Sons & Daughters Through God’s Annointed One

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I am somewhat amazed that so many Christians seem to believe that the big picture message about God raising Jesus from the dead is that it was a huge miracle. Obviously, the miracle isn’t at all “bad news,” but it certainly is not the main thing the New Testament writers focus on as the “Good News” of God raising Jesus from the dead.

One of the exciting aspects of that Good News is celebrated in Hebrews chapter 2.  There the author claims that God raising Jesus from the dead shows that God is intent upon achieving God’s original purpose in creating humans – humans in the image of God as an extended family of God.

These notes are rough – but they are exciting to think and pray about.

I. THE HUMAN JESUS IS GOD’S END DEMONSTRATED IN THE MIDDLE OF HISTORY

1.    God’s goal: Jesus is the model—God’s end goal for human history is demonstrated through Jesus in the middle of history. 

{Hebrews 2:6} But there is a place where someone has testified: “What is the human race that you are mindful of  them, the son of man that you care for him? {7} You made him a little lower than the angels; you crowned them with glory and honor {8} and put everything under his feet.” In putting everything under him, God left nothing that is not subject to him. Yet at present we do not see everything subject to him. {9} But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

Here the author meditates on two earlier scriptures – Psalm 8 which is then in turn a meditation on Genesis 1.  The Psalmist wonders how Genesis 1 can be true when humans are both so small in such a large universe (little did he know how large!), and when humans are such a messed up bunch as well.

It is very important to note that the “honor and glory” God bestows on Jesus in the resurrection and ascension/exaltation is the “honor and glory” Psalm 8 says God intends for the human race.

The writer of Hebrews agrees that any look at human history raises doubts about this purpose of God since it is clearly “not yet,” but he says that we can now see where God is headed because God has now gotten one of us to God’s goal for the human race – “we see Jesus!”

And, we see that God reaches this goal for humanity not by Jesus avoiding death, but by Jesus faithfully following God right through death into God’s gift of an even more glorious human life. (Note that it is very important to the writers argument that Jesus is still very human right now just as it is to the claims of other New Testament authors.)

2. God’s goal is not just for Jesus. He is just the first of many sons and daughters through what God has done in Jesus.

{Hebrews 2:10}  In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering.

This family of the coming age that God is creating can only be created one way: by God overcoming the suffering and death that haunts human history as a great power that oftens seems more powerful than God.  In Jesus’ resurrection and new kind of human life with God that is victorious over suffering and death, we see the direction God is going!

3. God’s goal: a family of holy sisters and brothers in Jesus

{Hebrews 2:11} Both the one who makes humans holy and those who are made holy are of the same family.  So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.

Be clear, says the author, the resurrected Jesus is still our brother and is not at all ashamed of our humanity in this great extended family God is creating through what God has done in the resurrected Jesus.

II.  GOD’S METHOD/MEANS  IS JESUS’ MINISTRY FOR US THEN & NOW

1.  Jesus’ ministry for us: And we will be like him

{Hebrews 2:10}  In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering.

God’s method of getting us humans to the “glory” he always intended to crown us with is Jesus.  The resurrection not only shows us Jesus as the model for where God wants to go with us, but Jesus is also God’s method for getting us there.

2.  Jesus’ ministry for us: sons and daughters through Christ presented to God

v.  9 – “that he might taste death for everyone”

v. 10a — “bring many sons and daughters to glory”  ( see Psalm 8)

vv. 11-12  Both the one who makes humans holy and those who are made holy are of the same family.  So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.

{12} He says, “I will declare your name to my brothers and sisters; in the presence of the congregation I will sing your praises.”

{13}  “Here am I, and the children God has given me.”

What an exciting thought: The resurrected Jesus wants to currently spend his energy presenting God to us, and then wants to proudly present us before God as his brothers and sisters of the human race—the people whom together they have brought to the goal God intended for humanity from our inception.

 

3.  Jesus’ ministry for us: a family given freedom (Hebrews 2:14-18)

a.  A family free from…the power of our foes (especially the evil one”)

{14} Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil

b.  A family free from…the power of our fears (especially of suffering and death)

{15} and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

I personally find it astoundingly exciting to realize that so far we have only seen one real human being, but through the resurrected Jesus co-laboring with God there are many more of us on the way to that incredible goal and gift.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *