Hebrews 3:13
But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
Jump to: AlfordBarnesBengelBensonBICalvinCambridgeChrysostomClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctExp GrkGaebeleinGSBGillGrayGuzikHaydockHastingsHomileticsICCJFBKellyKingLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWMeyerParkerPNTPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBVWSWESTSK
(13) While it is called To day.—Literally, as long as the “to-day” is called (to you), lest any one of you be hardened by deceit of sin. As long as they heard the word of God speaking in the Scripture, “To-day if ye shall hear,” so long is the way of obedience open to them. Sin is here personified as the Deceiver (Romans 7:11), alluring from God by the offer of “pleasures” (Hebrews 11:25), or persuading that forbearance and “respite” (Exodus 8:15; Ecclesiastes 8:11) imply the absence of a Living God.

3:7-13 Days of temptation are often days of provocation. But to provoke God, when he is letting us see that we entirely depend and live upon him, is a provocation indeed. The hardening of the heart is the spring of all other sins. The sins of others, especially of our relations, should be warnings to us. All sin, especially sin committed by God's professing, privileged people, not only provokes God, but it grieves him. God is loth to destroy any in, or for their sin; he waits long to be gracious to them. But sin, long persisted in, will make God's wrath discover itself in destroying the impenitent; there is no resting under the wrath of God. Take heed: all who would get safe to heaven must look about them; if once we allow ourselves to distrust God, we may soon desert him. Let those that think they stand, take heed lest they fall. Since to-morrow is not ours, we must make the best improvement of this day. And there are none, even the strongest of the flock, who do not need help of other Christians. Neither are there any so low and despised, but the care of their standing in the faith, and of their safety, belongs to all. Sin has so many ways and colours, that we need more eyes than ours own. Sin appears fair, but is vile; it appears pleasant, but is destructive; it promises much, but performs nothing. The deceitfulness of sin hardens the soul; one sin allowed makes way for another; and every act of sin confirms the habit. Let every one beware of sin.But exhort one another daily - This is addressed to the members of the churches; and it follows, therefore:

(1) that it is their duty to exhort their brethren; and,

(2) that it is their duty to do it "daily;" that is, constantly; see Hebrews 10:25; 1 Thessalonians 4:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:11; note, Romans 12:8. While this is the special duty of the ministers of the gospel 1 Timothy 6:2; 2 Timothy 4:2; Titus 2:6, Titus 2:15, it is also the duty of all the members of the churches, and a most important, but much-neglected duty. This does not refer to "public" exhortation, which more appropriately pertains to the ministers of the gospel, but to that private watch and care which the individual members of the church should have over one another. But in what eases is such exhortation proper? What rules should regulate it? I answer, it may be regarded as a duty, or is to be performed in such cases as the following:

(1) Intimate friends in the church should exhort and counsel one another; should admonish each other of their faults; and should aid one another in the divine life.

(2) parents should do the same thing to their children. They are placed particularly under their watch and care. A pastor cannot often see the members of his flock in private; and a parent may greatly aid him in his work by watching over the members of their families who are connected with the church.

(3) Sunday School teachers may aid much in this duty. They are to be assistants to parents and to pastors. They often have under their care youthful members of the churches. They have an opportunity of knowing their state of mind, their temptations, and their dangers better than the pastor can have. It should be theirs, therefore, to exhort them to a holy life.

(4) the aged should exhort the young. Every aged Christian may thus do much for the promotion of religion. His experience is the property of the church; and he is bound so to employ it as to be useful in aiding the feeble, reclaiming the wandering, recovering the backslider, and directing the inquiring. There is a vast amount of "spiritual capital" of this kind in the church that is unemployed, and that might be made eminently useful in helping others to heaven.

(5) church members should exhort one another. There may not be the intimacy of personal friendship among all the members of a large church, but still the connection between them should be regarded as sufficiently tender and confidential to make it proper for anyone to admonish a brother who goes astray. They belong to the same communion. They sit down at the same supper of the Lord. They express their assent to the same articles of faith. They are regarded by the community as united. Each member sustains a portion of the honor and the responsibility of the whole; and each member should feel that he has a right, and that it is his duty to admonish a brother if he goes astray. Yet this duty is greatly neglected. In what church is it performed? How often do church members see a fellow member go astray without any exhortation or admonition! How often do they hear reports of the inconsistent lives of other members and perhaps contribute to the circulation of those reports themselves, without any pains taken to inquire whether they are true! How often do the poor fear the rich members of the church, or the rich despise the poor, and see one another live in sin, without any attempt to entreat or save them! I would not have the courtesies of life violated. I would not have any assume a dogmatical or dictatorial air. I would have no one step out of his proper sphere of life. But the principle which I would lay down is, that the fact of church membership should inspire such confidence as to make it proper for one member to exhort another whom he sees going astray. Belonging to the same family; having the same interest in religion; and all suffering when one suffers, why should they not be allowed tenderly and kindly to exhort one another to a holy life?

