October 16, 2020
FROM YOUR PASTOR’S DESK:
MADE A LITTLE LOWER THAN THE ANGELS IN THE INCARNATION FOR THE SUFFERING OF DEATH
“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 should taste death for every man.” Heb. 1:9, A.V.
Notice that it was “by the GRACE of God” that Christ the Creator, was both “made a little lower than the angels” in the mystery of the Incarnation and by that same “grace of God” ‘taste death for every man.” Every diligent and thorough Bible student should take this profound scripture into proper account when addressing familiar lines “by grace you are saved, not of your works lest any MAN should boast.” Remember these: God does not boast; only fallen man does. Now this:
“A little lower than angels.’ When Jesus became man He was made [according to the divine plan of redemption ‘prepared before the foundation of the world’] a little lower than the angels, or as the margin reads, ‘a little while inferior to.’ Thus Jesus in a very real sense took our nature WITHOUT losing His Godhead, though He [temporarily] relinquished the independent use of the prerogatives of Deity. At no time did He exercise His divine powers EXCEPT as He received commandment from God. (John 4:31: 5:19). As a man He was at all times subject to God.
“For the suffering of death.’ The KJV affirms that Jesus became man that He might SUFFER and DIE. He was made ‘a little lower than the angels for [the purpose of] suffering and death.’ The Revised Version affirms that it was as a REWARD for His suffering and death that Christ was ‘crowned with glory and honor.’
“By the grace of God.’ Christ’s sufferings here are not considered as PUNISHMENT laid on Him, for it was ‘by the GRACE of God’ that He tasted death for every man—a significant expression. Some of the older manuscripts instead of ‘by the grace of God’ have ‘apart from God,’ which suggests that Christ in His death suffered ALONE without the SUSTAINING presence of God. This would give point to His DESPAIRING cry, recorded in Matt. 27:46: ‘And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast Thou FORSAKEN Me?’
“Taste death for every man.’ This does not mean, as some suggest, that He merely tastes LIGHTLY of death, and did not suffer the WHOLE measure. GETHSEMANE shows that He ‘drank the cup to the dregs and tasted death as NO OTHER MAN ever tasted it!” —M.L. Andreasen, The Book of Hebrews, pp.95, 96.
Ponder on these! Bless all, NMF.