AND HAVING BEEN MADE PERFECT: kai teleiotheis (APPMSN):
(Heb 2:10; 11:40; Daniel 9:24; Luke 13:32; John 19:30)
OT PASSAGES QUOTED IN HEBREWS 5 -
Click for complete list of OT
He 5:5 <> Ps 2:7
He 5:6 <> Ps 110:4
He 5:10 <> Ps 110:4
KEY WORDS IN HEBREWS 5 -
Click for complete list of Key Words in
Eternal - He 5:9
Sacrifice - He 5:1, 3
Priest - He 5:1, 5, 6, 10
OUR GREAT HIGH PRIEST
OF THE POWER OF CHRIST
Son of God
Son of Man
chart is adapted in part from Jensen's Survey of the NT and
Wilkinson's Talk Thru the Bible
Criswell explains the relation between the obedience Jesus
learned and His being made perfect...
The phrase "learned obedience by the things which He suffered" (He
does not mean that Jesus was ever disobedient but rather that He learned
through experience as a Man and through all His temptation and suffering
what it meant to suffer and triumph in a way He did not experience before
the incarnation. His humanity was in this sense "completed," which is the
meaning of the Greek word translated "perfected" (having been
made perfect) in this context.
W A. Believer's Study Bible: New King James Version. 1991. Thomas Nelson)
been made perfect” does not imply that Jesus was imperfect previously.
Rather, the idea is that His experience of obediently suffering unto death
qualified Jesus as the Savior (we saw the same idea in He 2:10). (Hebrews
5:1-10 The Kind of Priest You Need)
Marcus Dods on teleioo (teleiotheis) means...
having been perfectly equipped with every qualification for the priestly
office by the discipline already described. (Expositor's
Greek Testament Commentary - online)
Having been made perfect
(teleioo related to
teleios from teleo = an end, a
purpose, an aim, a goal, consummate soundness, idea of being whole) means to
accomplish or bring to an end or to the intended goal (telos). Teleioo does not mean simply to terminate something but to carry it out to
the full finish which is picked up in the translation "perfected". Teleioo signifies the attainment of consummate soundness
and includes the idea of being made whole. The fundamental idea in
teleioo is the bringing of a person or thing to the goal fixed by God.
Being made perfect was something
that could never happen to the priests under the Old Covenant of Law (He
Vincent writes that teleioo
is used here...
of Christ’s having reached the end which
was contemplated in His divinely-appointed discipline for the priesthood.
The consummation was attained in his death, Php. 2:8: His obedience extended
even unto death.
Barclay explains that
quite correctly be translated perfect so long as we remember what the Greek
meant by that perfection. To him a thing was teleios if it perfect carried
out the purpose for which it
was designed. When he used the word he was not thinking in terms of abstract
and metaphysical perfection; he was thinking in terms of function. What the
writer to the Hebrews is saying is that all the experiences of suffering
through which Jesus passed perfectly fitted Him to become the Saviour of
men (Ed: And in context, their Great High Priest). (Barclay,
W: The Daily Study Bible Series. The Westminster Press
In Hebrews 12:2
Jesus is designated as "the Author and Perfecter of faith" where
is teleiotes, the Completer, the One Who reached the goal so as to win the
prize so to speak.
Telioo is used 19 times
in Hebrews out of a total
of 24 NT uses. The uses in Hebrews often convey the sense of to make perfect or
fully cleanse from sin in contrast to ceremonial (Levitical) cleansing
(but see the uses below). The writer
is emphasizing the importance of perfection...
(which should cause any Jew who is contemplating the worth of Christ and the
New Covenant to realize his utter hopelessness to every attain perfection
under the Old Covenant).
(note) For it was fitting
for Him, for Whom are all things, and through Whom are all things, in
bringing many sons to glory, to perfect the author of their salvation
through sufferings (What sufferings? Certainly one would consider His temptation by Satan in the
barren wilderness [see Mt 4:1-11, Lk 4:1ff, Mk 1:12, 13] and Gethsemane
[Mt 26:36,44, Lk 22:39,44][in agony He was praying very fervently]).