While it is called Today - While life lasts; or while you may be permitted to use the language "Today hear the voice of God." The idea is, that the exhortation is not to be intermitted. It is to be our daily business to admonish and exhort one another. Christians are liable every day to go astray; every day they need aid in the divine life; and they who are fellow-heirs with them of salvation should be ever ready to counsel and advise them.

Lest any of you be hardened - the notes at Hebrews 3:8. It is possible for Christians to become in a sense hardened. Their minds become less sensitive than they were to the claims of duty, and their consciences become less tender. Hence, the propriory of mutual exhortation, that they may always have the right feeling, and may always listen to the commands of God.

The deceitfulness of sin - See the notes at Ephesians 4:22. Sin is always deceitful. It promises more than it performs. It assures us of pleasure which it never imparts. It leads us on beyond what was supposed when we began to indulge in it. The man who commits sin is always under a delusion; and sin, if he indulges it, will lead him on from one step to another until the heart becomes entirely hardened. Sin puts on plausible appearances and preferences; it assumes the name of virtue; it offers excuses and palliations, until the victim is snared, and then spell-bound he is hurried on to every excess. If sin was always seen in its true aspect when man is tempted to commit it, it would be so hateful that he would flee from it with the utmost abhorrence. What young man would become a drunkard if he saw when he began exactly the career which he would run? What young man, now vigorous and healthful, and with fair prospects of usefulness and happiness would ever touch the intoxicating bowl, if he saw what he "would be" when he became a sot? What man would ever enter the room of the gambler if he saw just where indulgence would soon lead him, and if at the commencement he saw exactly the wo and despair which would inevitably ensue? Who would become a voluptuary and a sensualist, if he saw exactly the close of such a career? Sin deceives, deludes, blinds. Men do not, or will not, see the fearful results of indulgence. They are deluded by the hope of happiness or of gain; they are drawn along by the fascinations and allurements of pleasure until the heart becomes hard and the conscience seared - and then they give way without remorse. From such a course, the apostle would have Christians guarded by kind and affectionate exhortation. Each one should feel that he has an interest in keeping his brother from Such a doom; and each Christian thus in danger should be willing to listen to the kind exhortation of a Christian brother.

13. one another—Greek, "yourselves"; let each exhort himself and his neighbor.

daily—Greek, "on each day," or "day by day."

while it is called To-day—while the "to-day" lasts (the day of grace, Lu 4:21, before the coming of the day of glory and judgment at Christ's coming, Heb 10:25, 37). To-morrow is the day when idle men work, and fools repent. To-morrow is Satan's to-day; he cares not what good resolutions you form, if only you fix them for to-morrow.

lest … of you—The "you" is emphatic, as distinguished from "your fathers" (Heb 3:9). "That from among you no one (so the Greek order is in some of the oldest manuscripts) be hardened" (Heb 3:8).

deceitfulness—causing you to "err in your heart."


Ver. 13,14 But exhort one another daily, while it is called To-day: the means to avoid the former evil is, to exhort; which, as a private duty, is an earnest, frequent calling on, stirring up, or persuading, encouraging to perseverance in the Christian religion, and to put away all heart evil, especially unbelief, which traineth to apostacy; to which are subservient God’s precepts, promises, threatenings suitably applied by them. And this is not only privately, but especially publicly, by the regular ministration of the word and ordinances to the whole society of Christians, as they are personally obliged to it, being members one of another, 1 Corinthians 12:25,27. And this they are to do instantly, for no man is sure what may be on the morrow, he being but a days-man, living, and supplied, as working by the day: Sufficient to the day is the duty as well as the evil in it, Matthew 6:11,34. Whilst then the day of grace and repentance lasts, in which God calls and entreats, and will hear and help, the opportune time of exhorting, the very instant wherein God expecteth it, Hebrews 3:7 Psalm 95:7. And every one, as thus to look to another, must begin with himself, lest any miscarry; charity, especially as to this, should begin in every Christian at home.

Lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin; lest themselves or others refuse the gospel tendered, or reject and apostatize from it after professing it, so as to become not only obstinate, but rebellious, by unbelief, and an habitual hardened heart; so as the sinful, natural habit of our soul, Jam 1:12,15, so horribly vile in itself, that were it not masked nature would abhor it, might be drawn forth by the false colours, as the devil blinds sin with, to delude the understanding, and to catch and insnare the malignant will, that it swallows it more and more, to the hardening of the heart; that Divine promises, threatenings, nor admonitions, can make any impression; it being unmoved under the application of all these, disregards the Christian faith, and hath its issue in a total apostacy, Jeremiah 17:9 Ephesians 4:22 1 Timothy 1:19.

