What Does It Mean To “Sin Wilfully” In Hebrews 10:26?


 If Salvation is eternal, what does the Bible mean when it said if we “sin wilfully” after that we have received the knowledge of the Truth there is no more sacrifice for our sins?
What does it really mean to “sin willfully” according to Hebrews 10:26?
One of the most beautiful things about the Gospel and the Bible is that there are no contradictions in it. No dark sides at all.
Always when we study the Word and find certain things that seem contradictory to us, it is mostly as a result of lack of clarity, that is, lack of proper understanding of those things on our part.
Such is the case of Hebrews 10:26 which most people turn to when they want to invalidate the eternal nature of the Salvation we have in Christ. However, a closer look at this verse shows us that it is actually in support of Salvation being eternal and not against it.
Let’s see it together from the Word.
(Heb 10:26)  For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,
(Heb 10:27)  But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.
To get what the writer of Hebrews is trying to say in those verses we just read, we will need to study the scriptures surrounding those verses. That would mean studying the entire chapter very well, paying special attention to his audience and his use of words.
From verse 1 down to verse 3, we see that the author was talking to a set of people, his Jewish brothers, who were already conversant with the Old Testament. That is the Law of Moses and the writings of the prophets. They did not only “know” the Law, they also strictly practised it.
They were in the church, participated in every activity of the church including her sufferings and persecutions. But they were still strong followers of Moses. We would see this clearer as we proceed.
From verse 4 to 15, the author now begins to state clearly that the purpose of the coming and the sacrifice of Jesus was to take care of all kinds of sins once and for all, since the Law with it’s numerous sacrifices and priests was not able to do this.
A look at from verse 15 to 18 reveals that for those who have had their hearts and minds written with the laws of God (those who are born again), sins and iniquities are not remembered (counted) against them.
The reason their sins are no longer remembered or counted against them is not because they no longer do anything wrong. The reason is what the writer had already explained from verse 3 to 15 which is because the sacrifice of Jesus had already taken care of their sins, once and for all.
Please pay real attention to this part. From verse 19, we see how the author’s tone changed. He switched from just explaining things to them to calling them to take an action.
What was the action? Having used the previous verses and chapters to explain the sacrife and priesthood of Jesus, he then invites them to boldly “enter,” “draw near” by faith and enjoy the benefits of that sacrifice from where they are to inspire and produce good works, and have true fellowship with one another.
What if they refuse to accept all these that Jesus had done for them? The author then in verse 26 now tells them the repercussion of that refusal. He tells them that if they “sin wilfully” after that they had received the knowledge of the Truth, then there is no other sacrifice to atone for their sins.
That is, if after they had received the knowledge of the Truth which is to hear the Gospel of what Jesus had done for them, and by their own will rejects or refuses to believe that Gospel they just heard. Then they will have to bear God’s wrath against sin by themselves.
Them receiving the knowledge of the Truth there does not mean they have accepted or believed the Gospel before and maybe later rejected it. No! It simply means they are no longer ignorant of the Gospel because someone had preached it to them. The willful sin they did after that was that after they were aware of it, they didn’t believe it, rejecting it completely of their own will.
The author then went on from verse 28 to explain that in the Old times, whoever rejected the Mosaic laws after he has known about it was severely punished as long as two or three persons testified against him. How much more punishment will whoever refuses to accept the sacrifice of Jesus receive of God at the end of the world.
Having told them of this fate that awaits those who refused to believe the Gospel, he then reminded them how they have suffered together with the church since they have always been among them for long and receiving the same persecutions those who believed in Jesus received.
He then encouraged them to do the will of God in verse 36 so that they can receive the promise of God. What was this God’s will he wanted them to do?
It was simply to believe in Jesus and His sacrifice for humanity. This is consistent in all the scriptures.
(Joh 6:28)  The people asked Jesus, "What does God want us to do?"
(Joh 6:29)  Jesus answered, "The work God wants you to do is this: to believe in the one he sent."
In verse 38, the author again reminds them that it is only those who are justified by Faith that shall live eternally. But if any man after hearing the Gospel, draws back from accepting it, then such a fellow shall not be pleasing to God, having drawn back of his own will to perdition.
So from the message of this entire chapter, we understand clearly that to “sin wilfully” after that we have received the knowledge of the Truth, simply means to reject the sacrifice of Jesus by refusing to believe the Gospel.
It doesn’t mean that if a Christian commits a sin intentionally then there is no more hope for him since all men still sin even after they are born again. And there is no such a thing as “accidental sin.” Every sin has to do with our wills or else it is o longer sin.
Hebrews 10:26-29 is simply an explanation of the fate that is coming to all men who “sin wilfully” by rejecting or refusing to believe the Gospel after it has been preached to them.
We (Christians) have believed in Jesus’ eternal sacrifice for us and are saved forever from the coming wrath of God or indignation against sin.
I hope this blesses you.
Glory to God!

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