Comment: This does not imply any
moral imperfection in the Lord Jesus, but speaks of the consummation of the
human experience of suffering the death of the Cross, through which He must
pass if He is to become the Author or Captain of our salvation.
Hebrews 5:9 (note) And having
been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the
source of eternal salvation,
(note) (for the Law
nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a
better hope, through which we draw near to God.
Comment: The Old Covenant could
reveal sin but it could never remove sin, and so it had to be
removed. It gave no security. It gave no peace for a man never obtained
a clean conscience.
For the Law appoints men as
high priests who are weak, but the word of the oath, which came after the
Law, appoints a Son, made perfect forever.
(note) which is a symbol for
the present time. Accordingly both gifts and sacrifices are offered which
cannot make the worshiper perfect in conscience,
Comment: No perfection possible
under the Old Covenant.
(note) For the Law, since it
has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the very form of
things, can never by the same sacrifices year by year, which they offer
continually, make perfect those who draw near.
Comment: Contrast with Jesus in
Hebrews 5:9 above. The idea in Hebrews 10:1 is that the ceremonial law
could not actually save the believer. Its work was always short of
(note) For by one
offering He has perfected for all time those who are
Comment: Wuest writes "Here, the completeness of the state of
salvation of the believer is in view. Everything essential to the salvation
of the individual is included in the gift of salvation which the sinner
receives by faith in Messiah’s sacrifice. The words “for ever” here are to
be construed with “perfected.” It is a permanent state of completeness in
salvation to which reference is made. The words “them that are sanctified”
are descriptive of the believer. He is one set apart for God) (ibid)
(note) because God had
provided something better for us, so that apart from us they should not be
Hebrews 12:23 (note) (But you have
come...) to the general assembly and church of the first-born who are
enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of
righteous men made perfect,
In summary, the fundamental idea of teleioo is the bringing of a person or
thing to the goal fixed by God.
It is interesting and doubtless no
mere coincidence that in the
teleioo is translated numerous times as
consecration, especially speaking of consecration of the priests (cf Jesus
our "great High Priest") (Ex 29:9, 29, 33, 35 Lv 4:5;
8:33; 16:32; 21:10; Nu 3:3). The Septuagint translators used the verb teleioo
in the special sense of consecration to
priestly service and this official concept most likely stands behind the writer's use in
this passage in He 5:9 where it signifies that Jesus has been fully equipped
to come before God His
priestly role on behalf of all who believe in Him.
Messiah's perfection equated with His holding fast His sinless integrity in face
of the most extreme trial and suffering and thus accomplishing His intended
goal. (cp Jn 4:34, Jn 17:4 same verb teleioo, to help understand "perfect" as it
applies to Jesus and cp teleo in Jn 19:30)
Note that made perfect does not imply any imperfection in Christ ("One
who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin" -
He 4:15-note), which might
be the way one reads it based on the common way be made perfect is used in
English language. The meaning of teleioo (idea of reaching the intended goal
- see above) in Greek clearly
explains the author's intended thrust in the original Greek language in
which the letter was written and read. It is difficult to translate this
succinctly into English. The original readers would have had no difficulty
understanding the intended meaning.
The appointed way to Savior of the World involved treading the path of
testing, the Cross preceding the Crown. In the face of even the most pressing hardship and suffering, Jesus
remained obedient to His Father. Having successfully endured the trial of
life He was proven fit to be the Savior of God’s people.
And having been made perfect implies that there was no stone left
unturned when it comes to your salvation; there is nothing left dangling. I
dare say that there are some among us who are likely struggling over this.
It is so common to think that Jesus has done a wonderful job,
but there's a little left for me to do to finish the task of salvation.
What can you add to that which Jesus has fulfilled? Can you
be more obedient than Him Who is "without
sin"? Can you add to the satisfaction of God in the smiting of His own
Son with His fully measured wrath? Can you do more than the One Who was
raised from the dead?...
