Hebrews 1:1– We are told that God has revealed Himself to His people in various ways but in Hebrews 1:2 we are told that in this age God is speaking through His Son. Concerning this “Son” He is the messenger of the New Covenant spoken of by Moses in (Deuteronomy 18:18, John 1:21; Acts 3:22)
His uniqueness is defined in chapter 1 in seven different ways. By doing this the writer distinguishes this “Son” from all other sons. These 7 ways can be divided into 3 categories. 1. That this “Son” is the Sovereign Lord of the Universe. 2. That He is the representative presence of the Father. 3. That He is greater than the angels.
The Son is Lord of the Universe – God has appointed Him Heir of all things. This was done before creation. Just as Abraham made Isaac heir of all his possessions, so too did the Father of all creation appoint Jesus. Psalm 2 and Psalm 8 attest to this fact concerning the Messiah. God through the Messiah created the World. If we confess that Jesus is Lord. We are saying that Jesus is God. This is exactly what the prophet Isaiah said in 9:6. The Son is the creator of all things. John 1:1-3, 1:10, 1:14. Colossians 1:16
He is the Representative presence of the Father. – He is the Radiance of His Glory – This means that He is the visible Manifestation of God upon the earth. This Word Glory is a reference to the Shekinah which was described so beautifully in 2 Chronicles 7:1-3. The word radiance means literally “to send for light.” Man could not behold the complete glory of God and live, but we can behold His glory in much the same way that Moses reflected the glory of God when he came from his presence from Mt. Sinai (Exodus 34:33-35). In the New Covenant we learn how the Light of the Father is revealed through Jesus (John 8:12)
He is the exact representative of His Nature. – As a mold impressed in wax is a reflection of the dye that cast it, so too are all the perfections of the Father found in the Son. God is “Echad” one or unity. He upholds all things by the word of His power – The Son of God is not only Creator, calling all things into existence out of nothing by a word; But He also supports and maintains all creation. It is He who maintains and sustains the physical laws that govern the universe. It is also He, through His Spirit, who restrains evil and the evil one on the earth. The time is coming when this restraint shall be removed (2 Thessalonians 2:6-7)
He made purification for our sins – This statement is the first fruits of the priestly ministry that we will learn about as we continue in the study of this book. Sin is what separates us from God who is Holy and cannot look upon evil Habakkuk 1:13 It is this sin that separates us from the Father.
We will learn later (Hebrews 9:12-14) in more detail the significance of His resurrection and that part of what was accomplished was that He offered His blood in the heavenly tabernacle and purified us so that we might have access to the Father.
In O.T. times before the sacrificial offerings in the Temple could be made, the Temple itself had to be cleansed. Exodus 29:36 Jesus however made this cleansing by Himself. The priests could not do this on their own. What this accomplished was removing the barrier that exists between God and man. This made it possible for us to have personal atonement. Furthermore He made it possible for man to be removed from the power of sin that causes us to be in bondage.
As a result of this work that He Himself accomplished He “sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.” – This means that His work of Atonement is complete. It is finished. This is a reference to His superiority over the angels as well as His superiority over priests. The Day of Atonement was the only day that the High Priest could enter the Holy of Holies. This is where the Ark of the Covenant was and the dwelling of God’s Spirit on earth. There was no chair anywhere in the court of the Levites, the Holy Place and in the Holy of Holies. But our Messiah has sat down in the Presence of God Himself and intercedes for us before His Throne.
Having become as much better that the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they. The wording “became” is interesting. We would expect a statement that the Messiah was eternally superior to the angels, instead we have the statement, “becoming superior to them.” But this is an allusion to the work that the Son did in becoming man and putting the sins of man away. It brings to mind the words of Isaiah the prophet who wrote 700 B.C. Isaiah 53.
This work caused Him to inherit a more excellent Name. HaShem. A substitute word for Jehovah. There is an allusion to this in the words of the Hallel in Psalm 118:26 A reference to the Messiah. Jesus is the Name above all names. We need to realize that this Jesus that we have come to believe in is Lord and King of the Universe Represents the image of the Father to mankind Is Far Superior to all men and angels. Next week we will consider angels and how majestic they are and yet pale in comparison to Jesus.