A Warning Not to Drift from Truth
1This is why it is so crucial that we be all the more engaged and attentive to the truths # 2:1 Or “things,” by implication “truths.” that we have heard so that we do not drift off course. 2For if the message of the law spoken and confirmed by angels # 2:2 See Deut. 33:2; Ps. 68:17; Acts 7:38, 53. Angels participated in the giving of the Torah. brought a just penalty to every disobedient violation; 3then how would we expect to escape punishment if we despise the very truths that give us life? # 2:3 As translated from the Aramaic. This appears to be a quote from Deut. 32:47. The Greek is “how will we escape if we neglect such a great salvation.” There are six significant warnings in Hebrews: (1) Here in 2:1–4 we are warned not to drift away from the power of our great salvation. (2) In 3:7–4:13 we are warned about failing to enter into the faith-rest life with the failure of the Israelites in the wilderness as an example. (3) In 5:11–6:12 we are warned to be devoted to the full assurance of our hope until life’s end. (4) In 10:23–39 we are warned of not sinning willfully after we have received the truth. (5) In 12:1–17 we are given the warning of God’s correction as our faithful Father. (6) In 12:25–29 we are warned not to close our hearts to the voice of the One who speaks from heaven. The Lord himself was the first to announce these things, and those who heard him firsthand confirmed their accuracy. 4Then God added his witness to theirs. He validated their ministry with signs, astonishing wonders, all kinds of powerful miracles, # 2:4 Signs, wonders, and miracles, were all components of the ministries of the New Testament believer. There is no place in Scripture to indicate that any of the works of Jesus or his apostles should not be seen today. See John 14:12; Acts 2:22, 43; 5:12; 6:8; 8:13; Rom. 15:19; 2 Cor. 12:12; Gal. 3:5. and by the gifts of the Holy Spirit, # 2:4 Or “by distributions of the Holy Spirit.” The Greek word for “distribution” is often used for dividing an inheritance. The word gifts is implied in the text and made explicit. which he distributed as he desired.
Jesus, and the Destiny of Believers
5For God will not place the coming world, of which we speak, under the government of angels. 6But the Scriptures affirm:
What is man that you would even think about him,
or care about Adam’s race.
7You made him lower than the angels for a little while. # 2:7 See Ps. 8:4–6. The Aramaic can be translated “Who is man that you would give a thought toward him, for whom the Son of Man should be pledged [to be offered for them].” The phrase “son of man” is used in the New Testament consistently for Jesus Christ, the “Son of Man.” The Hebrew text of Ps. 8 refers to man being made a little lower than Elohim (God), which can also mean “mighty angels.” This seemed to be a problem to the translators of the Septuagint, so they rendered it “lower than angels.” Hebrews seems to closely follow the Septuagint; however, the Greek text of Hebrews changes the quotation to read “a little while lower.”
You placed your glory and honor
upon his head as a crown.
And you have given him dominion
over the works of your hands, # 2:7 This last sentence is missing in some Greek manuscripts; however early and important ones include it, as well as the Aramaic.
8For you have placed everything under his authority. # 2:8 Or “you subjected all things under his feet.” The command given to both Adam and Eve to “take dominion” (Gen. 1:28) has never been rescinded. The planet will one day be under the rulership of men and women who are under the rulership of Christ.
This means that God has left nothing outside the control of his Son, even if presently we have yet to see this accomplished. 9But we see Jesus, who as a man, lived for a short time lower than the angels and has now been crowned with glorious honor because of what he suffered in his death. For it was by God’s grace # 2:9 A few manuscripts and some external evidence has instead “he, apart from God [separated from God], tasted death.” This could be taken to mean that he experienced death only in his humanity and not in his divinity. The Aramaic can be translated “God himself, by his grace, experienced death in the place of every person.” that he experienced death’s bitterness on behalf of everyone! # 2:9 Or “everything,” that is, he redeems humanity and restores creation to his original plan.
Jesus Brings Many Sons to Glory
10For now he towers above all creation, for all things exist through him and for him. # 2:10 The Greek word prepo means “to stand out and tower above.” And that God made him, pioneer # 2:10 Or “trailblazer” or “forerunner.” His perfection through sufferings implies that all his sons will come to glorious perfection through hardships. The Aramaic can be translated “the Prince of Life.” of our salvation, perfect through his sufferings, for this is how he brings many sons and daughters to share in his glory. # 2:10 Or “bring many children into his glorious state.” Grace gives us the glory that Jesus has. Although it is true that God will not share his glory with another (Isa. 42:8), but in Christ, we are not “another,” we are one with him. See also John 17:22; Rom. 8:29–30. 11Jesus, the Holy One, makes us holy. And as sons and daughters, we now belong to his same Father, # 2:11 Or “we are all from [out of] one.” That is, we are all out of one Source, God the Father. so he is not ashamed or embarrassed to introduce us as his brothers and sisters! # 2:11 See Song. 4:9–10; 5:1–2. 12For he has said,
“I will reveal who you really are # 2:12 Or “I will announce your name.” This quote is taken from Ps. 22:22. to my brothers and sisters,
and I will glorify you with praises
in the midst of the congregation.”
“My confidence rests in God!” # 2:13 See Ps. 31:14; Isa. 8:17.
And again he says,
“Here I am, one with # 2:13 Jesus is one with us, his children. the children Yahweh has given me.” # 2:13 By implication “Here I am, in the midst of the sons and daughters you have given me.”
14Since all his “children” have flesh and blood, so Jesus became human to fully identify with us. He did this, so that he could experience death and annihilate the effects of the intimidating accuser who holds against us the power # 2:14 Or “dominion.” of death. 15By embracing death Jesus sets free those who live their entire lives in bondage # 2:15 Or “slavery.” to the tormenting dread of death. 16For it is clear that he didn’t do this for the angels, but for all the sons and daughters of Abraham. # 2:16 See Isa. 41:8. 17This is why he had to be a man and take hold of our humanity in every way. He made us his brothers and sisters and became our merciful and faithful King-Priest # 2:17 The Aramaic can be translated “so that he would be the nurturing Lord of the king-priests.” before God; as the One who removed our sins to make us one with him. 18He suffered and endured every test and temptation, so that he can help us every time we pass through the ordeals of life. # 2:18 This chapter gives us the 8 victories Christ won for us at Calvary: (1) He is crowned with glory and honor. (2) He brings many sons into his glory. (3) He is made perfect through his sufferings. (4) We are made holy. (5) By his death he destroyed the devil, who held the power of death over us. (6) He delivers us completely from the fear of death. (7) He is now our faithful High Priest. (8) He helps us in every temptation.