If We Neglect So Great Salvation

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SEPTEMBER 11, 2022 STUDY NOTES HEBREWS 2:1-4 BIBLE TEACHER: CLIFTON JONES IF WE NEGLECT SO GREAT SALVATION INTRODUCTION Some people say, “believe nothing you hear and only half of what you see” But if it is God’s Word, you better hear it all, see it all, and believe it all Give heed to every word of God’s Word, let nothing slip by Did you let God’s Word go by yesterday? Did you read any of the Word of God yesterday? How long has it been since you read and studied the Word of God? We see the importance of listening to God in the very beginning of creation God spoke to Adam and Adam did not heed, he was careless with God’s spoken word His attitude was that of indifference, Adam had a carefree attitude like too many today We read of Adam’s disobedience in, Rom 5:19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. (Righteous only through Christ) The word translated “disobedience” means, “failing to hear” because of a lack of attention Adam’s disobedience was because he failed in his hearing, he was not listening closely to God He failed to recognize that it was God’s Word, and that it was truth that must be heard Adam and Eve listened to Satan who said, “that God didn’t tell the complete truth” Adam listened to Eve say, “that God didn’t really mean what he said” He heard himself say, “it doesn’t really matter,” too often people say, it will all work out one day What God had to say to Adam and Eve was important to all of mankind (Genesis 3) Paul summed it up for us, Rom 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: It would be best for all people, all-of the time, if all people would heed God’s Word Satan will put our mind on something else, and we will put off God’s Word until later The message of Hebrews 2:1-4 is to pay attention to God’s Word today, “right now” Accept Christ, learn Christ, live for Christ, don’t neglect your salvation Heb 2:1 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. “Therefore” takes us back to chapter one which presented to us the Superiority of Jesus Christ He is God’s Son, He is the heir of all things, He made the worlds, nothing or no one is better than Christ He is greater than the prophets through which God spoke in times past (Heb 1:1) He is greater than the angels which have at times been God's messengers (Heb 1:4) God spoke through man and angels in times past, in these last days He speaks to us by His Son (Heb 1:2) A1l that God is going to say has been said in Jesus Christ, His Son, He is the “Revelation” (Rev 1:1) Christ is the finality of God's message, the completeness of God's Word (Rev 19:10) Christ is the total revelation from God and God’s last spokesman (John 5:39-47) That is why “we ought to give the more earnest heed,” a very strong statement in the original Greek Meaning that it is necessary for you to carefully give your full attention, don’t neglect God’s Word The original presents exceeding ordinary attention, calling for an abundant, superabundant attention Presenting it as something that must be done from a sense of duty, a “must,” it is of Divine necessity It is a moral and a logical “must,” the basis of which is our duty as a Christian to hear God’s Word There is no reason why we should not hear what God has to say, yet people give many poor excuses We must give our full attention, we must continually “give the more earnest heed” Page 1 of 6 That means much more than giving God’s Word some consideration or giving it a thought It means to give your undivided attention, set your mind upon God’s Word, devote yourself to it Sailors used the original term meaning to hold a ship in the right direction, to set the sails As Christians we need to be sure that our ship is sailing in the right direction Our mind must give attention “to the things which we have heard” That which has been heard from God, you must first hear it, you must put forth an effort to hear it And be sure that the word you are hearing is the Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 4:12) In each of the seven letters found in Revelation 2 &3, it is stated, Rev 2:29 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. Every Christian needs to hear every word, obey every command, heed every warning We must have a desire to listen, a will to learn, and a spirit to obey Only through God’s Word can we set our minds on things above, Col 3:2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. (Very important in our day) The Word of God will open our hearts to serve God, Rom 6:17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. We must increase in the knowledge of God by hearing His Word, Col 1:9 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; Col 1:10 That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; It is important that we “Heed God’s Word,” we must receive it in our mind and commit it to our heart We must listen, learn, live, and obey God’s Word, “lest at any time we should let them slip. “Lest at any time” calls for caution, there is a great danger, anyone of us can slip up The choice is ours, we are to make the decision, will we “Heed God’s Word” or not? The meaning of “we should let them slip” is the opposite of giving heed It is possible to let God’s Word slip by us, we can let it drift away, we can daily neglect the Bible It is like standing on the bank of a river and watch something float by you It flows with the current and you are still standing there, it went right by you Many Christians today are guilty of what Paul warns us of, they have Bibles, put away somewhere They claim to believe that the Bible is God’s Word, but they don’t read it or study it They will talk about it but not live daily according to its truths because they don’t seek God’s truth They want to hear the good stories from the Bible but don’t want to be a living story of the Bible They want to possess a Bible but do not want the Bible to have possession of them We must be obedient to God’s Will and live a fruitful life according to the Word