Hebrews 1:1–4:16

God’s Final Word: His Son

1 In the past God spokea to our ancestors through the prophetsb at many times and in various ways,c but in these last daysd he has spoken to us by his Son,e whom he appointed heirf of all things, and through whomg also he made the universe.h The Son is the radiance of God’s gloryi and the exact representation of his being,j sustaining all thingsk by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins,l he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.m So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs.n

The Son Superior to Angels

For to which of the angels did God ever say,

“You are my Son;

today I have become your Father”a?o

Or again,

“I will be his Father,

and he will be my Son”b?p

And again, when God brings his firstbornq into the world,r he says,

“Let all God’s angels worship him.”c s

In speaking of the angels he says,

“He makes his angels spirits,

and his servants flames of fire.”d t

But about the Son he says,

“Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever;u

a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom.

You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;

therefore God, your God, has set you above your companionsv

by anointing you with the oilw of joy.”e x

10 He also says,

“In the beginning, Lord, you laid the foundations of the earth,

and the heavens are the work of your hands.y

11 They will perish, but you remain;

they will all wear out like a garment.z

12 You will roll them up like a robe;

like a garment they will be changed.

But you remain the same,a

and your years will never end.”f b

13 To which of the angels did God ever say,

“Sit at my right handc

until I make your enemies

a footstoold for your feet”g?e

14 Are not all angels ministering spiritsf sent to serve those who will inheritg salvation?h

Warning to Pay Attention

2 We must pay the most careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away.i For since the message spokenj through angelsk was binding, and every violation and disobedience received its just punishment,l how shall we escape if we ignore so great a salvation?m This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord,n was confirmed to us by those who heard him.o God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles,p and by gifts of the Holy Spiritq distributed according to his will.r

Jesus Made Fully Human

It is not to angels that he has subjected the world to come, about which we are speaking. But there is a place where someones has testified:

“What is mankind that you are mindful of them,

a son of man that you care for him?t

You made them a littlea lower than the angels;

you crowned them with glory and honor

8 and put everything under their feet.”b,c u

In putting everything under them,d God left nothing that is not subject to them.e Yet at present we do not see everything subject to them.f But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honorv because he suffered death,w so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.x

10 In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists,y should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through what he suffered.z 11 Both the one who makes people holya and those who are made holyb are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.g c 12 He says,

“I will declare your name to my brothers and sisters;

in the assembly I will sing your praises.”h d

13 And again,

“I will put my trust in him.”i e

And again he says,

“Here am I, and the children God has given me.”j f

14 Since the children have flesh and blood,g he too shared in their humanityh so that by his death he might break the poweri of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devilj15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their feark of death. 16 For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants.l 17 For this reason he had to be made like them,k m fully human in every way, in order that he might become a mercifuln and faithful high priesto in service to God,p and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people.q 18 Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.r

Jesus Greater Than Moses

3 Therefore, holy brothers and sisters,s who share in the heavenly calling,t fix your thoughts on Jesus, whom we acknowledgeu as our apostle and high priest.v He was faithful to the one who appointed him, just as Moses was faithful in all God’s house.w Jesus has been found worthy of greater honor than Moses,x just as the builder of a house has greater honor than the house itself. For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything.y “Moses was faithful as a servantz in all God’s house,”a a bearing witness to what would be spoken by God in the future. But Christ is faithful as the Sonb over God’s house. And we are his house,c if indeed we hold firmlyd to our confidence and the hopee in which we glory.

Warning Against Unbelief

So, as the Holy Spirit says:f

“Today, if you hear his voice,

8 do not harden your heartsg

as you did in the rebellion,

during the time of testing in the wilderness,

where your ancestors tested and tried me,

though for forty years they saw what I did.h

10 That is why I was angry with that generation;

I said, ‘Their hearts are always going astray,

and they have not known my ways.’

11 So I declared on oath in my anger,i

‘They shall never enter my rest.’ jb k

12 See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God.l 13 But encourage one another daily,m as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.n 14 We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we holdo our original conviction firmly to the very end.p 15 As has just been said:

“Today, if you hear his voice,

do not harden your hearts

as you did in the rebellion.”c q

16 Who were they who heard and rebelled? Were they not all those Moses led out of Egypt?r 17 And with whom was he angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies perished in the wilderness?s 18 And to whom did God swear that they would never enter his restt if not to those who disobeyed?u 19 So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.v

A Sabbath-Rest for the People of God

4 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it.w For we also have had the good news proclaimed to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because they did not share the faith of those who obeyed.a x Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said,

“So I declared on oath in my anger,

‘They shall never enter my rest.’ ”b y

And yet his works have been finished since the creation of the world. For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these words: “On the seventh day God rested from all his works.”c z And again in the passage above he says, “They shall never enter my rest.”a

Therefore since it still remains for some to enter that rest, and since those who formerly had the good news proclaimed to them did not go in because of their disobedience,b God again set a certain day, calling it “Today.” This he did when a long time later he spoke through David, as in the passage already quoted:

“Today, if you hear his voice,

do not harden your hearts.”d c

For if Joshua had given them rest,d God would not have spokene later about another day. There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works,e f just as God did from his.g 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.h

12 For the word of Godi is alivej and active.k Sharper than any double-edged sword,l it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.m 13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight.n Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

Jesus the Great High Priest

14 Therefore, since we have a great high priesto who has ascended into heaven,f p Jesus the Son of God,q let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.r 15 For we do not have a high priests who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we aret—yet he did not sin.u 16 Let us then approachv God’s throne of grace with confidence,w so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Read more Explain verse

A service of Logos Bible Software