What does Hebrews 10:30 mean? “The Lord will judge his people.” Aren’t we saved by grace?
First of all, we are saved solely by grace. The apostle Paul confirms this: Eph 2:8-9 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- not by works, so that no one can boast.” NIV
But does this mean that we have a license to sin?
It is true that the apostle Paul wrote this great news in Rom 10:9 “If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” NIV
However he also points out that Rom 8:8 “Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God.” NIV
Those who confess that Jesus is Lord also do “not live by the sinful nature but by the Spirit.”
The problem is that in our language the word “believe” has been reduced to a mental acknowledgement of something’s existence. However the Scriptures portray a very different meaning of the word believe.
Heb 5:9 “Once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.” NIV
Believing according to the Scriptures is more than acknowledging the existence of Jesus. It carries with it obedience to His Word and His will.
Rom 8:9 “You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.” NIV
In other words, if you accept Jesus into your heart, but do not live a life according to the promptings of God Spirit, but instead you satisfy your sinful lusts, you do “not belong to Christ”!
In fact the book of Hebrews makes us aware that “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.” (Heb 10:26-27)NIV
Please note that the emphasis is here on “deliberately” keeping on sinning. In other words if you do not confess your sins, but instead enjoy the life of sin you are leading, you belong to that group!
The promise still stands: 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” NIV But confession should be followed with a desire not to sin any longer, as portrayed by Jesus words pronounced to the woman who was caught in adultery: John 8:11 “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.” NIV
Let us understand this with an illustration. When a guy falls in love with the most “wonderful” girl in the world, is this by grace or is it by works? Isn’t it grace? No matter how many works this guy will perform (“Look at my nice car! Look how many push ups I can do! Look how many hours I can work!”…), this will not attract this most “wonderful” girl in the world to him! The act of falling in love is an illustration of grace.
Let us now pretend that this wonderful couple decides to get married. Are they still under grace? Absolutely! However, what would happen if this guy says to himself: “Marriage is an act of grace. This means I can do anything I want!” and He goes out sleeping with other pretty girls of this world. Would the marriage last? No way! Why not? Because his actions are not matching his confession of love towards his wife.
The same is true concerning following Jesus. If you accept Jesus in your life and love Him, you will not be able to keep on sinning deliberately. You will want to follow the promptings of God’s Spirit, and not your sinful nature. “Once saved, always saved” is a lie from the devil. It is not true!
Isn’t it interesting to notice that half the virgins in Matthew 25:1-13 (The virgins portraying the Christians in this world), are not saved! Notice Jesus’ reaction when they approach Him: Matt 25:12
‘I tell you the truth, I don’t know you.’ NIV
Hebrews 10 makes us aware that there is more than saying “I believe in Jesus”. We need to live that belief!
Let us go back to Heb 10:26-27 “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.” NIV
See what follows this declaration: Heb 10:28-29 “Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?” NIV
Wow! The apostle Paul is giving us here 3 reasons why such persons “deserve to be punished”.
1. They “have trampled the Son of God under foot”. By not living a life according to God’s Word and professing to be Christians, they have trampled Jesus under foot. Jesus died for our sins. He didn’t die so that we could continue to keep on sinning deliberately! It is making a mockery out of Jesus’ sacrifice!
2. They have “treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified” them. They have turned the holy unto common. They have used Jesus’ sacrifice as an excuse to keep on sinning, deluding themselves that once saved is always saved.
3. They have “insulted the Spirit of grace”. How? By ignoring His promptings and instead doing their sinful ways.
This can all be summarized by saying that they did not have the fear of God into their life. They didn’t fear the consequences of their actions. They didn’t fear hurting God Himself. They only cared for themselves!
It is in this context that we find the text mentioned in our Bible Question of the Week.
Heb 10:30-31 “For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” NIV
Notice that the text says “His people”. It is clear that God will judge even Christians not only by the profession of their faith, but by the evidence of their faith.
Matt 25:34-40 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
“The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’ NIV
These are His people. The ones who lived their faith. The ones who have an intimate relationship with Jesus. Their profession of faith is confirmed by the way they live. They follow the promptings of God’s Spirit in them. Jesus has become a reality to them.
My friend, you may feel you have fallen from God’s will and that you may be at a point of no return. You have a choice to make. You can continue to live in sin the way you do and hope that your profession of faith will save you. However, you know deep down that Heb 12:29 “God is a consuming fire.” NIV and that He cannot be mocked.
Or you can come to Jesus, repent, “leave your life of sin.” (John 8:11) and live according the promptings of God’s Spirit. God will forgive you and will give you victory over your sin. Hallelujah! It is still not too late. Why don’t you invite Him now into your heart and let Him be the king of your life. Do so by answering the Saviour’s Call. You won’t regret your decision.
This is referring to the fact that the Lord will judge those who have NOT chosen Christ as their savior. Christ saved those that BELIEVE by grace. Those who do NOT will be greatly judged and punished. Hebrews directs a lot to the Old Testament, but has a lesson in it for us all. Bottom Line? You either choose Christ, or lose!
In other words, even though we are saved by grace, we will still be judged because there are sins of omission. If the word of God tells us to do something and we don’t we shall be judged. Example If we are told to win souls and we don’t we will be judged.
Josie from AZ
Simply put, I believe that we are saved by grace but that we will face the Lord on our day of judgment and must answer for our sins. We are forgiven but must answer for our sins.
I believe it means that we will be judged for what we do with the knowledge God has given us and how we use our gifts for His glory.
1 Corinthians 3:12-19. 3:12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; 3:13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. 3:14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 3:15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire. 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 3:17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. 3:18 Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. 3:19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.
Christ took all of the judgment for sin when He died on Calvary. The judgment referred to in the Hebrews passage is (I believe) speaking of the judgment seat of Christ. There we will give account of what we have done with the knowledge we have of Christ, and how we used it.
Because of Calvary, yours, Delmer G. Lawson
From the holy scripture we learn that the old tabernacle was meant to cleanse off their dirt and too to console them .This work was done by the high priest in the most holy place ,however this nature of cleansing was passed by time as peoples life became more complicated and they needed more power to appease their conscience.
The coming of Jesus Christ brought us salvation by grace through His death on the cross. He died for all mankind ,however by so doing Jesus never gave us guarantee to sin .The life and teachings of Jesus Christ replaced that of the high priest who was the custodian of law .Jesus is the son of God “whom we should emulate”. If we deliberately sin we shall be judged for when we believed we received the knowledge that set us free. This truth we are ignoring is the same that will judge us
David Matumbu Muriithi Kenya