AI & Heb 3:6

Hebrews 3:6 – But Christ was faithful as a Son over His house—whose house we are, if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end.

  1. Question to BingChat 7-20-23: Does Jesus speak to the need for the human to hold fast, the need for the human to remain faithful?

Yes, Jesus does speak to “the need” for the human to “hold fast”, the need for the human to remain faithful. Faithfulness is one of the fruits of the Spirit that God produces in us as we abide in Christ (Galatians 5:22-23). Faithfulness means being loyal, trustworthy, dependable, and steadfast. It also means being faithful to God’s word and his promises, and living in obedience to his commands.

Jesus taught his disciples and followers to be faithful in many ways. For example, he said:

  • “Whoever is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much; and whoever is dishonest in a very little is dishonest also in much” (Luke 16:10).
  • “Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Revelation 2:10).
  • “Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a little, I will set you over much; enter into the joy of your master” (Matthew 25:21).

My thoughts: the need for the human to remain faithful until death

(back to BingChat) Jesus also demonstrated his own faithfulness by fulfilling his mission to save us from our sins. He was faithful to his Father’s will, even to the point of death on the cross (Philippians 2:8). He was faithful to his word, by rising from the dead on the third day (1 Corinthians 15:4). He was faithful to his people, by sending the Holy Spirit to guide and empower them (John 14:26). He is faithful to his promises, by preparing a place for us in heaven and coming back to take us there (John 14:2-3).

Jesus is our perfect example of faithfulness, and he calls us to follow him and be faithful as well. He gives us the grace and strength to do so, as we trust in him and rely on his Spirit. As Hebrews 12:1-2 says:

My thoughts: We are to follow

(back to BingChat) Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God.”

My Thoughts: Let us lay aside; Let us run – looking to Jesus (our responsibility)

  1. Question to BingChat 7-20-23: Did the Old Testament prophets address the topic of faithfulness required by humans?

Yes, the Old Testament prophets did address the topic of faithfulness required by humans. Faithfulness is a key concept in the Old Testament, as it reflects both God’s character and his expectations for his people. Faithfulness means being loyal, trustworthy, dependable, and steadfast. It also means being faithful to God’s word and his promises, and living in obedience to his commands.

My thoughts: requires Trust and Obey

(back to BingChat) The Hebrew word for faithfulness is emunah, which comes from the root aman, meaning “to confirm, support, or uphold.” The same root gives us the word amen, which means “so be it” or “truly.” When we say amen, we are affirming our faithfulness to God and his word. The word emunah is often translated as “faith” or “faithfulness” in the Old Testament, depending on the context.

The Old Testament prophets often spoke of God’s faithfulness and called the people to be faithful to him as well. For example:

  • Moses praised God for his faithfulness in Deuteronomy 32:4: “He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.”
  • Samuel reminded the people of God’s faithfulness in 1 Samuel 12:24: “Only fear the Lord, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things he hath done for you.”
  • David celebrated God’s faithfulness in Psalm 36:5: “Thy mercy, O Lord, is in the heavens; and thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds.”
  • Isaiah declared God’s faithfulness in Isaiah 25:1: “O Lord, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.”
  • Jeremiah lamented the people’s unfaithfulness and hoped in God’s faithfulness in Lamentations 3:22-23: “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.”
  • Hosea illustrated God’s faithfulness and the people’s unfaithfulness through his own marriage to an unfaithful wife in Hosea 1-3.
  • Micah exhorted the people to be faithful to God in Micah 6:8: “He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”

My thoughts: what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”

(back to BingChat) These are just some of the many examples of how the Old Testament prophets addressed the topic of faithfulness required by humans. They taught that faithfulness is not only a belief or a feeling but also a way of life that honors God and reflects his character. They also warned that unfaithfulness leads to judgment and destruction, but that God is always faithful to his covenant and his promises and offers forgiveness and restoration to those who repent and return to him.

My thoughts: faithfulness required and is not only a belief or a feeling but also a way of life (a behavior) that honors God and reflects his character.

