THE BOOK OF HEBREWS
CHAPTER FOUR

Introduction

James Deering, AncientPath.net

1. The Visualized Text
2. Questions to be Explored
3. Cross References

THE VISUALIZED TEXT (NASB)  (conjunctions & prepositions underlined, words not in original text in italics)    (alternate text in purple) (Gray horizontal lines are paragraph divisions)

(Hebrews 4:1)
Therefore,
    let us fear lest,
        while a promise remains
            of entering His rest,
        any one of you should seem to have come short of it.
(4:2)
For indeed
    we have had good news preached to us,
    just as they also;
        but
            the word they heard did not profit them,
                because it was not united
                    by faith in those who heard. (many mms: "because they did not share in the faith of those who obeyed")
(4:3)
For
    we who have believed
        enter that rest,
            just as He has said,
                "AS I SWORE IN MY WRATH,   
                THEY SHALL NOT ENTER MY REST,"
                    although
                        His works were finished
                            from the foundation of the world.
(4:4)
        For
            He has thus said somewhere concerning the seventh day,
                "AND GOD RESTED ON THE SEVENTH DAY
                FROM ALL HIS WORKS";
(4:5)
        and again
            in this passage,
                "THEY SHALL NOT ENTER MY REST."
(4:6)
Since therefore
    it remains for some to enter it, and
    those who formerly had good news preached to them
        failed to enter
            because of disobedience,
(4:7)
    He again fixes a certain day,
        "Today,"
            saying through David after so long a time
            just as has been said before,
                "TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE,
                DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS."
(4:8)
For if
    Joshua had given them rest,
        He would not have spoken of another day after that.
(4:9)
There remains therefore
    a Sabbath rest
        for the people of God.
(4:10)
For
    the one who has entered His rest
        has himself also rested
            from
                his works,
                    as
                        God did from His.
(4:11)
Let us therefore
    be diligent to enter that rest,
        lest anyone fall
            through following the same example of disobedience.
(4:12)
                For
                    the Word of God is
                        living and
                        active and
                        sharper than any two-edged sword, and
                        piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit,
                            of both joints and marrow, and
                        able to judge
                            the thoughts and
                            intentions of the heart.
(4:13)
                 And
                    there is no creature hidden from His sight,
                but
                    all things
                        are open and
                        laid bare to the eyes
                            of Him with whom we have to do.


(4:14)
Since then
    we have
        a great high priest
        who has passed through the heavens, (or "gone into heaven")
        Jesus the Son of God,
            let us hold fast our confession.
(4:15)
                For
                    we do not have
                        a high priest
                        who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses,
                but
                        One who has been tempted
                            in all things as we are,
                            yet without sin.
(4:16)
Let us therefore
    draw near
        with confidence
        to the throne of grace,
        that we may receive
            mercy and
            may find grace
                to help in time of need.


ABOUT: (Questions to be explored based on this study's verses)

(Hebrews 4:1)
Therefore, let us fear lest, while a promise remains of entering His rest, any one of you should seem to have come short of it.
1.  What is the significance of the word "Therefore"?
2.  Why should we fear?
3.  What is the significance of the word "lest"?
4.  What is the promise that remains? (BibSac ref 1)
5.  Who offers us that promise?
6.  What is the basis of that offer?
7.  To whom is this sentence addressed in general?
8.  To whom is this sentence addressed in specific?

(4:2)
For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard.
1.  What is the significance of the words "For Indeed"?
2.  What "good news" is spoken of here?
3.  When have we had this good news preached to them/us?
4.  Why was this "good news" preached to them/us?
5.  What is the meaning of the word "Preached"?
6.  Define "us" and "they" here.
7.  What is the significance of the word "But"?
8.  Did "they" profit from hearing the word?
9.  Was the word "they" heard different than the word "us" heard?
10.  Why did "they" not profit from hearing the word preached to them?
11.  What does the word "because" indicate here?
12.  What is the "it" mentioned here?
13.  What was not united with Faith?
14. Define the phrase "united with Faith."
15.  Where was the Word not united by Faith?
16.  According to verse 1, what was the result of this?
17.  What is the importance of hearing the Word of God?
18.  What is the importance of UNITING, through Faith with the Word of God?
19.  Have you done that?  If not, why not do it now, and avoid "not entering into His rest"?

(4:3)
For we who have believed enter that rest, just as He has said, "AS I SWORE IN MY WRATH, THEY SHALL NOT ENTER MY REST," although His works were finished from the foundation of the world.
1.  What is the significance of the word "For"?
2.  Who have believed?
3.  What did they believe?
4.  What is the result of "believing"?
5.  What is the "rest" spoken of here?
6.  What is that rest symbolic of?
7.  What is the significance of the word "although" here?
8.  Who's works were finished?
9.  What works were finished?
10.  When were these works finished?
11.  When was that?

