11 Feb Hebrews 02- Such a great salvation
4 having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. 5 For to which of the angels did God ever say,
“You are my Son, today I have begotten you”?
“I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son”?
6 And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says,
“Let all God’s angels worship him.”
7 Of the angels he says,
“He makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.”
8 But of the Son he says,
“Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the sceptre of uprightness is the sceptre of your kingdom.
9 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.”
“You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands; 11 they will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment, 12 like a robe you will roll them up, like a garment they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will have no end.”
13 And to which of the angels has he ever said,
“Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”?
14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?
2 Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. 2 For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution, 3 how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, 4 while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.
Anyone ever encounter an angel? By that I do not mean someone named Angel but an actual angel. Well, I’m not saying if your name is Angel that you are not an angel, but, you know what I mean. Anyone ever encounter an angel of the Lord? Neither do I. At least as far as I can tell, I never have an encounter with an actual angel. Honestly speaking, I was having a hard time at first preparing for this message. I read this passage and I’m like, “Jesus is better than angels. Doh. Thank you for stating the obvious, Mr whoever you are that write the book of Hebrews.” Then I read more on this passage and go, “Okay this is a quote from Old Testament. This one from Psalm, this one from Samuel, oh this one from Psalm again, Psalm again, this one from Deuteronomy, and this one is from Psalm again. Great. Bunch of Old Testament quotations. This is only my second sermon on Hebrews and its already going to be the best sermon ever. Ha ha. (sarcastic).” But I realized it is because I do not have a right view of angels.
Just few decades ago, our society had obsession with angels. We used to have a TV show called “Touched by an angel” about three angels who walked around and touched the lives of different people. Most of you are probably too young to know. It is pretty much about people who struggled and tried to do their best in life but never make it. Then at one specific moment, they received help or touch by these angels. And when they realised that that these three girls are angels, they disappeared from sight. So one moment the angels were next to them, then when they turned around there were no one next to them. Is it Biblical? I’m not too sure but one thing that I do know for sure that angels do exist and they exist to serve the purpose of God. One of my favourite Psalm, Psalm 91:11-12 – “For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.” How many of you ever heard before that every Christian have their own personal guardian angel? When I was young, I was told that I do not have to fear because God has a guardian angel watching over me constantly. He watches me when I sleep, when I eat, when I play, fight etc. So an angel is like an invisible personal butler. It’s cute. But it is wrong. Because Psalm 91 does not say an angel but angels. Christians not only have a single angel watching over them but an army of angels guarding them all the time.
There is a wonderful story in 2 Kings 6 that describes this point. The king of Syria was trying to take hold of Israel and kill the king of Israel, but for some reason the king of Israel always managed to evade. The king of Syria was greatly troubled because of it and he heard that the reason the king of Israel always managed to escape was because there was a prophet of God by the name of Elisha who knew all the secret plans of Syria to kill the king of Israel. So the king of Syria decided that he needed to kill Elisha first before he can kill the king of Israel. He sent horses, chariots and a great army to surround Elisha. The next morning when Elisha’s servant woke up, he was frightened by what he saw. He saw a huge army surrounding the city trying to kill Elisha. He reported what he saw to Elisha in fear. “Master, we are doomed. We have no way out. We are totally surrounded. There is no escape. We are going to die. And I am still single.” He probably did not say the last part. Then Elisha replied calmly, “Do not be afraid. For those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” The servant is probably confused. He looked around and he saw no one but him and Elisha. “Err? Master? I know you are a prophet of God but… I can see that you are getting old. Maybe it’s time for you to get a new prescription for your glasses. I don’t see anyone but the two of us. And last time I check, 10,000 is a lot more than 2.” Elisha probably smiled at him, then he prayed and said, “O, LORD, please open his eyes that he may see.” And the LORD opened his eyes. And suddenly, the young man saw what he did not see before. He saw and behold, behind the Syrian army, there was another greater army ready to attack the Syrian army. Behind the city, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire ready to protect Elisha at any given moment. A guardian angel is cute but an army of angels is better.
