Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 1 * PART 4 * BOOK 46
Hebrews 1:1-10 – Part 2
Now as we begin this study, we’re going to finish verse 3 before we go on, and we were in the very last part of the verse when we had to stop in the last lesson. But let’s read the complete verse.
“Who (speaking of the Son in verse 2) being the brightness of his glory, (something that is beyond our understanding.) and the express image of his person, (and as we saw in the Book of Colossians, He is the visible manifestation of the invisible God) and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, (had finished the work of the cross, His death, His shed blood, His burial, and His resurrection. and when He had finished the work of the cross, He) sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;”
Now I’m always reminding people not to carry your imagination too far. Don’t just picture Jesus Christ as sitting there on a little chair, and God the Father up here on a big fancy throne, because that’s not exactly what we’re supposed to realize. Remember, as the priest of Israel, back in the Old Testament economy, they never sat down. There were no chairs in the Tabernacle or the Temple. Their work went continually without ever sitting down, because it was an endless job to be constantly interceding for the sins of Israel. It was simply unending! But you see, when Christ finished the work of the cross, it meant that His priesthood had also ended, and so He could sit down, and that’s what you have to understand. It’s a symbolic thing more than anything else that His work of redemption and work of intercession was now finished.
That’s why I’m almost screaming that Salvation is by faith, and faith alone in that finished work of the cross. Listen, you can’t add to it, and you can’t take away from it. See that’s why Paul puts such an anathema on those who would adulterate the Gospel of Salvation, by adding something that we might consider harmless in some of the deeds of the Law. But Paul says, “If you’re going adulterate my Gospel, then you’re under the anathema of God.” And why not, because He had finished it completely. He suffered, He died, He shed His blood, and He arose from the dead. So how in the world can men dare to add to that for Salvation? So here’s the whole idea that He had finished it, He now presented Himself in heaven as our High Priest, and He could sit down, and He never again had to do the work of a priest. Now let’s see what Paul says about it back in Ephesians chapter 1, and verse 20. And again, I’m going to come up to verse 19 because of that word “power.” Every time you see that word “power,” you just stop and read it slowly and digest it.
“And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power.”
The only criteria for Salvation under Paul’s Gospel is to believe it with all our hearts. That power is released when we believe. And it’s according to the working of his mighty power, as we showed in the last program and that power was exercised at His resurrection.
“Which (that is the mighty power) he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, (remember my closing remarks of Romans 1:4? What is it but that it was the power of God when he raised Christ from the dead? Here it is again.) and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places.”
It was finished! No more priestly work needs to be done. It’s all finished. And we are part and parcel of that power. Now his position at the Father’s right hand is exemplified in verse 21.
“Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, (and again I’ll go back to the power above) and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:”
And not only in this world, but even in all eternity to come. There will never be a name that will match the name of Christ, God’s Son. Now let’s come back to Hebrews once again. And so after finishing the work of redemption to which no man dare add a thing, he could sit down and proclaim that everything was done that needed to be done to bring about man’s Salvation. Now let’s go down to verse 4 and you remember when I introduced Hebrews I made the statement that throughout the book of Hebrews we’re going to be running into a constant comparison of that which was good, but now we’ve got something far better. And here we have the first instance. God the Son having the finished the work of redemption, having set down at the Father’s right hand:
“Being made so much better (underline that word “better” every time we come across it, and I think there will be 11 or 12 of them in the book of Hebrews.) than the angels, as he hath by inheritance (we covered that in the last program) obtained a more excellent name than they.” Even the two crowning angels of Michael and Gabriel can’t come close to the power and majesty of the Son, Jesus the Christ. Now verse 5 and here is the argument.
“For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee?….”
We covered that in the last program, that the only begotten Son of God is a reference to His resurrection. Never to Bethlehem, because He was not a begotten, he was simply brought about by an act of God. It was not a procreation between a man and a woman, and God Himself overshadowed Mary and it was not an act of procreation. So that is not what begotten is talking about. The only begotten Son of God is His resurrection. Now verse 5.
“….And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son.”
Now again, that does not imply that God the Father was here first and then came God the Son and then the Spirit. No way!! They have been equal in all eternity passed. They are equal in everything, even today. And everything that was accomplished by Christ on the cross was also attributable to the glory of the Father. Now verse 6.