(4:4)
For He has thus said somewhere concerning the seventh day, "AND GOD RESTED ON THE SEVENTH DAY FROM ALL HIS WORKS";
1.  What is the significance of the word "for" here?
2.  Who is the "He" spoken of here?
3.  What seven days are referenced here?
4.  On which day did God rest?
5.  When was that?
6.  How many works did He rest from?
7.  Who's works are referenced here?
8.  What were His works?

(4:5)
and again in this passage, "THEY SHALL NOT ENTER MY REST."
1.   What is the significance of the words "and again" here?
2.  Which passage of scripture is referenced here?
3.  Who said this?
4.  When did He say this?
5.  What people were involved when He said this?
6.  Consider verse 4:6 and comment on "to whom" it was truly written?

(4:6)
Since therefore it remains for some to enter it, and those who formerly had good news preached to them failed to enter because of disobedience,
1.  What is the significance of the words "since therefore"
2a.  Consider the phrase "it remains for some to enter it."
2b.  What "remains"?
2c.  Who "remain"?
2.d  What was the "good news" preached to them?
2e.  What remains for them to do, or not do?

(4:7)
He again fixes a certain day, "Today," saying through David after so long a time just as has been said before, "TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS."
1.  Who fixes a certain day as "Today"?
2.  What is the nature of "Today"? (as differentiated from Yesterday or Tomorrow)
3.  Which passage of scripture, written by David, are referenced here?
4.  How many times has God expressed the desire for mankind to NOT harden their hearts?
5.  What does it mean to "harden your heart"? (BibSac Ref 2)
6.  Who is to NOT harden their hearts?
7.  When are they NOT to harden their hearts?
8.  Why should one not harden their heart?

(4:8)
For if Joshua had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that.
1.  What is the significance of the words "For if" here?
2.  Who was Joshua
3.  Refer to verse 4:7: When did David live in relationship to Joshua?
4.  Did Joshua lead the Israelites into Canaan?
5.  Did Joshua lead the Israelites into their "Rest"?
6.  Was Joshua "able" to give the nation of Israel "Rest"?
7.  Did David speak of another day?
8.  What is the name of that day?
9.  When is that day?
10.  When will "that day" be over?

(4:9)
There remains therefore a Sabbath rest for the people of God.
1.  Is that day still available?
2.  How long will it remain available?
3.  What "kind" of rest is it?
3.  What is the origins of the "Sabbath"?
4.  Why is this rest a "Sabbath Rest"?
5.  Who will rest in that day?
6.  What is the significance of the word "OF"
7.  Who do the people of God belong to?
8.  Is this ALL people?

(4:10)
For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His.
1.  What is the significance of the word "For" here?
2.  Who is "the one who has entered"?
3.  What did that one do to "enter" into God's rest?
4.  If you have entered into God's rest, what should you be doing now?
5.  How does one "rest" from their works?
6.  How do you rest from your works and continue "The Work of God"?
7.  In what manner of resting from our works are we emulate?

(4:11)
Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall
through following the same example of disobedience.
1.  What does the word "Let" mean?
2.  Who is the "us" here? (in its strictest sense)
3.  Who is the "us" here by application?
4.  In what manner is one called upon to "enter that rest"?
5.  How does one "enter" that rest?
6.  Which rest is spoken of here?
7.  What is the significance of the word "lest"?
8.  To whom does the word "anyone" apply?
9.  What is the significance of the word "fall"?
10.  What "fall" does the writer have in mind? (pesh - 3p/sing/aor2/subj piptw)
11.  In this verse how does one "fall"?
12.  How does one "follow" and example?
13.  What, or which, disobedience is meant here?
14.  Spend some time reviewing and thinking about the book of Exodus, especially "The Provocation" and try making a list of the kinds of disobedience God persevered through from the nation of Israel.

(4:12)
For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
1.  What is the significance of the word "For" here?
2.  Who is "The Word of God"?
3.  What is He able to do?
4.  Can you hide from Him?
5.  Can you hide our innermost thoughts and feelings, and intentions from Him?

(4:13)
And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.
1.  Answer to 4:12 questions!

(4:14)
Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.
1.  What is the significance of the words "since then"?
2.  Who is the "we" here?
3.  What do "we" have?
4.  What kind of an High Priest is He?
5.  What is the importance of having Jesus Christ as High Priest?
6.  What does this verse say He has done?
7.  When did He do this? (not just His Ascension after resurrection)
8.  What is the difference in emphases between Jesus Christ, and Christ Jesus?
9.  What is the importance of including "The Son of God" in the Name of Jesus here?
10.  How are we to "hold" to our confession? (kratwmen - 1p/pl/pres/act/ind kratos - "we are now to be seizing, compassing, or grasping)
11.  What is our "Confession / Profession"? (consider the local Hebrew church with both believing and unbelieving members)

(4:15)
For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.

