Jesus is . . . Above Angels

Jesus Is. . .!
Above Angels
Hebrews 1:5-14
June 11, 2017

I’m not sure I know very many people who really like to take orders from others. In many respects, we have an authority issue. And in the midst of government issues, questions, inquisitions, probes and trials, as we experience the moral decline in our country, the belief that if it feels good – – do it . . . I really do think we have an authority crisis!! This is what I’m asking – – –

Who or what should we listen to – – in order to determine what to believe and how we should live our lives?

Some will answer by turning to the psychic hotline, calling 1-900-psychic. Others will go to the New Age section in bookstores. I’m not sure they still call it new age. Or they will hold onto the words of Oprah, Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz and seek the great and powerful Oz. Others believe they have all of the answers, so there’s no need to look elsewhere.

Some believe science will cure all ills, others look to religion and combine as many as they can so they can get the answers they desire. Even within the church, there are different responses to who’s really in authority. We wonder who is God and who is not. We struggle with authority issues over individuals, as well as what god we’re going to listen to.

We’re now in week 2 of our search through the book of Hebrews. Our overarching theme and title of the series is . . . Jesus Is. . .! That’s the hope of this series as we discover more and more who Jesus is in our lives and what that means for us so that we don’t have distorted views of the Son of God.

The message from the writer of Hebrews in chapter 1, verses 5-14 can be a little confusing, and while I’m not going to touch on every verse, I hope you will walk out of here today knowing a little more about who Jesus is. Let’s look at this passage ~

5 For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be to Him a father, and He shall be to me a Son”?

6 And again, when He brings the firstborn into the world, He says, “Let all God’s angels worship Him.”

7 Of the angels He says, “He makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire.”

8 But of the Son He says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.

9 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.”

10 And, “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands;

11 they will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment,

12 like a robe you will roll them up, like a garment they will be changed.
But you are the same, and your years will have no end.”

13 And to which of the angels has He ever said, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet?”

14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation? – Hebrews 1:5-14

There is so much going on in these verses, but my hope is to summarize them as I talk about who Jesus is and the context and reason the author wrote this.

It’s believed these 2nd generation Jewish believers needed to hear this because many of them were embracing the belief that Jesus was an angel — maybe He was a great or even the greatest angel, but they were struggling to believe He was God.
If Jesus was really God, and had all of this power, then why were they suffering and being persecuted? Maybe He was not all powerful, so they were developing a new theology of Jesus . . . that He was really a great angel.

This way of thinking may have been appealing to them because they would be accepted back into the temple and escape the persecution and suffering.

Making Jesus the greatest angel — was tantalizing because it didn’t require an outright denial of Christ — but only a different affirmation of Him and His greatness. It would be like they were saying what a lot of people in our world say today . . . Jesus was a really, really great teacher, a great moralist, a great leader, and He was a really, really great angel!

And many Christians today can relate to this because the supremacy of Jesus brings tension in our world. The world rebels and bristles at the thought of “Jesus only.” Christ followers are labeled intolerant, bigoted, prejudiced and more. Yet, try to become a muslim without embracing Allah as the true God! Be Jewish without saying God is Yahweh! You see, it doesn’t work for these and most major religions.

In order for all of us to get along, the world would encourage Christ followers – – – to simply affirm that Jesus was the very best of men to ever walk this planet — that His ethics were exalted, His life was heroic, He had great morals and values and we should try to follow His example. But, there are many paths to find eternity. You just need to find and embrace the one which works for you.

I want to show you a video of a confirmation hearing . . .

VIDEO – – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VW6CTlpxUb8

Do you hear what Sanders is saying? If you claim to be a Christian who proclaims Jesus is the only way to salvation you are not fit for public office. You must embrace pluralism – – – where everyone can be and do whatever they want and we have no real absolutes to believe in. That’s our world today folks. If you think this is a joke, it’s not. But I would also surmise if Vought was a muslim, there would have been no questioning his faith, because that would not be P.C. But to challenge and condemn a Christian is totally P.C.

If we don’t have a clear understanding of who Jesus is, then ultimately we will fall into the same thinking of Sanders . . . believe in Jesus, but know that there are other ways to salvation besides Jesus. Just don’t ask the conservative muslim, or J.W. or Mormon, or Buddhist or Jew the same question.

OK . . . back to Hebrews. But understand, and I can’t say it enough . . . we must know who Jesus Is!

The writer of Hebrews is addressing the issues of angels and Jesus by saying Jesus was NOT an angel. Jesus was MORE than even the GREATEST of angels. Jesus was and is GOD!

