January 24

Hebrews 1 (NLT)
The Supremacy of God’s Son

5 For God never said to any angel what he said to Jesus: “You are my Son. Today I have become your Father.” God also said, “I will be his Father, and he will be my Son.” 6 And when he brought his supreme Son into the world, God said, “Let all of God’s angels worship him.” 7 Regarding the angels, he says, “He sends his angels like the winds, his servants like flames of fire.” 8 But to the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, endures forever and ever. You rule with a scepter of justice. 9 You love justice and hate evil. Therefore, O God, your God has anointed you, pouring out the oil of joy on you more than on anyone else.” 10 He also says to the Son, “In the beginning, Lord, you laid the foundation of the earth and made the heavens with your hands. 11 They will perish, but you remain forever. They will wear out like old clothing. 12 You will fold them up like a cloak and discard them like old clothing. But you are always the same; you will live forever.” 13 And God never said to any of the angels, “Sit in the place of honor at my right hand until I humble your enemies, making them a footstool under your feet.” 14 Therefore, angels are only servants—spirits sent to care for people who will inherit salvation.”

V5, Two verses are now quoted from the OT identifying the Messiah as God’s Son. First, in Psalm 2:7, God addresses Him as Son: “You are My Son, today I have begotten You.” In one sense Christ is the eternally begotten Son. In another sense, He was begotten in incarnation. In a third sense, He was begotten in resurrection—the first-born from the dead (Col. 1:18). Paul used this verse in the synagogue at Antioch of Pisidia and applied it to Christ’s First Advent (Acts 13:33).

But the main point is that God never addressed an angel as His Son. Angels collectively are spoken of as sons of God (Job 1:6; Ps. 89:6), but in that case it means nothing more than creatures. When the Lord Jesus is described as the Son of God, it signifies equality with God.

The second verse is from 2 Samuel 7:14: “I will be to Him a Father, and He shall be to Me a Son.” Although the words might seem to have reference to Solomon, the Holy Spirit here identifies them as referring to David’s greater Son. Here again the argument is that God never spoke of an angel in this way.

V6, A third way in which Christ is greater than the angels is that He is to be the object of their worship, whereas they are His messengers and servants. To prove his point, the author quotes Deuteronomy 32:43 and Psalm 97:7.

V8, Now follows a galaxy of glories in which the Son is seen to be incomparable. First He is addressed by God as God. In Psalm 45:6 God the Father hails the Messiah with the words, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever.” Here again the deity of Christ is unmistakable, and the argument comes from the traditional Hebrew text. (There is at least one quotation from the OT in every chapter of Hebrews.)

He is also the eternal Sovereign; His throne lasts forever and ever. His kingdom shall indeed “stretch from shore to shore, till moons shall wax and wane no more.”

He is the righteous King. The psalmist speaks of Him as wielding a scepter of righteousness, which is a poetic way of saying that this King rules in absolute honesty and integrity.

V10, The Lord Jesus Christ is the Creator of heaven and earth. This is demonstrated from Psalm 102:25–27. In that psalm, the Messiah prays, “O my God … do not take me away” (v. 24). This prayer at Gethsemane and Calvary is answered by God the Father, “Of old You laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands.”

It should be noticed that God here in verse 10 addresses His Son as Lord, that is Jehovah. The conclusion is inescapable: the Jesus of the NT is the Jehovah of the Old.

V13, A further quotation (Ps. 110:1) proves the Son’s superiority. In that psalm God invites the Messiah, “Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” The question is asked, “To what angel did God ever say anything like that?” The answer is, of course, to none.

To be seated at the right hand of God signifies a position of highest honor and limitless power. To have all one’s enemies as a footstool signifies universal subjugation and universal dominion.

Life Application

The book of Hebrews is rich with specific spiritual knowledge of Christ. Consider reading through it at some point this year, asking God to give you insights you may have yet to discover.