Pay the most careful attention to the gospel, so that you do not drift away.
As I wrote last week, this warning came to Jewish believers, who were tempted to return to the religion and rituals of their culture.
In the previous chapter, the writer reminds us of Jesus’ position as God’s Son–that He made and owns the world, sustains all things, is the representation and radiance of God, provides purification from sin, and is seated at the right hand of the Father in heaven.
In view of these truths about Jesus, our best response is to highly esteem Christ and His gospel.
Esteem Christ, who is superior to the prophets and angels, Christ who is superior to the Law of Moses. (See post on Hebrews 1–Jesus, Where Are You?)
Why, then, was the Law given at all? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come. The Law was given through angels and entrusted to a mediator. Galatians 3:19
The Law was given to make people aware of sin. But the Law was only a shadow of something better to come. The promised Seed, Jesus Christ, is that Something Better. Jesus is the superior One who we hold in the highest regard, whose offer of salvation we must never ignore.
For since the message spoken through angels was binding, and every violation and disobedience received its just punishment, How shall we escape if we ignore so great a salvation? Hebrews 2:2-3a
The “message spoken through angels” refers to the Law of Moses, which demanded to be taken seriously. Hebrews 10 tells that anyone who rejected the Law died without mercy.
Since Jesus is greater than the Law, how much more seriously we should take His words? How much more should we act on them?
What does it mean to ignore so great a salvation?
After all, this passage is not speaking to unbelievers, but to believers. This question is not about rejecting Christ for salvation–it’s about neglecting to abide in Jesus Christ, to walk with Him each day.
To ignore such a great salvation is to neglect or make light of it. It’s to stay wrapped up in our own lives, and to make little room for the Lord. It could be simply staying too busy to spend time with Him.
When we neglect to meet with Jesus in prayer, and we choose to live our lives without the input of His Word, we are ignoring such a great salvation.
In Matthew 22, a king prepares a great wedding feast for his son, and his servants invite the guests to come.
But they paid no attention and went off—one to his field, another to his business. (verse 5)
They refused to stop what they were doing. They were too busy, and so they ignored the opportunity. Others were invited instead. Others were willing to come. What a sobering story.
May it never be the way we treat the gospel. May it never be the way we treat King Jesus.
And yet, haven’t we all at some time?