of God Heb 2:2 For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; God has used angels to speak, when God gave the law to the Israelites from Mount Sinai, Psa 68:17 The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place. Angels were God’s administrative agents at the time of the giving of the law, Act 7:53 Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it. God was the speaker, He used the angels as messengers, the Jews heard the message But they did not keep it, they did not pay attention, they did not take heed, they let it slip Since their message was from God it “was steadfast” “Steadfast” speaks of something fixed, something sure or certain, something you can rely on The word that came from God through angels was “steadfast” and could be trusted Words that were established and guaranteed to be truth, every word from God is trustworthy God’s Word is not to be questioned or challenged but believed and received, words that we must live by We are given a warning, “and every transgression” Page 2 of 6 A “transgression” is that which breaks the law of God, referring to sins of commission An act of disobedience when someone deliberately steps over the line drawn by God “Every” transgression, not one is missed by God, nothing will be overlooked by God Each transgression and all “disobedience” will be dealt with accordingly “Disobedience” is the same word that was used to describe Adams act of sin (Rom 5:19) The act of disobedience which followed the lack of attention toward the Word of God If you fail to hear God’s Word, you will fail to obey it (America’s failure today) “Disobedience” is the results of not paying attention, letting the truth slip by us Letting the truth go in one ear and out the other, disobedience refers to the sins of omission Listen to this, every transgression and disobedience “received a just recompence of reward” “Recompence” refers to what they received because of what they had done Their “Reward” was not something of honor, it was a recompence of punishment Because they broke the law of God and disobeyed God, they received punishment The punishment was “just” whether the disobedience was in ignorance, neglect, or willful God is never unfair, He is always right in His judgment of sin and disobedience Hebrews 2:2 deals with the past, Hebrews 2:3 deals with the present In the past God dealt with the failure to “Heed His Word,” the same is true for the present--Heb 2:3 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; The comparison is between the past and the present revelation of God to man The “escape” is a reference to the past and present judgment of God There was no escape in the past from letting God’s Word slip by and disobeying it How could it be possible for us to escape the judgment of God today for the same thing? It is impossible, there will be no escape, we cannot flee from the Word of God There is no escape “if we neglect so great salvation” (Christians in America pay attention) “If we,” refers to those who are saved and not to those who are lost There are many Bible scholars who teach that the warnings in Hebrews are to the lost But the context of each warning in Hebrews refers to the true child of God Those who are saved are the ones who God was writing too The ones who had every reason to give heed to the Word of God Those who have no reason “not” to give heed to His Word (There is no excuse) “Neglect” does not mean reject it is not referring to the lost because they have rejected Jesus He is not referring to lost sinners who need to be saved, though it is true, they need to be saved It is true that the only way to be saved is to receive Jesus Christ as Who He Is, He is the only Savior He is talking about believers who should give full attention to the Word of God But they are negligent, there is a lack of interest, they are more interested in other things They are being careless and caring less about the Word of God Christians usually begin their Christian life with a desire to learn the Word of God But many eventually lose their zeal for the study of the Bible and begin to neglect it “So great” is a strengthened form of the word “great,” it is that which is exceeding great The salvation that is so great is being compared to the words of verse two That which was OT prophecy has now been fulfilled in Christ The prophets looked for it to happen, it happened when Jesus came to the earth When you neglect the Word of God you miss the greatness of what God has done What God has done through Jesus Christ is called a “Great Salvation,” we can experience it today Jesus is the author of our salvation, Heb 2:10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. Page 3 of 6 Our Great Savior paid a great price for our “Great Salvation,” Heb 10:10 By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Heb 10:14 For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. Salvation is known as “the faith,” Jud 1:3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. Christians live by faith, Heb 10:38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. (To “draw back” is to retreat from faith, failing to trust in God) Salvation is great, we are no longer under Satan’s power, Rom 6:6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. We now live in the power of Christ, Eph 3:20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, (Faith allows it to work in us) We are raised up and seated together in Christ, Eph 2:6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: (Positioned in Christ to be blessed by God) We are blessed with all spiritual blessings, Eph 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: We can come boldly to the throne of Grace in time of need, Heb 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. We know that all things will work together for good, Rom 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ, Rom 8:35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Christians can live with a peace of mind, Php 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (You don’t