Do you know Christ, not as a mediator, but as your Mediator? "Yes I do," you
say. Then continue on in the faith, obediently following Jesus Christ. "Be
diligent to enter His rest." He continues to mediate for you. Every breath
you draw in Jesus' name, every prayer you utter, and every act of service
comes because he mediates for you. You may find yourself weak and your
spiritual limbs barely dragging along. But you have a high priest who
represents you before God and who invites you to the bounty of his grace for
weary pilgrims. "Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will
give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and
humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy
and My burden is light" (Mt 11:28, 29, 30).
Christ: Qualified as High Priest Hebrews 5:1-10)
Earlier we read that...
it was fitting for Him, for Whom are all things, and through Whom are
all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to perfect the author of
their salvation through sufferings. (He 2:10-note)
HE BECAME TO ALL THOSE WHO OBEY HIM: egeneto (3SAMI) pasin
tois hupakouousin auto:PAP:
(Heb 12:2; Psalms 68:18-20; Isaiah 45:22; 49:6; Acts 3:15; Acts 4:12)
See topic discussing the
Relationship of faith and obedience
(ginomai) means to come into existence and the
indicates a completed action in the past.
He became - This indicates a change of relationship that follows
Christ's perfecting. The suffering that led to the perfecting did something,
and specifically brought into existence Jesus as the source of eternal
salvation. Jesus has always been the One through Whom redemption of this
fallen world would come, having been promised by God in the Garden of Eden
after Adam sinned, where it was foretold that the Seed (Christ) would crush
the head of Satan (Ge 3:15 ~ the so-called "protevangelium" or "first
giving" of the Gospel). But it was not until Christ's incarnation and His
perfection that the promise became reality. Don't misunderstand --
sinners have always been saved by faith in the Promised Seed, the Messiah.
The OT saints were saved by a faith that looked forward to the Cross, while
NT saints look back to the finished work of Christ on Calvary. In both
instances that faith was shown to be genuine in that it brought forth the
fruit of obedience. As discussed more below obedience does not save anyone,
but it does demonstrate the reality of one's faith.
To all those (present
= continuously) obeying Him.
This is descriptive of the saved (the fruit
= obedience) not the
grounds of their salvation (the root
See related study of "obedience
of faith" in Ro 1:5-note
and contrast Paul's teaching in 2Th 1:8. If one is not obedient (we are not talking perfect
obedience but a lifestyle [present
tense] that tends toward obedience.
In short = "Not perfection, but direction!"), then he or she needs to
ponder Paul's words in
Obedience involves active listening and
choosing to respond positively to Christ’s call and command. Obedience is an
evidence of true discipleship, as Jesus Himself stated...
And why do you call Me
"'Lord, Lord' and do not (Greek = "ou" = strongest
negative = absolutely) do (present
= as their habitual practice or direction) what I say?" (Luke 6:46).
But He said, "On the contrary, blessed are those who hear the word of
God, and observe (present
= as their habitual practice or direction) it." (Lk 11:28)
Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven;
but he who does (present
= as a lifestyle = direction not perfection - "Doing" does not save them but
serves as a "marker" of their genuine salvation) the will of My Father who
is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not
prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name
perform many miracles?' And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you;
FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE (present
= as a lifestyle) LAWLESSNESS.'
Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine, and acts (present
= as their lifestyle) upon them, may be compared to a wise man, who built
his house upon the rock. "And the rain descended, and the floods came, and
the winds blew, and burst against that house; and yet it did not fall, for
it had been founded upon the rock.
And everyone who hears these words of Mine, and does not act (present
= as a lifestyle)
upon them, will be like a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand.
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and burst
against that house; and it fell, and great was its fall." (Mt 7:21-note,
Mt 7:22, 23-note,
Mt 7:24, 25-note,
Mt 7:26, 27-note)
Jesus became the cause of salvation “to all those who obey Him.” This
is not teaching salvation by works. Rather, to have saving faith is to obey
Jesus, who commanded, “Repent and believe in the gospel” (Mk 1:15).
