Here the writer is giving the readers a chance to heed this very important warning on giving up on Christ. Previously, it has been written in the first chapter of Jesus being God’s final revelation, Jesus is the Message and the Messenger, He is the eternal creator, the One in whom all authority is given to, and having told us that even the angels worship Him. The writer begins this chapter with, “Therefore…”
V. 1A – Give more heed to what has been heard…
We must not take the things we have heard lightly, hold them with us loosely, or assume that we have understood the full power behind the meaning. We need to head, and pay attention to it, more closely. The good News is so deep, powerful, unexpected, and contrary to the world view of thinking that you must constantly and consistently be immersed with the word. Have you ever read one scripture verse and is applied to a portion of your life, then months later you read it again and it just so happens to apply to a different portion of your life? If you answered yes, well so have I! The scripture and it’s full meaning is unsearchable, it’s infinite, and its majestic. God gives you wisdom for the day, He lets you know what He wants you to know at that very moment, no more and no less.
If you answered no, and if you are on the brink of turning your back on Christ and the salvation He has for you, there is a high probability that you haven’t really understood or possibly received either Christ or His salvation with a genuine heart. This final word of God, this word of the Gospel that fulfills all other words, cannot be improved upon. This is not just one more piece to the revelation puzzle, or a continually on-going progressive revelation of God. This is the final revelation to which all other words from God pointed, and in which they will find their fulfillment and their goal.
V.1B – So that we do NOT drift away…
If we have picked Jesus as just one option among many equally steady religious leaders, or if we have picked Him as merely one of any number of gods we might have chosen to worship, if we have not really comprehended that Jesus actually is the one and only way, truth, life, light, etc… Then we stand in quicksand and are in danger of letting go of Him, and sucked up by a previous belief system, or moving on to whatever catches our religious interest next. We are warned of this by Jesus in Matthew with the parable of the sower. V.19 “When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path.” Our minds and our hearts must be steadfastly focused on Jesus Christ and his salvation, without wavering from the truth that He is precisely who He claimed to be, in order to avoid our drifting away from the way, truth, and everlasting life.
V.2 – The proven, reliable, message…
This verse refers to the word of God given to Moses on Mount Sinai, which the New Testament writers state was mediated through angels (click here for reference). If that message which was meditated by the angels was violated, penalties and punishment would be incurred. How much more terrible a thing is it to abandon the this message. A message that is not only spoken by the Son of God but actually is the Son of God. The message given to Moses on Mt Sinai was merely a foreshadow to this new message, and the Old Testament salvation was prophetic to this New Testament salvation.
V.3-4 – Neglect and there is no escape…
The New Testament salvation is the ultimate and final one. There is nothing more to add to it, and nothing less that can be taken away, this message was established by God and it is perfect. “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows…” (James 1:17). To scorn, ignore, or drift away from this salvation is to let go of mankind’s best and only hope. But also it is to let go of God’s only and final provision for you. All other types of salvation that you can muster up are nothing and none can compare to something as great as a GIFT of eternal life. The warning is that there is no escaping later down the road if you chose to reject the escape being given now.
In the case of the Hebrews, which whom this letter was written to, they stood on the brink of deserting the New Testament salvation to return to their former religion of Jewish ritual. But to do so would reveal that they had never really understood this salvation to begin with.
The writer then gives four points of validation of this new salvation:
- Announced by the Lord.
- Confirmed by those who heard.
- Confirmed by miracles of God.
- Confirmed by the distribution of Gifts of the Holy Spirit by God.
Within the first four verses he begins to show his readers the foolishness and danger of their position of deserting this message of salvation. The writer continues to reveal more of this, as we see in our next study…
Thank you and God Bless!