2.     Tasted the Heavenly Gift:  Heavenly is that which exits in Heaven; things that take place in heaven; The heavenly Gift is according to the measure in which Christ gave it. (2 Cor. 9:15) Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.”  To taste means to have experienced or come to know Christ in the fullest sense.  They had experienced Christ through the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts. 10:45). 

3.     Partakers of the Holy Ghost:   They had enjoyed His working in them to the place where they knew, by experience, He could enable them to do what they could not do on their own.

4.     The Good Word of God:  The life in the Living Word of God with power to heal, deliver and save.

5.     Powers of the World to Come:  They had actually experienced the supernatural powers of the Kingdom of God.  This refers to the gifts of the Holy Spirit associated with Pentecost, as well as authority over agents of the spiritual realm (demons). 


After a person has known the blessedness of all this insight and experience and then falls away, it is impossible for him to be brought to repentance a second time, having rejected the Son of God, he joins those who condemned Him to death and mocked Him as a false Messiah, and is ready to crucify Him himself.


This is a difficult verse.  Scholars debate three possible interpretations:


1.     The passage refers to born again believers who reject Christ and are lost forever.

2.     The writer is merely giving a hypothetical situation, offering that if it were possible for a true Christian to reject Christ, it would be impossible to renew him to repentance.

3.     That such rejecters are not Christians at all.  They are like Judas, who was one of the twelve.  He sampled all the sweetness and power of the “gift of heaven” without every being truly committed to Christ.


The first of these views we should probably reject because there are too many passages which definitely teach the security of the saints, and the Lord is married to the backslider.  The second view has much to commend it, but the warning appears weakened if this is only a hypothetical case.  The third view seems more preferable allowing that such rejecters are non-Christians growing up as tares among the wheat. (Mt. 13:30).   However, to not water down the verse, it does appear to mean that these have seen the creative power of the preached Gospel and have themselves performed miracles as did Judas.   The Lord has not given me any further revelation on this scripture.


In Chapter 10: 26-31, the author will discuss the fate of the man who commits the “willful sin” of the denial of Christ. 


6: 7-8:For the earth which drinks in the rain that comes oft upon it, and brings forth herbs meet for them by whom it is dressed, receives blessing from God; but that which bears thorns and briers is rejected, and is near to cursing; whose end is to be burned.


Here are two pieces of ground receiving rain from the sky.  One parcel brings forth crops, the other weeds.  The point to observe is that both enjoy the same favorable conditions.  The rain, of course, represents the five things listed in verses 4-5, and both parcels are equally blessed by this rain.


The fruitful ground represents the Christian who commits his life to Jesus and bears the kind of fruit that honors the blessing God has showered on him.  The unfruitful ground is the unsaved “believer” who, when put to the test, proves himself unworthy of the blessing God has showered on him.  In spite of the fact that he has enjoyed the insight and experiences of verses 4-5, he turns his back on Jesus and there is nothing anyone can do to get him to return.  The Lord’s rain does not determine the condition of the soil.  The Lord does not have one kind of rain for the saved and another for the unsaved.  There is just one working of the Spirit for all men.  As rain is poured out from the sky, so is God’s Spirit poured out on all mankind” ( Acts 2:17).


This is a hard passage of scripture.  The tricky thing is that a person can enjoy this working of the Spirit and look and act just like a born-again Christian, and still not have a personal relationship with the Lord.  Perhaps this applies to those whom Jesus said, “…they believe for a while, and in time of temptation fall away” (Luke 8: 12, 13).  Once a person is genuinely conceived in Christ, “nothing” can separate him from Jesus (Rom. 8: 38, 39).  Perhaps this will be those who cry out in that day, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, etc.?” And Jesus will say, “Depart from Me, I never knew you…” (Mt. 7: 22,23) The bottom line is what is in the human heart?


6: 9-10:Beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak.  For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labor of love, which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.


Our author has just delivered a frightening warning.  He says even though I have spoken to you like this, beloved friends, I don’t for a minute believer that many of you are in this category.


They are displaying the fruit of the Spirit by their love for God’s people.  This kind of love, he says, is proof of spiritual life, because it is the by-product of salvation.  Only a saved person can display this kind of love, and that fact makes it evidence of salvation, i.e.  We know we have passed from death unto life because we love the brethren.


He is also confident that God will keep them safe.  He puts it this way, “God could never forget what you have done in His name.”


We have this assurance in Jude 24: Now to Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy.


6: 11-12:  We desire that every one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope to the end; that you not be slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.


The writer now reminds them and us that they are not the first to travel this road.  He is thinking of the great heroes of the O.T. whom they will meet in chapter Eleven.  Those dear saints suffered trials and afflictions but refused to let them shake their confidence in God’s promises.  They trusted God and patiently accepted whatever He sent into their lives.  As a result, they inherited the promises.  Our future is as safe as the faithfulness of God.


