- 10-11 The Captain of unity
- 12-13 Chosen identity
Two weeks ago we started looking at the hypothetical question that the writer of Hebrews anticipated that his readers would ask with regards to; the necessity of Jesus becoming a man. He lists four reason for Jesus becoming man the first of which was:
- 5-9 To: RECAPTURE OUR LOST DESTINY.
Now we take a look at verses:
- 10-13 The second reason why Christ became man is to: RECOVER OUR LOST UNITY.
Next week we will continue our investigation with:
- 14-15 The third reason is to: RELEASE US FROM OUR PRESENT BONDAGE.
- 16-18 The fourth reason is to: RESTORE US IN TIMES OF FAILURE.
- 10-11 The Captain of unity
Vs. 10 In 1 Corinthians 1:23 Paul wrote that “we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness…” The cross of Christ was clearly a stumbling block tripping them up and one of the main reasons these professing Hebrew believers were drifting back to the Levitical sacrifices. To counter this “stumbling block” the writer seeks to prove the necessity of the incarnation and specifically the cross of Jesus. This section begins with the phrase “For it was fitting for Him” and in the writer stating it this way, he means to paint the contrast to two other ways:
- 2:1 “Therefore we must..”: Which states the following is a logical necessity.
- 2:17 “… had to be made like His brethren…”: Which stats it was an obligation growing out of circumstances.
- 2:10 “For it was fitting..”: This contrast to the above two states that our salvation was brought forth found its origin not in God’s statement but in the very nature of God!
Thus the writer shows the reasonableness of Jesus on the cross as it fits the very nature of God! God the Father provides the sacrifice, God the Son procures the sacrifice and God the Holy Spirit applies it! It was God’s intention that the Son become fully man for the direct purpose that only through His sufferings could He be the leader bringing many to glory!
Next the writer says, “for whom are all things and by whom are all things,” The phrase in the Greek is “on account of whom” God is the final agency that all things came into being. By saying this the author combines the reason for the suffering of the Son with God’s very nature to bring it into fruition! The writer moves to the second outcome of Jesus death on the cross namely: “brining many sans to glory” and the way in which that was brought forth through Jesus: “to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.” The “sons” includes Jesus as OUR Captain who according to verse 9 through the “suffering of death was crowned with glory and honor.” The phrase, “captain of our salvation” is made up of the word “captain” (found only 4 times in N.T. twice in this letter) and means, “One who goes first”. The writer is saying that Jesus is the Person going first on the road to heaven. But in John 14:6 Jesus said literally “I am the ROAD, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” Jesus is not only our LEADER ON THE ROAD to salvation, He is the very road its self sprinkled with His precious blood! The word “Perfect” in verse 10 isn’t the Greek word that speaks of “moral imperfections” but rather speaks of finishing the course prescribed to Him, described as “the suffering and death upon the cross”! At issue here is not Jesus’ “Moral Perfection” but the second area of His perfection, His “WORK”! The reason for it not being “Perfect or Completed” is that it wasn’t “FINISHED” which in John 19:30 Jesus declared on His last breath that it was! His earthly life was all about identification with fallen humanity. The only area where Jesus doesn’t identify with fallen humanity is SIN! That being said, he never acted out of uncertainty, he never spoke out of fear, the reason for this was that He alone was man as was intended by God. The moment Jesus experienced fear gripping his heart, immediately he trusted upon the indwelling Father and fear was met by faith. The moment he felt uncertain, not knowing which way to turn, He rested back upon the indwelling wisdom of God and was immediately given the right word for the situation. Jesus didn’t just save us, then ascend into heaven with the parting words, “Good luck, don’t do anything I wouldn’t do!” He has walked the same road we have, fought the same battles we are fighting, He is our perfect Captain!
