The Berean Expositor
Volume 9 - Page 64 of 138
Index | Zoom
Writing as he was to Hebrews, the apostle had in mind their veneration of angels.
Stephen alludes to the place that angels hold in Israel, in Acts 7: 53: "Who have
received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it". The epistle to the
Galatians says of the law, "it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator"
(Gal. 3: 19). Some of the Jews went so far as to contend that Malachi, the last of the
prophets, was an angel, his name meaning "My messenger", or "My angel". It is part of
the purpose of this epistle to place the Lord Jesus Christ, as the Son, far above every
other name and dignity. To have commenced with Moses as the law-giver would not
have gone back far enough; Moses the mediator received the law by the disposition of
angels. It must therefore be shown that Christ is much better than they, to establish His
complete superiority. The exaltation of the Lord to the right hand of the Majesty on high
marks the time when the Son was given the name that is above every name. It was at the
resurrection that He was declared "son of God with power"; it was as the risen One that
He claimed "all power" in heaven and in earth; the superiority of the Son above angels is
one of degree, "by so much", and is to be understood in the light of His inherited name.
The Lord Jesus by His birth at Bethlehem became "the Son of God", for said the angel to
Mary, "the Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the highest shall
overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing that shall be born of thee shall be called
the Son of God" (Luke 1: 35). When the Word became flesh, then was seen the glory of
the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. All through the spotless years of
His life up to that dread crisis of the cross, the Father's testimony remained true and
unchanged, "This is My beloved Son". He vindicated His claim to the name He bore,
and the name becomes His by inheritance.
On page 183 of Volume VIII the structure of Heb. 1: and 2: is given, and one
member covering 1: 2-14, "The Son, His glories, God and Lord, better than angels",
must now be extended.
B | 1: 2-14.
B | a | 2-4. The Son, Heir, made ages, upholds all things.
b | 5, 6. To which of the angels. . . . Thou art My Son?
c | 7. The Angels, Spirits, Ministers.
a | 8-12. The Son, O God, Throne, Lord, Creation.
b | 13. To which of the angels. . . . Sit on My right hand?
c | 14. The Angels, Ministering Spirits.
The argument that occupies the remainder of the chapter is an establishment of the
glorious doctrine of the supremacy of the Son. The method which the apostle adopts to
prove his point is to bring forward a series of quotations from the Hebrew Scriptures, all
of them being taken from the Psalms. Seven Psalms are quoted, and the references give
evidence of a design in the order of their quotation.