Psalm 91 tells us that we have army of angels watching over us. They will lift you up in their hands so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. Did you hear that? The angels will protect even your toe! You think your parents is over-protective? This is your parents times million. God is over-protective of you. He not only watches over you, he sends army of angels to guard you in all your ways. How does his angels watch over you? I have no idea. But it is true. Billy Graham once told a story about a legendary missionary by the name of John G Patton on his missionary journey.
Sometime during the early 1900’s, John and his wife found themselves surrounded by a tribe of cannibals who wanted to eat them alive. So that night John and his wife did the only thing they could do. They got on their knees and prayed. They prayed that God would supernaturally protect them. As they pray, they could hear the noises and the hisses of those cannibals making their way toward the house. The noises were getting closer and closer, approaching the front door any moment. But something strange happened. The door was never opened. Minutes went by. Hours went by. And finally, the sun rose and the morning came. All the natives were retreating back into the forest. A miracle happened. John and his wife praised God and continued to do their missionaries work faithfully. A year later, the chief of the tribe that wanted to eat them accepted Christ. As John spoke with him, he remembered the event that happened a year prior. So, John asked, “What happened that night? Why didn’t you guys get in and kill me?” And the chief asked him a question, “Who were all those men who were with you?” John was confused and he replied, “What men? There was no one else but me and my wife. It was just the two of us inside the house.” Then the chief replied, “No that cannot be. There were hundreds of tall men in shining garments with drawn swords circling about your house, so we could not attack you.”
John’s story is not a one-off story. This kind of story happens regularly in the mission field. The Old Testaments speaks a lot about angels and the New Testament also tell us many stories involving angels. Acts 12 tells a story of how king Herod killed James, one of the apostle. Then he also arrested Peter and intended to kill him. But the church prayed for Peter and God send an angel to rescue Peter. I don’t know what you believe about angels but the Bible is clear that angels do exist and they are involved in our lives. They are supernatural beings who are able to do supernatural works. In fact there is a story in 2 Kings 19 where a single angel defeated an army of 185,000 soldiers. Can you imagine that? One angel is strong enough to destroy an entire army. Now, the reason I tell you these stories is I am trying to make a single point. The Jews have a very high view of angels. This is something that we do not have in common with them. When we think of an angel today, we think of an overweight chubby baby in his underwear, carrying a bow and arrow. We have a very low view of angels. This is very different from how the Jews perceive angels. Almost every time an angel of the Lord appeared in the Old Testament, we found the Jews wanted to worship them. To the point that the angel had to told them to not worship them.
But there is one particular reason why they hold angels in such high esteem. This is something that I just found out in my study for this passage. It’s really cool. The Jews think very highly of angels because they believed that the Law of Moses was given by God through angels. Acts 7:53 – “You who received the law as delivered by angels and did not keep it.” Now it starts to make more sense. If you know your Bible then you would know that the Law of Moses is the centre of the Jewish’s life and religion. It is the centre of everything they do. The Law of Moses is everything to them. And the one that delivered the law to Moses were angels. Now, can you see why the Jews have such a high view of angels?
It is important for us to understand what the author of Hebrews is trying to accomplish in this passage. Remember the context of the book of Hebrews. The book of Hebrews is written to a Jewish church or group of Jewish churches that were struggling to follow Jesus. We found in the book of Hebrews that there were many Jewish Christians who faced severe persecution. There were self-professed Christians who walked away from initial faith. They were not only persecuted by the Roman Government, they were also rejected by their Jewish communities and families. They found out that Christian’s life is not easy. And not only that, they were tempted to leave Jesus behind and returned to Judaism. They were tempted to go back to the Law of Moses. The law that was delivered to Moses by angels! And to this group of people, the author of Hebrew is saying, “I understand why you are tempted to return to your old ways. I get why you think angels are awesome. Gabriel, the messenger, he is cool. Michael, the angel of war, he is cool. Lucifer, well, okay, he is not cool. Angels are great and they are powerful. They played an important role in giving us the law. But you would be foolish to go back to your old way. Because there was someone greater than Gabriel and Michael. And he himself came to us to give us a new message. The message of life. So, why would you go back to a law delivered by angels when you have a message from someone superior to angels?” Are you guys with me?
So, three things that I want to talk to you guys tonight. How is Jesus better than angels; the appropriate response to the Gospel; the warning of the Gospel.