have to understand it, experience it) We have a “Living Lord” and a “Living Hope,” 1Pe 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, (Not a “hopeless end,” Biblical hope is an “endless hope”) We have a “Blessed Hope,” Tit 2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; (We have hope today because Jesus is coming again one day) Give serious thought to those verses we just read, read them again, we have a “Great Salvation” Don’t miss the truths and the experience of a “Great Salvation” by neglecting the Word of God We have a salvation that works, work out your salvation, Php 2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Php 2:13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. To work out our own salvation is to live a daily Christian life, don’t neglect your “Great Salvation” Our “Great Salvation” came when Jesus came, “which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord” Jesus is “The Word,” Joh 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. Joh 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God. Jesus came with the “Word,” Joh 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. God designed our salvation, Jesus provided our salvation, the Holy Spirit applied it The life of Jesus taught it, the death of Jesus bought it, His resurrection wrought it His ascension certified it, His return will finalize it The first followers of Jesus confirmed it, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; Throughout the ages salvation has been confirmed, first-of all the Apostles confirmed it Then those who heard the Apostles confirmed it Then those who had heard the truth of salvation from those who had heard the Apostles confirmed it Salvation has been confirmed from one generation of believers to another, even unto our day Page 4 of 6 As Christians in America today, are we failing to confirm such a “Great Salvation?” Christians have a written guarantee, it is called the “Word of God” Christians have a living guarantee, it is called a “Great Salvation,” confirmed by the Apostles, Luk 1:1 Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us, Luk 1:2 Even as they delivered them unto us, which from the beginning were eyewitnesses, and ministers of the word; Luk 1:3 It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus, Luk 1:4 That thou mightest know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed. We are instructed today, we must be fully persuaded and continue to declare that the Word of God is true “Perfect understanding” will come from our sincere searching of the truths of God’s Word We must learn “the certainty” of God’s Word and the security of our “Great Salvation” We must allow God’s Word to “instruct” us, to train, discipline, guide, and disciple us And then do what the disciples did, John said, we heard it, we saw it, and we passed it on, 1Jn 1:1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; 1Jn 1:2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) 1Jn 1:3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. The Apostles who confirmed the Word of God were confirmed by God Heb 2:4 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? God made it known that they were His men with His message He authenticated the Apostles as those men who were given His authority God proved them to be genuine by signs, wonders, and miracles “Signs” are a distinguishing mark, they point to something and identify it “Signs” say something has been said or done that is important Signs are a manifestation of divine revelation, they point to God Signs reveal that it is God who is speaking or doing something with spiritual significance Signs reveal that a divine purpose is being presented and there is no question about it The word “wonders” always occurs alongside the word “signs” “Wonders” are a miraculous occurrence serving as a witness to the Person and Work of God God gifted the Apostles “with divers miracles,” many different and diverse miracles Their miracle working power identified them as the men of God with the message of God Their message was that Jesus is the Savior and Jesus is alive, Act 4:33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. Paul is an example of why the Apostles were gifted with miraculous power, Act 19:11 And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul: The purpose and the result of the miracle working power is found in, Act 19:20 So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed. Today the greatest miracle of all that we can witness is the salvation of a lost, hell bound soul Following that miracle is the miracle of the ability of the Christian to serve God in a unique way Which is “gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will? Spiritual gifts are the evidence of salvation in a person’s life today, a miracle to behold The ability to serve Christ in a powerful way, 1Pe 4:10 As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. We must learn the truth of spirituality and spiritual gifts from the study of God’s Word Spirituality and spiritual gifts are our current study on Wednesday nights (You need to be here) Christians will do well to take “Heed to God’s Word,” 2Pe 1:19 We have also a more sure word of Page 5 of 6 prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: “A more sure word of prophecy” is God’s written Word, the Bible, be sure you read it daily The word “prophecy” is not limited to the foretelling of the future, it is the “forthtelling” of truth The entire Bible is “a more-sure word of prophecy,” listen to Peter “Whereunto you do well to take heed,” you will do well to study the Bible You will do well to learn more about Jesus, His death, burial, resurrection, ascension, and return “Take heed” speaks of how important God’s Word is, you do well to pay attention to it Give attention to how many of the OT prophecies were fulfilled in the life of Jesus upon the earth Pay attention to the instructions given for living today, the warnings concerning life today Page 6 of 6
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