"Jesus Founds our Salvation!"
General idea: Jesus Christ is the founder of our salvation and authors our faith. He is totally Divine and He became Human too. Thus, we are not controlled or answerable to angels or created things for our faith, only to God, the Sovereign of the universe. It is all about Christ as Lord, who we ought to think right of. He is no mere man or a subordinate being of some sort, He is not governed or subjected to anything or anyone, yet He humbled Himself to be as our example and our Savior crowned with Glory and honor as He walked this earth. It is He Who holds all authority in the universe. There is nothing that is left out of His knowledge and control. Whereas our knowledge and experience including the sum knowledge of all humanity and to come has no equal with our Lord's. We can't see the big picture or what will come or how things work together, but He does. We do not see the inner workings of the universe or how things happen or made, only a mere glimpse is what we have, where He has it all. We have Jesus, we must see Jesus who is our all in all and who tasted death on our behalf. He is the ultimate act of grace that He made by sacrifice of Himself for us. He who made everything and for what everything was made for, also made Himself for us. Through undeserved suffering The Most Perfect Sovereign Being, He who was only One fit to do this, founds our salvation and authors our faith. His Work alone, His holiness alone, Who now calls us His children!
Contexts and Background:
The arguments style here is a Jewish interpretative rule called the "gezerah shavah" where key words of one passage are linked to another. Thus, many Jews at that time, as today, do not take the plain or face value of a text as we do. Rather, they seek only its underlying meaning or what more it can be and argue from those points. Then there are the Jews as well as others who use the Scriptures to fulfill their views and argue accordingly. Here is not the case. Many today especially in the liberal or academic community, see this as a contradiction, but this is not the case either. In contrast, traditionally we in the Reformed and Evangelical tradition use an "Aristotelian logic form" of what is the basic idea or face value of the texts and relate it precept to precept. This passage uses Jewish logic styles from Psalm 8 making the argument that everything is subdued under Christ. In understanding God's Word, it is best to use both styles which is a part of the "Inductive Method" (Psalm 8:4-6).
Commentary, Word and Phrase Meanings:
- Not to angels. Begins another proof of the Divinity of Christ using the Old Testament and a passage that the Jewish Christian audience knew well. Christ, not angels, reigns supreme in this age and the age to come (Luke 24:25-27, 44-45).
- The world to come. A picture of Heaven but also a declaration that those in Christ reign with Christ. His victory is our victory too. This was also foretold in Psalm 8:4-6, to which this passage quotes. As God's people reign with Him in the world as His example and as His witness to His majesty and holiness.
- Has testified. This does not mean the reference is unknown or misplaced; rather it is placing the confidence in the Reference. As to prove the point, the conviction is in the Word and God as the Author and not in the man making the point. This was a Jewish argument of appealing to what is clearly known to the other person. This also meant that God is the One who inspired the words, leaving no doubt of the imperative nature of this precept (Heb. 1:5-8, 2:12; 3:7; 4:3; 5:5-6).
- What is man that… A contrast between Christ, Humanity and angels. Jesus has total dominion. Referring that humanity is not, only God, as our pride is pointless and meaningless to His Lordship (Psalm 8:4-6; Heb. 1:13). This is from Psalm 8 and refers the marvel and the holiness and high dignity God who bestows to insignificant humanity with trust with power and authority over the other creatures (Gen. 1:26-28).
- That you care for him. In context, meaning something is subdued under someone's feet (authority). This is forming a case from the Psalms that everything is submissive to the rule and reign of Christ. Even though humanity is fallen and inferior, God bestows to us dignity and usefulness. He appoints people as His agents to rule over His creation. At the same time, we are to submit to God's authority. (Gen. 1:26-27; Psalm 8:4-6; Heb. 1:13).
- Lower than the angels. Is a temporary role for Christ in His humanity. Can also mean a little lower than God, as the Incarnate Christ, He submitted Himself to God. Also to further convince this audience that angels are created beings and more powerful than people. At the same time, Christ is Creator and Lord over them. Yet, He submitted even to them for the benefit of humanity and to work for our salvation that we could not work for (Luke 22:58; Acts 5:34).
- Son of man. Usually means the messianic title of Christ. Here it does not necessarily refer to Christ directly as in the Gospels; rather it was also a "Semitic" form as an indication for or the identification with humanity. Even though the entire passage is set to prove Christ, this just may be another illustration of Christ's love for humanity and why He sacrificed Himself for us. The author may have challenged the Jews with the image of Abraham's offering of Isaac in mind for this passage, as a submission (Gen. 22:1-18).
- Everything under his feet. The recipients of this letter believed that angels ruled the elements, and the argument is made for the superiority and Godhood of Christ. Creation and the elements of nature are not subject to angels or humanity only to God and Christ is God. Also, that all is God's promise to Adam of creation is being submitted to Him and will come about at some future date. This may refer to the age to come or this only refers to the New Adam Jesus as humanities representative. This may also mean, we as Humans have dominion over creation and the earth only subject to God to do with as we see fit at the same time be responsible for its environment and resources. Due to sin this has become corrupt (Rom. 5:12-14; 1 Cor. 15:22, 45).
- We do not see everything. This is a very important point in Scripture; we do not have all the information and in fact very little. Proof to trust in Christ. So as we lead our role in the created order, we are subject with responsibility and to God.
- We see Jesus. A vital call to place our focus on the main thing in daily life and in our spiritual walk, Christ as Lord! We must see Christ in our life as the holy God as He is for our faith formation and fulfills Psalm 8.
