Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God.
But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed.1 In the end it will be burned.
Even though we speak like this, dear friends,2 we are confident of better things in your case--things that accompany salvation.
God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.311
We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, in order to make your hope4 sure.
We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate5 those who through faith and patience6 inherit what has been promised.7
When God made his promise to Abraham, since there was no one greater for him to swear by, he swore by himself,814
saying, "I will surely bless you and give you many descendants."a915
And so after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised.1016
Men swear by someone greater than themselves, and the oath confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument.1117
Because God wanted to make the unchanging12 nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised,13 he confirmed it with an oath.