Hebrews 3:1-2

“Therefore, holy brethren, sharers of the heavenly calling, carefully consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession: Jesus, who is faithful to the One who appointed Him, as Moses also was faithful in His entire house.”

We have seen that Jesus is superior to the prophets (1:1-3), and He is superior to the angels (1:4-2:18). We might think that Paul has proven everything that he needs to prove. However, there is one even greater (according to Jewish thinking) than the angels. Paul needs to prove that Jesus is even greater than Moses. Here is what an ancient Jewish rabbi said about Moses: “God calls Moses faithful in all His house, and thereby He ranked him higher than the ministering angels themselves.” So, if Jesus is even greater than Moses, then there is no one greater than Jesus. That is what Paul is now going to prove in chapter 3.

Paul starts by saying that Christians are holy (set apart from the world). “Brethren” here includes women. Paul tells us that we are sharers in the heavenly calling. Jesus is in heaven. Therefore our minds should be on the things of heaven. The next two words “carefully consider” are full of instruction. I am convinced that one of our greatest problems in the Christian life is that we will not delve deeply into who Christ is. We are a very superficial people, oftentimes, thinking that we know everything about Jesus that we need to know. These two words “carefully consider” mean that we should contemplate with a long and searching gaze who Jesus is. When we do that, we will find out that He is the Apostle of God, and He is our High Priest.

The word “apostle” means a person who is sent by someone else. Jesus is sent by God to accomplish the will of the Father. This is the only time in the New Testament where Jesus is called an apostle. What was He sent to do? He was sent to be our High Priest. He is the One who offers up the sacrifice (which is also Himself!) to the Father, that we might not have to suffer wrath. And, He is even now in heaven interceding for us.

This Apostle and High Priest is faithful. Utterly faithful. He was faithful to the One who appointed Him Apostle and High Priest (who is the Father). In fact, He was even more faithful than Moses was. Moses was a faithful Mediator. He interceded for the people even when it was inconvenient, even when, if he hadn’t interceded, he could have had blessing from God. Jesus is the same for us. And Jesus is also greater than Moses because Moses was a created being, whereas Jesus is the God-man. Is He your High Priest?

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1 Comment

  1. April 22, 2008 at 10:42 pm

    Just so you know (if you didn’t), J. A. Seiss’s “Lectures on Hebrews” (originally published in 1846) has been republished by Wipf & Stock. Seiss (1823-1904), a Lutheran pastor and author, is probably best known for his “Lectures on the Apocalypse” (originally: 3 volumes, 1870-1884).

    Also newly reprinted by them: the volume of Alexander Maclaren’s (1826-1910) pulpit prayers originally published in 1907.

    Nice to see them publishing some conservative stuff for a change.


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