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Hebrews 2:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things that were heard, lest haply we drift away [from them].
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let [them] slip.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away [from it].
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let [them] slip.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— For this reason we should give heed more abundantly to the things [we have] heard, lest in any way we should slip away.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— For this cause, it behoveth us, with unwonted firmness, to be holding fast unto the things that have been heard, lest, at any time, we drift away.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— Because of this it behoveth [us] more abundantly to take heed to the things heard, lest we may glide aside,
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— Therefore ought we more diligently to observe the things which we have heard lest perhaps we should let them slip.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Therefore we ought to giue the more earnest heede to the things which we haue heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.
John Etheridge Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1849)
— Therefore we are obligated to be more exceedingly heedful in what we have heard, that we fall not.
James Murdock Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1852)
— Therefore we ought to be exceedingly cautious, in regard to what we have heard, lest we fall away.

Strong's Numbers & Red-LettersGreek New TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
Therefore 1223
{1223} Prime
διά
dia
{dee-ah'}
A primary preposition denoting the channel of an act; through (in very wide applications, local, causal or occasional). In composition it retains the same general import.
5124
{5124} Prime
τοῦτο
touto
{too'-to}
Neuter, singular, nomitive or accusative of G3778; that thing.
we 2248
{2248} Prime
ἡμᾶς
hemas
{hay-mas'}
Accusative plural of G1473; us.
ought 1163
{1163} Prime
δεῖ
dei
{die}
Third person singular active present of G1210; also δεόν [[deon]], {deh-on'}; which is neuter active participle of the same; both used impersonally; it is (was, etc.) necessary (as binding).
z5748
<5748> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - No Voice Stated (See G5799)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 1612
to give the more earnest y4056
[4056] Standard
περισσοτέρως
perissoteros
{per-is-sot-er'-oce}
Adverb from G4055; more superabundantly.
heed 4337
{4337} Prime
προσέχω
prosecho
{pros-ekh'-o}
From G4314 and G2192; (figuratively) to hold the mind (G3563 implied) towards, that is, pay attention to, be cautious about, apply oneself to, adhere to.
z5721
<5721> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Infinitive (See G5795)
Count - 647
x4056
(4056) Complement
περισσοτέρως
perissoteros
{per-is-sot-er'-oce}
Adverb from G4055; more superabundantly.
to the things which we have heard, 191
{0191} Prime
ἀκούω
akouo
{ak-oo'-o}
A primary verb; to hear (in various senses).
z5685
<5685> Grammar
Tense - Aorist (See G5777)
Voice - Passive (See G5786)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 215
lest at any time 3379
{3379} Prime
μήποτε
mepote
{may'-pot-eh}
From G3361 and G4218; not ever; also if (or lest) ever (or perhaps).
we should let [them] slip. 3901
{3901} Prime
παραρρυέω
pararrhueo
{par-ar-hroo-eh'-o}
From G3844 and the alternate of G4482; to flow by, that is, (figuratively) carelessly pass (miss).
z5632
<5632> Grammar
Tense - Second Aorist (See G5780)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Subjunctive (See G5792)
Count - 449
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Hebrews 2:1

_ _ Hebrews 2:1-18. Danger of neglecting so great salvation, first spoken by Christ; to Whom, not to angels, the new dispensation was subjected; though He was for a time humbled below the angels: This humiliation took place by divine necessity for our salvation.

_ _ Therefore — Because Christ the Mediator of the new covenant is so far (Hebrews 1:5-14) above all angels, the mediators of the old covenant.

_ _ the more earnestGreek, “the more abundantly.”

_ _ heard — spoken by God (Hebrews 1:1); and by the Lord (Hebrews 2:3).

_ _ let them slip — literally “flow past them” (Hebrews 4:1).

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Hebrews 2:1-4

_ _ The apostle proceeds in the plain profitable method of doctrine, reason, and use, through this epistle. Here we have the application of the truths before asserted and proved; this is brought in by the illative particle therefore, with which this chapter begins, and which shows its connection with the former, where the apostle having proved Christ to be superior to the angels by whose ministry the law was given, and therefore that the gospel dispensation must be more excellent than the legal, he now comes to apply this doctrine both by way of exhortation and argument.