How is Jesus better than the angels?
Jesus has a better name
Hebrews 1:4-5 – 4 having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. 5 For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son”?
The author of Hebrews says that Jesus has inherited a better name. What name? It is the name “The Son of God.” None of the angel is ever called the Son of God. To be clear, the Old Testament does refer to group of angels as “sons of God” plural, but there was never a single individual angel to whom God says, “You are my Son.” The author is actually quoting Psalm 2. Psalm 2 is a Psalm of enthronement. If you like to watch movies about the Old Kingdom then you know that enthronement is a ceremony where the rightful heir of the Kingdom is declared to be the rightful ruler of the Kingdom. He is no longer a Crown Prince but he becomes a King. So, this is what God says about Jesus. After Jesus accomplished his work of redemption, after he conquered sin and death through his death and resurrection, God the Father enthroned Jesus and gave Jesus the name above every name. “You are my Son, today I have begotten you.” It does not mean that Jesus was not the Son of God before. Jesus is eternally the Son of God. Just like a Crown Prince is always the son of the King even before his enthronement. But after the resurrection, God the Father make a public display and a public declaration, declaring, “This is my Son who is the heir of my kingdom. He is the one. Not Gabriel, not Michael, not Yosi and definitely not Lucifer. Jesus is my Son. Today, I have begotten him. Today, there is no more question as to who own the Kingdom. It is my Son. Jesus, the Son of God.”
Jesus has a unique relationship with the Father that no one else has. He is the one true Son. And the second quotation, “I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son” comes from God’s promise to David about Solomon. That God will be a father to Solomon and Solomon will be a son to God. But then the promise goes on say that God will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. We know this cannot be true of Solomon. This promise ultimately looks forward to a greater son of David. A king that will rule forever. And Jesus is that promised son of David. And the point in saying all this is to say, “Angels are cool. They are great. But to which of them did God ever say things like this? The answer is, none. Jesus is the only one who inherited the name the Son of God. If this is true, why would you turn from Jesus to angels?”
Jesus has a better authority
Hebrews 1:6-12 – 6 And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says, “Let all God’s angels worship him.” 7 Of the angels he says, “He makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.” 8 But of the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the sceptre of uprightness is the sceptre of your kingdom. 9 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.” 10 And, “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands; 11 they will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment, 12 like a robe you will roll them up, like a garment they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will have no end.”
Now bear with me. This one is a little messy. The author refers to Jesus as the firstborn. It does not mean that there was a time where Jesus did not exist and God the Father created or gave birth to Jesus. There was not a time where Jesus was not. Jesus was not created. He is co-eternal with God. It is important for us to know this because there are some sects of Christianity that tried to use verses like this to say that Jesus was a created being. Jehovah Witness is wrong when they say that Jesus is less than God. One of the way the Bible used the word firstborn is not just to express the order of birth but also a special authority and privilege that one carries. The point of the author in calling Jesus firstborn is to show that Jesus has a special authority that no one has over creation. That is why then he says “Let all God’s angels worship him.” The point is clear. “If the angels worship Jesus, why would you turn your back from Jesus to angels? Instead, you should join the angels and worship Jesus!”
If that’s not enough, the author makes a contrast that show that the angels are the servants of God. As great as they are, they are under the authority of God. God makes them winds and flame of fire. They are servants of God. While on the other hand, if you look at Jesus, he is a king and his throne is forever and ever. His kingdom knows no end and he will rule in righteousness. Verses 8 and 9.
And if that’s still not enough, the author makes a bold declaration in verses 10-12. He is quoting Psalm 102 that speaks about God the Father, he is quoting a psalm that’s speaks about Yahweh the God of Israel, and he boldly applies the passage to Jesus. What is the author trying to say? Simply this. Jesus is not less than Yahweh. Jesus is God. He has the supreme authority over all creation. Everything in creation will wear out. Your favourite clothe, does not matter how well you take care of them, one day it will wear out. Your car, your job, your husband, your favourite food, your favourite view, whatever it is in creation has its expiry date. Ladies, it does not matter how often you have botox, your beauty has its expiry date. 40/50 years max before you look like a wrinkle shirt. Guys, it does not matter how often you go to gym, your strength has its expiry date. If you are above 30, then you know there are days that you wake up in the morning and your hurt your leg while you are sleeping. Every kingdom and empire has its expiry date. Every government will come to an end. Every king, every president, every athlete will come to an end. Even the planet earth that we live on has its expiry date according to scientist. But there is one who has no expiry date. He has no beginning and he has no end. Everything will change but he remains the same. He is forever and ever glorious. And his name is Jesus. Worship him!
