Even as a young elementary student, I knew what “Heads up!!!” meant there was an incoming ball on a swift and direct trajectory with me head and I was about to get beaned. So “heads up” meant, “watch out” and “cover up” at the same time. Danger was approaching. And most of the time I was able to take advantage of the warning and protect myself.
There is a similar warning for the believer in Hebrews 2: “For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it” (v. 1).
This verse serves as a spiritual “heads up” for every believer. The word “drift” is taken from a nautical setting and has the idea of something being caught in the flow of some body of water and it just slowly moves away from the safety of its harbor. It seems likely that the idea also is that it is not sudden, but gradual and barely perceptible. So it is for the believer who is not attentive to his hearing of truth — if he is not watching, he will slip away from the moorings of his faith and will be adrift from Christ and His faith.
So the writer also says, “For this reason.” For what reason? He is writing of what he has said in chapter one. The angels are endowed by God with great ministry and position (note also 2:2, 5), yet Christ is infinitely greater than they are. So the believer is to pay attention to Christ and exalt him and his greatness more than anything or anyone else. If he slips into equating others to Christ or finding more enjoyment in anything more than Christ, He will drift away from the faith.
The writer reminds us of more of Christ’s supremacy in this chapter:
- Christ’s words and works during His earthly ministry demonstrated His supremacy (vv. 3-4)
- Christ took on manhood, but at the same time retained His deity and supremacy over all things (vv. 7-8)
- Christ tasted death (v. 9) as the author of salvation (v. 10)
- He is the sanctifier of all His brothers (redeemed people, v. 11)
- He rendered Satan powerless and liberated those who believe in him from their enslavement to sin (vv. 14-15)
- As the eternal High Priest, He satisfies (propitiates) God with His sacrifice (v. 17)
- He was tempted to the full extent of sin and Satan’s enticements without the slightest bending of his will towards sin — so He perpetually comes to the aid of those of us who still are inclined to succumb to temptation.
This is our Christ. And if we diminish the value of these truths or consider anything else to be of greater importance than Christ and these declarations, we will be in danger of drifting away from the one who is above all and better than all.
So, do you regularly value and meditate on these great truths (and others like them) about Christ? And, do you find your heart being pulled away from Christ by anything else?
Heads up! Beware!