3 -Hebrews Chapter 2 So Great a Salvation

Heb 2:1  Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip. 

Heb 2:2  For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; 

Heb 2:3  How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; 

Heb 2:4  God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will? 

First Warning To Heed the Gospel

Here is a warning not to let the things related to Salvation slip from our mind. We need to give earnest heed.  The whole instruction in the book of Hebrews is to press on to know the contents of the salvation that He accomplished so that we would enter into a rest of realization about what He’s done for us.  We would no longer be tempted to go back to old things.  The first temptation is angels.  I don’t know if you know that the 10 commandments (written on stones) which was called a ministry of condemnation and death in 2 Cor 3, was ministered at the hand of angels.  This can be seen in Acts 7 and Galatians 3.

Acts 7:53 they received the law by the disposition of Angels and have not kept it.

 And Gal 3:19 What serves the law? It was added because of transgressions until the seed came to whom the promise was made, and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.

So angels were involved in giving the law.  Their word was to be obeyed and transgression and disobedience was recompensed. Now God is Speaking in His Son in these last days, concerning His salvation. If the word of angels was to be obeyed, how shall we escape if we neglect “so great a salvation?” that God is speaking about now? 

This is not talking about neglecting a commandment or a law, but of our very salvation.  This was originally spoken by the Lord during His ministry, and then He accomplished it in His death and resurrection.  Then, it was confirmed by those who heard (the apostles) and God bore witness with them with signs and wonders.  What was He bearing witness to?  The testimony of Jesus Christ.  What is the salvation?  The salvation is that He has died for our sins and rose for our justification and was seen by witnesses and has ascended to Heaven.  He has offered His blood as propitiation for our sins and that has been received so that now when we believe in Him we have Him as our righteousness, and we have peace with God, and we have access to God with boldness!

The whole point in Hebrews is that there has been one perfect offering which has “forever perfected” those who are being sanctified.  That’s us, if we believe the gospel.  We are the heirs of what He has accomplished.  When this chapter talks about giving heed to the things we have heard, it’s talking about this.  This is the gospel. 

That’s why Paul said in 1 Corinthians 15 that “this message” saves you if you continue in it.  Colossians says that He’s able to present you without fault before the throne if indeed you continue “in the faith, not being moved away from the hope of the Gospel which you heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven.” This is a a message that we are all to hold fast to more than anything else.

 Religion gets you involved with everything else – angels, law, bible, ethical teachings – all kinds of things.  But religion doesn’t get you involved with the gospel. In fact, you may let the gospel slip because of your attention to other things which are good, spiritual and related to God, but are not Christ Himself.  The Gospel talks about the person and the work of Christ and what He has accomplished, and gets your focus onto Him in contrast to everything else.   Christ is versus everything else! 

 That’s what we see in Galatians and Hebrews. He is more excellent and more superior to the Temple, to the sacrifices, to the law, to priesthood, to the angels.  We’ll see comparisons and contrasts to all of these things where Christ is extolled and brought out against a backdrop of these other things that are now “shadows” and in a sense, “negative”.  These good things that God actually ordained become negative when they become a distraction so your eyes are not on Christ.

It’s one thing to go back to the Old Testament to see the patterns/types of Christ, but you don’t have the interpretation until you’ve seen Christ on every page. And if you read it void of the revelation of Christ, it will actually become a veil to you so that you will actually neglect the salvation.  It just works that way.  You have one or the other.  You have things given and ordained by God, or you have Christ and you recognize the things which He ordained as a pattern.  You cannot have both.  That’s the problem being addressed in Hebrews.

All the warnings are about this tendency for the Jewish believers to want to go back to Moses, the Law, the Temple, the Angels, all of that.  They were into all of it!  There are warnings to let those things go and hold fast to what they received:  a Message!  

Remember, the beginning of the book says that God used to speak in diverse manners through the prophets to the Fathers and in these last days has spoken to us in Son and He is the exact image of God and the brightness of His Glory.  We talked about how He is pressing Himself into us by bringing Himself into us, and that revelation transforms us.  We’re not transformed by trying to do something.  We let go of everything and lay hold of Him and sit under His speaking and His shining, and we are infused with His life so that we become transformed and are brought closer and closer into Him.  Eventually we will be brought into glory.

Heb 2:5  For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. Heb 2:6  But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him? Heb 2:7  Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands: Heb 2:8  Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. 

So Great a Salvation – Reigning with Him

He’s showing us the person and work of Christ in the light of His salvation and He’s extolling this great salvation.  What did it accomplish for us?  It enthrones us.  It’s not just that you have forgiveness of sins. That’s the procedure, that’s the base.  This “great salvation” ultimately enthrones us and subjects the world to come to us. 

That was prophesied in the psalms.  This is an angel speaking “what is man that you are mindful of him? Or the son of man that you visitest him?  You made him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour and set him over the works of your hands.” 

This is from psalm 8.  The angel is wondering how God could be mindful of this “clay creature.” And this shows what God’s salvation ultimately accomplishes; putting man over the works of his hands. We have yet to see it come to pass, but positionally we are already there.  Remember that Ephesians 2 says that while we were dead in sins God made us alive together with Christ and seated us together with Him in the heavenlies so that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ (Eph 2:6-7).  That passage goes on to show that we are His masterpiece (Eph 2:10).  

Positionally, we are already enthroned. We are already risen. We are already seated. We are heirs of this salvation. You can’t dislodge us from this place in Christ, because we were baptized into His death and raised together with Him.(Rom 6:4) 

Even though this happened 2000 years ago, when we get saved and regenerated we are joined to Him so that wherever He is that’s where we are.  Where is He?  He’s in the heavens on the throne, and so are we. 

But we don’t yet see this manifested.  Just like John says “now we are the sons of God and it is not yet manifested what we shall be” (1 John 3:2)  This is all a hidden reality. The angels see it and we take it by faith.  You don’t even know how much authority you have.  We take it by faith.  We believe the word, and live according to what it has said. 

Heb 2:9  But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. 

Some people say you should be like Christ.  Really? Can you sit yourself down on the throne and judge angels?  You can’t match Him.  He is above all. He is the standard. And we see Him seated on the throne, and we believe that we are in Him, seated there.  Colossians 3 says “you died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life shall appear you shall appear with Him in glory.”  Everything is about Christ, and it is only as He is manifested that we will see our position manifested.  So by faith today we see and behold Christ. He is our salvation. We are to lay hold of Him.

Crowned with Thorns and Glory

Hebrews 2 says we don’t yet see everything put under him – we don’t see this salvation manifested yet.  It will be manifested when we are brought into glory.  We do see Jesus however, who was made a little lower than angels for the suffering of death. One way you could say this is He was crowned with honour “for the suffering of death”  or you could say He was made lower than the angels for the suffering of death and then He was crowned with glory and honour.  Either way works.  You know, He was crowned with thorns. On the outside that looks like defeat.  But inwardly, He was being glorified.  Martin Luther talked about “theologians of glory” vs. “theologians of the cross..”  Theologians of glory look for god’s glory in anything but the cross of Christ – in miracles, angels, in outward religious practices, in human righteousness and virtue – that’s a theologian of glory.  The theologian of the cross recognizes that God is glorified in the cross of Christ. 

John 12:23 The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified. 

Joh 12:24  Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. 

We tend to think that He glorified when He was risen, but He was glorified in the whole process. The work He was going to accomplish was His glory.  His death was a glorification.  That crown of thorns that He wore, painful and awful as it was, hid His real crowning with glory as the perfect man, as the Seed of the Woman, the Seed of Abraham, the Seed of David, the Heir of the promise, the Last Adam. He made a covenant with God.  He went through death to establish His end of that everlasting covenant.  He gave Himself up to the Father in death, and that was right and His glory.  He went through death and resurrection, and then really was glorified outwardly.

          He was crowned for the suffering of death so that He might “taste death for every man”. We know that the scriptures tell us that we were buried with Him in baptism into His death. We were buried with Him and we are to reckon ourselves dead, to sin and to the law(Rom 6:11; Romans 7:4).  