(back to BingChat) What is the difference between faith and faithfulness? Question to BingChat (a follow-up)

Faith and faithfulness are related but not the same concepts. Faith is a feeling, conviction, or belief that something is true or real, not contingent upon reason or justification. Faithfulness is the state of being faithful; allegiance; loyalty; fidelity. Faithfulness is also the outward expression, the active demonstration, of one’s faith.

One way to understand the difference between faith and faithfulness is to look at how they are used in the Bible. The Bible teaches that faith is a gift from God that enables us to trust in Him and His promises (Ephesians 2:8-9). Faith is also the basis of our salvation, as we are justified by faith in Jesus Christ (Romans 3:28). Faith is not something we can earn or produce by ourselves, but it is a response to God’s grace and revelation (Romans 10:17).

On the other hand, faithfulness is a fruit of the Spirit that God produces in us as we abide in Christ (Galatians 5:22-23). Faithfulness means being loyal, trustworthy, dependable, and steadfast. It also means being faithful to God’s word and His promises, and living in obedience to His commands. Faithfulness is not a condition for salvation, but a result of it. Faithfulness is also a way of showing our love and gratitude to God for His faithfulness to us (1 John 4:19).

Therefore, faith and faithfulness are not the same thing, but they are inseparable. We cannot have true faith without faithfulness, and we cannot have true faithfulness without faith. They are both aspects of our relationship with God, who is faithful and true (Revelation 19:11).

My thoughts: Faithfulness is not a condition for salvation, but a result of it. We cannot have true faith without faithfulness!

  1. Question to BingChat 7-20-23: Does the New Testament explain the need for faithfulness to our profession of faith in Christ?

Yes, the New Testament apostles did address the topic of the need to hold fast to the gospel. The gospel is the good news of God’s salvation through Jesus Christ, who died for our sins and rose again (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). The gospel is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes (Romans 1:16). The gospel is also the message that we are called to proclaim and defend as witnesses of Christ (Mark 16:15; 1 Peter 3:15).

The New Testament apostles taught that holding fast to the gospel is essential for our faith, our hope, and our obedience.

My thoughts: holding fast to the gospel is essential for our faith

For example: (from BingChat)

  • Paul exhorted the Corinthians to hold fast to the gospel that he preached to them, by which they were saved, unless they had believed in vain (1 Corinthians 15:2).
  • Paul also urged the Galatians not to be deceived by a different gospel, which was no gospel at all, but a distortion of the truth. He said that anyone who preached a different gospel than the one he received from Christ should be accursed (Galatians 1:6-9).
  • Peter encouraged the Christians who were suffering for their faith to hold fast to the hope that was in them, which was based on the living and enduring word of God, the gospel that was preached to them (1 Peter 1:23-25; 3:15).
  • John warned the believers not to believe every spirit, but to test them whether they were from God. He said that anyone who confessed that Jesus Christ had come in the flesh was from God, but anyone who denied this was not from God, but was the spirit of the antichrist. He said that this was the spirit of truth and the spirit of error (1 John 4:1-6).

These are just some of the many examples of how the New Testament apostles addressed the topic of the need to hold fast to the gospel. They taught that holding fast to the gospel is vital for our salvation, our assurance, our witness, and our protection from false teachings and deception. They also taught that holding fast to the gospel is possible by the grace and power of God, who is faithful and true (Revelation 19:11).

My thoughts: holding fast to the gospel is vital for our salvation, our assurance, our witness

  1. Question to BingChat 7-20-23: How does the interpretation of Heb 3:6 change when the interpreter uses the three hermeneutics of four-sense, historical-critical, and historical-grammatical?

Hebrews 3:6 is a verse that affirms the faithfulness of Christ as the Son over God’s house, and the condition of our belonging to that house. The verse reads:

“But Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house. And we are his house, if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory.” (NIV)

Different hermeneutical methods may approach this verse differently, depending on their assumptions, principles, and goals.

