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Dangerously Adrift


"For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it. For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, 3 how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will."
Good Morning My Beloved,

Welcome to worship this Lord's Day!
We are so very grateful for our beloved brothers and sisters in Christ, we are so thankful that you are all with us today. We continue to lift all of you up in prayer, and ask that you would also pray for us.
It is so easy for us to get caught up in the matters in life that seem urgent at the time, however, in the light of eternity, they pale in comparison. Since we all have only twenty-four hours in our day, we continue to focus our attention on the seemingly important, however, less essential matters, we tend to neglect the imperative eternal matters that are vital. And, when these things vex our conscience, as invariably they do, we justify our current priorities by saying, "I will take care of the eternally important matters tomorrow, I’m just too busy today." Allow me to boldly remind you that sooner or later, such procrastination will prove to be damning and eternally fatal!
Death, is inevitably a part of our human existence. One day, we all have to face death, therefore, you would think that we all would live in view of eternity, yet, we do not! We seem to allow the other pressing matters that come up to divert our attention. Adopting the worlds philosophy, "Carpe Diem," or "Y.O.L.O." While many of these pressing matters are likely important, they can too often easily cause us to abandon the most important thing, our eternal destination. As a result, though who know the truth of the gospel are in danger of drifting spiritually.
Let us bow our heads in prayer.

Heavenly Father,
Father, thank You for Your Word. Forgive us in our prideful ignorance when we have not honored You as we should. However, help us not to look to the government, or politicians, but to your Son Jesus as our only hope, our sure defense against the evil forces of darkness. Lord, we pray that You will speak to each of our hearts, and that no one would be fooled into thinking they have more time, and walk away from grace, and salvation, and forgiveness, today, leaving without Jesus Christ.
In Christ's precious name we pray
Today's Message: Dangerously Adrift
In the first chapter, the author of Hebrews focused on extolling the supremacy of the Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ. He has not yet mentioned a word of application or exhortation. Now however, as a concerned pastor, he pauses in his argument to apply what he has previously written. We could essentially say that doctrine breaks into invitation. In our text today, we'll be looking at the first of five warning sections in this letter. These warnings are addressed to professing Christians who were in the church. I believe this is a very relevant message for all of us today!
As a footnote, notice that the author uses the first person plural pronoun, "we," he therefore, identifies himself with his readers. In other words, he faced the same temptations that they faced. He was not in some ivory tower, looking down on them, exempt from these pitfalls. Like every faithful pastor, this was weighing heavily upon his heart, as it does my heart as well. He was exhorting himself first, even as he exhorted his congregation. 
He was confronting the danger of drifting away from salvation: You are drifting with regard to your salvation because of neglect, and the result of drifting along with the current is to miss so great a salvation. Or you are deliberately growing because of conscience attention and effort. Because no one grows spiritually by accident. Spiritual maturity does not just happen by chance, it occurs by choice. I believe that Hell, is filled with people who know the truth, who even believe the truth, who are well aware of the good news of the gospel, the salvation offered in Jesus Christ, who were never quite ready or willing to commit their lives to Jesus Christ. And so they dangerously drifted past the call of God, right into eternal damnation.
Open your Bibles with me to the book of Hebrews chapter 2.  From the beginning of Hebrews to the end of the book, the writer proves that the new covenant is better than the old, and the new mediator, Jesus Christ, is greater than anyone, who is connected with the old covenant. He wants to show the Jews, that it is not that the old covenant was wrong, or bad, however, it was incomplete. That it can only be complete in Jesus Christ, who fulfills it all.
I would encourage you to follow along with me as I read, to set the text in our minds, as we prepare our hearts for a Word from our Lord. Hebrews 2:1-4

