Hebrews - Beyond the Basics

We wouldn’t even know that there were such things as elementary, foundational principles of the oracles of God if the Bible didn’t tell us. Nor that God expects us to move on beyond these elementary principles to what the writer calls the "meat" of the word.

What can we glean from the passage that tells us about elementary & mature matter?

Mike gave a nice overview of Hebrews last Sunday night. You may have noticed one of the things Hebrews reveals is a series of comparisons between Angels and Jesus, Moses and Jesus, Jesus and Melchizedek, and the Levitical High Priest and Jesus our High Priest, all showing the superiority of Jesus. Not to mention comparisons between the Tabernacle and Heaven, the old and new covenants, and between animal sacrifices and Jesus' sacrifice.

But, there are other things mentioned too. I’d like to look at the section of Hebrews that identifies and contrasts the elementary teachings to teachings for the mature Christian. It’s a very familiar passage to us since our study of the elementary teachings, recently concluded, was based on this section.

However, I’d like to expand the scope of the passage and include more of the context and we will see a microcosm (ie in miniature) of the whole book of Hebrews.


a community, place, or situation regarded as encapsulating in miniature the characteristic qualities or features of something much larger.

The fuller context

The Hebrew writer is in the middle of a deep discussion when he stops to give a criticism, a list of elementary teachings, and a warning to his audience. After the warning he returns to his discussion right where he left off.

On to Maturity…​

Hebrews — a case study in identifying & using the meat of the scriptures

Our focus in our study of Hebrews will be to identify mature material

Some of the discussions from the author can be categorized

More About Jesus…​ And His Word

  • Instruction

    • Heb 1:1-14

    • Heb 2:5-3:6

    • Heb 4:14-5:10

    • Heb 6:1-3

    • Heb 6:13-10:18

    • Heb 11:1-

When Am I Ever Going to Use This?

  • Warnings

    • Heb 2:1-4

      • Pay attention, lest we drift away

      • How shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation?

    • Heb 3:7-4:13

      • If you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts…​

        • God says, "They always go astray in their heart;

        • They have not KNOWN my ways,…​

        • I swore in my wrath, 'They shall NOT enter My rest.'"

      • Take care brothers, lest there be in any of you

        • An evil, unbelieving heart

        • Leading you to fall away…​

      • But exhort one another every day,

        • as long as it is called “today,”

        • that none of you may be hardened

        • by the deceitfulness of sin.

    • Heb 4:11-14

      • Let us therefore strive to enter that rest,

        • so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience.

        • For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

        • And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

        • Let us hold fast our confession


Do you know that there is NOT ONE thing that God doesn’t know about us? — SWR

  • Hebrews 5:11-14

    • 11 About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain,

      • since you have become dull of hearing.

    • 12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers,

      • you need someone to teach you again

      • the basic principles of the oracles of God.

      • You need milk, not solid food,

      • 13 for everyone who lives on milk

        • is unskilled in the word of righteousness,

        • since he is a child.

      • 14 But solid food is for the mature,

        • for those who have their powers of discernment

        • trained by constant practice

        • to distinguish good from evil.

  • Heb 6:4-8 (Biblical malnourishment leads to falling away)

    • For it is impossible,

      • in the case of those who have once been enlightened,

      • who have tasted the heavenly gift,

      • and have shared in the Holy Spirit,

      • and have tasted the goodness of the word of God

      • and the powers of the age to come,

      • and then have fallen away,

    • to restore them again to repentance,

      • since they are crucifying once again the Son of God

        • to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.

      • For land that has drunk the rain that often falls on it,

        • and produces a crop useful to those for whose sake it is cultivated,

        • receives a blessing from God.

      • But if it bears thorns and thistles,

        • it is worthless and near to being cursed,

        • and its end is to be burned.

  • Heb 8:7-9

    • For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion to look for a second.

      • For he finds fault with them when he says:
        “Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will establish a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt.

        • For they did not continue in my covenant,

        • and so I showed no concern for them, declares the Lord.

  • Heb 10:26-31

    • For if we go on sinning deliberately

      • after receiving the knowledge of the truth,

      • there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,

      • but a fearful expectation of judgment,

      • and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.

    • Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses

      • dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses.

    • How much worse punishment, do you think,

      • will be deserved by the one

        • who has trampled underfoot the Son of God,

      • and has profaned the blood of the covenant

        • by which he was sanctified,

      • and has outraged the Spirit of grace?

    • For we know him who said,

      • “Vengeance is mine; I will repay.”

    • And again,

      • “The Lord will judge his people.”

    • It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

  • Heb 10:35,36

    • Therefore do not throw away your confidence,

      • which has a great reward.

    • For you have need of endurance,

      • so that when you have done the will of God

        • you may receive what is promised.

When Am I Ever Going to Use This? Part two

  • Encouragement

    • Heb 3:13

      • But exhort one another every day,

        • as long as it is called “today,”

        • that none of you may be hardened

        • by the deceitfulness of sin.

    • Heb 6:9-12

    • Heb 8:10-12

    • Heb 9:14

    • Heb 10:19-25

    • Heb 10:32-39

    • Heb 11:1-

What is NECESSARY for us to change?…​ KNOWLEDGE

Some Scripture Regarding Knowledge
1 Corinthians 1:4-9 (ESV)

4 I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus, 5 that in every way you were enriched in him in all speech and all knowledge— 6 even as the testimony about Christ was confirmed among you— 7 so that you are not lacking in any gift, as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 8 who will sustain you to the end, guiltless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Ephesians 1:16-18 (ESV)

16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, 18 having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,

Ephesians 4:11-16 (ESV)

11 And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, 14 so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. 15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

Philippians 1:8-11 (ESV)

8 For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. 9 And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, 10 so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

Colossians 1:9-14 (ESV)

9 And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: <u>bearing fruit</u> in every good work and <u>increasing in the knowledge of God</u>; 11 being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Colossians 2:1-5 (ESV)

1 For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, 2 that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments. 5 For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ.

Colossians 3:9-10 (ESV)

9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.

2 Peter 1:3-8 (ESV)

3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. 5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.