Here are some brief examples of how three hermeneutical methods may interpret this verse:

  1. – The four-sense method: This method, which was dominant in the medieval church, interprets the Scripture in four levels: literal, moral, allegorical, and anagogical. According to this method, Hebrews 3:6 may have the following meanings:
    a. Literal: The plain meaning of the text, which affirms Christ’s authority and faithfulness over God’s people, and the necessity of perseverance in faith for the believers.
    b. Moral: The practical application of the text, which exhorts the readers to imitate Christ’s faithfulness and obedience to God, and to hold fast to their confidence and hope in Him.
    c. Allegorical: The hidden or spiritual meaning of the text, which reveals Christ’s relationship to the church as His bride. and the church’s identity as His body and temple.
    d. Anagogical: The eschatological or future meaning of the text, which anticipates Christ’s return and reward for His faithful servants, and the consummation of His kingdom.
  2. – The historical-critical method: This method, which emerged from the Enlightenment and rationalism, interprets the Scripture based on its historical origins, sources, contexts, and meanings. It assumes that words and expressions have a stable meaning in a given period and that history is governed by natural laws and causes, without any supernatural intervention. According to this method, Hebrews 3:6 may be analyzed as follows:
    a. Historical: The verse is part of a larger argument that compares Christ with Moses, and warns against apostasy and unbelief. The author of Hebrews is unknown, but he was writing to a group of Jewish Christians who were facing persecution and temptation to abandon their faith. The date of writing is also uncertain, but it was before the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.
    b. Source: The verse draws on several Old Testament passages, such as Numbers 12:7; Psalm 95:7-11; 1 Chronicles 28:6; 2 Samuel 7:14; and Isaiah 8:18. The author uses these passages to show that Christ is superior to Moses as the Son over God’s house and that God’s people must not harden their hearts as they did in the wilderness.
    c. Context: The verse is part of a larger section (Hebrews 3:1-6) that introduces the theme of Christ’s faithfulness as a high priest. It also sets up the contrast between Christ and Moses, which is developed further in the next section (Hebrews 3:7-4:13). The verse also connects with the previous chapter (Hebrews 2), where Christ is presented as the Son who shared in our humanity and suffered for our salvation.
    d. Meaning: The verse conveys two main points: (1) Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house, which implies His divinity, authority, and loyalty; (2) We are His house if we hold firmly to our confidence and hope in Him, which implies our identity, responsibility, and condition.
  3. The historical-grammatical method: This method is a modern Christian hermeneutical method that strives to discover the biblical author’s original intended meaning in the text. It uses grammatical and syntactical analysis, historical background, literary genre, theological considerations, and canonical context to interpret the text. It also assumes that words and expressions have a normal meaning in a given period and that history includes supernatural events and revelation. According to this method, Hebrews 3:6 may be understood as follows:
    a. Grammatical: The verse consists of two clauses connected by a conjunction (kai). The first clause has Christ as the subject (ho de Christos), followed by an adverbial phrase (hōs huios), a predicate adjective (pistos), an adverbial phrase (epi tēn oikian autou), and a relative pronoun (hēs). The second clause has an implied subject (we), followed by a predicate nominative (oikos autou esmen), a conditional particle (eanper), an adverbial phrase (tēn parrēsian kai to kauchēma tēs elpidos), and a predicate adjective (bebaian). The verse uses several key terms, such as pistos (faithful), oikos (house), parrēsia (confidence), kauchēma (boasting), and elpis (hope).
    b. Historical: The verse reflects the historical situation of the original audience, who were Jewish Christians facing persecution and pressure to renounce their faith in Christ. The author of Hebrews uses the example of Moses and the Israelites in the wilderness to warn them against apostasy and unbelief and to encourage them to persevere and trust in Christ. The author also appeals to their Jewish background and familiarity with the Old Testament scriptures, which he interprets in light of Christ’s fulfillment and superiority.
    c. Literary: The verse is part of a rhetorical argument that uses comparison, contrast, analogy, and exhortation to persuade the readers. The author uses various literary devices, such as parallelism, antithesis, alliteration, and wordplay to emphasize his points. The verse also belongs to a specific genre of literature, which is an epistle or a letter. The epistle has a typical structure of salutation, body, and conclusion, and follows the conventions of ancient letter writing.
    d. Theological: The verse expresses several theological truths about Christ and His people. It affirms Christ’s deity as the Son of God, His humanity as the Son of David, His authority as the Lord of the house, His faithfulness as the high priest, and His supremacy over Moses and the law. It also affirms the believers’ identity as God’s house, their responsibility to hold fast their confidence and hope in Christ, their condition of being in Christ by faith, and their danger of falling away from Christ by unbelief.
    e. Canonical: The verse relates to the rest of Scripture in terms of its continuity and coherence. It builds on the previous revelation of God in the Old Testament, especially regarding His covenant relationship with His people and His promise of salvation through His Son. It also anticipates the future revelation of God in the New Testament, especially regarding His fulfillment of His promise in Christ’s death and resurrection, His establishment of His church as His new house, and His return to judge and reward His faithful servants.