But exhort one another daily,.... In order to prevent unbelief and apostasy. The phrase is sometimes rendered, "comfort one another", or, "yourselves together", as in 1 Thessalonians 5:11 which the saints may do, by discoursing together about divine things; by praying together; by instructing one another in the doctrines of the Gospel; by putting one another in mind of the covenant of grace, and its promises; and by observing the near approach of everlasting happiness with Christ. And though the business of exhortation greatly belongs to ministers of the word, yet it ought not to be neglected by private believers; who ought, when it becomes necessary, to exhort one another to prayer; to an attendance on the word and ordinances; to a regard to their conversations; to a close adherence to their profession; and to a believing view and consideration of Christ, the apostle and high priest of it; and to a due concern for his truth and interest: and this should be done in love, with good and consolatory words, and in things, in which the saints are concerned, and do themselves regard; and it is an affair which requires prudence and faithfulness; and supposes that God's own people may be dull, heavy, and sluggish; and this is to be done "daily", every day, as often as there is an occasion, and an opportunity for it; and

while it is called today; while the Gospel dispensation continues; or while the time of life lasts. This shows that the phrase "today", in Psalm 95:7 did not respect David's time only. The Syriac version renders it, "until that day which is called today": until the everlasting day appears, when there will be no need of such exhortations, nor any danger of what follows:

lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin; actual sin, which is a transgression of the law; every sin is of an hardening nature, and by being often committed, an habit is contracted, and a callousness brought upon the heart and conscience; or the corruption of nature, indwelling sin, may be meant; an evil and a corrupt heart, which deceives through promises of pleasure, or profit to a man's self, or of secrecy and impunity; it suggests the power a man has to repent at pleasure, and the mercy of God, by which means the man is drawn in to it, and by frequent repeating it, grows hardened in it.

But exhort one another daily, {i} while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

(i) While today lasts, that is to say, so long as the gospel is offered to us.

Hebrews 3:13. Ἑαυτούς] tantamount to ἀλλήλους, comp. 1 Corinthians 4:7; Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 3:13; 1 Thessalonians 5:13; 1 Peter 4:8, al.; Kühner, II. p. 325.

ἄχρις αὗ] in the inclusive sense: as far as that, i.e. so long as. Cf. 2Ma 14:10 : ἄχρι γὰρ Ἰούδας περίεστιν, ἀδύνατον εἰρήνης τυχεῖν τὰ πράγματα. Josephus, Antiq. x. 2. 2 : ηὔχετο μέχρις τῆς αὐτοῦ ζωῆς εἰρήνην ὑπάρξαι; Xenophon, Cyrop. v. 4. 16: Καὶ ὁ μὲν Ἀσσύριος διώξας ἄχρις οὗ ἀσφαλὲς ᾤετο εἶναι, ἀπετράπετο.

ἄχρις οὗ τὸ σήμερον καλεῖται] so long as the to-day, of which mention is made in the passage of the psalm, is named, or: so long as it is still called “to-day,” and it is thus not yet too late to be obedient to the admonition of the psalm. So Luther, Estius, Schlichting, Owen, Carpzov, Stuart, Bleek, Alford, Maier, Kurtz, al. Others, as Heinrichs, Dindorf, Böhme, Kuinoel, Klee, Tholuck, Moll, Hofmann: so long as that to-day of the psalm is called out, i.e. is called out, or proclaimed, to you.

The “to-day” is not the duration of the lifetime of the individuals (Basil, Ep. 42, Opp. iii. p. 130: τὸ σήμερον σημαίνει ὅλον τὸν χρόνον τῆς ζωῆς ἡμῶν; Theodoret, Theophylact, Primasius, Erasmus, Estius, Cornelius a Lapide, J. Cappellus, Dorscheus, Valckenaer), but (comp. μέχρι τέλους, Hebrews 3:6; Hebrews 3:14) the continued existence of the earthly world, which, with the Parousia of Christ—thought of as near at hand (Hebrews 10:25; Hebrews 10:37)—attains its end.

ἀπάτῃ τῆς ἁμαρτίας] by the deception (the treacherous enticement or alluring) of sin. The ἁμαρτία is here personified, comp. Romans 7:11. What is meant is the allurement exerted by the seductive splendour of the ancient cultus to a relapse into the same, and therewith to an apostasy from Christianity.