So, to make his points clear, the writer of Hebrews quotes a number of Old Testament scriptures. He refers to the OT on 5 different occasions.

He asked rhetorical questions. Questions where the answer was totally obvious, but they would lead to the answer he wanted which was for the people to proclaim Jesus as Lord and Savior! He asked ~

5 For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you?” Or again, “I will be to Him a father, and He shall be to me a Son?”

6 And again, when He brings the firstborn into the world, He says, “Let all God’s angels worship Him.”

7 Of the angels He says, “He makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire.”

8 But of the Son He says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.

13 And to which of the angels has He ever said, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet?”

Do you hear the questions and statements the writer is making? To which angel did God say, YOU ARE MY SON?

God said – – – LET ALL GOD’S ANGELS WORSHIP THE SON

To which angel did God say SIT AT MY RIGHT HAND?

You see, when the writer says, “HE BRINGS THE FIRSTBORN INTO THE WORLD. He’s not talking about Jesus being a created being in heaven. This was a heresy the early church fought! Instead, the writer wants us to understand the importance of the firstborn in the OT culture.

The firstborn son normally had the place of honor. They would receive a double portion of the inheritance and family leadership. It’s a figure of speech for the most honored. In this instance, it can have a dual meaning. It refers to Jesus’ humanity. Of all created beings, His humanity is above all other creation. His deity as the Son of God, means that His divine nature is uncreated and eternal. It also refers to His resurrection, as Jesus is the firstborn from the dead, destroying the curse satan had over death.

AND YET, as awesome as angels are . . . the writer reminds us that angels are what? They are servants!! The writer tells us that in verse 14 ~
14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation? – Hebrews 1:5-14

The word ministering refers to serving in a sacred manner. They are servants for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation. That is you and I. They are to serve us. And as we saw in verse 6, they are to worship Jesus. Angels are not creatures to be worshiped, they are creatures who worship, and they worship Jesus.

That’s only a snippet of angels. BUT now, Jesus – that’s a different story entirely. Not only is Jesus worshiped by angels, He has a name which is far more powerful than theirs. From last week in Hebrews 1:4, the writer proclaimed Jesus is ~
4 much superior to angels as the name He has inherited is more excellent than theirs.

In fact, Jesus is not only superior to them. He is divine. He is God. Verse 8 and 13 so clearly show this ~
8 But of the Son He says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.

13 And to which of the angels has He ever said, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet?”

Jesus is exalted and has His throne in heaven, at the right hand of the Father. He holds His scepter showing His power and rulership. No angel can do this or is even spoken of in this manner.

Then we have the statement that Jesus is the Creator. Verse 10 tells us ~
10 And, “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands;

John MacArthur wrote ~ “Consider …what instant destruction would happen if the earth rotation slowed down just a little. The sun has a surface temperature of 10,000 degrees F. If it were any closer to us we would burn up; if it were any further away we would freeze. Our globe is tilted on an exact angle of 23 degrees, providing us with four seasons. If it were not so tilted, vapors from the oceans would move north and south and develop into monstrous continents of ice. If the moon did not retain its exact distance from the earth tides would flood the land completely, twice a day…. If the atmosphere did not remain at its present density, but thinned out even a little, many of the meteors which now harmlessly burn up when they hit the atmosphere would constantly bombard us…. How does the universe stay in this kind of fantastically delicate balance?”

Actually, I will add this to what MacArthur said, “According to the Milankovitch Cycle – – – the Earth’s Tilt angle follows a Cycle of Oscillation between 22.1 and 24.5 Degree, with a cycle time of 41,000 years.

How does everything from our world to the galaxy-filled universe stay in this kind of fantastically delicate balance? Well you can choose to believe that it’s the result of millions of years of evolution or you can accept that as the Bible says — Jesus sustains and monitors all its movement and inter-workings. Christ, is our ruler and authority. He is the Creator and He is the sustainer.

Jesus is also our redeemer. Jesus is the One who broke the bonds that death holds over us. He is the One who died for you and I and became the great sacrifice. He is the One who upholds the world. He is called the Redeemer of the world.

Jesus is our authority. He is the One we answer to . . . not someone we can say no to and expect to live on in eternal joy and bliss. No, we must proclaim that Jesus is our Lord and Savior. He is the Creator . . . He is the Redeemer and He is the Sustainer. Today, would you see Jesus as yours. He is not some created being. He is the Creator! He is the One who loves you so much, that He was willing to sacrifice Himself so that you could find life. Embrace Jesus! Cry out to Him! Proclaim to the world that Jesus is Lord!! To the glory of God!

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