Paul refers to “the obedience of faith” (Ro 1:5-note;
see also 1Pe 1:2-note).
You cannot separate saving faith from obedient faith, or
unbelief from disobedience (Ed: Compare especially He 3:18, 19-note)
(He 4:18, 19; 4:6, 11). Those who truly believe in Jesus as Savior
live in obedience to Him as Lord. Those who claim to believe but who
live in disobedience to Him are not truly saved (Mt 7:21-note,
Mt 7:22, 23-note). (Hebrews
5:1-10 The Kind of Priest You Need)
Phil Newton...does not mince words writing...
Let's be honest. Much of
is claimed to be Christian is pure antinomianism (Ed: Anti = against
+ nomos = law ~ and so living as if there were no laws). That is, there are
many who want the eternal benefits of Christians without desiring the
present, ongoing walk of obedience as Christians. They are lawless-without
Christ. Does that describe you? Then wake up to what is truly Christian.
Turn from your hypocrisy to the High Priest who has mediated before God on
your behalf. (Jesus
Christ: Qualified as High Priest Hebrews 5:1-10)
If the captain of salvation must learn obedience, so must his followers. Cp.
from hupó = under + akoúo =
physical hearing and apprehension of
something with the mind - akouo gives us our English acoustics - the
science of design which helps one hear) (Click study on related noun
hupakoe) literally means to listen
under with attentiveness and to respond positively to what is heard. The
sense is that one understands and responds accordingly. Note that
hupakouo implies an inward attitude of respect and honor, as well as
external acts of obedience. (See
Torrey's Topic on Obedience)
salvation is extended to all who obey Him. In this sense, all who obey Him
is used synonymously for believing on Him - which simply assumes that
believers will obey! (Hebrews 5)
obedience are closely related, C H Spurgeon writing that...
Faith and obedience are bound up in the
same bundle. He that obeys God, trusts God; and he that trusts God, obeys
If you desire Christ for a perpetual
guest, give him all the keys of your heart; let not one cabinet be locked up
from him; give him the range of every room and the key of every chamber.
There are at least
four NT uses of hupakouo that relate to the gospel and salvation -
Acts 6:7, Ro 6:17-note,
Ro 10:16-note, 2Thess 1:8 and Hebrews 5:9
(See these verses below). These uses of hupakouo are closely related to the
phrase "obedience of faith" Dr Charles Ryrie summarizing the
two main ways one might interpret this phrase explaining that it could refer
Either obedience that leads to
initial faith (as in
or obedience that results from faith. (The
Ryrie Study Bible: New American Standard Translation: 1995. Moody Publishers)
After some study on
this phrase obedience of faith including review of a balanced, well
written analysis by D. B. Garlington ("The
Obedience of Faith in the Letter to the Romans Part I: The Meaning of
hupakoen pisteos Ro 1:5; 16:26" in the Westminster Theological Journal Vol.
52, Page 223, Fall, 1990),
leads me to favor this phrase as referring to obedience that emanates from
A T Robertson writes that in
Romans 1:5 obedience of faith in the original Greek text reflects what is referred to
Subjective genitive as in Ro 16:26,
the obedience which springs from faith (the act of assent or surrender). (Word
Pictures in the NT)
Marvin Vincent another
respected Greek scholar says that...
Obedience of faith is the
obedience which characterizes and proceeds from faith. (Vincent, M. R. Word
studies in the New Testament Vol. 3, Page 1-5)
Expositor's Bible Commentary
explaining the "obedience of faith" writes that...
The desired response to the gospel
message is "obedience that comes from faith" (Gaebelein,
F, Editor: Expositor's Bible Commentary 6-Volume New Testament. Zondervan
Robert Haldane commenting on
the "obedience of faith" writes that...
