The Horrors of Apostasy

For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?” (Hebrews 10:26-29).

Few places in Scripture can be found in which there is a more graphic and horrific description of apostasy. The heinousness of this spiritual crime is demonstrated by the severity of its punishment. Clearly, apostasy is no trifling matter.

What makes apostasy so horrible?

  • It is a deliberate/intentional act (v. 26). Some spiritual miscues happen unintentionally. Not apostasy. It is willful. It is not done out of ignorance. The word “knowledge” (epignosis) denotes a reservoir of learning which has been purposefully disregarded.

  • It is a foolish act (v. 26). By turning your back on Christ—the Lamb of God, you have abandoned Jehovah’s only enduring solution to humanity’s sin, guilt, and shame. The Old Testament’s inferior and inefficient sacrificial system has been replaced by Christ. Leaving Him behind is leaving behind God’s only permanent solution to your sin.

  • It is an act which will certainly be punished severely (vv. 27-29). Apostasy and other high crimes which occurred under the Law of Moses resulted in the just execution of the death penalty. The only appropriate way to justly punish apostasy under the new and better covenant is to punish it with the second death—eternal separation from God in Gehenna (Revelation 21:8).

Apostasy is the most heinous spiritual crime you can commit.

   Send article as PDF   

Author: jchowning

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *