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Neglecting Our Salvation?

by David A. DePra

How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?

     This passage was written, not to unbelievers, but to those who

saved. It was written by Paul to the Hebrews -- to those who had

now come to know and receive Christ.

     The reason this is important to remember is the phrase "neglect

so great salvation." The fact that this is written to saved people tells

us that Paul is not talking about people neglecting TO BE SAVED.

No. He is talking about people who would neglect the salvation

they have already received. In other words, we have received the

free gift of God's grace in Jesus Christ. We have received eternal

life and a new birth. Now, are we going to neglect it?

     This is one of those scriptures which would be in a book entitled,

"Scriptures Which Apply to Everyone Else But Me." We read it, and

it just doesn't sink in. We think WE would never neglect OUR

salvation. We have our faults, yes. But God understands. And

after all, we are good people, aren't we? We go to church. Maybe

serve there. This negative stuff could never apply to us. Or could it?

     Yep. It could. There are any number of ways to "neglect" our

salvation. The chiefest among them is to simply get interested in

something else. Namely this life. Money. It isn't that we are never

to think about these things, mind you. But once they begin to

possess us and direct us, they can entangle us so much that we

end up, little by little, pushing away what really matters. And before

you know it, years go by. Decades. We may have neglected our

salvation.  We may have left Jesus alone because we are busy.

     There are thousands of Christians in churches right now who do

not have any sense of need before the Lord. They have what might

be called normal lives, without too much out of the ordinary. Now,

it's not that this is an evil thing, in and of itself. But according to the

Word of God, this really isn't going to get them far in Christ.

     Now, how does God fix such people? Well, once in a while God

disturbs us. And when He does, then we need to allow Him access.

We need to open ourselves and surrender to Him. But some won't.

None of this stuff could be happening to them by the hand of God,

they reckon. And so sometimes they push God away, or simply

adjust the Truth to fit themselves, instead of allowing God to adjust

them to the Truth. The result is gross neglect of God's salvation.

     It does not have to be this way. And God is doing everything He

can to try to wake us up and get us re-focused. He will disturb us or

disrupt us or do anything necessary to get us to tend to the life

which is in us. That is because He loves us. He knows what we are

neglecting is eternal, with eternal ramifications. So God does not

neglect US.

     Neglecting salvation is the natural outcome of getting my own

way, and doing my best to maintain it. Once I do that, I need only

go through the motions of giving assent to the Truth, and being a

good church person. But all the while, I never surrender myself to

God. I neglect Him in favor of my own spiritual agenda.

     This is going to sound crazy, but if you are never disturbed and

never pressed to God in desperation, you may have neglected

your salvation. For the fact is, the grace of God is totally free. It is

no cost to us to receive it. But once we receive it, there is a great

cost because of it. We must undergo a terrific spiritual adjustment.*

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