- Now crowned with glory. This parallels and contrasts Christ's humility, as He fulfills the promise of the Prophets and of Adam. Even though Jesus humbles Himself as a man, He was also fully God and now after the resurrection for paying our debts of sin, He is the Eternal Glory of Holiness. Christ's humility was only true as He walked the earth, now it is demonstrated by His mercy and grace, as He is fully God (Heb. 1:13).
- Taste death. This is the purpose of Jesus' humility to show His work and love for us. He became a man to die for us.
- For everyone. Some have misinterpreted this to mean universal salvation, but what this means in context is simply those whose trust is in Christ as Lord. He frees us from the slavery of sin (Heb. 3:6, 14)
- Many sons. Us as Christians receive His righteousness and inherit eternal life. As God brings us who are unworthy into glory through the Son (John 1:12-13).
- The author / founder. Greek "archegos," meaning Originator, Source and Founder. Christ is the Exalted One who saves us, it is by His work alone fulfilled God's promise and gave us salvation and freed us from the fear of death. This word refers that He is the pioneer and also champion and captain and leader as this word also means. Meaning He is the One who cuts the path for us to follow, for our salvation and our life of faith. This also means the consecration of a priest who pays and paves the way of God to the Jews by sacrifices ordinances and represenitive rituals (Acts. 3:15; 5:31; 1 Cor. 8:6; Heb. 12:2).
- Through suffering. This means Christ who was already perfect is made perfect to take on our sins and give us salvation, eluding to the sacrificial system of the OT and Not He is the Lamb.
- Makes men holy /perfect. Meaning made "qualified" as Redeemer to save us. This does not mean morally or spiritually imperfect, rather His incarnational role was finished. Referring to Christ and His work for our salvation that we cannott by any means accomplish on our own. His righteousness finished the role that was set before Him is put on us called "propitiation," appeasing the righteous wrath of God as His work "conciliates" (makes peace with) God, who would condemn us for our sins. Now through Christ, we can also have "satisfaction" our fullness and growth in Him.
- Made holy. The reward of a righteous person's faith, as God will perfect us. Our redemption is freeing us from the bondage of sin, by our Lord's "substitutionary" sacrifice on the cross. A payment that we cannot do ourselves (Mark 10:45; 1 Cor. 1:23-25; 1 Tim. 2:6; Heb. 9:15). The sacrifice of Christ does not manipulate and force God to love and accept us, but God is the one who initiated it (John 3:16). This is the full expression of love in God's heart. We are Reconciled to God, whose righteousness paid for our justification through the sacrifice of His Son, for our sins (Rom. 3:21-26).
- Call them brothers. Referring that the sacrifice of Jesus made us heirs and sons, those who trust in God are His. Our Redeemer loves His redeemed and we are truly one with Him. This is also so He can teach us His Way and precepts (Psalm 22:22; Isa. 8:18; 1 John 2:28-3:10).
Devotional Thoughts and Applications:
Do you desire to really see Jesus and allow for His piercing to pierce you? We see Jesus through His Word and precepts and we will see Him in the eternity to come. What does this mean to your faith? Does the piercing of our Lord that directs sinners to Him also attract your fervent faith and obedience? As a Christian, we have the privilege to see Him now and forevermore. We have Him and His door is open to us. His accesses is presented to us. Christianity is grace and free but our growth takes time and work, so we can be our best for His highest. His piercing made this happen, so make sure He is still penetrating you (John 12:21; 1 John 3:2)!
We have His promise and we Have Him. The point being is we know Him as a Christian and thus can trust Him who does know all things. This is called "omnipresent" (Christ is all present throughout the universe of space-time) and "omnipotent" (all powerful) and "omniscient' (All perfect and knowing). So our focus for faith and life is Jesus, who knows all things and is all powerful and perfect. This is foundational for our trust to know Who our Lord is and what He did. This fuels our faith and inspires our living.
The Essential Inductive Questions (for more Inductive questions see Inductive Bible Study):
1. What does this passage say?
2. What does this passage mean?
3. What is God telling me?
4. How am I encouraged and strengthened?
5. Is there sin in my life for which confession and repentance is needed?
6. How can I be changed, so I can learn and grow?
7. What is in the way of these precepts affecting me? What is in the way of my listening to God?
8. How does this apply to me? What will I do about it?
9. What can I model and teach?
10. What does God want me to share with someone?
- As a youth, how did you handle others with authority such as teachers, police…? What about Now? How does handling authority figures relate to handling Jesus' call and precepts?
- How can you relate your daily life to the fact that Jesus made you, runs all things and knows all things? How can this fact help you trust in Him more?
- What does it mean to you that Jesus Christ is the founder of your salvation? How has He authored your faith?
- Why did Jesus identify so much with humanity that He became a little lower than the angels and submitted Himself to God? What does it mean to you that Jesus humbled Himself to be as your example and your Savior?
- How do you feel that no matter what level of education and experience you have, your knowledge and skill has no equal with our Lord's? So how does this help your trust and faith formation in Him?
- How has God bestowed to you dignity and usefulness?
- Why must we see Jesus who is our all in all and who tasted death on our behalf? What does this mean to see Him?
- What does it man to you that Jesus humbled Himself to "condescend" to be human, to assume our nature to battle sin?
- What does it mean that through Christ we have redemption, life and purpose? Why is our pride pointless and meaningless to His Lordship?
- What does it mean that we as humans can't see the big picture or what will come or how things work together? How can this help you with relationships?
- How do you feel that angels may come to serve us, when we need them and we may never even be aware of it?
- If the Christian life is all about Christ as Lord, and it is, what gets in the way of this being exhibited in us? What does it mean that we ought to think right of Him? How can you practice this more?
© 2007 R. J. Krejcir Ph.D. Into Thy Word Ministries http://www.intothyword.org/