Driving a car requires our full attention. Even small distractions – like changing the radio station – can cause us to drift across the line into the path of oncoming traffic. Following Christ requires our full, focused attention too. Otherwise we are in danger of drifting away from walking in complete obedience to Him. Even a slight deviation can bring disastrous results.
The author of Hebrews issues this warning to his readers in Hebrews 2:1-4.
We must pay the most careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away.For since the message spoken through angels was binding, and every violation and disobedience received its just punishment, how shall we escape if we ignore so great a salvation? This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him.
In chapter one, the author proved through Old Testament Scripture the superiority of Christ over the prophets and angels. His Jewish readers were tempted to turn away from Christ and His superior message to return to an inferior – but easier – way. If they drifted away they would face God’s discipline.
We will also face consequences if we drift away. Unlike these first century Jewish Christians, persecution does not tempt me to compromise my obedience. However, the busyness of our culture, the harried pace of my lifestyle, does tempt me to compromise my obedience. Busy days tempt me to short my time with God. A full calendar calls me to “get on with my day” and rush through my morning quiet time.
What about you? What is it in your life that distracts you from giving God your full attention? In what areas do you find yourself drifting away, even slightly?