_ _ I. By way of exhortation: Therefore we ought to give the more diligent heed to the things which we have heard, Hebrews 2:1. This is the first way by which we are to show our esteem of Christ and of the gospel. It is the great concern of every one under the gospel to give the most earnest heed to all gospel discoveries and directions, to prize them highly in his judgment as matters of the greatest importance, to hearken to them diligently in all the opportunities he has for that purpose, to read them frequently, to meditate on them closely, and to mix faith with them. We must embrace them in our hearts and affections, retain them in our memories, and finally regulate our words and actions according to them.

_ _ II. By way of argument, he adds strong motives to enforce the exhortation.

_ _ 1. From the great loss we shall sustain if we do not take this earnest heed to the things which we have heard: We shall let them slip. They will leak, and run out of our heads, lips, and lives, and we shall be great losers by our neglect. Learn, (1.) When we have received gospel truths into our minds, we are in danger of letting them slip. Our minds and memories are like a leaky vessel, they do not without much care retain what is poured into them; this proceeds from the corruption of our natures, the enmity and subtlety of Satan (he steals away the word), from the entanglements and snares of the world, the thorns that choke the good seed. (2.) Those meet with an inconceivable loss who let gospel truths, which they had received, slip out of their minds; they have lost a treasure far better than thousands of gold and silver; the seed is lost, their time and pains in hearing lost, and their hopes of a good harvest lost; all is lost, if the gospel be lost. (3.) This consideration should be a strong motive both to our attention to the gospel and our retention of it; and indeed, if we do not well attend, we shall not long retain the word of God; inattentive hearers will soon be forgetful hearers.

_ _ 2. Another argument is taken from the dreadful punishment we shall incur if we do not do this duty, a more dreadful punishment than those fell under who neglected and disobeyed the law, Hebrews 2:2, Hebrews 2:3. Here observe, (1.) How the law is described: it was the word spoken by angels, and declared to be stedfast. It was the word spoken by angels, because given by the ministration of angels, they sounding the trumpet, and perhaps forming the words according to God's direction; and God, as judge, will make use of the angels to sound the trumpet a second time, and gather all to his tribunal, to receive their sentence, as they have conformed or not conformed to the law. And this law is declared to be stedfast; it is like the promise, yea and amen; it is truth and faithfulness, and it will abide and have its force whether men obey it or no; for every transgression and disobedience will receive a just recompence of reward. If men trifle with the law of God, the law will not trifle with them; it has taken hold of the sinners of former ages, and will take hold of sinners in all ages. God, as a righteous governor and judge, when he had given forth the law, would not let the contempt and breach of it go unpunished; but he has from time to time reckoned with the transgressors of it, and recompensed them according to the nature and aggravation of their disobedience. Observe, The severest punishment God ever inflicted upon sinners is no more than what sin deserves: it is a just recompence of reward; punishments are as just, and as much due to sin as rewards are to obedience, yea, more due than rewards are to imperfect obedience. (2.) How the gospel is described. It is salvation, a great salvation; so great salvation that no other salvation can compare with it; so great that none can fully express, no, nor yet conceive, how great it is. It is a great salvation that the gospel discovers, for it discovers a great Saviour, one who has manifested God to be reconciled to our nature, and reconcilable to our persons; it shows how we may be saved from so great sin and so great misery, and be restored to so great holiness and so great happiness. The gospel discovers to us a great sanctifier, to qualify us for salvation and to bring us to the Saviour. The gospel unfolds a great and excellent dispensation of grace, a new covenant; the great charter-deed and instrument is settled and secured to all those who come into the bond of the covenant. (3.) How sinning against the gospel is described: it is declared to be a neglect of this great salvation; it is a contempt put upon the saving grace of God in Christ, making light of it, not caring for it, not thinking it worth their while to acquaint themselves with it, not regarding either the worth of gospel grace or their own want of it and undone state without it; not using their endeavours to discern the truth of it, and assent to it, nor to discern the goodness of it, so as to approve of it, or apply it to themselves. In these things they discover a plain neglect of this great salvation. Let us all take heed that we be not found among those wicked wretched sinners who neglect the grace of the gospel. (4.) How the misery of such sinners is described: it is declared to be unavoidable (Hebrews 2:3): How shall we escape? This intimates, [1.] That the despisers of this salvation are condemned already, under arrest and in the hands of justice already. So they were by the sin of Adam; and they have strengthened their bonds by their personal transgression. He that believeth not is condemned already, John 3:18. [2.] There is no escaping out of this condemned state, but by accepting the great salvation discovered in the gospel; as far those who neglect it, the wrath of God is upon them, and it abides upon them; they cannot disengage themselves, they cannot emerge, they cannot get from under the curse. [3.] That there is a yet more aggravated curse and condemnation waiting for all those who despise the grace of God in Christ, and that this most heavy curse they cannot escape; they cannot conceal their persons at the great day, nor deny the fact, nor bribe the judge, nor break the prison. There is no door of mercy left open for them; there will be no more sacrifice for sin; they are irrecoverably lost. The unavoidableness of the misery of such is here expressed by way of question: How shall we escape? It is an appeal to universal reason, to the consciences of sinners themselves; it is a challenge to all their power and policy, to all their interest and alliances, whether they, or any for them, can find out, or can force out, a way of escape from the vindictive justice and wrath of God. It intimates that the neglecters of this great salvation will be left not only without power, but without plea and excuse, at the judgment-day; if they be asked what they have to say that the sentence should not be executed upon them, they will be speechless, and self-condemned by their own consciences, even to a greater degree of misery than those fell under who neglected the authority of the law, or sinned without the law.

