( HEBREWS 6:1-3 )
THEREFORE LEAVING THE PRINCIPLES OF THE DOCTRINE OF CHRIST, LET US GO ON UNTO PERFECTION; NOT LAYING AGAIN THE FOUNDATION OF REPENTANCE FROM DEAD WORKS, OF FAITH TOWARD GOD, ( 2 ) OF THE DOCTRINE OF BAPTISMS, AND OF LAYING ON OF HANDS, AND OF THE RESURRECTION OF THE DEAD, AND OF ETERNAL JUDGMENT. ( 3 ) AND THIS WE WILL DO , IF GOD PERMIT.
I realize we have spent a lot of time on these three verses and, we aren’t done yet. However, It’s very important that we understand the transition that happened to the people that lived during the time of Christ and the next few years after his death, burial and resurrection.
There are many people that don’t like the word ( dispensation ) and simply refuse to see the ( landmark changes ) that have occurred since the days of Adam and Eve. Without seeing those things it is impossible to ( go on unto perfection ). The Apostle Paul is trying to get the Hebrew believers to see one of those ( transitional changes ) here in these verses.
Our lives are full of ( things that pass ) and can never be seen again. My wife and I often speak of our parents and our childhood. We, to some degree yearn for those days however, the only way we can go back to those times is simply in our minds. For instance, both of my pearents and hers have passed. We live in the very house I grew up in. I can sit and think, even see things in this house that use to be but, I can’t go back and relive those experiences in any way.
Each of these things we speak about in these verses, while they did still exist in the book of ( Acts ) as the Church began to grow slowly disappeared in time. Just like any man or woman seeking to cling to their childhood, it can’t be done, We must grow up and take on the responsibilities of maturity as men an women.
In this lesson we are looking into ( laying on of hands ). We can find many places in the gospels , as Jesus walked this earth that he laid his hands on people and something changed. One such place is in :
( Mark 8:23 )
And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought.
You can read the whole account. I simply show that verse to show the act of ( laying on of hands ) that is part of the ( Doctrine of Christ ). Jesus Christ also gave his apostles this same power. They each had virtually the same powers that he had and, they used them during their complete lives. As I mention that, let’s look at this verse:
( Luke 10:19-20 )
Behold, I give you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you. ( 20 ) Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.
Although we read this verse; we see very few times that the apostles used these powers in the gospels. We also see here in Luke that seventy people had special powers, that’s to whom Jesus is speaking in these verses. The point I’m making is that this act was part of the ( Doctrine of Christ ). The complete ( Doctrine of Christ ) was all about helping the ( Nation of Israel ) see and understand that he was who he claimed he was.
I’ve often stated this; even after the resurrection of Christ, the acts we see in the first few chapters of ( Acts ) it was still to the ( Jew first ). Personally, I believe that even at that ( IF ) the Nation of Israel as a whole would have excepted Christ, he would have set up his KIngdom there at that time. I also realize that God, in his foreknowledge knew that it wouldn’t happen. Jesus Christ didn’t come to this world to be their King at that time. He came to be the Savior of this world.
( John 18:37 )
Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Everyone that is of the truth heareth my voice.
We know that God had blinded their eyes as a Nation. However, he still desired for them to believe on his name. Even after Jesus had called the Apostle Paul, it was still that he preached unto the Jew first. All through the book of Acts we see that ( as long as the Apostles lived ) they had special powers. However, look at what the Apostle Paul said unto them:
( Acts 13:46 )
Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, it was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.
There’s a book that could be written on that one verse! I just might do that one day! I want you to know that from the creation of the Nation of Israel, all the way up to this verse, that Nation had opportunity after opportunity to simply seek God’s will, but they would never change, they lived in ( unbelief ). Again, we must consider all that is said in that one word! That word is not saying they didn’t believe in God, it’s saying they never learned to trust him.
It’s so much to teach! The laying on of hands in the early days of the Church as the end of ( the Doctrine of Christ ) had to do with helping individual Jews to place their faith in Jesus Christ and his shed blood. That is, as many as possible in the early days of the Church. It’s a lot I’d like to say here but, maybe in a later lesson.
I’d like to show you something here:
( Acts 3:6 )
Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.
In that verse if you will read the whole account, we never see anything about the ( Laying on of Hands ) do we? We do see that Peter took him by the hand, he did touch him. But, ( laying on of Hands ) is not mentioned there. The point is their gifts were use in many different ways. In most cases in Acts that gift was used that people might receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. However, we can see times when ( laying on of hands ) weren’t used. Look at:
( Acts 19: 1-6 )
And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, ( 2 ) He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. ( 3 ) And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, unto John’s baptism. ( 4 ) Then sais Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus ( 5 ) When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. ( 6 ) And when Paul had laid his hands opon them. the Holy Ghost came upon them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.
We can also see both baptisms there. the former and the baptism we receive now. However, the baptism didn’t change a thing. ( the power of the Apostle did ). He laid his hands on them. When he laid his hand on them, they spoke in tongues and prophesied. This was just a mere sign that they had received the Holy Ghost. The Jews ( sought a sign ). It appears, just by reading ( Acts 18 ) that these people were Jews. They had just never heard of the Holy Ghost.
The Apostle Paul is telling the people, the Hebrew believers that they need to forget this aspect of their lives because it’s not a part of the Church any more. It had its place but now the Doctrine of Christ had been transformed into the Doctrine of the Church, a completely different way of walking in Christ.
I’d like to share something with you. When I was ordained into the gospel ministry a group of men layed their hands on me and prayed. Just before they brought me out before my congregation to do that ordaination, one of the men in that group asked me this question. He said, sir, if we decide not to ordain you, what are you going to do? I answered, well, I was preaching before you came, expounding God’s word, leading people to Christ. If you men decide not to ordain me, I’ll just keep doing what I do.
Although those men laid their hands on me and prayed, it meant nothing. They could have stood back ten feet from me and prayed and, accomplished the very same thing. I, as a member of the body of Christ have matured and moved far beyond the ( Laying on of Hands ) to being about God’s will in a person’s life. The Holy Spirit is what moves on any person to do the needed changes in every life and, that apart from anything any man or woman might think they have the power to do.
Our Churches today truly needs a special gift from God. That gift is wrapped up in our willingness to submit to the power of the Holy Ghost that now lives within the heart of every born again believer. When we learn to simply let him speak through our lips of clay, get our flesh and our will out of his way then, salvation can come to multitudes of people. As long as we stand in his way, as long as we think we can do anything, we are simply being deceived by our very own pride.
After the ( laying on of hands ) there are two more things mentioned. ( resurrection from the dead ) and ( eternal judgment ). Then we go to ( verse three ) And this we will do, if God permit.
Is it possible for us to grow up spiritually today? God will permit that, that is, if we are willing to turn from ourselves and do so. Do you remember the verse of scripture that says we must ( hate ) our father, mother, brothers and sisters? This can also mean forsaking the members of the Church you belong to. Can you be willing to stand up and proclaim truth even if every person disagrees with what you teach? Look at this verse:
( Titus 1:9 )
Holding fast the faithful word as it hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
Do you realize that there cannot be but one truth? We’ll get into this next week but, just considering ( eternal judgement ) as a believer, are you still worried about dying and going to hell, facing eternal judgement? Just as a starter, the Hebrew children were still looking at having to bring a sacrifice each year for their sins. They couldn’t relate to Jesus being their perfect sacrifice. We have people today that still worry about ( if they sin ) then they are lost again! Same picture!
We’ll continue next week.
2 Timothy 1:7