Agonizomai: Heb 1:13-14 Christ - Whose Servants Are Angels

Monday, November 02, 2009

Heb 1:13-14 Christ - Whose Servants Are Angels

Heb 1:13-14 Christ - Whose Servants Are Angels


Heb 1:13-14 And to which of the angels has he ever said, "Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet"? 14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?

Finally, in making his case about the infinite superiority of Christ from their own scriptures, the writer turns to another psalm {Ps 110:1} This is the very psalm that the Lord Himself used to prove His identity to unbelieving leaders - though they refused to hear. The Pharisees knew perfectly well that this psalm was a prophetic one, too. They understood in their heart of hearts that it spoke of Messiah.

But Jesus quoted this not in answer to their testing; rather it was added after their condescending remarks to Him in Luke 20 (though all the synoptics have this). They had tested him about the afterlife with a ridiculous hypothetical story about a woman who, under the Levirate law, was married to seven brothers, each of whom died. The Lord’s answer was a rebuke to show their ignorance of the scriptures, when he said there would be no marrying or giving in marriage in heaven, but that men and women would be as the angels.

It was only after they complimented Him on the wisdom of His answer that Jesus rejoindered with psalm 110. His point was to let them know that it was not earthly wisdom - not just quick thinking, juggling on the fly, having sharp wits - that He had shown them; it was that He himself was wisdom incarnate. “I am no mere man” was the implication. He was a man, but He was more than a man. He was the Theanthropos - the God/man. He wasn’t there to bandy wits with His detractors, but to declare, preach and manifest the will of the Father.

Wherefore, He took them to psalm 110 and asked them a simple question, "(if) David thus calls him ‘Lord’, so how is he his son?" {Luke 20:44}. They, of course did not answer, and Jesus warned the onlookers to beware of such men.

Now, none of this is directly spoken of here in Hebrews - but the citation the Lord used was the one directly next to this one. In our Bibles, it is in the very same verse. The same Jesus who rebuked the Pharisees for their clever flattery and cunningly intellectual and legalistic nit-picking for the sake of religious argument (but without a real care for meaning) was making a point about His divine Sonship as part of the sentence now brought to bear. Surely this could not escape the notice of the Hebrews who, by now, had the gospels.

Jesus knew Who He was. The Pharisees and other leaders refused to see it. Jesus was the Lord of David and is the Lord of the universe. Not only that, but the incarnate and resurrected Son is now at the most privileged post that there is. He sits at the right hand of God - the power and honour position. Angels - the holy angels - cover their faces and their feet with their wings in the presence of God but the Son sits at the right hand of power and authority and favour and honour. Unveiled. Untrembling. Unafraid. He is Holy, holy, holy - the Lord God Almighty - thinking it not robbery to be equal with God and having laid aside His glory to redeem a people for Himself (a people given to Him by name by the Father) He has finished His journey through the heavens and taken up His glory again, having revealed even greater glory to all creation than was able previously to be apprehended by any of His creatures.

The writer seems to be saying, "Jesus - an angel? Give me a break!" While Jesus sits at the right hand of power and majesty on high, mere angels are sent to minister and serve in the unveiling, the revelation, the unfurling in history of the redemptive plan that Jesus secured. So far from Jesus being an angel, angels themselves are ministers to the (human) saints for Christ’s sake. They are not nearly so glorious as redeemed mankind, for redeemed men experience and enjoy something that angels themselves long to look into. Redeemed men are to be glorified not for themselves, but on account of what Christ Himself did in their behalf. Jesus an angel? Not on your life!



2 Comments:

Blogger Roxylee said...

I'd like to print this out and hand it to the next Watchrower person who knocks on my door. Maybe your words will sink in-mine don't seem to faze them.

Holy, Holy, Holy... this sums it up. And to think He loves us with an everlasting love... It's so amazing.

10:14 am  
Blogger agonizomai said...

Roxylee,

Go ahead. Just leave a quarter under my doormat. Or send me a present or something.

JWism is a strong deception, but not stronger than God's grace to overcome it, if He so chooses.

Words are important, but speaking them in love matters, too.

Blessings,


Tony

10:50 am  

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