_ _ 3. Another argument to enforce the exhortation is taken from the dignity and excellency of the person by whom the gospel began to be spoken (Hebrews 2:3): It began at first to be spoken by the Lord, that is, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is Jehovah, the Lord of Life and glory, Lord of all, and as such possessed of unerring and infallible wisdom, infinite and inexhaustible goodness, unquestionable and unchangeable veracity and faithfulness, absolute sovereignty and authority, and irresistible power. This great Lord of all was the first who began to speak it plainly and clearly, without types and shadows as it was before he came. Now surely it may be expected that all will reverence this Lord, and take heed to a gospel that began to be spoken by one who spoke so as never man spoke.

_ _ 4. Another argument is taken from the character of those who were witnesses to Christ and the gospel (Hebrews 2:3, Hebrews 2:4): It was confirmed to us by those that heard him, God also bearing them witness. Observe, (1.) The promulgation of the gospel was continued and confirmed by those who heard Christ, by the evangelists and apostles, who were eye and ear-witnesses of what Jesus Christ began both to do and to teach, Acts 1:1. These witnesses could have no worldly end or interest of their own to serve hereby. Nothing could induce them to give in their evidence but the Redeemer's glory, and their own and others' salvation; they exposed themselves by their testimony to the loss of all that was dear to them in this life, and many of them sealed it with their blood. (2.) God himself bore witness to those who were witnesses for Christ; he testified that they were authorized and sent by him to preach Christ and salvation by him to the world. And how did he bear them witness? Not only by giving them great peace in their own minds, great patience under all their sufferings, and unspeakable courage and joy (though these were witnesses to themselves), but he bore them witness by signs, and wonders, and divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his will. [1.] With signs, signs of his gracious presence with them, and of his power working by them. [2.] Wonders, works quite beyond the power of nature, and out of the course of nature, filling the spectators with wonder and admiration, stirring them up to attend to the doctrine preached, and to enquire into it. [3.] Divers miracles, or mighty works, in which an almighty agency appeared beyond all reasonable controversy. [4.] Gifts of the Holy Ghost, qualifying, enabling, and exciting them to do the work to which they were called — divisions or distributions of the Holy Ghost, diversities of gifts, 1 Corinthians 12:4, etc. And all this according to God's own will. It was the will of God that we should have sure footing for our faith, and a strong foundation for our hope in receiving the gospel. As at the giving forth of the law there were signs and wonders, by which God testified the authority and excellency of it, so he witnessed to the gospel by more and greater miracles, as to a more excellent and abiding dispensation.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Hebrews 2:1

Lest we should let them slip — As water out of a leaky vessel. So the Greek word properly signifies.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Hebrews 2:1

Therefore (1) we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which (a) we have heard, lest at any time we (b) should let [them] slip.