"For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it. For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will."
John 12:27-29 tells us, "Now My soul has become troubled; and what shall I say, ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. Father, glorify Your name." Then a voice came out of heaven: "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again." So the crowd of people who stood by and heard it were saying that it had thundered; others were saying, "An angel has spoken to Him." I believe that Jesus struggled with the passion He felt on that day, to which He submitted.
We should not be too hard on those who heard the voice of the Lord on that day; we must not envision ourselves to be superior to them. We’ve never heard the voice of the Lord ringing out, therefore, we have no idea of how His voice might have sounded. What they heard at that time, was heard by their forefathers at Sinai. 
Listen as I read that account to you from Exodus chapter 19, verses 16-19, of God’s actions when giving the Ten Words."So it came about on the third day, when it was morning, that there were thunder and lightning flashes and a thick cloud upon the mountain and a very loud trumpet sound, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. And Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Now Mount Sinai was all in smoke because the Lord descended upon it in fire; and its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked violently. When the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and God answered him with thunder."
Our Father spoke on multiple occasions declaring that the One to whom He spoke was His Son. That One cannot be an angel, for though an angel may be ever so powerful, there is no angel who can do what God does. The citation given in the fifth verse, the statement originally given in Psalm 2:7, through the Psalmist, has given some people pause. 
"I will surely tell of the decree of the Lord: He said to Me, ‘You are My Son, Today I have begotten You."
In verse 1, "For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it."  We see that the writer is impassioned, he cares about the salvation of his hearers. He is not so egotistical, in that all he cares about is spilling out doctrine, then walking away. Or in today's vernacular, one of those "mic drop" moments. He genuinely cares about  their response, and that people respond to what he’s been saying. He not only cares to exalt Christ, he cares deeply, that they respond to Christ. 
Quite a contrast to the day in which we live, when many pastors are minimizing doctrine. Many pastors today, are preaching sermons, if you could even call them that, that are devoid of doctrine. Quite frankly, many of their sermons could easily appear in Cosmopolitan or Reader’s Digest, with little, if any modification! The author of Hebrews wants us to see the connection between the great doctrines about Christ in chapter 1 and his exhortation here in chapter 2.