However we didn’t taste that death.  He tasted the suffering that we deserved. He drank the cup for us. (Mt 26:42) We were condemned on the cross. We hear in Christianity a lot about how we have been forgiven but we don’t hear a lot about how we were condemned. We were both forgiven and we were condemned.  That condemnation is important because it is the key to seeing our death with Christ, which is the key to spiritual freedom.   Sin had to be swallowed up and dealt with and dethroned (Romans 8:3), and the old man had to be crucified (Rom 6:6).  

He had to go bear the suffering, the chastisement of our peace was upon Him.  God laid upon Him the iniquity of us all.  He was wounded for our transgression.  We were in that death, but we didn’t taste it. (Isaiah 53:6)   He did.  Our elder brother tasted it for us becuase He loved us. When we were grafted into Him, His death (and our death with Him) became past tense for us.  So in the Gospels when He said “pick up your cross and follow me” as if it’s something before you, in the New Testament after His resurrection it’s always “Reckon yourself dead” and see yourself crucified with Him.  It is an article of faith and it is something we inherit that He accomplished.  He accomplished it and we enjoy the reality of it.  We didn’t taste it, but we are dead. Our past is gone. Our sins have been fully condemned.  Not only that, but we have been condemned and God doesn’t expect anything from us anymore. We’ve been “unemployed” by being crucified with Christ.  This is the meaning of being dead to the law and crucified with Christ. (Gal 2:19-20) 

Heb 2:10  For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. 

The Captain of our Salvation Bringnig the Sons to Glory

Here we see that the creator and heir of all things becoming the Captain of our salvation to bring us into glory.  For this, He was perfected through sufferings. His suffering was a preparation for Him to be identified with us so that He could be our High Priest. He was qualified for His ministry.  Without Heberws, we don’t really see His present ministry. We think He’s up there as a carpenter building the New Jerusalem and if you listen close you’ll hear Him “hammering away” at your mansion.  But He is the Heavenly High Priest according to the order of Melchizidek who was perfected thorugh sufferings to be qualified for this role, and He tasted our death.  That becomes very important later.

This was all to bring us into glory.  That has to do with the seed of His divine life within us being nurtured, watered, sprouting up, bearing fruit and then blossoming to be resurrected so that we are conformed to His image and glorified. That is His work. Regeneration, growth and ultimately glorification is not something that just happens. It’s something He is actually doing by ministering His life in a way that we can barely understand. 

He is giving Himself to us and pouring Himself out on us, and dispensing Himself into us in order to saturate us with Himself and will eventually bring us into glory – to glorify us, and in this work He is the Captain of our salvation.  This is also an allusion to Joshua who we will see referenced in Hebrews 4.  Joshua met the “Captain of the Lord’s Host” In Joshua 5, who ultimately and supernaturally led the Lord’s people in to the land to take Jericho.  That was a “theophany” (an old testament appearance of Christ), and He was bringing the people of God into their Rest.  Jesus, who is our Joshua, is also our Captain to bring us into glory to ultimately reign with Him.

 So this is the great salvation that we must not neglect!  How great is this salvation?  It subjects the world to come to us. It subjects angels to us. It enthrones us with Christ and puts everything under our feet, and we now see Jesus.  And in this salvation He was made lower than angels and crowned with glory and honour and He tasted death for everyone of us, so that He could become the Captain of salvation and bring us into the glorious reality of our salvation so that everything will ultimately be subjected to us and we will reign with Him, and He was perfected for this through all His sufferings.  What a great salvation!

Heb 2:11  For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, 

He is One with His Brethren

We are all of one.  We are one. We have the same life and the same nature, and for that reason He is not ashamed to call us brethren.  There have been so many times when I was ashamed and thought I’m not worthy to be called a Christian.  For years of my Christian life I had anxiety attacks that led to all sort of temper issues. I experienced years of PTSD from a cult I was in, and when attacks would come the temper issues would cause me to lash out uncontrollably, and though I appeared fine to the world, my family knew I had these problems.

