Hebrews 2:1-4 Sermon Transcript with changes to ending

Our text this morning is found in Hebrews 2:1-4. It states,

Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution, how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.

At Community Church we have partnered with one of our Field Staff, Plethos Global, to offer the BIG3 Discipleship Program. The BIG3 are three Keystone Habits that every disciple should do faithfully. Every disciple needs to…

  • Learn It (the bible),

  • Live It (apply the gospel to your life),

  • Pass It On To Others (tell someone what your learning and disciple others).

The last time that I led this group I started out by sharing something that I thought demonstrated our need to do these three things. I would like to share it with you this morning.

In the 1927 there was a resource book that was published that is still in print today. It is called the Halley’s Bible Handbook. I would not be surprised if quite a few of you have this resource on a bookshelf in your home.

In this book there is a section near the end that Dr. Halley entitled ‘The Most Important Thing In This Book’. In that section Dr. Halley laments, “With all our facilities for propagating Christian truth, our well organized churches and Bible schools, our seminaries, our highly trained ministers and church leaders, with the last word in up-to-date religious education methods, an endless amount of Christian literature, and an ever-increasing number of meetings and organizations where we talk and teach and preach in the name of the Bible, even quoting chapter and verse – Yet the Great Body of the Church Members Treat the Bible as if it were a Mere Side-Issue in their lives.1

Dr. Halley goes on to lament the fact the majority of professing Christians in his day...

  • did not engage in personal study of the scriptures

  • were not able to speak knowledgeably of biblical doctrine.

  • He confessed that less than ¼, of a congregations professed membership, attended its Sunday services with any degree of regularity.

Dr. Halley goes on to describe something even more troubling when he writes, “I marvel that Church People are so Indifferent to, and Neglectful of, the Book that tells them about their Savior. But I marvel more that Church LEADERS are doing so little about it. Unquestionably, the most fatal weakness of the present day Church is the Lack of Leadership in the Pulpit on this One Point of Guiding and Leading its people into the ONE HABIT that is the Source and Basis of Everything that the Church exists to accomplish in its people.2

It is no surprise then that two decade after Halley’s Bible Handbook was first published there was another preacher, William R. Newell, who confessed to seeing seven indicators in his day that Christians, who claimed to know Jesus Christ, were drifting away from God and His Word.3 The seven things that concerned him in 1947 were,