Double Negatives Removed:
For we have a high priest who can sympathize with out weaknesses, and One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.
1.  Who has this High Priest? (again consider the dual nature of the local Hebrew church)
2.  How can He sympathize with our weaknesses?
3.  In what ways was Jesus Tempted?
4.  What part of these temptations was never in question?
5.  What was Jesus unable to do?
6.  What is the significance of the phrase "as we are"?

(4:16)
Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need.
1.  What is the significance of the words "Let us therefore"?
2.  Who is to draw near? (dual nature of local church)
3.  How are we to draw near?
4.  Where are we to draw near?
5.  Who's "Throne of Grace"?
6.  What is grace?
7.  What is the Grace of God?
8.  According to this verse, what is one of the purposes of God's Grace?
9.  When is this kind of God's grace active?
10.  What kind of "time of need" is spoken of here?


REFERENCES:

Hebrews (4:1)
Hebrews 12:15

(4:2)
1 Thessalonians 2:13

(4:3)
Psalms 95:11
Deuteronomy 1:34-35
Hebrews 3:11

(4:4)
Genesis 2:2-3
Exodus 20:11

(4:5)
Psalms 95:11

(4:6)
Hebrews 3:18

(4:7)
Psalms 95:7-8
Hebrews 3:7-8, 15

(4:8)
Joshua 22:4
Hebrews 1:1

(4:9)

(4:10)
Leviticus 23:3
Revelation 14:13

(4:11)
Hebrews 3:18

(4:12)
Mark 4:14
Luke 5:1; 11:28
John 10:35
Acts 12:24
1 Thessalonians 2:13
2 Timothy 2:9
1 Peter 1:23
1 John 2:14
Revelation 1:2, 9
Acts 7:38
1 Peter 1:23
Isaiah 55:11
Jeremiah 23:29
1 Thessalonians 2:13
Ephesians 6:17
Revelation 1:16
1 Corinthians 14:24-25

(4:13)
Psalms 33:13-15
Proverbs 5:21
Jeremiah 16:17; 23:24
Daniel 2:22

(4:14)
Hebrews 2:17; 6:20; 8:1; 9:24
Matthew 4:3
Hebrews 3:1

(4:15)
Hebrews 2:17-18
2 Corinthians 5:21

(4:16)
Hebrews 7:19
Ephesians 3:12

 

1. The Visualized Text
2. Questions to be Explored
3. Cross References

 1 Kaiser, Walter C. Jr., "The Promise Theme and the Theology of Rest" — [Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., Associate Professor of Old Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Deerfield, Illinois.] Bibliotheca Sacra Volume 130. Dallas Theological Seminary, 1973; 2002, S. 130:135

"The rest of God is distinctively His own rest which He offers to share first with Israel and through them with all the sons of men who will also enter into it by faith. While there were antecedent aspects of that final rest to come, chiefly in the divine rest provided by the inheritance of the land of Canaan; because it was not accompanied by the inward response of faith to the whole promise of God, of which this rest was just a part, the land of Canaan still awaits Israel and the people of God. The rest of God, lost in the fall, again rejected by the older wilderness generation and subsequently by their erring children is still future to us in our day.

The dead will enter into its full enjoyment after their resurrection from the dead (Ps 116:7), therefore it is not to be identified with heaven. Rather it is fixed by Isaiah 11:10 as being “in that day” when “the Lord will extend his hand a second time to recover the remnant of his people” (Isa 11:11). In that eschatological setting, “his rest” (not “dwellings” as in RSV) shall be glorious. Then the Lord shall choose Jerusalem as His dwelling place, and this new David will say, “This is my resting place for ever” (Ps 132:14)."
 

 2 Kenneth S. Wuest, "Hebrews Six in the Greek New Testament,"  [Kenneth S. Wuest is the author of many books on studies in the Greek New Testament for the English reader.], Bibliotheca Sacra Volume 119. Dallas Theological Seminary, 1962; 2002, S. 119:45

"The writer warns the recipients against hardening their hearts against the Holy Spirit (3:7–8 ). The Hebrew committing this sin would be like Esau who for a bowl of lentil soup sold that which he did not own but professed to have, the birthright, and, when he desired the family property, could not bring himself to repent though he tried to do so even to the point of tears. So this Hebrew was in danger of selling that which he did not possess but professed to have, salvation, in consideration of freedom from the persecution of apostate Judaism, and yet desiring the material aspects of a national existence, the land of Palestine, could not find it in his heart to repent of having renounced his profession of salvation in Messiah to go back to the Mosaic economy.
The writer, singling out the saved among his readers by the term “beloved” (6:9 ), says that he is persuaded better things of them than the act of falling away. The saved Hebrew would not apostatize. The unsaved was in danger of doing so. Then he appeals to the unsaved among his readers who were in danger of renouncing their professed faith in Messiah and of returning to the First Testament sacrifices, to be followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises (6:11–12 ).


2012-11-23