Summary: Jesus Greater Than Moses - Greater than everyone! (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Greater that Moses
Reading: Hebrews chapter 3 verses 1-6.
The theme of the book of Hebrews;
• Ill: Plane - Is like a banner waving high in the sky, so high that everyone can see it:
• The message it contains is short but true: ‘Christ is superior’.
The first few chapters of this letter have already testified to this fact:
• Chapter 1: He is superior to the prophets.
• Because he is God’s final word to mankind.
• Chapter 1-2: He is superior to angels.
• They are created beings and he is the creator,
• And now as we break into chapter 3;
• We are going to see that Christ is superior to Moses.
Note: As Western Gentile Christians:
• We might see a move from angels to Moses as a step down;
• But not to an Eastern Jew,
• Because, Moses is set apart from all other Jewish prophets;
• To understand the premise, the comparison;
• We need to think about what we know concerning Moses
• Remember he started life and ended life in most unusual circumstances;
• At the beginning of his life, God miraculously protected him as a baby;
• And at the end of his life, God himself personally provided for his burial.
• And between those two miraculous points in his life;
• There are recorded for us miracle after miracle after miracle!
• Ill: Remember he was the man God spoke to ‘face to face’.
• He had seen the very glory of God (in fact for a brief time he reflected the glory of God on his face)
• Ill: He was the one who led the nation to freedom;
• He had led them out of the slavery and the misery of Egypt.
• Ill: He was the one entrusted to receive the Old Testament Law;
• (e.g. 10 commandments and the writer of the first 5 books of the Bible).
• In fact to a Jew Moses and the Law were synonymous.
• Even the New Testament often refers to the commands of God as the ‘Law of Moses’.
• Ill: It was Moses who gave the people the plans for the Tabernacle;
• Ill: And it was Moses who gave the people the plans for d the Ark of the Covenant.
Quote John MacArther:
• “Some Jews believed that Moses was greater than angels.
• God spoke to the prophets in visions, but to Moses he spoke face-to-face.
• He spoke to him in a burning bush.
• He spoke to him out of heaven.
• He spoke to him on Mount Sinai and wrote the commandments with a finger of fire.
• Moses was above all others, God’s man”.
So the writer of this letter wants to remind his readers that Moses was great, but Jesus Christ is even greater!
• For them going back to Moses and the Law would be a backward step.
• Ill: Looking longingly at a photo when you have the real person there.
• Because Jesus Christ has fulfilled the Law;
• For these Jewish Christians the entire system of Jewish religion came through Moses.
• But the writer wants to show his readers that something even better came through Jesus Christ!
In this section, we learn that Jesus Christ is superior to Moses in at least two respects:
• Before the writer draws some comparisons;
• The writer starts by giving us some similarities!
• Both were human beings.
• It’s worth noting that the writer of this letter constantly refers to the Son of God;
• Not by his title: “Lord Jesus Christ”
• But the writer deliberately uses only his human name – “Jesus”.
• e.g. In chapter 3 verse 1 he says; “Fix your thoughts on Jesus”.
• e.g. In chapter 3 verse 3 he says; “Jesus who has been found worthy”.
• e.g. In chapter 4 verse 4 he says; “We have a great high priest…..Jesus”
• e.g. In chapter 5 verse 7 he says; “In the days of his flesh Jesus offered up prayers”.
• e.g. In chapter 6 verse 4 he says; “The inner shrine where Jesus has gone before us”.
• 17 times in this letter the writer uses the singular human name of Jesus,
• Remember the background of the letter;
• This letter was written to a bunch of 1st century Christians who were in danger of giving up.
• They were Christians from a Jewish background;
• Who were rejected by their fellow Jews because of their allegiance to Jesus Christ.
• They were also used as a ‘scapegoat’ by the Roman emperor Nero;
• Who blamed them for all things, whenever he needed a get out clause!
• And so to escape Nero’s fierce persecution (i.e. Chapter 10 verses 32-34).