Jesus has a better status
Hebrews 1:13-14 – 13 And to which of the angels has he ever said, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”? 14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?
So, imagine this. Imagine you live in the era of kingdoms of the Old Testament. You are invited to come to the throne room of your king. You know that whoever sit at the right hand of the king has a special status. The right hand of a king shows the highest rank and authority in the kingdom. So, you walk in to the throne room, and you see a man sitting at the right hand of the king. And then you witness an amazing scene in front of your eyes. One by one, the enemies of the kingdom is brought in to the chamber. There are lots of them in line. And then one by one, the enemy is push to the ground, and the man sitting in the right hand of the king would put his foot on the throat of the enemy. What does it mean? It is an old custom to show that the enemy has been defeated. And you look at the long line of enemies that have been defeated. Each of them have name. Sin, addiction, pornography, lust, greed, pride, power, sickness, disaster, demon, and then you look toward the end of the line, you see the name, death. These are all the enemies that have been defeated. They are just waiting for their turn to be put as a footstool for the feet of the right hand of the king. This is what the cross of Christ has accomplished. Jesus has defeated every single enemies and a time will come where all his enemies will become his footstool.
So, you are amazed the scene that is happening in front of your eyes. It is greater than your greatest imagination. It burns hope and joy inside of you. But then you notice groups of angels keep walking in and out of the throne chamber. So, you dare yourself to ask a question to the right hand of the king. “Most exalted one, if I may ask, why does all the angels seem so busy? I can’t help to notice that they keep rushing in and out from the chamber. What are they doing?” Jesus looks at you and smile. He says, “The angels are doing my bidding. They are taking care of my people. The people that I have chosen for myself. My people who trust in my name. My people that will inherit the kingdom with me. They are currently waiting for my kingdom to come. They are facing many dangers and persecutions. But they are not alone. I am with them. And I send my angels to ministers to their needs. Till the day come where they will be with me forever.” My friends, this is the reality that we have in Jesus. The angels are doing Jesus’ bidding to serve you. Then the author of Hebrews is asking the question, “If this is true, why would you forsake Jesus for angels? Jesus is infinitely better than angels. Hold on to him.”
The appropriate response
Hebrews 2:1 – Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it.
There are two appropriate responses to the message that we just heard. This is the first command in the book of Hebrews. There was not a single command in Hebrews chapter 1. The author starts chapter two with the word therefore. Therefore what? We have to go back to chapter 1. The author is saying that because Jesus is God’s final Word, because Jesus is the Creator, because Jesus is the Sustainer, because Jesus is God and he sit at the right hand of God, because Jesus accomplished no earthly priest can do, because Jesus purified your sin once and for all, and because Jesus inherited the name above every name, a name greater than all the angels, therefore. Are you with me? Because of all who Jesus is and what he has accomplished, therefore. Two things that we must do.
