Summary: This is a warning, not from a God who wants to find fault, but from a God who has forgiven fault and desires to encourage and purify.
“For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense, how shall 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, God also bearing witness with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.”
The letter to the Hebrews was probably written to the church in Jerusalem shortly before that city’s fall to Titus of Rome in A.D. 70. The estimated time of writing is about A.D. 65-66.
More important to remember than the date of writing though, is that it was written to Christians. There is much evidence for this, as I will point out as we move through. It was not written to pagans; it was not written to practitioners of Judaism; it was written for the believer, then and now.
I stress this point, because right here in the opening verses of the second chapter, very early in this letter, we find a warning.
There are five warnings to the church throughout the course of this epistle,
and these, as much as the doctrines of love and grace and forgiveness and mercy, must be studied and applied to the life...for they are life-saving.
So let’s move forward with an attitude of surrender to His truth and a willingness to be changed in mind and heart where He sees the need ~ remembering all the while that these are not warnings from a God who wants to find fault, but a God who has forgiven fault, and desires to purge and purify for holiness’ sake.
First of all, zoom in on the first three words of the chapter.
“For this reason...”
Reminding ourselves that the writer himself did not make chapter and verse divisions, we see that with these three words he is now beginning to build upon a foundation he has laid in the opening statements of his epistle.
God has spoken. In times past, He spoke through prophets, by word and miracles, by writings and historical events; “many portions and many ways”.
God has spoken. In His Son. He has sent His ambassadors and His special messengers ~ both human and angelic ~ but now, in what the writer calls the last days, He has sent His own Son, who is better than the prophets, better than the angels.
More, much more than that, He is creator of all things and upholds all things by the word of His power. He is God Himself, whose throne is forever and ever. His reign is in righteousness and will have no end.
The very heavens that His hands made will grow old like a much used garment, and He Himself will roll them up and change them. But He Himself will have no end, and by His atoning work, He has risen to a place of majesty and honor in the heavens, symbolically at the Father’s right hand. In other words, God equal with God.
“For this reason...”
...because Christ is better than the angels, and the message of the gospel is BY Him and FOR Him...