|Jesus: Loud & Clear;
Front & Center (Hebrews)
The Danger of Drifting
|November 23, 2014|
For the Week of November 23, 2014
Purpose: This week we encounter the first of five warning passages in the Epistle to the Hebrews. The warning is a caution against drifting as a believer. As you lead your group through this lesson, focus on two aspects: 1.) Do we pay attention to a warning passage like this, or do we convince ourselves that spiritual drifting is not something we must be concerned with? 2.) In concrete terms, what does “spiritual drift” look like? How would we recognize this in our own life and in the lives of our fellow Christian brothers and sisters? How should we work to correct spiritual drift?
Sermon in a Sentence: “In the first of five warning passages, the writer urges his audience to hold to the tried-and-true message of salvation in Jesus, not neglecting His work for us but responding to it with diligence and confidence.”
This Week’s Resources:
- The Compass Bible Study
- Word Search Answer Key
- Lighthouse Discussion Guide
- Lighthouse Leader Study Guide
In our day of over zealous litigation, manufacturers seem to have gone overboard with the warning labels on their products. Some make sense, like the surgeon general’s warning that smoking can cause cancer. Others just seem…well…ridiculous. Here’s some examples:
- Warning: Do not attempt to remove blade while lawnmower is running or plugged into an outlet. (Craftsman Push Mower)
- Warning: Use of this product may be hazardous to your health. This product contains Saccharin, which has been determined to cause cancer in laboratory animals. (Carefree Gum)
- Warning: Do no operate vehicle on road, a collision may occur with another vehicle. (Yamaha 4-Wheeler)
- Warning: Pregnant women, the elderly, sufferers of serious medical conditions, those who are sleep deprived or under the influence of alcohol should avoid utilizing the unit’s 3D functionality. (Samsung 3D TV)
Some are just plain stupid:
- Warning: has been found to cause cancer in laboratory mice. (On a box of rat poison.)
- Warning: This product is not to be used in bathrooms. (On a bathroom heater.)
Looking back at your notes from this week’s sermon, was there anything that particularly caught your attention, challenged or confused you?
How do we respond to warning labels? Do you tend to pay attention to them or disregard them? Why?
Read the Text (Hebrews 2:1-13)
Hebrews 2:1-4 is often described as the first of five “exhortation” or “warning” passages placed strategically in the epistle. These passages remind us that theology is not just a mental exercise. Theology is important because it represents focused, sincere efforts to rightly understand God’s truth. True theology, however, leads beyond right belief to right behavior. Thus the writer of Hebrews—an inspired pastor-teacher—regularly moved from explanation (exposition) to exhortation (warning) and back again. Read Hebrews 2:1-13.
- How is a divine warning an act of grace?
- What causes you to drift away from Christ?
- Why do we disregard a warning, even if it comes to us by God Himself?
- When has a warning in Scripture helped you resist the pull of doubt and unbelief?
- What logic does the writer use in Hebrews 2:2-3 to further focus our attention on the peril of drifting away?
- How does the writer strengthen the warning that God’s salvation in Christ is well worth our most intense obedience (Hebrews 2:3-4)?
- How does God confirm His message today? How does the validation of the message impact a believer’s responsibility to share the gospel?
- What are some signs or evidence that we are starting to drift?
Believers must guard against drifting away from the truth of the gospel. We can have confidence in the validity of the gospel message. Believers can defend the truth of the gospel with confidence.
- What truth of the gospel gives you the greatest confidence to stand boldly for Christ? How?
- Ask a trusted friend to help you evaluate your life. Focus on how well you demonstrate confidence in the gospel. Use the evaluation to identify areas needing your attention.
- List ways your Lighthouse can provide spiritual support so that you can keep each other from drifting away. Determine practical ways you can incorporate these ideas into the life of your group.