My thoughts: We are His house “if” [required] we hold firmly to our confidence and hope in Him, which implies our identity, responsibility, and condition.

  1. Question to BingChat 7-20-23: What is the context and literal interpretation of Heb 3:6?

Hebrews 3:6 is a verse that affirms the faithfulness of Christ as the Son over God’s house, and the condition of our belonging to that house. The verse reads:

“But Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house. And we are his house, if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory.” (NIV)

The context of this verse is that the author of Hebrews is comparing and contrasting Christ with Moses, who was a faithful servant in God’s house, but not the Son over it (Hebrews 3:1-5). The author is writing to a group of Jewish Christians who were facing persecution and temptation to abandon their faith in Christ and return to Judaism. The author uses the example of Moses and the Israelites in the wilderness to warn them against apostasy and unbelief and to encourage them to persevere and trust in Christ (Hebrews 3:7-19).

The literal interpretation of this verse is that Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house, which implies His divinity, authority, and loyalty. He is not a servant, but the Son of God. He is not the created thing, He is the Creator. He did not come to predict God’s plan, He came to fulfill it. And we are His house, if we hold firmly to our confidence and hope in Him, which implies our identity, responsibility, and condition. We are God’s house, His family, His temple if we remain faithful to Him and His word. We have confidence and hope in Him because He has saved us from our sins and given us eternal life. But we must not fall away from Him by unbelief or disobedience, as the Israelites did in the wilderness.
How can I hold firmly to my confidence and hope in Christ?

Holding firmly to your confidence and hope in Christ is a vital aspect of your faith and relationship with Him. Confidence and hope are not based on your feelings or circumstances but on God’s character and promises. Confidence means having firm trust and assurance in God’s love, power, and faithfulness. Hope means having a joyful expectation and anticipation of God’s goodness, grace, and glory.

There are many ways to hold firmly to your confidence and hope in Christ, but here are some suggestions that may help you:

  • Read and meditate on God’s word regularly. The Bible is the source of truth, wisdom, and encouragement for your faith. It reveals who God is, what He has done, and what He will do for you. It also reminds you of who you are in Christ, what He has done for you, and what He will do in you and through you. As you read and meditate on God’s word, you will grow in your knowledge and understanding of Him, and you will be able to apply His principles and promises to your life. You will also be able to resist the lies and doubts that may try to shake your confidence and hope. Some verses that may inspire you are:
    • Romans 15:13: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
    • Hebrews 10:23: “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”
    • Hebrews 11:1: “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
    • 1 John 5:14-15: “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.”
  • Pray and worship God sincerely. Prayer and worship are essential ways to communicate with God and express your love, gratitude, praise, and dependence on Him. Prayer is not only asking God for things, but also listening to His voice, confessing your sins, thanking Him for His blessings, interceding for others, and aligning your will with His. Worship is not only singing songs but also living a life that honors and glorifies God in all that you do. As you pray and worship God sincerely, you will experience His presence, peace, and power in your life. You will also be able to cast all your cares on Him, knowing that He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7). Some verses that may motivate you are:
    • Philippians 4:6-7: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
    • Psalm 34:1-4: “I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips. I will glory in the Lord; let the afflicted hear and rejoice. Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt his name together. I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.”
    • Psalm 95:1-7: “Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song. For the Lord is the great God,
      the great King above all gods. In his hand are the depths of the earth, and the mountain peaks belong to him. The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands formed the dry land. Come, let us bow down in worship,let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care.”
  • Connect and serve with other believers faithfully. The Christian life is not meant to be lived alone, but in community with other believers who share your faith and values. The church is the body of Christ, where each member has a role and a responsibility to support one another (1 Corinthians 12). The church is also the family of God, where each member has a relationship and a privilege to love one another (1 John 3). As you connect and serve with other believers faithfully, you will be able to grow in your faith, learn from others’ experiences, receive encouragement and correction, give comfort and counsel, use your gifts and talents, fulfill your mission and purpose, and reflect God’s love and glory to the world. Some verses that may guide you are:
    • Hebrews 10:24-25: “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
    • Galatians 6:2: “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”
    • Ephesians 4:15-16: “Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”
  1. Question to BingChat 7-20-23: What would be the difference between the interpretation of a Calvinist and an Armenian of Heb 3:6?

