Here is a Bible study, commentary, and summary of Hebrews chapter ten.
Hebrews 10:1-2 “For since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near. Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, since the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have any consciousness of sins?”
A shadow is not the reality. I’d rather be hit by a bus’s shadow than the real thing. These sacrifices where only reminders of the cost of sin, and since “in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins” (Heb 10:1-2). These were all casting a shadow and the reality was the cross. The shadow is the sacrifices but the reality is when Jesus entered heaven with His own blood. Shadows are only temporary but the real thing remains forever. The point is that animal sacrifices never really took away sins; they only covered them because they had to done over and over again.
Why is the usage of a shadow used?
Is covering sin not enough?
Hebrews 10:11-12 “And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God.”
Now that Christ’s sat down at the right hand of the Father, He is “waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet” (Heb 10:13). He has already redeemed His own as “by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified” (Heb 10:14) because He has said, “after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws on their hearts, and write them on their minds” (Heb 10:16), meaning our hearts are now bent toward Him and God says, “I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more” (Heb 10:17) and “Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin” (Heb 10:18).
Why did Jesus sit down at the right hand of the Father?
What’s the significance of the “right hand?”
Are those who are “perfected for all time” now sinless (1st John 1:8, 10)?
Hebrews 10:24-25 “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”
Since we know today is one day closer to Christ’s return, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful” (Heb 10:23) because it’s much easier to hold on if there are others holding on with you and holding on to you in prayers. That’s the reason the author of Hebrews commands us to not forsake the assembling of ourselves, which apparently was the habit of some. There are over fifty “one another’s” in the New Testament church, meaning we need relationships, fellowship, encouragement, exhortation, edification, and to be praying for one another. It’s even more important “as you see the Day drawing near” with the “Day” being capitalized and speaks of Jesus’ return. Believers will rejoice, but the lost will weep and wail (Rev 1:7). We need to hold fast to one another, even tighter as the day of His return draws near, and I believe the closer we get, the more we’ll need one another.
Why would we need one another more as the day of Jesus’ return draws near?
Why do you think some forsaking the assembling of themselves?
Can you stir up one another by sitting alone at home during church?
Hebrews 10:26-27 “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.”
When we sin, we are desensitized a bit from that sin. If we keep repeating the same sin, our conscience won’t even think about it anymore. It’s like a callous. The more you sin, the less you feel the conviction from the Holy Spirit. You can reach a point where you start to do it deliberately, after knowing its sin. When this happens, a person will never have any peace. They will always be worried about “a fury of fire” that they know will “consume the adversaries” of God. If a person finally feels no more conviction, then there isn’t any more sacrifice. Why? This is because a sacrifice is only effectual if it is received. Over a century ago there was a man in prison who received a pardon from the governor. He was free to go, but the problem was, he didn’t want to. He remained in prison. The pardon (sacrifice) was enough to free him but only if he accepted (believed) it. You had better figure this out because “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb 10:31).
Does this mean that Jesus sacrifice is limited?
Do these verses say we can lose our salvation?
Does “receiving the knowledge of the truth” mean that they had actually been born again (John 3:3-7)?
Hebrews 10:33-34 “sometimes being publicly exposed to reproach and affliction, and sometimes being partners with those so treated. For you had compassion on those in prison, and you joyfully accepted the plundering of your property, since you knew that you yourselves had a better possession and an abiding one.”
The author of Hebrews was writing to the Hebrews, or the Jewish Christians. Many of these were former orthodox Jews, so the author tries to comfort them because they had been dispersed by persecution (1st Pet 1:1) and had suffered great hardship, been put out of the temple, shunned by family and friends, been imprisoned, and had all their property taken away, so he writes, “do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward” (Heb 10:35) and “Yet a little while, and the coming one will come and will not delay” (Heb 10:37).
What does the author mean by “yet a little while, and the coming one will come?”
Is he referring to Jesus’ return?
Why did he call it “yet a little while?”
Do you think he expected Jesus’ return very soon?
The tenth chapter of Hebrews tells us the futility of the old sacrificial system as it only covered sins and had be done over and over again. Then, the spotless Lamb of God provided Himself as the once-and-for-all sacrifice. There was no more sacrifice needed again. Now, as the Day of Christ’s return nears, the author says that we need one another even more, and to exhort and encourage one another, especially the closer it gets to His return, but the author also warns those who are sitting on the fence, if the deliberately turn away from Christ after hearing the truth, Jesus’ sacrifice is not enough because they won’t except it, and if they go on deliberately sinning, all they can expect is a fiery judgment from God on the day of His visitation, and as we know, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb 10:31).
Article by Jack Wellman
Jack Wellman is Pastor of the Mulvane Brethren Church in Mulvane Kansas. Jack is also the Senior Writer at What Christians Want To Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Teaching Children the Gospel available on Amazon.