“And again, when he bringeth in the first begotten into the world (the Son) he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him.”
Now remember those verses in Philippians we looked at in our last program, when Christ left glory, was born of the virgin and became the Jesus of Nazareth in His earthly ministry, He never gave up His deity. Now He laid aside His glory, but He never stopped being God. And there is no room for argument. And so even though He did lower Himself below the angels in order to take on human flesh, yet in His power and in His majesty, He never stopped being God. Now that is the reason for His miracles. Why in the world when the Sea of Galilee was raging and billowing and the little ship was about to sink, and the disciples were all shook up and fearing for their lives, they went below and told the Lord, and what did He do? He merely stepped out and spoke and said, “Peace be still.” And just that quick everything was quiet. And what did the disciples say? “What manner of man is this that even the wind and waves obey his voice?” Well, they had a hard time, too, recognizing Who He really was.
And so this is what we have to be constantly reminded of, that as He proved through His miracle working powers in His earthly ministry, He showed that He never stopped being God. And even though the angels were powerful and they had glory, yet it was nothing compared to His. Now verse 7 and this might answer some questions concerning us today.
“And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire.”
The question comes periodically, do we believe in angels? Well, of course I believe in angels because the Bible teaches them. Now, we do not have their manifestation in miraculous ways as we did in the past. They don’t appear to us. In fact, I tell everybody when they talk about some of these things, what would we do today if you’re driving home on a dark night and all of a sudden there would be 8 or 10 angels standing on the road? Have you ever thought about that? How would you handle it? I think it would drive most of us almost to the loony bin, wouldn’t it? We’re not ready for something like that. Angels haven’t appeared in that form since almost the apostolic days and we’re not supposed to be looking for angels. But, that doesn’t mean we don’t believe that they are real.
I personally think that we probably have a guardian angel. I like to think that every one of us does. I can’t prove it from Scripture. This is probably as close as you can get that angels are God’s ministers of fire. And they watch over the believer. But that’s as far as I can go with it. Paul teaches nothing concerning angels except that we’re not to enter into it as a form of false worship. That’s back in Colossians. We might as well go back and look at it so you’ll know what I’m talking about. Come back with me to Colossians chapter 2 and verse 18. And this is about as close as Paul ever gets to teaching concerning angels. So we dare not go beyond what the Scriptures permits us to go.
We can certainly realize that they’re God’s ministers, they’re spirit beings, and we like to think that they watch over us, especially the ones who believe. But on the other hand we have to be careful that we don’t step into territory where we don’t belong. Now let’s look at Colossians chapter 2:18. Where Paul writes:
“Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels,…”
See there’s the warning! Don’t get enraptured with angels. Now the last few Christmases I think we have almost been deluged in our department stores with angels. Every place you look is angels, but I can’t agree with that, because we’re not to have that much doing with angels. So looking at that Scripture again:
“Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,”
It’s a warning, so that’s as far as I go concerning angels. Now the truth of them in the Old Testament economy, of course there were many instances. My, angels are part and parcel of the Old Testament. We know Jacob certainly saw the angels. We know the three angels came to Abraham’s tent. We know the shepherds at the birth of Christ saw many angels. Peter had an angel release him from prison, and those are valid accounts, but when we get to the Church Age, Paul never teaches us anything concerning the activity of angels or demons.
Do you realize that the Apostle Paul gives us absolutely no room, or instructions for casting out demons. I mean not a word! When I get a question concerning demons, I always tell people, “Well lead that person to Christ, and that will take care of his demon problem!” And folks that’s as far as we can go, because we have no permission or commandment in this Age of Grace to practice exorcism. But we can bring that person to a knowledge of Salvation, and as the Holy Spirit comes into the life of that person at Salvation, the demonic things, if they’re there, will leave.
Now back to Hebrews chapter 1, and verse 8. Remember angels haven’t obtained to this level, as great as they are, and as numerous as they are, and as powerful as they are, yet they never come close to the power of the Son!
“But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O (what’s the next word?) God, is for ever and ever:…”
I’ll never understand how people can reject Christ the Son as God. Especially when they can look at verses like this and say, “That isn’t what it means,” or “I don’t believe that.” Well I have a hard time contemplating that. But to the Son, God Himself says: “
“Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom.”
