The Tragedy of Neglect Hebrews Series Pt. 2 2/19/2014
A Living in Chester (So. IL) it’s not uncommon to see homes, old business buildings, farms in disrepair, dilapidated, testimonies of neglect.
1 Many nursing homes are sadly neglecting their senior residents, unfit parents regularly neglect their children.(Proper care, concern, attention)
a As sad as each of these instances of neglect may be, they fail to be as sad as when someone rejects God’s gift of salvation.
b Enter eternity lost, without God’s grace.
1 Paul exposes a situation that comes in a close 2nd on the scale of tragedy... a audience that hasn’t rejected salivation, but rather were neglecting it.
a Hebrews 2:1-4 (NASB) 1 For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it. 2 For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, 3 how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, 4 God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.
b Neglect (vs. 3) id also in Matthew.
Matthew 22:5 (KJV) 5 But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise:
aa Aoriest, Perfect Tense: Not always that way; recent development.
bb Paul isn’t writing to a lost people, but to Christians who has simply began to not care about their salvation.
B It’s a sad sight to see Christians developing a lasse fair approach to their salvation.
1 We’re gonna look tonight at the tragedy of neglect.
a The reason for neglect.
b The results of neglect.
c The remedy of neglect.
I The reason for neglect. (Vs. 3-4)
Hebrews 2:3-4 (NASB) 3 how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, 4 God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.
A People don’t grasp salvation’s greatness.
1 Paul’s audience were drifting back into the law wen they had already laid hold to salvation through grace, which was far superior to the law.
a The law required the constant shedding of blood from bulls, goats, rams.
b Salvation is great because God designed it & gave it to mankind.
2 Paul addresses the greatness of salvation by giving these three features:
a Proclaimed by the Lord. (Law was given by angels (vs2) Gospel of grace was given by God Himself)
b Confirmed by those who heard it.(Apostles witnessed it (vs.3))
c Certified by God by miracles that accompanied the message. (Miracles in the first century wasn’t primarily to ease suffering but rather to prove the One performing them was from God.)
B Salvation’s uniqueness is forgotten.
1 “How shall we escape?”
a We can neglect it, reject it... but we can’t escape it.
b Christ’s salvation isn’t the best way to heaven - it’s the only way!
aa Only one way, one door, one Savior, one fountain of living water exists... Jesus Christ.
bb There is only one way to heaven!
2 One can’t help but wonder how many throngs of people are in hell who were so close to salvation.
a They heard, close to dropping anchor... but drifted away.
b All one has to do to so to hell is do nothing.
c It’s possible to be saved & NEGLECT the provision, salvation, remaining a spiritual baby. (Immature)
II The results of neglect. (Vs. 1-2)
Hebrews 2:1-2 (NASB) 1 For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it. 2 For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty,
A Danger of drifting.
1 “Drift away” is an incredible word picture.
a Ring slipping from your finger - losing it.
aa Jar with a small crack in it, allowing it’s contents to slowly leak out - losing what was inside.
bb A boat drifting aimlessly out to sea.
b There is a danger to drifting, but I’m not saying you “lose salvation.”
aa I lost my wedding ring, not for long, but I never lost the one who gave it to me!
bb There is a danger when we become like leaky jars, lose our fullness - (Backslidden, lose the overflowing presence of the Lord.)
2 In the OT if you broke the law - it broke you. (Blasphemy, adultery, idolatry: stoned you)
a under grace, rebellion is not taken to kindly by God.
aa He’ll continue to speak & if need be - discipline.
bb When we neglect God’s word, prayer, worship, opportunity for spiritual growth... the result is we drift.
b When we neglect our great salvation we start to drift - The anchor doesn’t move we do.
B Danger of destruction (vs.2)
1 There are two kids of sin: Transgression & Disobedience.
a Transgression: word used for trespassing on someone else’s property, going beyond the boundaries established by God.
b Disobedience: Failing to obey what God has told us to do.
aa Disobedience is the sin of not doing what we ought to do.
bb Doing nothing when we should be doing something.
2 “Received a just recompense.”
a If believers live in sin, God will discipline them.
b Lost people who die in sin will be eternally punished in hell.
III The remedy for neglect (vs. 1)
Hebrews 2:1 (NASB) 1 For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it.
A I preach verse one last because it holds the remedy for neglect.
1 We are to keep our eyes open; ears attentive to what we’ve heard with total concentration: The word of God.
a There was a man in Leeds, England, who has worn a hearing aid for years.
aa Upon his first visit to a new doctor, the physician removed the man’s hearing aid & immediately his hearing was improved.
bb He has been wearing it in the wrong ear for 20 years!
b We Christians should be attentive when it comes to the truth of God’s word.
2 Dr. Griffith Thomas gives this warning, “With familiarity, truths tend to lose their influence, and the result is involuntary gradual backsliding.”
a It is possible to listen but not really hear.
b Hebrews is a call to Christ to fully “hear” the message of truth.
c God wants our complete/undivided attention.
A Years ago, a man accidentally backed his truck over his 4-year old daughter, killing her. (Accident caused by neglect.)
1 The funeral was heart-wrenching to watch as the man’s agony was on full-display as he cried over the precious life that was lost.
a The man was lost, rejected opportunity to accept salvation.
b After the funeral the man cried to his pastor, “There could be no greater neglect than what I did to my baby.”
c The pastor replied, “No sir, you’re wrong. Your own soul is in peril if you continue to run from the free gift of salvation Christ has offered you.”
2 Woe to the person who neglects salvation and to the Christian who takes their salvation lightly.
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