When I first moved abroad, one of the greatest adjustments was driving. The city has no highways, just overcrowded streets, many of which would only be a one-lane road in the states. There are cars, there are motorcycles, there are animal-drawn carts and trailers, there are pedestrians, there are local transportation vans, there are box trucks…anything you can imagine is all trying to make its way down these small roads. On the left hand side. Even though there are traffic lights, they are more of a suggestion than a rule. And early on in my stay there I was given the advice to consider the road like a river. Just get in the flow, and go with it, until it is time to jump out.
That was helpful, because it is easy to flow with the current. It is easy to canoe downstream. It is easy to get on an inter-tube and ride the lazy river. And sometimes we coast through life because it takes so much energy and focus to be intentional with our time.
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.
– Heb 2.1-4
Drifting is dangerous. Why? The easy road, the way of the world, is the the road to Hell.
“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.”
– Matt 7.13-14
If you do not intentionally seek out and find the narrow path, you will coast down the river of the wide path, straight into Hell. Hebrews is one of my favorite books in the Bible. The entire first chapter magnifies Jesus. It establishes His greatness above the angels, it declares Him deity, and focuses on Him alone. There is no instruction, no exhortation, no commandment throughout the entire first chapter. Chapter 2 then opens “For this reason…”, meaning “because Jesus is so great” we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard so that we do not drift away from it.
In the Old Testament, up until the time of Jesus, God spoke through prophets, angels and various ways. He gave commandments, He had Laws and expectations, and He told the people how they were to repent of their sins and make sacrifices for them. When the people failed, there were dire circumstances. Many times they were killed, they were taken into captivity, they were enslaved by other nations… And we all know stories of cities like Sodom and Gomorrah who were wiped off the face of the Earth by fire and brimstone falling from Heaven. Hebrews 2 says, “Look at how the prophets of old were received and the consequences – how much greater will our judgment be if we neglect Jesus!”
Notice here that drifting is equated to neglecting. If you just coast through life and do not make Jesus and your salvation a priority, you are drifting – but you are also neglecting Him. Neglecting and drifting lead to Hell. Jesus has told us the way, and if we choose to consider it not worth our time to obey, we will incur a worse judgment than those people of old, because they only drifted from angels and prophets. We are drifting from Jesus: God Himself.
Are you drifting today? Are you being intentional with your time, your mind, your heart, our energy? Or are you just coasting through life, taking it easy? Are you focused on Jesus? Or are you neglecting Him? Jesus is God. He made the ultimate sacrifice so that we might live. That is worthy of your time and energy today.