We go on to Hebrews 1:7-14
v7: This quotation comes from Ps 104:4. G-d made His angels to be spiritual beings. Their natures manifest G-d’s glory – flames of fire. Angels are heavenly creatures, but they are not divine.
v8: But: ‘But’ is a word of contrast. The writer is contrasting Yeshua and the angels. Angels reflect G-d’s glory. Yeshua, the only divine Son of G-d, does not reflect G-d’s glory. He emits it. He is the glory of G-d.
- ‘Your throne, O G-d, is forever and ever. A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your Kingdom.’: This is a quotation taken from Ps 45:6. In calling the Son ‘G-d’ the divinity of Messiah is clearly stated.
- Throne: This is emphasised here. A throne belongs to a King. When we think of the term Messiah (Anointed One, Christ) we need to also associate it with ‘King”. Kings are anointed in order to rule. Isaiah 9:6-7 speaks of this Son, this child who will be born, whose righteous and just rule will have no end. His Kingdom will reflect the very nature, quality, and essence of G-d. The writer to the Hebrews not only emphasises that His Kingdom is eternal, but he also emphasises the nature of this Kingdom. Messiah will rule in it with uprightness.
- Scepter: His staff/scepter shows His kingdom authority.
v9: This quotation is found in Ps 45:7. G-d the Father is speaking about His Son. Like G-d, Messiah does not only love righteousness, but He also hates sin. The nature of G-d is to love righteousness and to hate unrighteousness.
- Lawlessness: The word translated lawlessness or ‘wickedness’ is ἀνομίαν. This is the word for law (or Torah) in the Greek and is prefixed by an alpha – the alpha negating the word which follows it. (i.e. causing it to mean ‘against the law’) Messiah Yeshua hates that which is against the law.
Note: We are not saved or made righteous, by the law, but the law sets forth for us a definition of righteousness. When we do the law, we are doing righteousness.
James 1:17 tells us that every good and perfect gift comes down from heaven. Moses went up on Mt Sinai and G-d came down from the heavens, and He presented to Moses the law/commandments (Exodus 19 and 20). Roms 7:16 tells us that the law is good. It is spiritual. The problem is that we are carnal people. Now, as a new creation – saved by grace and not by works -the Holy Spirit comes into us, sealing our salvation. As recipients of the Holy Spirit, being made spiritually alive, the Torah can have relevance in our lives.
- Anointed you with the oil of gladness: Messiah (The Anointed One) has been anointed with rejoicing or gladness. Old Testament Scripture is being used to teach us that if we want to be anointed with gladness we need to live righteously. When we do not live in righteousness (i.e. we are walking and behaving in a way that is against the law of G-d) we will not experience joy. When we violate truth, there are earthly and spiritual consequences (e.g. If we steal we might be put into jail etc). Believers, having accepted the grace of G-d, have had all their sins (past, present and future) paid for by the blood of Yeshua. When we violate the law (or sin) we do not lose our salvation (Hebs 9:12) but our relationship with G-d is affected if we do not repent.
- More than your companions: Above the angelic beings.
v10: Quoted from Ps 102:25.
v11: Quoted from Ps 102:26. The heavens and the earth are going to die (Luke 21:33). Everything we can see, touch, and feel is temporal, but Messiah is eternal. All those who are in eternal covenant with Him, through the gospel, are also going to remain forever and are not going to come to an end.
v12: Quoted from Ps 102:26-27. When clothes are old and worn, they are used as rags, and eventually thrown away. The old clothes are replaced by new ones. Our clothes succumb to the effects of time, but Messiah does not. He remains the same forever.
v13: Quoted from Ps 110:1. Messiah is going to rule. He is, right now, seated at the right hand of the Father (Hebs 1:3) and is making intercession on behalf of us (Roms 8:34). He is interceding:
1. NOT for our justification -removing the guilt and penalty of sin, declaring the repentant sinner righteous, through faith, in the atoning blood of Messiah.
2. NOT to maintain our salvation -our deliverance or redemption, saved from death and separation from G-d.
3. But for our sanctification – to make us holy, to purify or free us from sin.
When Messiah said, on the cross, “It is finished” (John 19:30) His work to justify and save man was completed perfectly. It is only after accepting Messiah (Roms 10:9-10) that we receive justification (Our sin does not destroy the covenantal relationship – The New Covenant promise is that He will remember our sins no more – Jer 31:31-34) as well as eternal salvation, eternal redemption, eternal life. These are complete and cannot be altered or changed. There is no need for Messiah to intercede, on our behalf, in regard to these. However, there remains a need for us to be sanctified. Messiah intercedes for us that we might be able to walk in righteousness and carry out G-d’s will and purpose in our lives.
v14: Throughout this first chapter, the author reveals that Messiah is superior to the angels. Messiah came into the world with a purpose – to purchase redemption for us. The angels, too, have been sent into the world for a purpose. The intercession of Messiah empowers the angels, and instructs the angels, so that they can minister to us. Our purpose is to walk in righteousness and to fulfil G-d’s will. The angels minister to us so that we can be servants of G-d, until such time as we inherit the outcome of our salvation (i.e. Enter into the Kingdom).