Summary: God is an unseen God. Jesus came to make an unseen God visible.He is the radiance of the glory of God, as it is said, God has "shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Messiah,"
God is an unseen God. Jesus came to make an unseen God visible.
Hebrews 1:1 – 3
ESV: Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,
GW: In the past God spoke to our ancestors at many different times and in many different ways through the prophets. In these last days he has spoken to us through his Son. God made his Son responsible for everything. His Son is the one through whom God made the universe. His Son is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact likeness of God’s being. He holds everything together through his powerful words. After he had cleansed people from their sins, he received the highest position, the one next to the Father in heaven.
MSG: Going through a long line of prophets, God has been addressing our ancestors in different ways for centuries. Recently he spoke to us directly through his Son. By his Son, God created the world in the beginning, and it will all belong to the Son at the end. This Son perfectly mirrors God, and is stamped with God’s nature. He holds everything together by what he says--powerful words! After he finished the sacrifice for sins, the Son took his honored place high in the heavens right alongside God,
He is the radiance of the glory of God, as it is said, God has "shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Messiah," (2 Corinthians 4:6) and His glory is the glory of God, as it is said, "the glory of Christ, who is the image of God," (2 Corinthians 4:4) for Christ Jesus is "the glory of our great God and Savior," (Titus 2:13) "so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen." (1 Peter 4:11)
At first glance it seems that verse 16 does not belong or fit in the context of this passage. In verse 15 – talking about how people must behave in the church. Not merely behavior “in a church building.” The church (ekklesia) consists of those who have been called into fellowship with Jesus Christ.
The apostle had spoken of the church in a practical manner. He is not unfolding its heavenly relationship nor entering into particulars as to the presence of the Holy Ghost dwelling there; but he speaks of it as the "house of God." And it is the only house of God that is now recognised on earth. The church is the assembly of a living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
The church is never called the truth: Christ is the truth; (John 14:6). He is the embodiment of the ultimate and final revelation of God (Heb. 1:1-2), but the church is the pillar and ground of the truth. The church is that assembly which has the truth. The world has not got the truth — on the contrary is under the power of error; and error as to God is of all things deadly for the soul.
The church is said to be the house of God, the assembly of the living God, the pillar and base of the truth!
He affirms that it is the responsibility of those in the church to be the pillar and support of the truth.
But verses 15 and 16 are grammatically connected by the word "AND". The mystery of godliness must somehow pertain to the Church.
So the pillar and ground of the truth is the great mystery of godliness.
The expression “without controversy” translates the Greek term homologoumenos, which literally denotes that which one confesses, hence, it might be rendered “confessedly, undeniably, most certainly.” It is a declaration of absolute confidence. This means simply "obviously" or "beyond all question."
What is a mystery?
“Mystery” is a rendition of the Greek word musterion. The term does not, as many suppose, refer to that which is mysterious, hence, incapable of being understood. Rather, in Bible parlance, the word denotes that which was formerly obscured, but which has now been announced through the gospel of Christ.
In the NT it denotes, not the mysterious (as with the Eng. word), but that which, being outside the range of unassisted natural apprehension, can be made known only by Divine revelation, and is made known in a manner and at a time appointed by God, and to those only who are illumined by His Spirit.