Sunday, May 6, 2012

Slip Sliding Away


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.  (Hebrews 2:1)

Paul Simon sang a song that expresses the sentiment of this verse.  “Slip sliding away, slip sliding away; you know the nearer your destination, the more you’re slip sliding away.”  Anyone who has ever traveled understands that a journey of any distance is made up of more than just the point of origination and the final destination.  There are usually several stops along the way, some planned and some unplanned.  Sometimes those stops, especially the unplanned ones, can delay or even divert our arrival.  They may even prove to be detrimental to our final goal.

For Christians, our final destination is eternity in the presence of our Lord, but before we reach our eternal abode, we are faced with obstacles along the way that have a way of distracting us from our ultimate goal.  When we perceive apparent barriers to our Christian walk, we should not be taken off guard or caught by surprise.  With God’s Word, we are not without counsel.  Indeed, when we encounter such roadblocks, as our verse says, “we ought to give more earnest heed to the things we have heard [from God’s Word], lest at any time we should let them slip.”  The phrase “more earnest” is one word in the Greek (perissostéroos) which means “more superabundant,” and the word translated “heed” is prosecho, which means to “hold the mind.”  When combined, these words encourage us to focus our minds intently on the Word of God so that we do not go “slip sliding away” from God’s purpose for our lives. “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10).

So, how do we keep from “slip sliding away”?  As the children of Israel prepared to enter into the Promised Land, they were facing many obstacles ahead.  God encouraged Joshua with these words:  “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success” (Joshua 1:8).  The way to be successful in the Christian walk is to heed and practice the Word of God.  The psalmist echoes this axiom: “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee” (Psalm 119:11).  If you do not want to go “slip sliding away,” you must anchor your life to the Word of God.

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