6: 13-15: For when God made promises to Abraham, because He could swear by no greater, he swear by Himself, saying, surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.  And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.”


Abraham was given every possible assurance that if he would patiently endure, he would obtain the promise.  The scope of the promise was not exhausted in the earthly experience of this man.  God not only said to him,  I will surely bless you and give you many descendants (Gen. 22:17), but He also has said, “In your seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed.” (Gen. 22:18).  Abraham’s seed is Christ and Christians who receive Christ are heirs of what was promised to Abraham. 


6: 16-18: For men verily swear by the greater; and an oath for confirmation is to them an end of all strife.  Wherein God, willing more abundantly to show to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath. That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us.


This oath is for all the “heirs of the promise”.  For as Paul says, “If you be Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed and heirs according to the promise(Gal. 3:29).  This involves two unchangeable things ---the promise itself and the oath which rests on the very being of God---in which it is impossible for God to lie.  The fulfillment of that promise is the heavenly blessing to which even Abraham looked (Heb. 11:8-19)


Jesus Christ, the Heir of all things, is the seed of Abraham, “the one’ whose right it is’ holds the title deed to this world.  Love constrains Him to share His wealth.  Jesus came to bring many sons unto the same glory (Heb. 2: 6-13).  All born-again Christians are the seed of Abraham.  The Body of Christ, the corporate heir of God has been given dominion or ownership of everything (Gal. 3:29; 4: 1-2).  But we must arise and walk in what Jesus died for!  The creation is groaning for real deliverance, not some deeper teaching or higher concept.  The invisible must be made visible.  Heaven must come to earth.  The gospel of the Kingdom must be translated into a lifestyle that all men can read and understand. 


We must experience the authority to go ahead and possess our possessions. 


Because it is impossible for God to lie, we have two things we can count on completely---His promise and His oath.


6:19-20:  Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters into that inside the veil; where the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made a high priest forever after the order of Melchisedec.”


This anchor of hope ties the Christian securely to the place of God’s presence, the heavenly world.  This unexpected change in figure of speech is used to return the readers to the subject of the priesthood of Christ (ch.5).  this veil was the inner curtain separating the holy from the Most Holy Place.  Christ has penetrated that veil and has gone into the Holy of Holies to work on our behalf.  He has done so as a forerunner---a word which implies that others are to follow, i.e., Christians too are to be brought into that same sacred area.  This was indeed a startling statement, for though the ancient high priest was his people’s representative he was never their forerunner---they were never allowed to follow him within the curtain.


During His earthly ministry, Jesus passed through the Veil of His flesh into the presence of God, taking in effect, the blood of His sacrifice with Him.  His earthly life corresponds to the holy place.  His ascension corresponds to passing through the veil, and now He ministers in God’s presence (the Most Holy Place) as a perpetual high priest.


The keynote of Hebrews is that the new high priest guarantees to every believer the privilege of confident access into this Most Holy Place--- the very presence of the living God, and it is summed up in one carefully chosen word: “Forerunner’.  “Jesus has gone that we may follow too” (F. W. Gingrich, “Forerunner” Hastings’ Dictionary of the Bible)


Jesus has thrown open the doors of heaven so that all who will, may enter into fellowship with God that we may walk, live, and move in eternity while still in our earthly tabernacles.


Thanks be unto God for this unspeakable gift”. (2 Cor. 9:15)


Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries, Inc.


Scripture from K.J.V.; Bibliography:  C. S. Lovett’s Lights on Hebrews; F. F. Bruce Bible Commentary-Gerald F. Hawthorne; F.W. Gingrich, “Forerunner” Hastings’ Dictionary of the Bible; Whose Right It Is—Kelly Varner.  (Comments and conclusions are my own and not meant to reflect the views of those from whom I have gleaned.


(See below a sermon from my book, Faith is a Fact, Hope is a Certainty and Love is a Reality). (available free of charge on the website under sermon notes)





Preached by: Carolyn Sissom

September 7, 2008



This is a continuation of the series:


Faith is a Fact, Hope is a Certainty and Love is a Reality.


What is Hope?  How is it like or unlike Faith and Love?  What is false hope?  What is hope deferred?  I saw a vision of the Words written out in the Spirit on a book.  In the vision, the book was written by me.  If the Lord showed this to me, then the truth has been written deep within my Spirit.  It is a quest for truth.


1 Peter 3:15 is a command to obey:  “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asks you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.”


Of Hope, the Lord gave us an oath by which it is impossible for Him to lie.:  Hebrews 6:17:  Wherein God, willing more abundantly to show unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us:  Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters  into that within the

Veil; whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made a high priest; for ever after the order of Melchisedec.


