3 And this we will do if God permits.
3 And this we will do
The antecedent of “this” is “let us go on to maturity.” It is important at this point to understand the argument of Hebrews 5:11f to this point. In chapter five the author warned Christians about their immaturity in Christ. The “therefore” of Hebrews 6:1 shows the implication that Christians need to mature in Christ. This verse shows that the “this” is maturity.
The author of Hebrews includes himself in the pursuit of maturity. He is somewhere in the process of growing in maturity. None had fully arrived at a full completion of maturity.
Up to this point the readers were “dull of hearing” (He 5:11), “unskillful in the Word of Righteousness” (He 5:13) and unable to masticate or assimilate “solid food” (He 5:14). Their inertness about the wonder of Christ put them in spiritual peril. Now they need to move on to a full knowledge of who and what Christ is.
The “if” here is conditional. There is a condition to God permitting the believer to mature in Christ. That condition has to do with leaving Levitical sacrifices and accept the finality of Christ’s sacrifice.
People cannot mature without God concurring with what they do. God does not concur with those who remain in immaturity. There is a certain condition upon which God permits a person to reach maturity. Maturity is not mechanical; it involves dynamic fellowship with God. This dynamic involves massing and assimilating of principles from God’s Word and appropriating them into one’s life. This is no “quick fix” spirituality.
The maturity process is dependent upon God’s grace.
Maturity in Christ is dependent upon both God’s power and grace. It is important not to presume on His grace. A person grows by metabolizing God’s principles into his experience. There are two types of metabolism: anabolism and catabolism. Anabolism builds up the cells of the body. By analogy, spiritual anabolism builds up the believer so that he has the resources to expend energy. Catabolism gives out energy. This is equivalent to the application of principles to experience. Without this process a believer will go into the stage of reversionism spiritually.