And a scepter of course denoted kingship, or royalty. A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom, and He will be King over all. You know the verse in Revelation, so let’s go back and look at it. Oh, the day is coming when this will take place. But also keep in mind that I’m always stressing that we in the Church Age do not address Him as our King. Christ is the Head of the Body of which we as believers are joint heirs with Him. Now that doesn’t take away this which is in Revelation chapter 19 and verse 16. This is still future, and absolutely I believe it, but that doesn’t mean He’s the King over the Church tonight. But rather He’s the Head of the Body which we are a direct inheritance of. We’re joint-heirs with Christ, but look what Revelation says when He finally returns at His second coming.
“And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”
Now that’s the epitome of His title, and He’s going to exercise that power over His Kingdom! And that’s what the Psalmist is saying back here in Hebrews 1:8.
“But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom.”
This 1000 year Kingdom that Christ will one day establish on the earth, where Israel will be the crowning Nation of the nations. Now verse 9. This is all to elevate our understanding of the Son.
“Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity;…” Now listen that’s the mind of God, even for us under Grace. Don’t ever think for a minute that God winks at iniquity, because God hates it! God hated it in the Old Testament economy. He hated it during His earthly ministry, but in Grace He is so willing to forgive, but that doesn’t mean that He doesn’t hate sin.
“Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God (again the Triune God) even thy God, (in which the Son is a part) hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.” Here again He has been exulted. And as God the Son, every knee will one day bow before Him. Now verse 10.
“And thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands:”
When I read verses like this, I can’t help it, but I always have to run back to Job 38 and I just get such a thrill out of those two chapters because I hope I’m not doing Job an injustice, but I have to think that Job was full of pride. I mean, he was a good man, God had blessed him, he had wisdom, but I think he was proud, and I think this is why God was dealing with him. The reason I’ve come to this conclusion is the statements in Job 38. Now if I’m wrong I may someday have to admit to Job himself, but we know that Job had to be dealt with for some reason or other. Once he realized that he was nothing in God’s eyes then God could restore him seven fold. But I think you’ll see what I’m talking about here in Job 39. And let’s start with verse 1.
“Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, (now remember when we have the word “LORD” speaking in the Old Testament, it’s God the Son, but in His Old Testament role, as He spoke to the prophets. But here He’s speaking to Job.) and said, 2. Who is this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge?”
Now some would say, “Well, He’s referring to Job’s friends.” Well I don’t think so. I think He’s referring to Job, because he’s proud and he thought he knew a lot. But you see, God is sort of putting Job in his place. So God says:
“Gird up now thy loins like a man; (in other words, let’s see Job if you can take it, because I’m going to show you how much wisdom you don’t have) for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me.” See, God’s not talking to Job’s friends, but rather He’s talking to Job. Now read on.
“Where was thou when I laid the foundations of the earth?…”
Isn’t that something? Could Job answer? He didn’t know the first thing about it did he? He didn’t know where the world came from and how it was hung in space.
“…declare if thou hast understanding.” Do you see where I’m getting the idea that the Lord is just pointing out Job’s pride, that he had nothing to be proud of?
“Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest?…”
Maybe most people don’t read that like I do, but I read that like, “Alright Job if you’re so smart, tell me these things I’m asking” And we know Job couldn’t! And today God could do the same thing with the most brilliant scientists. God could confront them with things that even though we have such tremendous technology, God could put them on the spot and just make them sweat like a butcher, couldn’t He?” They wouldn’t know the first thing He was talking about, so that’s what He’s doing here with Job. Now verse 7
“When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy? (I can hear the Lord say, ‘Where were you Job? Can you explain it?) 8. Or who shut up the sea with doors, when it brake forth, as if it had issued out of the womb?” Then come all the way over to verse 22.
“Hast thou entered into the treasures (or the secrets) of the snow?…”
What do you suppose God was talking about? That no two snow flakes are alike. “Did you know that Job?” So when you read about creation just go back and read Job chapters 38 and 39 and you’ll get a pretty good inkling of the amount of knowledge that most people do not have concerning the miracle and power of creation. Now coming back to Hebrews in our closing seconds we realize that God the Son was the One who had all this knowledge that Job knew nothing of. Now let’s read 10 again.
“And Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands; 11. They shall perish; but thou remainest;…” That’s the Creator, that’s the God whom we worship and serve!