Summary: # 3 in series on Hebrews. When are we guilty of neglecting our faith?
A Study of the Book of Hebrews
Jesus is Better
Sermon # 3
“Therefore we must give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard, lest we drift away. (2) For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward, (3) How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him, (4) God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?”
In chapter two the writer pauses in his presentation of Jesus as superior to every thing and everyone to give one of the five great warnings (danger signals) in Hebrews). These six danger signals can be likened to highway markers to warn the reader. These danger signals are as follows:
Peril of drifting, (2:1–4)
Peril of doubting, (3:7–4:2)
Peril of dullness, (5:11–6:20)
Peril of despising, (10:26–39)
Peril of (defying) denying, (12:15–29)
[J. Vernon McGee. Thru The Bible Commentary. (electronic ed. -1997). (Nashville: Thomas Nelson: Nashville, 1981)]
If (lit. since) the message of Angels is not to be ignored, how much more so, that which is received from the Son! Having established the clear superiority of Jesus over the Angels he urges his readers to pay more careful attention to what they have heard? What have they heard???
We have learned that God’s final revelation has been given by his Son Jesus Christ. If we could boil down all of chapter one and the first four verses of chapter two into a single statement it would be, “In these last days God has spoken to us by his Son… for this reason we must pay close attention to the word He has spoken.”
The writer begins Chapter two with the word “therefore” or “for this reason.” He is tying the subject of the last verse of chapter one to that which is to follow. The last verse of Chapter one stated, that the angels are
“… ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?”(1:14). It is the importance of this free gift of salvation that he wants the readers to focus their attention on! Some in the church of that day were in danger of being blown away from their moorings and drifting away from the truth of Christ.
There are two points of application. There are two groups to whom this has a special application.
First, to those who have never taken the time to accept the gift of salvation or The Danger of Rejecting Salvation.
Having established that Jesus is superior to everything and everyone, that He is the exalted one, that it was He that purged our sins, that He is the Creator and that He is worthy of worship, it as if the writer could go no further without an invitation to respond. It is as if he is saying, “Jesus is all of this and more, now what are you going to do about it?”
The writer is appealing to the ones who have heard the truth about Jesus and who know it is true, and they know they need Him but who have not yet made a commitment.
Jesus once told a parable speaking to this very problem in (Luke 4:16-24) “A certain man gave a great supper and invited many, (17) and sent his servant at supper time to say to those who were invited, ‘Come, for all things are now ready.’ (18) But they all with one accord began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of ground, and I must go and see it. I ask you to have me excused.’(19) And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to test them. I ask you to have me excused.’ (20) Still another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’ (21) So that servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house, being angry, said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.’ (22) And the servant said, ‘Master, it is done as you commanded, and still there is room.’ (23) Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. (24) For I say to you that none of those men who were invited shall taste my supper.’ ”
Just imagine, too busy to accept the invitation of the king. They all offered excuses. “When I get passed this hurdle, when I get over this struggle, I would love to but, I have other more pressing things right now! Someday! When the time is right! When I get older, but right now I am looking forward to enjoying my life. I will some day. But not today.”