First, we need to beware of drifting away. The word drifting away is actually a word that describe a ship without an anchor. Do you know what happen to a ship without an anchor? It is slowly pulled away by currents. Slowly but surely. It is drifting away. Let me illustrate it for you. I do not like cat. I think cat is scary. Especially their eyes. It freaks me out. But my illustration has nothing to do with cat. I just want to let you know that I am scared of cats. But I do share one thing in common with cat. I’m not fond of getting wet. Except for shower. Just want to be sure I put it out there lest you think that your pastor does not like taking shower. That’s not good. I love shower and wet and wild. That’s about it. In general, I try to stay away from water, especially beaches. There is a reason for it. I was born and raised in Bali, which mean, I went to the beach quiet a lot. You can see it from my skin color. I was a beach boy. One day, I went for a swim at KUTA with my cousin who is few years older than me. We were having lots of fun and without we realize it, we were slowly pulled away from the shore by the current. By the time we realized it, we were already very far from the shore. So, we started to swim hard toward the land. But for some reason, it seemed like we were getting nowhere. The current was too strong for us to swim against. Finally, after some time, I gave up. I did not have any energy left to swim. I thought I was going to die. Now, let me ask you a question. What do you think happen when I stop swimming? Would I stay in the same place? Of course not. The current would pull me even further from the shore. All I have to do to drift further away from the shore is to do nothing. Correct? And here is another thing about drifting. Drifting is a lot of time not intentional. I never intended to get pulled to the ocean by the current. This is what happen to Christians who did nothing. We need to realize that the world that we live in is not neutral. It has current. And the current leads toward destruction. The current of this world is taking you further away from Christ. If you do nothing, then you will end up further away from Christ. There is no such thing as standing still. The moment you decide to stop swimming is the moment you begin to drift toward destruction.
Now, let me do a bit of “curhat” moment with you guys. Since this sermon is now broadcast on the internet to the public, if there is anyone listening who does not know what curhat is, it means pouring out one’s heart. So here it is. One of the thing that delight my heart as your pastor is to see your growth in Christ. There is this unspeakable joy when I see you begin to love Christ more and more. Few weeks ago, I bragged about some of you guys to Edrick and Jejep. I told them how moved I was to see your desire to know Christ more. Some of you guys just started reading, some of you increases your reading capacity, and right now in my KM we are doing Bible Study on Romans and what is awesome is I don’t even have to lead it. I get to sit down and listen to them teaching me the Bible. How awesome is that! And both Edrick and Jejep gave me three “thumbs up” emoticon. They were probably tired of my bragging about you guys. So yes, I am very thankful to God for his work in you guys. But here is another side of the coin. Some of you here today are drifting. You came to RSI and you listened to the gospel almost every week. Maybe you are in KM and you talked quiet a lot about Jesus. You might even read your Bible here and there. But your heart is not in love with Jesus. Church and KM are only part of your ritual as good Christians. Your heart is not burning with the beauty of the gospel. There is no pursuit of Jesus and desire to know him more. In other word, you think you are standing still. You think you are okay because you attend church and you are not in active rebellion against God. You don’t commit any big sin that people know of. But in fact, you are drifting. And I am worried about you. You might not realize it but you are slowly getting further and further away from the shore.
So, what do we need to do in order to not drift away? The author already gives us the answer. And this is his first command in the whole book. We need not only beware of drifting away, but second, we also need to “pay much closer attention to what we have heard.” The solution to drifting is not simply aware of the fact that we might drift, but to pay much attention to what we have heard. What is the message that we have heard? Hebrews chapter 1, that Jesus is better. Jesus is the answer. He is all that you need. He accomplished all the works of salvation on his own. He is the better King, Prophet and Priest. So, pay attention to him. In fact, the author says, “pay much closer attention.” This is a very strong word. It means, look to him, think about him, devote your life to him, or if I can rephrase it, you need to be obsessed with the gospel. You need to grow deeper in the gospel. You don’t say “Okay, I get the gospel and now it’s time to move to something else.” No, you don’t get to do that. You need to be so obsessed with the message of the gospel and how Jesus is better than everything that the gospel drives everything you do. It’s not enough to say “Okay, Jesus died for my sin. I am sinner saved by grace alone. Gotcha. What’s next?” but we need to ask, “How does Jesus’ perfect sacrifice change the way I work? How does the gospel change my relationship with one another? How does the good news of the gospel affect every area of my life?” You do not move on from the gospel but you let the truth of the gospel shapes all your life. Are you with me? This is what it means to be obsessed with the gospel.
Hebrews 2:2-4 – 2 For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution, 3 how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, 4 while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.