Hebrews 3:13. To avoid this, παρακαλεῖ τε ἑαυτοὺς καθʼ ἑκάστην ἡμέραν, “Exhort one another daily”. ἑαυτούς is equivalent to ἀλλήλους, see Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 3:13. ἄχρις οὗ τὸ Σήμερον καλεῖται, “as long as that period endures which can be called ‘to-day’ ”. ἄχρις denotes a point up to which something is done; hence, the term during which something is done as here. τὸ σήμερον = the word “to-day”. Bengel says, “Dum Psalmus iste auditur et legitur”; but this is less likely. The meaning is, So long as opportunity is given to hear God’s call. ἵνα μὴἁμαρτίας, “lest any of you be rendered rebellious through sin’s deceit”; perhaps the meaning would be better brought out by translating “lest any of you be rendered rebellious by sin’s deceit”. [On sin’s deceit cf. “Nemo repente pessimus evasit”; and the striking motto to the 35th chap. of The Fortunes of Nigel.] Sin in heart or life blinds a man to the significance and attractiveness of God’s offer.

13. exhort one another] The verb implies the mutually strengthening intercourse of consolation and moral appeal. It is the verb from which comes the word Paraclete, i.e. the Comforter or Strengthened The literal rendering is “exhort yourselves,” but this is only an idiom which extends reciprocity into identity, and the meaning is “exhort one another.”

while it is called To day] Another rendering is “so long as to-day is being proclaimed.” The meaning is “while the to-day of the Psalm (τὸ σήμερον) can still be regarded as applicable,” i.e. while our “day of visitation” lasts, and while we still “have the light.” Luke 19:44; John 12:35-36.

be hardened] See note on Hebrews 3:8. The following clause indicates that God only “hardens” the heart, in the sense that man is inevitably suffered to render his own heart callous by indulgence in sin.

Verse 13. - But exhort one another (literally, yourselves, as in Colossians 3:16, the idea being that of the responsibility of the believers themselves in keeping their own faith alive; the Church must keep itself from apostasy by the mutual admonitions of its members), day by day, so long as it is called Today (i.e. while the "Today," τὸ σήμερον, of the psalm is still called so, καλεῖται: while you are still living day by day within the limit of its meaning); lest any one of you be hardened (still referring to the warning of the psalm) by the deceitfulness of sin. Here again, as in ver. 12, the possible result of obdurate unbelief is distinctly traced to moral culpability. Sin is a deceiver (cf. Romans 7:11; Ephesians 4:22); it distorts the spiritual vision, causes us to take false views of things, and to lose our clear view of truth; and continued dalliance with sin may hare its result in final obduracy, which, as above remarked, is our own doing as it comes of our sin, God's doing as it comes of his judgment. The sin contemplated in the case of the Hebrew Christians as not unlikely to have its result in obduracy was, not only imperfect appreciation of the true character of the gospel revelation, and consequent remissness in mutual admonition and attendance at Christian worship (Hebrews 10:25), but also, as a further consequence of such remissness, failure in the moral purity of life, the active charity, the disentanglement from the world, and the endurance of persecution, required of Christians. This appears from the earnest exhortations that follow afterwards against all such shortcomings (see especially Hebrews 10:19-26, 32-39; Hebrews 12:1-18; Hebrews 13:1-20). It was especially by conscientious perseverance in the religious life that they might hope to keep their religious faith steadfast and unclouded to the end; in accordance with Christ's own saying, "If any man will do (θέλη ποιεῖν) his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God." Hebrews 3:13While it is called to-day (ἄρχις οὗ τὸ σήμερον καλεῖται)

Lit. so long as the to-day is being named. The article points to the former expression - the "to-day" of Hebrews 3:7. It is the day of grace, while salvation through Christ is still attainable.

Through the deceitfulness of sin (ἀπάτῃ τῆς ἁμαρίας)

Ἀπάτη is rather a trick, stratagem, deceit, than the quality of deceitfulness. The warning is against being hardened by a trick which their sin may play them. Note the article, the or his sin - the sin of departing from the living God. The particular deceit in this case would be the illusion of faithfulness to the past.

Hebrews 3:13 Interlinear
Hebrews 3:13 Parallel Texts

Hebrews 3:13 NIV
Hebrews 3:13 NLT
Hebrews 3:13 ESV
Hebrews 3:13 NASB
Hebrews 3:13 KJV

Hebrews 3:13 Bible Apps
Hebrews 3:13 Parallel
Hebrews 3:13 Biblia Paralela
Hebrews 3:13 Chinese Bible
Hebrews 3:13 French Bible
Hebrews 3:13 German Bible

Bible Hub

Hebrews 3:12
Top of Page
Top of Page