Summary: # 4 in a series on Hebrews. Four reasons that Jesus came.
A Study of the Book of Hebrews
Jesus is Better
Sermon # 4
“The Captain of Our Salvation!”
“For He has not put the world to come, of which we speak, in subjection to angels. (6) But one testified in a certain place, saying: “What is man that You are mindful of him,Or the son of man that You take care of him? (7) You have made him a little lower than the angels; You have crowned him with glory and honor, And set him over the works of Your hands.”
Our world tells us that we are a creature of evolution, that over the course of billions of years we have evolved to our present state of existence. But we are after all not that much better than all the other members of the animal kingdom. But the writer of Hebrews in verse seven says that are created “a little lower” than the angels which actually means “lower for a little while.”
When God created man, he made him in one way lower than angels. It is not that man is lower than angels spiritually, or lower than angels in importance to God. Man is lower than angels only in that he is physical and they are spiritual. But only “little while” are men lower than angels.
Angels as great and glorious as they are, will not rule in the world to come. If God does not intend to use angels to rule in the world to come, who will he use? And the answer is, Man! Angels must one day yield to man. God’s ultimate plan is for His kingdom to be ruled by redeemed men and women.
The writer then quotes Psalm 8:4-6 to prove God’s original intention for mankind. In Genesis 1:28 we are told that man was given rule over the world. “Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” But then Adam sinned and everything became twisted and distorted. Man lost his dominion over nature.
As a result Romans 8:19-22 creation groans “For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. (20) For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; (21) because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. (22) For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now.” Although sin has interrupted God’s intentions for the human race it has by no means changed them.
The writer of Hebrews now introduces us to four reasons that Jesus came.
First, He Came To Regain Our Lost Destiny. (vv. 8-9)
“You have 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 do not yet see all things put under him. (9) But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone.”
Verse eight reminds us that although the intention of God may have been to have all things in subjection to man, that is certainly not how things stand now. All things are not subject to man! William Barclay comments on this situation when he said, “Man was meant to have dominion over everything but he has not. He is a creature who is frustrated by his circumstances, defeated by his temptations, encircled by (girt about) with his own weakness. He who should free is bound; he who should be a king is a slave. As C.K Chesterton says, “Whatever is or is not true about men, this one thing is certain – man is not what he was meant to be.” [William Barclay. The Letter to the Hebrews. (Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1976) p.24]
Man does not have dominion over any thing including him self. Man’s efforts to master the earth are marred at best. Man is subject to the destructive forces of natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods and earthquakes. He is ravaged by disease and grows old and is conquered by death. Every thing is obviously not in subjection to man, that is not, yet!
But in the middle of verse nine we read the words, “But we see Jesus,” Jesus is God’s answer to mankind’s dilemma. Jesus became a man so that he might suffer and die for man’s sin and restore the dominion that was lost as a result of sin.