Therefore leaving elementary instruction about the Christ, let us advance to mature manhood and not be continually re-laying a foundation of repentance from lifeless works and of faith in God,
or of teaching about ceremonial washings, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and the last judgement.
And advance we will, if God permits us to do so.
For it is impossible, in the case of those who have once for all been enlightened, and have tasted the sweetness of the heavenly gift, and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit,
and have realized how good the word of God is and how mighty are the powers of the coming Age, and then fell away--
it is impossible, I say, to keep bringing them back to a new repentance, for, to their own undoing, they are repeatedly crucifying the Son of God afresh and exposing Him to open shame.
For land which has drunk in the rain that often falls upon it, and brings forth vegetation useful to those for whose sakes, indeed, it is tilled, has a share in God's blessing.
But if it only yields a mass of thorns and briers, it is considered worthless, and is in danger of being cursed, and in the end will be destroyed by fire.
But we, even while we speak in this tone, have a happier conviction concerning you, my dearly-loved friends--a conviction of things which point towards salvation.
For God is not unjust so that He is unmindful of your labour and of the love which you have manifested towards Himself in having rendered services to His people and in still rendering them.
But we long for each of you to continue to manifest the same earnestness, with a view to your enjoying fulness of hope to the very End;
so that you may not become half-hearted, but be imitators of those who through faith and patient endurance are now heirs to the promises.
For when God gave the promise to Abraham, since He had no one greater to swear by, He swore by Himself,
saying, 'Assuredly I will bless you and bless you, I will increase you and increase you.'
And so, as the result of patient waiting, our forefather obtained what God had promised.
For men swear by what is greater than themselves; and with them an oath in confirmation of a statement always puts an end to a dispute.
In the same way, since it was God's desire to display more convincingly to the heirs of the promise how unchangeable His purpose was,
He added an oath, in order that, through two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for Him to prove false, we may possess mighty encouragement--we who, for safety, have hastened to lay hold of the hope set before us.
That hope we have as an anchor of the soul--an anchor that can neither break nor drag. It passes in behind the veil,
where Jesus has entered as a forerunner on our behalf, having become, like Melchizedek, a High Priest for ever.