What is the antecedent of "and so much the more" in Hebrews 10:25?

Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves
0% (0 votes)
Exhorting one another
0% (0 votes)
Both
67% (4 votes)
Other- please explain
33% (2 votes)
Total votes: 6
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There are 8 Comments

BryanBice's picture

The antecedent actually goes back to v. 24 -- "Let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works (not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another), and all the more as you see the day drawing near." [ESV--parentheses added ]

So because the day is increasingly drawing near, we need to consider how to stir up one another. We can't stir up one another if we neglect to meet together. We can stir up one another through encouraging one another as we regularly meet together.

Ed Vasicek's picture

I voted for both, but I think the emphasis is not on either, but on the concept of participating in and building Christian community in general. This includes meeting and it includes exhorting (encouraging), but the antecedent is vague because, IMO, these two things are samples of what the author has in mind. The idea is that believers bond together and nurture one another, so it includes personal friendship, I believe.

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BryanBice's picture

Susan R wrote:
Do you think the "and so much the more" means that we should meet and exhort more often, or that it is more important that we not forsake assembling and exhorting?

I think "so much the more" means "and even more importantly." So the sense of vv. 24-25 is that since the Day is increasingly drawing near, it's all the more important that we perceive how to incite one another to love and good works (whenever we do meet together). The actual carrying out of the "inciting" is by means of exhorting/encouraging/comforting (parakaleo) one another at those times of meeting.

Susan R's picture

EditorModerator

So if it is more important that we not forsake meeting with other believers and be given to exhortation, should that then be translated into more and more services, special meetings, etc?

Charlie's picture

Susan R wrote:
So if it is more important that we not forsake meeting with other believers and be given to exhortation, should that then be translated into more and more services, special meetings, etc?

If anything, I think it would resemble Ed's Jesus Lodge more than 1830's camp meetings. There is every indication that the NT church was doing a lot with each other besides sitting in a formal worship service.

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Susan R's picture

EditorModerator

Charlie wrote:
Susan R wrote:
So if it is more important that we not forsake meeting with other believers and be given to exhortation, should that then be translated into more and more services, special meetings, etc?

If anything, I think it would resemble Ed's Jesus Lodge more than 1830's camp meetings. There is every indication that the NT church was doing a lot with each other besides sitting in a formal worship service.


That's where I was going with this, but I didn't want to come out and say it and skew the 'results' of my inquiry. Smile I have heard all my life that the "and so much the more" means we should be in church more- more services, more meetings... but when I read the verse, sitting in a service means that only one person is doing the exhorting, and everyone else is sitting there soaking it up....or clipping their fingernails. That whole passage leads me to think that we should be more involved in each other's lives, so to speak- more involved in discipling, mentoring, and meeting needs than 'sitting in church'.

I just wanted to know if anyone else was reading it that way.

BryanBice's picture

Susan R wrote:
Charlie wrote:
Susan R wrote:
So if it is more important that we not forsake meeting with other believers and be given to exhortation, should that then be translated into more and more services, special meetings, etc?

If anything, I think it would resemble Ed's Jesus Lodge more than 1830's camp meetings. There is every indication that the NT church was doing a lot with each other besides sitting in a formal worship service.


That's where I was going with this, but I didn't want to come out and say it and skew the 'results' of my inquiry. Smile I have heard all my life that the "and so much the more" means we should be in church more- more services, more meetings... but when I read the verse, sitting in a service means that only one person is doing the exhorting, and everyone else is sitting there soaking it up....or clipping their fingernails. That whole passage leads me to think that we should be more involved in each other's lives, so to speak- more involved in discipling, mentoring, and meeting needs than 'sitting in church'.

I just wanted to know if anyone else was reading it that way.

I concur. More "formal meetings"? No.

But again, the emphasis of "and so much the more" is not on quantity. The phrase has to do with "importance," that is, since the Day is approaching, it is that much more important that we perceive how to incite each other to love & good works. Of course, we can't be incited if we forsake the assembly, and we won't be incited if we don't encourage/exhort/comfort each other; so let's not forsake, & let's do encourage.

Incidentally, one of the interpretational issues of the text is what is meant by "the day." If Hebrews was written before the fall of Jerusalem (and the conservative position is that it was), some think of "the day" as that ominous, impending calamity. Westcott's comments are helpful, I think: "The actual position of the things, the nearness of the great crisis of the Lord's coming [or Jerusalem's destruction ] made the obligation of mutual support among Christians urgently pressing. The danger was great and the time was short. Those who deserted the Christian faith would be swept away in the ruin soon to follow, without the opportunity of return."