"See to it
that you do not refuse Him
who is speaking,
For if those did not escape
when they refused Him
who warned them on earth,
much less will we escape
who turn away from Him
who warns from heaven."
Here it is again, "See to it." Take heed. Take care.
We've already been told to
"See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God;
See to it that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble...
that there be no immoral or godless person..."
Now here we are commanded,
"See to it
Way, way back there when I was just a shy little thing, social conversations were a difficult thing for me. It often happened that when I finally thought of something intelligent to say, the person I was talking to acted like they did not hear me and would talk over me as if I was just flapping my lips in the wind. Sometimes they would walk away while I was still speaking. If I didn't like it as a kid, can you imagine how God feels when people treat Him like that? Actually, it is the intentional refusal to listen that is warned against here.
Our pastor told us the stats of our community that 67% of our county is unchurched, does not claim to be a part of any faith group. Right here. Right now. So it seems there is a vast majority who turn away from God's voice and walk away. That usually happens when what someone is saying is either thought to be of no significance or that even though it is understood, it is willingly ignored. Danger! Danger! Danger! Do we need to put up signs that say, "Caution! God is speaking!"? Scary stuff!
Andrew Murray says, "Greater privilege brings greater responsibility;
the neglect of these, greater punishment...The terrors of Sinai will be far
surpassed by the awful judgment on those who refuse Him
that speaks from (heavenly) Mount Zion."
Adam Clarke said, "Take heed, that ye refuse not Him--the Lord Jesus, the mediator of the new covenant, who now speaketh from heaven, by His Gospel, to the Jews and to the Gentiles, having in His incarnation come down from heaven. 'Him that spake on earth' Moses, who spoke on the part of God to the Hebrews...none being permitted to escape punishment; consequently, if ye turn away from Christ, who speaks to you from heaven, you may expect a much sorer punishment, the offense against God being so much the more heinous, as the privileges slighted are more important and glorious."
John Wesley wrote of it like this, "'Refuse not'--By unbelief, 'Him that speaketh'--And whose speaking even now is a prelude to the final scene. The same voice which spake both by the law and in the Gospel, when heard from heaven, will shake heaven and earth: 'for if they escaped not;--His vengeance, 'much more shall not;--Those of us who 'turn from Him that speaketh from heaven'--That is, who came from heaven to speak to us."
In the final judgment we read of it in Revelation 19:11-13...
"And I saw heaven opened,
and behold, a white horse,
and He who sat on it is called
Faithful and True...
and His name is called
The Word of God."
Do you see the connection? Jesus Himself is He who is embodied in the very Word of God.
Let's go back to the beginning when sin entered the world
when the serpent said,
We best not question God's word
whether when He was here on earth
or when He speaks from heaven.
We have circled back to the beginning of Hebrews...
"God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets...
these last days has spoken to us in His Son."
Remember, the writer is speaking to the persecuted Hebrews. He is reminding them of what happened when the Hebrew children did not listen and obey God with the warning...
"For if those did not escape when they refused Him who warned them on earth,
much less will we escape who turn away from Him who warns from heaven."
So we better cup our little ears,
drop our socks and listen up!