(1) Now pausing to show to what end and purpose all these things were spoken, that is, to understand by the excellency of Christ above all creatures, that his doctrine, majesty and priesthood, is most perfect, he uses an exhortation taken from a comparison.

(a) He makes himself a hearer.

(b) They are said to let the word run out, who do not hold it securely and remember the word when they have heard it.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
Therefore:

Hebrews 2:2-4 For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; ... God also bearing [them] witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?
Hebrews 1:1-2 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, ... Hath in these last days spoken unto us by [his] Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;
Hebrews 12:25-26 See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more [shall not] we [escape], if we turn away from him that [speaketh] from heaven: ... Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.

the more:

Deuteronomy 4:9 Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons' sons;
Deuteronomy 4:23 Take heed unto yourselves, lest ye forget the covenant of the LORD your God, which he made with you, and make you a graven image, [or] the likeness of any [thing], which the LORD thy God hath forbidden thee.
Deuteronomy 32:46-47 And he said unto them, Set your hearts unto all the words which I testify among you this day, which ye shall command your children to observe to do, all the words of this law. ... For it [is] not a vain thing for you; because it [is] your life: and through this thing ye shall prolong [your] days in the land, whither ye go over Jordan to possess it.
Joshua 23:11-12 Take good heed therefore unto yourselves, that ye love the LORD your God. ... Else if ye do in any wise go back, and cleave unto the remnant of these nations, [even] these that remain among you, and shall make marriages with them, and go in unto them, and they to you:
1 Chronicles 22:13 Then shalt thou prosper, if thou takest heed to fulfil the statutes and judgments which the LORD charged Moses with concerning Israel: be strong, and of good courage; dread not, nor be dismayed.
Psalms 119:9 BETH. Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed [thereto] according to thy word.
Proverbs 2:1-6 My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee; ... For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth [cometh] knowledge and understanding.
Proverbs 3:21 My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion:
Proverbs 4:1-4 Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding. ... He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live.
Proverbs 4:20-22 My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. ... For they [are] life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.
Proverbs 7:1-2 My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee. ... Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye.
Luke 8:15 But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep [it], and bring forth fruit with patience.
Luke 9:44 Let these sayings sink down into your ears: for the Son of man shall be delivered into the hands of men.

we should:

Hebrews 12:5 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:
Matthew 16:9 Do ye not yet understand, neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets ye took up?
Mark 8:18 Having eyes, see ye not? and having ears, hear ye not? and do ye not remember?
2 Peter 1:12-13 Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know [them], and be established in the present truth. ... Yea, I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting [you] in remembrance;
2 Peter 1:15 Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance.
2 Peter 3:1 This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in [both] which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance:

let them slip:
Gr. run out, as leaking vessels,
Habakkuk 1:6 For, lo, I raise up the Chaldeans, [that] bitter and hasty nation, which shall march through the breadth of the land, to possess the dwellingplaces [that are] not theirs.
Habakkuk 2:16 Thou art filled with shame for glory: drink thou also, and let thy foreskin be uncovered: the cup of the LORD'S right hand shall be turned unto thee, and shameful spewing [shall be] on thy glory.
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Dt 4:9, 23; 32:46. Jsh 23:11. 1Ch 22:13. Ps 119:9. Pv 2:1; 3:21; 4:1, 20; 7:1. Hab 1:6; 2:16. Mt 16:9. Mk 8:18. Lk 8:15; 9:44. He 1:1; 2:2; 12:5, 25. 2P 1:12, 15; 3:1.

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