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Volume 14 - Page 41 of 167 Index | Zoom | |
Midst all the change and decay, the fall and the failure of things seen, the Lord
remains the same. Your faith and hope are within the veil. Your anchorage is there.
While that remains you must endure.
We usually translate hupomone by patience, but this is not the word in Heb. 6: 2,
which is makrothumia. Patience is distinguished from makrothumia in II Tim. 3: 10,
te pistei te makrothumia, te hupomone: "faith, longsuffering, patience". Again in
Col. 1: 11, "unto all patience and longsuffering". Longsuffering is ascribed both to God
(Rom. 2: 4, 9: 22, I Pet. 3: 20, II Pet. 3: 15) and to Christ (I Tim. 1: 16). The believer
reflects the longsuffering that God shows to a world of wickedness by quietly waiting
with uncomplaining spirit for God's good time. The spirit that chafes, that murmurs, that
complains, is in danger of forfeiting the reward. One of the marks of the perfect is that he
bridles his tongue. Murmuring lost the land of promise to those who were redeemed out
of Egypt. The epistle of the hope and the prize urges all those who would be perfect to
"Do all things without murmurings and disputings". (Phil. 2: 14).
What are the Two Immutable things? (6: 17-19).
pp. 52 - 55
Two related themes occupy the closing verses of Heb. 6:, viz., Oath and the Hope.
"When for example God made promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no
greater, He swore by Himself" (Heb. 6: 13).
"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 shew unto the heirs of
promise the immutability of His counsel, interposed with an oath: that by two immutable
things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation"
(Heb. 6: 16-18).
On several occasions God made covenant and promise to Abraham, but upon one
occasion only did He interpose with an oath. The occasion was not that first initial act of
justifying faith recorded in Gen. 15:, but the crowning act of faith given in Gen. 22:
The apostle had said "God is not unrighteous to forget", and the way in which the Lord
responded to Abraham's implicit trust is surely on element in that strong consolation
which our hope in God gives us. The angel of the Lord did not merely say to Abraham,
"Now I know that thou fearest God, seeing that thou hast not withheld thy son from Me",
but "seeing that thou hast not withheld thy son, THINE ONLY SON, from me". God did
not "forget". He gives prominence to the sacrifice that Abraham made, and in His delight
at this great act of faith goes beyond strict necessity and "swears by Himself, saying
Blessing I will bless thee".
God was willing "more abundantly". It was, as we have said, beyond strict necessity.
It is sufficient for God to speak. A simple promise made by God is enough to command
our fullest faith. Yet, so does He condescend, that in this recognition of Abraham's trust,
the Lord goes beyond this, and "swears by Himself". The intention was to manifest the