Hebrews 3:6 is a verse that affirms the faithfulness of Christ as the Son over God’s house, and the condition of our belonging to that house. The verse reads:

“But Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house. And we are his house, if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory.” (NIV)

Different theological traditions may interpret this verse differently, depending on their views on salvation, grace, and free will. Two of the most well-known traditions are Calvinism and Arminianism, which have different perspectives on the five points of TULIP: Total depravity, Unconditional election, Limited atonement, Irresistible grace, and Perseverance of the saints.

Calvinism is a theological system that emphasizes God’s sovereignty and predestination in salvation. Calvinists believe that God has chosen some people to be saved before the foundation of the world and that Christ died only for those elect. They also believe that God’s grace is irresistible and effectual, meaning that those whom God calls will inevitably come to faith and repentance. Finally, they believe that those who are truly saved will persevere in their faith until the end, and cannot lose their salvation.

Arminianism is a theological system that emphasizes human free will and responsibility for salvation. Arminians believe that God has foreseen who will believe in Him, and that Christ died for everyone who believes. They also believe that God’s grace is resistible and conditional, meaning that people can choose to accept or reject God’s offer of salvation. Finally, they believe that those who are saved can fall away from their faith and lose their salvation if they persist in sin and unbelief.

According to Calvinism, Hebrews 3:6 teaches that Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house, which consists of those whom He has chosen and redeemed by His blood. They interpret the conditional clause “if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory” as evidence or mark of true salvation, not a requirement or possibility of losing it. They argue that holding firmly to one’s confidence and hope in Christ is a result of God’s grace and power working in the believer’s life, not a human effort or merit. They also argue that the warning against apostasy in the following verses (Hebrews 3:7-19) is addressed to those who profess faith but do not possess it or those who are associated with the church but are not truly part of it. They claim that such people were never really saved in the first place and that their falling away proves their lack of genuine faith.

According to Arminianism, Hebrews 3:6 teaches that Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house, which consists of those who have believed and received Him as their Lord and Savior. They interpret the conditional clause “if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory” as a warning or exhortation to remain faithful to Christ and His word, not an assurance or guarantee of eternal security. They argue that holding firmly to one’s confidence and hope in Christ is a matter of human choice and responsibility, not a divine decree or coercion. They also argue that the warning against apostasy in the following verses (Hebrews 3:7-19) is addressed to those who are truly saved but are in danger of falling away from their faith due to sin and unbelief. They claim that such people can lose their salvation if they do not repent and return to Christ, and that their falling away does not negate their previous genuine faith.

My Conclusion: IF God chooses and NO decision and actions are required by the human then there is no need for a substitutionary death! Christ is God in the flesh and would know that His death was not required!

Chose this day, a CHOICE!

Joshua 24:15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

Joshua’s challenge to Israel was a call for them to remain faithful to God and His covenant, and to avoid the influence and idolatry of the surrounding nations. Joshua gave this challenge in his farewell address to the leaders and people of Israel, shortly before his death. He reminded them of God’s great deeds and promises for them and warned them of the consequences of disobedience.

Jesus did make a similar challenge to his disciples and followers. He challenged them to follow him, to obey his commands, to love God and their neighbors, to seek God’s kingdom and righteousness, to deny themselves, to take up their cross, to be his witnesses, to make disciples of all nations, and to remain faithful until the end. [HOLD FAST]

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