Vs. 11 According to verse 11 he fully entered into our fears and pressures and because of this he is fully one with us. The phrase, “He who sanctifies” refers to Jesus who according to verse 10 “is bringing many sons to glory”. And “those being sanctified” of course refer to believers. The word “sanctifies and sanctified” in Hebrews always is a reference to “consecration” not “purification”, “position” not to “condition”. The, writers point is that, Jesus has put us, through the ministry of the Holy Spirit, on the path to glory. It’s a “progressive sanctification” as it will continue on through glorification and into eternity where although we will “know as we are known” (1 Corinth 13:12), we will continue to grow more and more like our Lord. Even in the infinite years of eternity we will never become in the absolute “LIKE HIM” for finiteness can only approach infinity, it can never “EQUAL” it.
Notice the phrase, “are all of one” which is defined by the phrase “for which reason He, (JESUS), is not ashamed to call them BRETHREN”. This is the heart of the 2nd reason Jesus became man; which was to RECOVER OUR LOST UNITY with our Lord! It is interesting to note that Jesus never refers to His disciples as “brethren” until after His resurrection in John 20:17 where He sends Mary to announce His resurrection to His “BRETHREN”. The phrase “are all of one” is saying that Jesus and believers are all out of “ONE SOURCE”, it is for this reason that Jesus is not ashamed to call them BRETHREN”. The Greek word for “brother” means “from the same womb”, speaking of the one source that we have in common, God the Father. Believers, because of Jesus, find our source of identity in God the Father, thus Jesus calls us His brethren. The implications of this are to great for words as we consider the reality that Jesus who is God the Son in His exalted deity is not ashamed to call us His brothers! Paul’s said in Ephesians 1:3, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ”.
Of all the things we humans suffer from, sense the fall, nothing is more obvious then the loss of our “IDENTITY”! In the 60’s and 70’s we were all about trying to “FIND OURSELVES” which was a truthful statement of having lost our sense of identity. Things haven’t changed in 30 to 40 years as gender confusion has reached mass hysteria. People are constantly trying to “discover themselves” and try as they might they can not RECOVER THEIR LOST UNITY OR IDENTITY! But as believers in Christ, WE HAVE RECOVERED OUR LOST IDENTITY! Everyone of us, followers of Christ, now have the answer to one of the great question every person seeks to have answered: “WHO AM I”? The answer through Christ: A child of the King of Kings, and one who our Lord is not ashamed to call His brothers and sisters! Not only our we; “brothers and sisters” but as Paul said in Romans 8:17 “if children, then heirs–heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.” And all of this because He has chosen to identify with us!
- 12-13 Chosen identity
Vs. 12-13 To illustrate this, the writer quotes from Psalm 22:22 and Isaiah 8:17-18.
- First, after stating the fact that Jesus “is not ashamed to call them BRETHREN” he quotes Ps. 22:22. This was the same Psalm in which Jesus had quoted from the cross. David wrote this from his own experience but the Holy Spirit intended its final application be Jesus. In verses 19-21 of that Psalm we hear the prayer to be raised from the dead. In verse 22-31, He gives thanks for answered prayer before it is answered and in view of that fact that God WILL raise Him from the dead, He will declare His name to His brethren. The quote is to give scriptural verification to the truth he just expounded in verse 11 as to our identity. The interesting part of the quote is that our identity is tied to the resurrection. In 1 Corinthians 15:13-19 Paul writes, “But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up–if in fact the dead do not rise. For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.”
- The second quote is out of Isaiah 8:17b-18a as the writer quotes these verses to show the close unity which now exists between Jesus and those He call His brethren. This passage from Isaiah was his criticism towards Israel during the Syrian Israeli war under king Ahaz, where the nation was trusting in other things instead of God for their victory. To this Isaiah says, “I will put My trust in Him” and that the nation had been appointed as living symbols of God’s plan. Again this quotation is meant to express the close unity that exists because of Jesus which reveals our recovered identity.
Thus this passage links up with John 17:22, and Jesus prayer for us to the Father, “That they may be one, Father, even as we are one,”. Thus to make a new CREATION, undivided in identity with the Son is the second reason Jesus Christ became man.