He writes in verses 2-3, "For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? In other words, our salvation is so great, so indescribably substantial, because it comes to us from none other than the eternal Son of God, Who left the Majesty on High to become the sacrifice for our sins. During His earthly ministry, He announced this good news, teaching us the way to be reconciled to God. Having offered Himself for our sins and rising from the dead, He now sits at the right hand of God, awaiting the time when His enemies would become His footstool. How then can we neglect so great a salvation!
However, such salvation is only great if it is true. If there is no truth, no factual basis, while it may sound grand, it certainly isn’t worth suffering shedding your blood for. Yet, the author states this great salvation was not only "at the first spoken through the Lord," but "it was confirmed to us by those who heard." That statement likely places the writer, as well as his readers, in the category of those who did not hear the gospel directly from Jesus Christ, which I believe excludes the Apostle Paul from being Hebrews author.
The gospel that Jesus proclaimed comes to us from those who directly witnessed His earthly ministry. It does not come from a bunch of religious leaders speculating about how we can be reconciled to God. I want to be very clear, the gospel, which we have received,  is not only a matter of revelation, but historical fact. Jesus really lived! His teaching and miracles are truthfully and accurately recorded in the gospels. He died on the cross and was supernaturally and physically raised from the grave before He ascended to heaven. There are many eyewitnesses who saw these things and recorded them for us. If they were merely some fairy tale, a collection of fictional stories, those in that day who read these accounts would have laughed the Apostles out of town. However, these witnesses accounts, held to the truth about Jesus, even to the point of costing them their lives. People do not lay down their lives for a lie!
The author states in verse 4, that "God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will." Here, he is referring to the miracles performed primarily by the apostles as recorded in the Book of Acts. The terms, "signs, wonders, and miracles," are essentially synonymous with one another, yet, carry different nuances. 
Signs point to the fact that miracles have spiritual significance. For example, when a lame man is healed or the dead is raised, it points to something significant that exceeds just the facts. This is demonstrated in how God powerfully acts to save souls! Wonders emphasize the human response, when we witness God doing the humanly impossible, in amazement. Various, focuses on God’s Omnipotent power which is displayed in numerous ways.
"Gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will," here, he is emphasizing God’s sovereignty in bestowing spiritual gifts as He sees fit for His purposes, therefore, not everyone receives the same gifts.
As with the human body, each member in the body of Christ has a vital function for the overall health of the body. Many in the church today, claim to have the gifts of miracles, healing, speaking in tongues, interpretation of tongues, word of knowledge, and prophecy, to the same extent as the early church did. However, I believe those who emphasize having such spiritual gifts, obviously are overlooking God’s purpose for them, which was to confirm the gospel. Upon a more in depth study of the miracles in the Bible, you will find that they are not uniformly distributed, but occurred at critical times in history
It would appear, that by the time the author wrote the book of Hebrews, such gist had already began to diminish. Or he would have called their attention to the ongoing phenomena in their midst, which would have further reinforced his point. At the end of the Apostle Paul's life, he did not instruct Timothy to claim healing by faith for his stomach problems, but rather, told him to "drink a little wine." Furthermore, it would appear as though signs, wonders and miraculous gifts are not part of God’s normal operating procedure in this era. That is not to say, that God does not still perform miracles, because I can assure you that He does, at times of His own choosing!
As for the gift of speaking in tongues, Scripture clearly teaches that the genuine gift is miraculously having the ability to speak in an unlearned foreign language, not some nonsensical gibberish.
In I Corinthians 14:27-34, the Apostle Paul gives us several guidelines by which to govern this practice.
"If anyone speaks in a tongue, it should be by two or at the most three, and each in turn, and one must interpret; but if there is no interpreter, he must keep silent in the church; and let him speak to himself and to God. Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment. But if a revelation is made to another who is seated, the first one must keep silent. For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all may be exhorted; and the spirits of prophets are subject to prophets; for God is not a God of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints. The women are to keep silent in the churches; for they are not permitted to speak, but are to subject themselves, just as the Law also says."
All of mankind desperately needs salvation, which comes to us by God’s exalted Son, it was confirmed to us as true by those who walked closely with Jesus, and God confirmed their testimony through miracles, it is indescribably great! Because salvation is so great, if we neglect this salvation, the consequences are indescribably great as well. Though the author of Hebrews does not go into great detail here in this chapter, we need only to read a bit further, in Hebrews 10:26-27, where he describes it more clearly "For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a terrifying expectation of judgment and the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries."
While true followers of Christ may drift and may occasionally become entangled in sin, when they are confronted with the truth, they will quickly repent, turn from their sin and pursue holiness. Many Christians carry the false assurance of thinking "Because I am saved, I am going to heaven. It doesn't matter if I keep sinning!" According to the author of Hebrews, you are either holding fast to your confession of faith in Christ and are striving against sin, or you are spiritually drifting and are in grave danger of facing frightening judgment. Those are the only options!
I believe that the longer a "believer" continues in sin, the more reason they have to question whether their profession of faith was genuine. The option of being a "carnal Christian," simply does not exist!
Beloved, we err if we think that the demands of the gospel are any less exacting than those of the Law. We err even further, if we somehow think that grace means that we can be fast and loose about God’s standards of holiness, as if God just shrugs His shoulders, in acceptance of our sin. That is a dangerously horrifying way to view God's grace! 
Allow me to read Hebrews 10:29, which clearly states "How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace?"
Beloved, to reject the gospel after having been exposed to it is to turn away from God Himself, who sent His Son so that we could receive the precious gift of His salvation. You don’t ever want to do that!
There is a common misconception among many today, that it requires some heinous act of rebellion or deliberate defiance against God to be sent to hell. To simply neglect of His offer of salvation will do the job just fine.
Long ago, I had someone ask, "What must I do to be lost? To which I replied, "Nothing! Simply drift through life, paying more attention to less important things!"
If you have been blessed to hear the message of God’s great salvation proclaimed, pay attention!
Pay close attention to this great salvation!
May it be so..
And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name
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The Brian Monzon Ministries



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