Therefore 1let us leave 2the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance 3from dead works and of faith toward God,
and of 4instruction about washings,a5the laying on of hands, 6the resurrection of the dead, and 7eternal judgment.
And this we will do 8if God permits.
For it is impossible, in the case of those 9who have once been enlightened, who have tasted 10the heavenly gift, and 11have shared in the Holy Spirit,
and 12have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come,
and 13then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since 14they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.
For 15land 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 16if it bears thorns and thistles, it is worthless and near to being cursed, 17and its end is to be burned.
Though we speak in this way, yet in your case, beloved, we feel sure of better things--things that belong to salvation.
For 18God is not unjust so as to overlook 19your work and the love that you have shown for his name in 20serving the saints, as you still do.
And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance 21of hope until the end,
so that you may not be sluggish, but 22imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
For when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, 23he swore by himself,
saying, 24"Surely I will bless you and multiply you."
And thus Abraham,b25having patiently waited, obtained the promise.
For people swear by something greater than themselves, and in all their disputes 26an oath is final for confirmation.
So when God desired to show more convincingly to 27the heirs of the promise 28the unchangeable character of his purpose, 29he guaranteed it with an oath,
so that by two unchangeable things, in which 30it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope 31set before us.
We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into 32the inner place behind the curtain,
where Jesus has gone 33as a forerunner on our behalf, 34having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.