This is the first of five major Gospel warnings that the author gives in the book of Hebrews. Don’t miss it. This is very important. Remember that the Law of Moses is the centre of the Jewish life. And the Law was given to Moses through angels. The Jews have an extremely high view on the Law, or to be more specific, the ten commandments. What you and I need to know is that God also has a very high view of his laws. Let me give you an example. What is the fourth commandment? Anyone? It is to keep the Sabbath day holy. What it means is that there is one day a week where the Jews are not allowed to work. That day belongs to the Lord and the Jews must rest. This is what it means to keep the Sabbath day holy. So on one Sabbath day, Josh was talking a walk and he decided to gather sticks. Josh knew the Sabbath law but he decided to ignore the law. Some people saw him gathered sticks and brought him to Moses. “Mo, we found Josh gathered sticks on a Sabbath day. What should we do with him?” Moses did not know what to do with Josh. So they put Josh in custody while Moses asked God what to do. And the Lord told Moses that Josh needs to be brought outside the camp and stoned to death. Stoned to death simply for gathering sticks on Sabbath. You think I am joking? Read Numbers 15 when you are home tonight.
So here is what the author of Hebrews is saying. “If the law delivered by angels carry that much weight and consequences, if there is no way for you to escape the just punishment of breaking the law, how much more punishment you will experience if you neglect the gospel?” Because the law was declared by angels but the gospel was declared by Jesus himself. Did you get that? That’s the point of Hebrews chapter 1. Jesus is not an angel or prophets. He is God’s final word. God himself came in the flesh and declare to you the message of the gospel. And not only that, we might not hear the message of the gospel from the mouth of Jesus directly but we have direct account from those who heard from Jesus directly, the apostles, and all of them died for proclaiming the gospel. And if that’s not enough, God validates the message of the gospel by sign and wonders, by healing the sick, the lame walks, the blind sees, the dead rises, and the gifts of the Holy Spirit is poured out on believers. The gospel carries so much more weight than the law. So, the great question is this. “If you can’t escape the just punishment of the law, how will you escape the punishment of neglecting the gospel?” The answer is, you will not. Therefore, do not neglect what you have heard and turn back to a lesser thing. Do not neglect Jesus and turn back to the Old Covenant. What is at stake is your eternal life. Don’t walk away from the truth of the Gospel. Pay much closer attention to it. Obsess in the gospel. Grow deeper in the gospel.
The author of Hebrews refers to the gospel as a great salvation. He is not telling you to be obsess in doing the right thing. He is not telling you to be obsess with being rigid and make sure that every part of your life is in order. He is not telling you to be obsess with keeping the rules. No, he does not do that. Because he knows all of us fail in keeping the rules. None of us received a pass or a credit in keeping the Law. All of us received a straight F. That is why the gospel is such a good news. That is why the message of the gospel is such a great salvation. He wants you to obsess in your great salvation. What is our great salvation? It is the story of our rebellion against God. All of us rebelled against God and we deserved to die. We chose to satisfy our sinful desires over trusting God. It is just and right for God to punish us. But God in his mercy send us his one and only Son, Jesus. Jesus came and lived the perfect life that we could not. Jesus rescued us from the punishment of sin by taking our punishment with him at the cross. At the cross, Jesus became our perfect sacrifice. And whoever believes in him, he traded his righteousness for sins. He became sin so that we might become the righteousness of God. And now we are adopted into God’ family. Jesus is the firstborn Son and we are his brothers and sisters. We become heirs of the Kingdom and one day we will reign forever with him. These promises are guaranteed and sealed by Jesus’s death and resurrection. And all of this is given to us freely simply because we put our faith in Jesus. Jesus is better. This is the great salvation that we have. Don’t trade it for anything else. Hold on to it. Pay much attention to it. Obsess in it. Grow deeper in it. Do not neglect the fact that Jesus died for you and purchased you with his blood. Do not neglect the free forgiveness he gives you at the cost of his life. Do not neglect the smile of God that is upon you right now. Obsess in it and let it transform your life from the inside.
- How are angels very important to the Jews? Do you think our society have the right view of angels? Explain.
- In what ways is Jesus better than angels? Explain the relationship between Jesus and angels.
- How does the author uses of the Old Testament help us to read and understand the Old Testament?
- How does the angels minister to God’s people? How should it encourage us?
- What are things in our life that causes us to “drift away” from the truth of the Gospel?
- How can we pay much more attention to the truth of the Gospel? Give examples.
- The gospel is the message “such a great salvation”. Explain. Why is the gospel superior to the message declared by angels (the law of Moses)? What are the consequences of neglecting the gospel?