“Therefore we must give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard,
lest we drift away. For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast,
and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward,
how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation,
which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord,
and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him,
God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders,
with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?”
Hebrews 2:1-4 New King James
Modern versions of this first verse have watered it down to mean pay close attention. However, if you study the definition of earnest, you find words like serious, intense, deep, heartfelt, and strong. This is why I love to use older versions of the Bible, and older teachers, as well.
Because of the magnitude of this subject, I cannot bring myself to omit much of Andrew Murray’s lesson. Therefore, I apologize for the length of this and the prior post. I am in the process of moving my dear friend (in the valley) out of his home of 25 years and into a senior facility. I have little strength for anything else. I am thankful for the focus of our study to keep me dependent upon God for my every need.
The privilege we have to live as free people is hinged upon our responsibility to give God, as Murray says, “a corresponding wholeheartedness.” “Nothing less will satisfy God; nothing less in the very nature of things will satisfy us because nothing less than man’s more abundant heed is capable of receiving God’s more abundant grace.”
In the previous post, we left off where Murray begins to describe this great salvation. The following excerpt is titled “The Danger of Neglecting so Great a Salvation,” from Andrew Murray’s The Holiest of All:
And wherein does the greatness of this salvation consist? In this that it comes to us from and through THE TRIUNE GOD; the Holy Trinity is revealed as combining to work out this salvation for us. Listen. “So great salvation, which having at the first been spoken by the Lord, was confirmed unto us by them that heard.” Christ the Son, the brightness of the Father’s glory, and the express image of His substance, it was He in whom God spoke to us; it was He, the Redeemer, God and King, who Himself first preached the kingdom which He established when He effected the cleansing of our sins, and sat down on the right hand of the throne.
So great salvation! First spoken by the Lord, God also bearing witness both by signs and wonders, and by manifold powers. God the Father Himself set His seal from heaven on the preaching of the word. The existence of His church is His standing sign and wonder, the proof of His divine power. Not to take heed, to neglect the great salvation, is nothing less than despising God Himself.
God also bearing witness, by distributions of the Holy Ghost, according to His own will. Not only did God bear witness to the great salvation by signs and wonders and powers, but above all by the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven. The Holy Spirit is God come to dwell on earth, to strive and plead and testify in the hearts of men. There is no fellowship with the Father but through the Son, and no fellowship with the Son and His salvation, but through the Holy Spirit in us.
Let us enter the study of Christ’s person and work in the Epistle in this faith. Yes, this is the greatness of the great salvation— in its offer THE THREE-ONE God comes to us. The Lord preached, the Father bore witness, the Holy Spirit came as the power of God to work. What a salvation! What sin to neglect it! May God reveal to us, as we study this Epistle, the glory of the so great salvation, that we may indeed more abundantly take heed to it.
To know the Son who speaks and reveals the Father; to know the Father to whom, and whose love, the Son brings us in; to know the Holy Spirit with His wonderful gifts of grace and power; to be restored to the image and fellowship of the Holy Trinity: this is salvation.
Let every thought of the glory of Christ, and of God, and of the Spirit, and of the great salvation leave this one impression: Take more abundant heed to what you hear! Meet God’s abounding grace with abounding desire to listen and believe.
To the preaching of Christ and the apostles God bore witness. If this was needful then, how much more now, at this long distance from those days of heavenly joy and power. Ask, for the study of the Word in the Epistle, that God bear witness of the Holy Ghost. Claim and expect it. Without this, even the teaching of the apostles by Christ Himself availed little.
Once again. This is the greatness of salvation; the everlasting Father in His love speaks to me Himself in the Son. The Son shows and brings and gives me all the Father speaks; and l have the Holy Spirit in me, fitting me to hear and know and possess and enjoy all that the Father in the Son speaks and gives. Let us, above all, hold this fast that there is no divine witness, or assurance, or experience of the salvation Christ effected, except as the Holy Spirit, which came from heaven, communicates and maintains it within us. Let us, therefore, take more abundant heed to the Holy Spirit in us, in whom the Father and the Son come to us.