The Letter to the Hebrews: An Exposition, Part 3 Hebrews 1:5-14: “The Son is Exalted Above the Angels”

No one is to be worshipped or honored except the Lord Jesus Christ, not angels or any other being, human or otherwise

 

By Dr. Donald Whitchard

“For to which of the angels did He ever say, ‘You are My Son, today I have begotten You?’ And again, ‘I will be to Him a Father, and He shall be to me as a Son?’ But when He again brings the firstborn into the world, He says, ‘Let all the angels of God worship Him.’ And of the angels He says, ‘Who makes His angels spirits and His ministers a flame of fire.”

“But to the Son He says, ‘Your throne O GOD, is forever and ever, a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness more than Your companions.’ And ‘You, LORD, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. They will perish, but You remain, and they will all grow old like a garment; like a cloak You will fold them up, and they will be changed. But You are the same, and Your years shall not fail.”

“But to which of the angels has He ever said, ‘Sit at My right hand, until I make your enemies Your footstool. Are they all not ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?”

– Hebrews 1:5-14 (NKJV)

Hollywood and television have a love affair with angels and other supernatural creatures yet produce programs and films that blaspheme and spew hatred towards God and His Son, and rarely allow any kind of film or program to be produced that gets most of the facts about Jesus straight, or at least some kind of logical order to His life and work.  A couple of years ago one of the cable networks put on a ten-part special about the Bible and garnered several thousand views, although a lot of liberty was taken with the characters and their situations.  I remember the time when NBC of all places ran the classic mini-series “Jesus of Nazareth” for a week, and it drew a large viewership.

Whenever the story of Jesus is presented that is based primarily on the Scriptures and not someone’s imagination, attention is given to the role of the angelic host in heralding His birth and other episodes in His life such as the temptation from the Fallen Angel Satan, the casting of demons out of people, and the day of His resurrection when the angels told the women that Jesus no longer occupied the tomb, that He was alive, and with this came the greatest change in the direction and history of humanity that still affects us today.

Brethren in Christ have told stories of what they believed were times where an unseen force or guardian kept them from harm or comforted them in a time of distress.  There also the times where those who were dying in the assuredness of eternal life in Christ tell their loved ones that they could hear the singing and praise of the angels as they took their final breath here and entered glory.  Unfortunately, there are also stories of people who died unredeemed and lost in their sins crying out in terror as they saw the demonic host carry them off into hell’s flames.  The testimonies of those who witnessed the demise of non-believers and their descent into darkness have said they would never want to see such a spectacle again.

What are angels, according to the Scriptures, what are they designed to do, and are they to be placed on a level of reverence as some people tend to believe, especially those who are in what is referred to as “New Age” thinking and mysticism?  The first fact to know about these beings is that they, like all of us and the universe, are a creation of God (Psalm 148:2, 5; Colossians 1:16).  They are spiritual beings who are immortal, having a beginning but no ending (Hebrews 1:14; Luke 20:36). Two-thirds of them are in the presence of God in heaven and are holy in nature (Matthew 25:31).  They are innumerable, wise, and powerful (2 Samuel 14:17, 20; Psalm 103:20; Hebrews 12:22).  They are elect, chosen to serve and praise God and are meek in nature, not seeking attention or notoriety (1 Timothy 5:21; Jude 1:9).

Jesus taught that the angels do not marry as we do (Matthew 22:30).  They tend to remain invisible to us, and display emotion and concern towards us when God calls them to assist us (Numbers 22:22-31; Luke 15:10; 1 Peter 1:12).  They have been known to assume human form (Genesis 18:2-8).  They are not perfect beings, as many followed Lucifer in his rebellion towards God (Isaiah 14:12-17) and were cast out of heaven, unrepentant and fully aware that they are headed for eternal hell as their punishment (Matthew 25:41; Mark 5:7; Revelation 20:10-15).  Like an army, they are assigned ranks and responsibilities by God (Isaiah 6:2; 1 Thessalonians 4:16).  They perform their duties as given by the LORD.

Angelic ministry and duties are listed in Scripture.  They guide us (Genesis 24:7, 40), provide for us (1 Kings 19:5-8), protect us (Psalm 34:7), deliver us from peril (Daniel 6:22), will direct activities that glorify God (Acts 8:26), provide comfort (Acts 27:23-24), and minister to us as needed (Hebrews 1:14).  They are not as benevolent towards unbelievers, as they can bring about their destruction (Genesis 19:13), can place curses from God upon them (Judges 5:23), send pestilences (2 Samuel 24:15-17), and given the authority to bring about persecution of the ungodly as well as their death (Psalm 35:5-6; Acts 12:23).  Angels waited upon Christ while on Earth and serve Him in heaven today (Daniel 7:10; Matthew 13:41, 16:27, 24:31, 25:31, 26:53; Mark 8:38; Luke 2:13, 9:26, 22:43; John 1:51; 2 Thessalonians 1:7; Hebrews 1:6; Revelation 1:1, 5:11).  They will not accept worship as God’s messengers and servants (Revelation 22:6-11).

That was what Lucifer desired, even going so far as to think that he could get Jesus to bow down to him during the time of temptation in the Judean desert (Matthew 4:8-9; Mark 1:12-13; Luke 4:5-8) believing that by offering the Creator of all things (John 1:1-4; Colossians 1:15-16) the kingdoms of the world, He would bypass the need to die for the sins of the world.  Jesus rebuked Him by using the Scriptures, and he left for a time.  Jesus had to rebuke Peter by calling him “Satan” for trying to dissuade Him from going to the cross and be the “Suffering Servant” as prophesied in the book of Isaiah (Matthew 16:22-23).

Satan and his fallen angelic horde, known as demons, have attempted to thwart the work of Christ and His followers since the birth of the church at Pentecost (Acts 2).  He pretends to be an “angel of light” as a means of deceiving as many people as he can to join him in hell, not for any companionship, but as a way of getting back at God since he has nothing to lose.  While for now he has some freedoms (Job 1:12; Luke 4:6, 22:53; Acts 26:18; 2 Corinthians 4:4; Ephesians 6:12; 2 Thessalonians 2:9; Hebrews 2:14), he knows all too well he is a defeated foe (Genesis 3:15; Luke 4:13; John 12:20, 14:30; 2 Thessalonians 2:8; Hebrews 2:14; 1 John 3:8; Revelation 20:10).

His deceptive work has caused people to believe that they have heard “messages from angels” that have resulted in the spread of false religions such as Islam, Mormonism, New Age, varied cults and the worship of the devil himself, which is rapidly growing here in the United States and worldwide. Satanism is known for its malevolent practices and dark rituals designed to blaspheme and deride the power and person of the Lord Jesus Christ. Satanists want to deceive the gullible into thinking that the devil is more powerful than God.  Theirs will be the rudest and most terrifying of awakenings to his evil intentions as these souls are inevitably cast into the Lake of Fire at the Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:11-15).  They will be eternally condemned by their own words and works and pronounced guilty by none other than the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.

No one is to be worshipped or honored except the Lord Jesus Christ, not any angel or other being, not an earthly figure or dark leader of a questionable movement.  Jesus Christ and He alone gives eternal peace, mercy, love, forgiveness, and grace that no other religion or lifestyle can provide (John 14:6; Acts 4:12; Romans 10:9-10).  This is the first of several proofs to the persecuted Jewish believers that Jesus is worth following, to be given all glory, praise, and honor, the eternal King now and always, and no one is His equal.  What has been presented so far should convince you of the same conclusion.

 

donaldwhitchard@gmail.com

www.realitycityreverend.com

 

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Luke 21:36 "Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man."

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