This was just the tip of the iceberg for the amount of sins that I confronted in my life that made me ashamed because I knew I didn’t deserve to be called a Christian. In those times He would whisper this verse to me: “He’s not ashamed to call you a brethren.”  He’s not ashamed to call you brethren even though you’re a fool.  You’re a fool for Christ.(1 Cor 4:10) He chose the abominable, the weak, the foolish things that the world despises to confound the wise and the strong (1 Cor 1:27). That’s us.  He’s not ashamed of us.  He’s not ashamed to call us brethren.  Can you imagine that?  Don’t be ashamed to call Him Lord. Don’t be ashamed to call Him your big brother.  He sanctified you and made you one with Him and gave you His life so we all have the same life.

Heb 2:12  Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. 

This is another psalm He’s quoting. This is interesting because Christ is declaring the name of the Father to us, which He promised to do in John 17 “I have declared Thy name and will declare it.”  For Him to declare the name of Father to us – how does that Happen?  Romans 8:15 tells us that we haven’t received a spirit of fear but a spirit of sonship crying “Abba, Father” and the Spirit Himself witnesses with our spirit that we are children of God, and heirs – coheirs with Christ.  Galatians 4:6 says that because we are sons “God has sent forth the spirit of His son into our hearts crying ‘Abba, Father'”. What is He doing?  He is declaring the Father’s name to the brethren.  He’s not ashamed to bring us before the throne and say “These are my brethren. Not only that, but I’m going to call upon the Father from within you, and reveal Him to you, so that you have to get to know Him.  You used to be afraid and shy back from Him, but I’m going to call out to Him from within you, and you’re going to find out that He’s bearing witness that you are His child and He loves you.”

Heb 2:13  And again, I will put my trust in him.

Where is He putting His trust in Him?  In us.  We partake of His faith.  Remember Galatians 2:20 “I am crucified with Crhist it is no longer I who live but Christ who lives in Me.  The life I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Our faith is fickle at best, a mustard seed at best. He doesn’t trust our faith, so He gives us His own life and believes God from within us.  We can’t be shaken.  We can’t fall away from the faith because our life is bound up with Him. The depth of Hebrews will show us that His life and our life are one life, and He is there to live this life for us and in us. He tasted death for us, He identified Himself with us, and now He is declaring the Father’s name in us, and He is believing and putting His trust in the Father from within us.

Heb 2:13b And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me

He’s declaring the Father’s name, putting His trust in the Father, and then saying “behold – look at these children.  Look at this treasure. Look at what I’ve accomplished. Look at my great salvation.  This will bring them into glory. They used to be foolish, but I’m bringing them into glory and they’re going to reign over everything.”

Heb 2:14  Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; 

Heb 2:15  And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage

So in His death, He actually swallowed up the enemy’s power over us, and even trapped the enemy. When He became the serpent on the pole, He condemned sin in His flesh (John 3:14, Rom 8:3). Satan didn’t realize it but by crucifying Christ He brought Himself to an end.  He was trapped in that death and His power was broken over us.  He delivered us – we used to be afraid of death. Everything we did was about our fear of death.  But He is delivering us from that.  So we are free to love and to give because we don’t fear loss because we have an infinite supply of the Divine Life and everything that goes with it.

Heb 2:16  For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. 

Heb 2:17  Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people

Heb 2:18  For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted. 

Qualified through Temptation

This was to qualify Him for His high priesthood. He understands temptation.  He has been tempted in every point without sin.  He knows what we are.  He is touched with the feeling of our weaknesses as we’ll see in the next chapter. Because of that He’s able to help those who are tempted. He actually has been put in us and as our High Priest, He brings us to God, and brings God to us.  And, in our temptation and in our weaknesses He actually feels our need and responds with His life.  All of this in chapter 2 is His preparation for His high priesthood.  In the next chapter He’s going to start comparing Christ in His high priesthood.  This will go on for awhile, and it’s a marvelous revelation that we need to see.

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