This anchor of hope ties the Christian securely to the place of God’s presence.  If we can see the metaphor of the anchor tied to our Faith which is the rope.  Our Faith and hope are two separate things.  Our hope is a solid anchor beyond the veil in Heaven (Spirit realm).  It is a certainty.  There is no “perhaps” or “maybe” about it.  It is guaranteed by God’s promise and backed by His oath.  Our line connecting us with our hope is our faith.  Though we live in the world of flesh, because of God’s promises, we seize that hope by faith and cling to it with confidence.  As life’s storms rage, that anchor holds because it lodged in the solid, Rock, our forerunner, Christ Jesus.   We need not worry persecutions or afflictions come against us.  Our future is bright.  We can walk through any storm when we know better days are ahead.


Our hope in Jesus is our anchor.  Normally in a storm, the anchor on a sailing ship is thrown over the side that it might become lodged in the unseen bed of the sea. But the anchor of our souls, our hope, rises upward.  It passes through the veil into the most holy place of heaven and becomes lodged in the throne of God.  Our hope is “locked in” to the unchangeable God Himself.  We are as safe as God is true.


Hebrew 7:19:  For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope; by which we draw near to God.”  …The Lord swore and He will not repent, you are a priest forever after the order of Melchisedec: a surety of a better testament.”


Jesus is the hope that is “set before us”.  Now it is possible for us to draw near to God to worship truly which is one of the fundamental elements of redemption.  Ps. 120:7: “O Israel put your hope in the Lord, for with the Lord is unfailing love and with him is full redemption.”


Hope is our helmet.  1 Th. 5:8: But since we belong to the day, let us be self controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.


This hope of salvation is based on the fact that God has no intention of letting us experience His wrath.  To the contrary, He chose us to be delivered from it through our Lord Jesus Christ, whose death was for our sake.  He died sot that whether we are awake or asleep, we will be in fellowship with Him forever.


1 Peter. 1:21:  Through Him you believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and glorified Him, and so your faith and hope are in God.


This hope is a certainty.  This Hope enters within the veil to find God’s love in all its fullness and majesty.  Only His love has power over sin.  Only His love has the strength to draw us away from all that is not pleasing to him.  His love, not His rules and laws, not even his judgments cause us to walk away from the flesh.  Although I do have a fear of God.  I do not ever want to be separated from His Presence.  It is that Holy Presence that is the strength of my life.


Here with Him we are transformed by this love, and sin’s stronghold is broken once and for all.


Faithfulness to him becomes a way of life.  We are no longer a sinner struggling for divine approval.  We are a son, washed in His blood and victorious because of His great love for us. 


Earthly love keeps you faithful to your spouse.  Agape Love will keep you faithful and devoted to the Lord.  God did not send His Son to die so we could continue to be unfaithful to Him. 


The Power of His love is released through the new covenant.  This love calls us into Holiness.  It is out of this intense desire to please Him that His love has the power to break sin’s hold on us.  Through Jesus entering in beyond the veil as the forerunner, we have the hope of the Glory of God.


We are joyful in hope.  We have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.  And we rejoice in the hope of the Glory of God.


His love sets us free.  His love keeps us free.  Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.


What if you told your spouse, “Honey you know how much I love you.  You know I am committed to you, but I cannot be faithful.  I cannot be true.  I will love you, serve you, and be your friend.  I will do all I can to make you happy, but I cannot be faithful.  It is not my nature.”  This is not true.  Yet, we say those words to the Lord.


I believe we can be faithful!  We can keep ourselves wholly for Him, but only through His love and Grace.  It is His love that will have the power to fulfill your destiny and purpose.


Is this depth of relationship really possible?  Can there be continual presence of His Glory?  The Word of God says that is our Hope.


We are to know the hope of our calling of the riches of the inheritance in the saints.  We were all called on one hope.  That we may know what the hope of his calling is, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints.


If we continue in our faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for us in heaven and that we have already heard about in the word of truth, the gospel of Jesus Christ.  He has obtained eternal redemption for us.


The Hope of Glory is Jesus Christ within us.  The blessed hope is His glorious appearing.  Being justified by his grace, we have become heirs having the hope of eternal life.


1 Pet. 1:13:  Prepare your minds for action: be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed.


We have the hope in God that there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. (Acts. 24:14b)


We have this Hope on the grounds of God’s word.  Romans 15:4:  For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.


The eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love.


1 Th. 1:3:  We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.


If we find wisdom, there is a future hope and your hope will not be cut off.


We are to be prisoners of hope.  Zech. 9:12:  “Return to your fortresses, O prisoners of Hope; even now I will restore twice as much to you.


Romans 15:13:  “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.




Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries, Inc.

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