Church of Christ
Locks Cross Roads
5) Hebrews - Chapter 2:1-4
"Therefore we" - notice the word "we", hemis - it is emphatic in the Greek.
How shall we escape? This is a question that asks if we neglect how we can escape. This suggests a conclusion to
be drawn from previous points:
A) Since God has loved us, giving us a ministry, a word, a Christ, ministering angels, some duties must rest on
B) Salvation is not to be solely God's responsibility. It is time man should wake up, for God will not endure a
"To give the more earnest heed" - This calls for the application of man's energies, and not a careless, carefree
A) God challenges men to hear - to reason
1) Revelation 3:13 - "-hath ears, let him hear."
2) Isaiah 1:18 - "-let us reason."
3) Deuteronomy 18:19 - "-not hearken."
4) Matthew 7:27 - "-heareth and doeth not."
B) Man is a creature of choice. Therefore, he must use his intellect for his self-preservation. Jesus spoke
plainly concerning disbelief, saying that disbelievers will be condemned (Mark 16:16).
Man must make an effort - you cannot sit back and coast!
"to the things that were heard" - What had been heard?
A) This refers to the message heard from Christ and his Apostles
- The content suggests the preaching of Christ and His Apostles, and not the divers portions and manners
of the Old Testament times.
B) The message that made them Christians is referred to here.
There is an implied contrast here between Old Testament legal obedience and the Gospel obedience. The first was
relative but the latter is absolute. The former was procured through carnal ordinances imposed upon the people
until the time of reformation. The former was temporal, the latter was eternal. This great salvation is full free
pardon, the redemption of the body from corruption, and the eternal glorification of the soul.
"Lest happily we drift away from them." - Drifting is always downstream. The word drift can mean - ship, ring, crumb.
A) Like a man that is above the waterfall, he has only to fold his hands and drift to his destruction.
B) The man who would reach heaven must strive, not drift. An alternate translation is, "Lest at any time we
should let them slip."
See this verse - it is possible to lose our salvation - pay close attention!
"for if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast" - this also suggests the strong use of the comparison in
the first chapter to the superiority of Jesus over the angels. This refers directly to the Mosaic Law:
A) Galatians 3:19 - Law was ordained in the hands of a mediator by angels.
B) Deuteronomy 33:2 - From His right hand went a fiery law for them.
C) Acts 7:53 - Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.
God's words to Israel were filled with warnings, and the history of Israel proves that God meant what He said:
A) Exodus 23:20-21 - An angel before thee - provoke him not.
B) Deuteronomy 17:12 - There was a death penalty for rejecting the word of a priest. The word "if" suggests a
conclusion to be drawn - look for it.
Transgression meant a deliberate stepping over the line - you knew it was wrong.
"a just recompense of reward" - The penalty in the Old Testament was severe and quick. A few examples of its
severity are given:
A) Deuteronomy 19:16-21 - The penalty for a false witness
B) Joshua 7:25 - Israel stoned Achan for disobedience.
C) Deuteronomy 22:21 - A harlot stoned to death.
The New Testament gives us a picture of the seriousness of sin.
- Acts 5:1-11 - Ananias and Sapphira - carried out dead, a just reward.
"if we neglect so great a salvation" - In what ways is our salvation great?
A) 1st Peter 1:12 - Angels desire to look into it
B) John 8:56 - Abraham rejoiced as he saw it coming
C) Hebrews 5:9, Hebrews 12:2 - Christ is the author of it.
D) John 3:16 - God loved US.
E) Romans 1:16 - It has power
F) Hebrews 2:3-4 - It is confirmed.
"God also bearing witness with them" - The apostles did not have to stand on their word alone.
A) They have proof that accompanied their message.
B) Thus the person who rejected the preaching rejected not only the word of God, but also His works.
What is meant by "signs"? Hear Jesus name some signs - Mark 16:17-18 - cast out demons (verse 17), speak with
new tongues (verse 17), take up deadly serpents (verse 18), drink deadly poison (verse 18), lay hands on sick and
they recover (verse 18).
These signs were miracles. They were not witch doctor trickery, but proofs of the origin of the message delivered.
They are called "signs" because they arouse men's minds to think of something higher than what appears.
What is meant by "wonders"? This is not necessarily something different, but a different way of looking at the same
First with their regard to their design as signs - miraculous testimonies in behalf of the truth
Secondly, with respect to their nature as wonders, supernatural acts calculated to excite wonder and
amazement in the minds of those who witnessed them.
Thirdly with respect to their origin as manifestations of supernatural powers.
Miracles: this is not the process of suspending the pattern to which events conform, but rather inserting new events
into the pattern.
Finally, in their specific Christian aspects, as gifts and distributions of the Holy Spirit imparted to the original
witnesses and proclamation of the truth (see 1st Corinthians 12, Ephesians 4:11).