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by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Lord’s Day Morning, April 19, 2009

“How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?”
(Hebrews 2:3).

This text brings to mind two great truths from the Bible: first, the greatness of the salvation provided for you in Christ Jesus; and second, the horrors that will come upon those of you who neglect that salvation.

I. First, the great salvation provided in Christ.

The Apostle calls the greatness of salvation provided for you in Christ, “so great salvation.” Christ earned that great salvation for you by His suffering in your place. He has “trodden the winepress alone” (Isaiah 63:3) to earn your salvation. In the Garden of Gethsemane God laid your sin upon Christ. I believe it was there in Gethsemane that God “laid on him the iniquity [the sin] of us all” (Isaiah 53:6). It was in Gethsemane that,

“Being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground”
      (Luke 22:44).

It was in the Garden of Gethsemane that He began to suffer in your place, to provide you with “so great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3).

Then they arrested Him. They took him before the high priest, and then before the Roman governor Pilate. It was there that Christ said,

“I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting” (Isaiah 50:6).

It was there that the Son of God endured being beaten in the face, having swatches of His beard pulled out by the roots, being spat upon, and having His back stripped to the bone.

“Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him”
       (John 19:1).

This was done for you. Christ was suffering in your place, for your sins, to provide for you “so great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3).

“Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin”
       (Isaiah 53:10).

Then they took the blood-drenched Saviour to the mountain of Calvary and nailed His hands and His feet to the Cross, of whom the Apostle Peter said,

“His own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree”
       (I Peter 2:24).

“For Christ…hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God” (I Peter 3:18).

He went through crucifixion and death to pay the penalty for your sins, to make possible for you “so great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3), to bring you to God cleansed from your sin.

Yet that “great salvation” did not end there. He also obtained that great salvation for you by rising from the dead. On the third day, on Easter Sunday morning, God raised the dead body of Jesus from the grave,

“Who was delivered [to the cross] for our offences, and was raised again for our justification” (Romans 4:25).

Dr. Gill said He was raised from the dead,

for our justification. He died in the [place] of his people, and by dying made satisfaction for their sins; he rose again as their…representative…Christ’s resurrection did not procure the justification…that was done by his obedience and death; but for the [testifying] of it, that it might fully appear that sin was atoned for…and for the application of it (John Gill, D.D., An Exposition of the New Testament, The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1989 reprint, volume II, p. 448; note on Romans 4:25).

“For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life” (Romans 5:10).

These then, His suffering and death on the Cross to pay for your sins, and His resurrection from the dead to give you life, and justification, and the new birth, make available to you “so great salvation” (Hebrews 2:3). As Philip Bliss put it in one of his great hymns,

Man of Sorrows! what a name
For the Son of God, who came
Ruined sinners to reclaim.
Hallelujah! What a Saviour!

Bearing shame and scoffing rude,
In my place condemned He stood;
Sealed my pardon with His blood.
Hallelujah! What a Saviour!
   (“Hallelujah, What a Saviour!” by Philip P. Bliss, 1838-1876).

But there is a second thought in our text.

II. Second, the horrors that will come upon those of you who neglect
that great salvation.

“How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?”
       (Hebrews 2:3).

If you neglect the salvation Christ makes available, you will not escape from the horror of Hell,

“Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched”
       (Mark 9:48).

“Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire” (Matthew 25:41).

“And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:15).

If you “neglect so great salvation” you will not escape the horrors of the “lake of fire.” You will be cast into it, along with “the devil and his angels,” for whom it was prepared (Matthew 25:41). I believe that then the Devil and the demons will torment your lost soul in that eternal lake of fire. It’s horrible to think what they may do to you! Then, too, there is the horror of the fire itself. You will be burned and burned and burned – yet never consumed – for ever and ever and ever.

“How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?”
       (Hebrews 2:3).

But there is also the horror, awaiting you, of standing before a holy and righteous God, without any excuse – having your sins read aloud by Him from His books, the record of your sins – unatoned for, uncleansed, because you neglected the cleansing Blood of Christ, because you “neglected so great salvation” offered freely to you by the Son of God! I want you to read what will happen to you on that horrible day. Please stand and turn to Revelation 20:12.

“And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works”
       (Revelation 20:12).

You may be seated.

If you neglected the Blood of Christ, it will not be there to cover your sins, and cleanse them from God’s record books. Instead, every sin you have committed, or even thought about, will be read by God out of His books, to condemn you.

“How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?”
       (Hebrews 2:3).

We beg you, and plead with you to reject Christ no more. Come to Christ who loves you and desires to wash your sins clean by His precious Blood! Yet if you insist on neglecting “so great salvation,” we can do nothing; our love for you and God’s love for you will be wasted on you. If you go on neglecting the salvation Christ offers all the love in the universe cannot save you!

“How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?”
       (Hebrews 2:3).

You can read Dr. Hymers’ sermons each week on the Internet
at Click on “Sermon Manuscripts.”

Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: Hebrews 2:1-4.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:
“Hallelujah, What a Saviour!” (by Philip P. Bliss, 1838-1876).



by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

“How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?”
(Hebrews 2:3).

I.   First, the great salvation provided in Christ, Isaiah 63:3;
Isaiah 53:6; Luke 22:44; Isaiah 50:6; John 19:1;
Isaiah 53:10; I Peter 2:24; 3:18; Romans 4:25; 5:10.

II.  Second, the horrors that will come upon those of you who
neglect that great salvation, Mark 9:48; Matthew 25:41;
Revelation 20:15, 12.