Sunday, December 13, 2009

Hebrews 2: Remain #Confident In #Christ

Theme: Remain Confident in Christ 

1) Because He is a better person (1:1 - 4:13) 
B) Than angels (1:3 - 2:18) 

The OT Law was given to Moses through angels (Gal. 3:19), and those who did not obey were disciplined severely (2; cf., e.g., Numbers 15:32-36). Since Christ is better than angels, and His teaching was confirmed by signs, wonders, various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit (4), believers today, should "pay much closer attention to what [they] have heard" from Him (1). Failure to heed Christ's words (regarding salvation through Him) may result in spiritual drifting (1), and severe discipline as children (3a; cf. 12:4-13; Acts 5:1-11). 

Chapter one, and 2:6-8 say Christ is better than angels because He is the ultimate victor over the world to come. This may raise the objection that we do not now see Him in this role. Verses 9 - 18 explain why Christ became "a little lower than the angels" when He took the form of a man. 

1) Because He had to pay for man's sin (9). 

The entire OT sacrificial system typifies the fact that sin calls for the death penalty, and that only  a spotless substitute can take man's place. Christ's death fulfilled this type by paying the penalty for "every man" (9, 17b). 

Philippians 2 explains that for such humility and obedience, God crowned Christ with surpassing glory, and that every knee will, therefore, ultimately bow to Christ. Christ had to become man to pay for man's sin. 

2) Because His death rendered the devil powerless (14-15). 

The devil uses fear of death to enslave people to his will. Since Christ rose from the dead, there is no sting in physical death for the believer, as they too will be raised (1 Cor. 15). Christ's death also frees the believer from obligation to the death penalty of the Law and the compulsory sin it provokes in his fallen nature (Rom. 6 - 8). The Holy Spirit's baptism of the believer into Christ's resurrection empowers christians to yield their members to God rather than sin. Thus, Christ's death nullifies the devil's power over the believer. 

3) Because suffering made Him a merciful and faithful high priest (17-18). 

Having been tested with the lust of the eyes, flesh, and pride of life (cf. Mat. 4), Christ has the ability "to come to the aid of those who are tempted" (18). Such experience perfects Christ as our Captain, or Pioneer of salvation.

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The Gospel


Have you heard Christ died for our sins, and God raised Him from the dead? Did you know God saves you from hell and gives you eternal life through faith in this finished work alone, not your merits (Jn. 3:16; 1 Cor. 15:1-3; Eph. 2:8-10; 2 Thess. 1:8-9)? This is so man cannot boast, and God alone gets the glory (Eph. 2:8-9).

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