Hebrews 12:17
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
For you know that even afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought for it with tears.

King James Bible
For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.

Darby Bible Translation
for ye know that also afterwards, desiring to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, (for he found no place for repentance) although he sought it earnestly with tears.

World English Bible
For you know that even when he afterward desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for a change of mind though he sought it diligently with tears.

Young's Literal Translation
for ye know that also afterwards, wishing to inherit the blessing, he was disapproved of, for a place of reformation he found not, though with tears having sought it.

Hebrews 12:17 Parallel
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

For ye know how that afterward ... - When he came to his father, and earnestly besought him to reverse the sentence which he had pronounced; see Genesis 27:34-40. The "blessing" here referred to was not that of the birth-right, which he knew he could not regain, but that pronounced by the father Isaac on him whom he regarded as his first-born son. This Jacob obtained by fraud, when Isaac really "meant" to bestow it on Esau. Isaac appears to have been ignorant wholly of the bargain which Jacob and Esau had made in regard to the birth-right, and Jacob and his mother contrived in this way to have that confirmed which Jacob had obtained of Esau by contract. The sanction of the father, it seems, was necessary, before it could be made sure, and Rebecca and Jacob understood that the dying blessing of the aged patriarch would establish it all. It was obtained by dishonesty on the part of Jacob; but so far as Esau was concerned, it was an act of righteous retribution for the little regard he had shown for the honor of his birth.

For he found no place of repentance - Margin, "Way to change his mind," That is, no place for repentance "in the mind of isaac," or no way to change his mind. It does not mean that Esau earnestly sought to repent and could not, but that when once the blessing had passed the lips of his father, he found it impossible to change it. Isaac firmly declared that he had "pronounced" the blessing, and though it had been obtained by fraud, yet as it was of the nature of a divine prediction, it could not now be changed. He had not indeed intended that it should be thus. He had pronounced a blessing on another which had been designed for him. But still the benediction had been given. The prophetic words had been pronounced. By divine direction the truth had been spoken, and how could it be changed? It was impossible now to reverse the divine purposes in the case, and hence, the "blessing" must stand as it had been spoken. Isaac did, however, all that could be done. He gave a benediction to his son Esau, though of far inferior value to what he had pronounced on the fraudulent Jacob; Genesis 27:39-40.

Though he sought it carefully with tears - Genesis 27:34. He sought to change the purpose of his father, but could not do it. The meaning and bearing of this passage, as used by the apostle, may be easily understood:

(1) The decision of God on the human character and destiny will soon be pronounced. That decision will be according to truth, and cannot be changed.

(2) if we should despise our privileges as Esau did his birth-right, and renounce our religion, it would be impossible to recover what we had lost. There would be no possibility of changing the divine decision in the case, for it would be determined forever. This passage, therefore, should not be alleged to show that a sinner. "cannot repent," or that he cannot find "place for repentance," or assistance to enable him to repent, or that tears and sorrow for sin would be of no avail, for it teaches none of these things; but it should be used to keep us from disregarding our privileges, from turning away from the true religion, from slighting the favors of the gospel, and from neglecting religion until death comes; because when God has once pronounced a sentence excluding us from his favor, no tears, or pleading, or effort of our own can change him. The sentence which he pronounces on the scoffer, the impenitent, the hypocrite, and the apostate, is one that will abide forever without change. This passage, therefore, is in accordance with the doctrine more than once stated before in this Epistle, that if a Christian should really apostatize it would be impossible that he should be saved; see the notes on Hebrews 6:1-6.

Hebrews 12:17 Parallel Commentaries

December 2. "Looking Diligently Lest any Man Fail" (Heb. xii. 15).
"Looking diligently lest any man fail" (Heb. xii. 15). It is not losing all, but coming short we are to fear. We may not lose our souls, but we may lose something more precious than life--His full approval, His highest choice, and our incorruptible and star-gemmed crown. It is the one degree more that counts, and makes all the difference between hot water--powerless in the boiler--and steam--all alive with power, and bearing its precious freight across the continent. I want, in this short life of
Rev. A. B. Simpson—Days of Heaven Upon Earth

Note F. Note from Bengel on Rom. I. 4.
According to the Spirit of Holiness. The word hagios, holy, when God is spoken of, not only denotes the blameless rectitude in action, but the very Godhead, or to speak more properly, the divinity, or excellence of the Divine nature. Hence hagiosune (the word here used) has a kind of middle sense between hagiotes, holiness, and hagiasmos, sanctification. Comp. Heb. xii. 10 (hagiotes or holiness), v. 14 (hagiasmos or sanctification). So that there are, as it were, three degrees: sanctification,
Andrew Murray—Holy in Christ

Fourteenth Day. Endurance in Contradiction.
"Who endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself."-- Heb. xii. 3. What endurance was this! Perfect truth in the midst of error; perfect love in the midst of ingratitude and coldness; perfect rectitude in the midst of perjury, violence, fraud; perfect constancy in the midst of contumely and desertion; perfect innocence, confronting every debased form of depravity and guilt; perfect patience, encountering every species of gross provocation--"oppressed and afflicted, He opened not His mouth!"
John R. Macduff—The Mind of Jesus

"But it is Good for Me to Draw Near to God: I have Put My Trust in the Lord God, that I May Declare all Thy
Psal. lxxiii. 28.--"But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all thy works." After man's first transgression, he was shut out from the tree of life, and cast out of the garden, by which was signified his seclusion and sequestration from the presence of God, and communion with him: and this was in a manner the extermination of all mankind in one, when Adam was driven out of paradise. Now, this had been an eternal separation for any thing that
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Cross References
Genesis 27:30
Now it came about, as soon as Isaac had finished blessing Jacob, and Jacob had hardly gone out from the presence of Isaac his father, that Esau his brother came in from his hunting.

Genesis 27:34
When Esau heard the words of his father, he cried out with an exceedingly great and bitter cry, and said to his father, "Bless me, even me also, O my father!"

Genesis 27:38
Esau said to his father, "Do you have only one blessing, my father? Bless me, even me also, O my father." So Esau lifted his voice and wept.

1 Peter 3:9
not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead; for you were called for the very purpose that you might inherit a blessing.

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