Hebrews 3:7-19



“If” here (“ei” in Greek; “ ‘im” in Hebrew) expresses a wish.


Psalm 95

  1. Two parts
    1. 95:1-7, a call to worship
    2. 95:7-11, a warning against disobeying him with a reminder of what happened to Israel in the wilderness.
  2. Point:  Worship is only acceptable if it is followed by obedience.
  3. 95:8 – “Meribah” means “quarreling”.  The Septuagint translates it as “The Rebellion”
  4. 95:8 – “Massah” means “testing”.
  5. Exodus 17:2 – The people:
    1. Rebelled against Moses
    2. Tested YHWH
  6. Numbers 13, 14
    1. 14:21-22

                                                              i.      “who disobeyed me” is “have not hearkened to my voice”

                                                            ii.      “tested me ten times” could be:

1.      Ex. 14:10-12 – at the Red Sea

2.      Ex. 15:22-24 – Marah, the bitter waters

3.      Ex. 16:1-3 – Before the Manna

4.      Ex. 16:19-20 – Kept part of the Manna

5.      Ex. 16:27-30 – Went to gather Manna on the 7th day

6.      Ex. 17:1-4 – Water from the Rock, Meribah/Massah

7.      Ex. 32:1-35 – The Golden Calf

8.      Nu. 11:1-3 – Complain of Hardship, Fire from Lord, Taberah

9.      Nu. 11:4-34 - Quail

10. Nu. 14:3 – Bad report of the ten spies

  1. Numbers 20 is a repeat of Ex. 17 forty years later at the same location
  2. Deuteronomy 2:14
    1. Joshua and Caleb enter the “rest” in Deut. 12:9

                                                              i.      “rest” is “menuhah” and is used in Psalm 95:11 and in Ruth 1:9


Christ death and resurrection was a personal Exodus:

Luke 9:31 at the Mount of Transfiguration Luke wrote: “They (Moses and Elijah) spoke about his departure (exodun or exodon) , which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem.”

  1. exodun from
    1. “ek” which means “from, out” and
    2. “hodos” which means “a road, the route or progress” or “exodov”)


The Christian faith was the new exodus

Jesus was the true passover  lamb in 1 Corinthians 5:7

The believers were like Israel 1 Corinthians 10:1

Paul and Jude (Jude 5) say that Jesus led Israel in the wilderness:

1)     1 Corinthians 10:4 –“that rock was Christ.”

2)     Jude 5 “I want to remind you that the Lord (early mss “JESUS”) delivered his people out of Egypt , but later destroyed those who did not believe.”

a.      Textual evidence supports that the original reading was “Jesus”

                                                              i.      Many minuscules

                                                            ii.      Latin versions

                                                          iii.      Coptic versions

                                                           iv.      Codex Alexandrinus (uncial from 400 AD)

                                                             v.      Codex Vaticanus

b.      NIV footnotes has “Jesus”


The correlation of the 40 years in the wilderness and the 40 years that followed the time of Jesus was a topic of discussion as first century Qumran literature shows:

  1. There would be a forty year interval after the death of the Teacher of Righteousness (a contemporary of Jesus and John the Baptist) “the consuming of all the men of war who returned with the man of Falsehood” (CD 20:14f which sounds a lot like Deut. 2:14-16)
  2. Forty years and the wicked will be no more (4QpPs. 37)
  3. Forty years’ war
  4. Eliezer ben Hyrcanus (Rabbinic sage around 100 AD whose views are recorded in the Mishnah) believed that Psalm 95:10 indicated that the days of the Messiah would last forty years.
    1. Torah (first 5 books of OT) – Mishnah (written recording of the Oral teachings from the Torah, 70-200 AD) – Talmud (a discussion of the Mishnah)



Israel perished in the wilderness because they rebelled against Moses.

In the first century Christians were rebelling against Jesus.


βλέπω             ἀδελφός             μήποτε             εἰμί      ἐν      τὶς      ὑμεῖς         καρδία

See to it             brothers            that none         you       in       any     you             heart


πονηρός      ἀπιστία       ἐν               ἀφίστημι      ἀπό        θεός       ζάω

   evil             unbelief     about   the      to depart       from       God       lifetime


βλέπω means to see When it is followed by the negative  μήποτε it expresses a warning and fear regarding a present inevitable reality.  This indicates that the warning should be taken very seriously.

πονηρός means “evil, wicked” (This evil heart is characterized by unbelief as seen next)

ἀπιστία (apistia) involves active disloyalty and passive unbelief.  Here it is used as a genitive of quality indicating that unbelief characterized the evil heart.

ἀφίστημι is to fall away, to depart, to leave, to step aside from.  This is the Greek word for our word “apostasy”

θεός       ζάω has no article which means the emphasis is on the character of the “God Life”


Unbelief involved:

1)     Active sense – disloyalty, rebellion

2)     Passive sense – unbelief


It is more serious of a problem when Christians Rebel against Jesus the Apostle and High Priest of their faith

than it was for Israel to rebel against their Apostle (Moses) and their High Priest (Aaron).