We have been given a great salvation. However, it can be neglected. Which means what to the believer? Let’s search this out.
“Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip. For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?” (Hebrews 2:1-4)
First, why is this salvation so great? We will find the answer in the previous chapter.
Salvation begins not with us but the incomparable majesty of the Son. The glory of the Son far beyond the Old Testament prophets and high above the angels. Jesus is the only begotten of God, meaning one of a kind. He is uncreated and eternal present before the creation of the world. And, He is the one who sits at the right hand of Heavenly Father.
It is Jesus that has purged us from our sins. We see this referenced in chapter one and a deeper dive in the second chapter begins to open this more fully. They center on the truth that Christ became flesh, dwelt among, died for our sins, and rose victorious. Christ became as one of us to die and cleanse us thoroughly from our sins.
What does it mean to neglect?
It is a moral and spiritual command that we pay attention to what God has said. Our response is a matter of ultimate blessing or loss. As the Hebrew writer will explain, we need to be more careful than those at Mt. Sinai who heard the words of God through the angels and the holy man Moses, for we have the Son of God! They listened to the word but did not mix it with faith. That is not our path.
How prone we are to “neglect?” It is so easy to treat the things of God as if they were unimportant, to become occupied without comforts and the affairs of this life. We wouldn’t want to offend others who have their own believers. We don’t intend to deny the faith – we are just taking it a bit easy and being a bit reasonable. The writer warns us that such an attitude leads to eternal loss. We shall not escape.
Give a more earnest thing to the things we have heard.
We must wholly commit to learning the Word of God. We do this through personal and congregational study. However, it is more than gaining knowledge. The believer needs to proceed further into the application of the Word. The sincerity of faith will move us past intellectually discussions and empty feelings. We must seek to live after God as he taught us to in the Scripture.