Some understand this of the obedience
which faith produces; but the usual import of the expression, as well as the
connection in this place, determines it to apply to the belief of the
Gospel. Obedience is no doubt an effect produced by that belief; but the
office of an Apostle was, in the first place, to persuade men to believe the
Gospel. This is the grand object, which includes the other. The Gospel
reforms those who believe it; but it would be presenting an imperfect view
of the subject to say that it was given to reform the world. It was given
that men might believe and be saved. The obedience, then, here referred to,
signifies submission to the doctrine of the Gospel. (Haldane, R. An
exposition of Romans)
The UBS translator's handbook
Believe and obey translates “obedience of
faith.” This is not “obedience to the faith” (Moffatt), but obedience that
is caused by faith (NEB “to faith and obedience”; Goodspeed “obedience and
faith”). Although “obedience” and “faith” are nouns in Greek, they describe
events rather than objects, and so are better rendered by verbs. The last
clause in verse 5, introduced by in order to lead, reflects only a
preposition in Greek. However, the relationship between the “apostleship”
and the “obedience of faith” involves obvious purpose. Furthermore, in most
languages one must make explicit the role of Paul with respect to the people
of all nations, and for this reason the TEV makes this relationship explicit
by means of the somewhat expanded rendering in order to lead people of all
nations to believe and obey. (Newman, B. M., & Nida, E. A.. A handbook on
Paul's letter to the Romans. UBS handbook series; Helps for translators Page
12. New York: United Bible Societies)
Life Application Bible Commentary
writes that "obedience of faith" refers to...
the obedience that comes from faith.
This was the desired response to the gospel message and the goal of Paul’s
ministry to the Roman Christians—that they would obey God because of their
faith in God. The only source for the kind of obedience expected is faith in
the one true God and in Jesus Christ, his Son.
Faith and obedience
Where one is lacking, the other will not be found either. Real
faith will always lead to obedience; real obedience comes from faith. (Barton,
B, et al: The NIV Life Application Commentary Series: Tyndale
THE SOURCE OF ETERNAL SALVATION: aitios
2:3; 9:12,15; Ps 45:17; 51:6,8; 2Thessalonians 2:16; 2Timothy 2:10; 1John
5:20; Jude 1:21) (Heb 11:8; Isaiah 50:10; 55:3; Zechariah 6:15; Matthew
7:24, 25, 26, 27; 17:5; Acts 5:32; Romans 1:5; Romans 2:8; 6:17; 10:16;
15:18; 2Corinthians 10:5; 2Thessalonians 1:8; 1Peter 1:22)
Jesus is Author of ‘eternal’ salvation (He 5:9KJV), i.e., of final
salvation, which has no peril beyond; all that salvation can mean is secured
by Him. (Death
The source - Compare the writer's other descriptions of Jesus...
"The Captain (author, founder, leader, pioneer, prince leader) of
their salvation" (KJV, see note
"as a Forerunner ("scout") for us" (see note
"Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of faith" (see note
aitéo = ask) describes the relation existing
between two or more objects or events, specifically referring to the cause
or source, the point at which something begins its course or existence.
Aitios means that in which the cause of anything resides. Note that
because of this meaning some translations render aitios
author. “that in which the cause of anything resides.” Messiah in His death
on the Cross is the Source, Author and Cause of our salvation. His death is
the Source from which our salvation proceeds.
In English source is defined as a spring or fountain head from which
a river or stream issues, which is an interesting thought in regard to Jesus
Aitios was a technical, legal term describing the grounds for an
accusation in court or the content of the legal charges brought against
someone (thus an accusation, charge, complaint)
Luke 23:4 And Pilate said to the chief priests and the multitudes, "I
find no guilt in this man...14 and said to them, "You brought
this man to me as one who incites the people to rebellion, and behold,
having examined Him before you, I have found no guilt in this man
regarding the charges which you make against Him...22 And he said to
them the third time, "Why, what evil has this man done? I have found in Him
no guilt demanding death; I will therefore punish Him and release
Acts 19:40 For indeed we are in danger of being accused of a riot in
connection with today's affair, since there is no real cause for it;
and in this connection we shall be unable to account for this disorderly
Hebrews 5:9 And having been made perfect, He became to all those who
obey Him the source of eternal salvation
Jesus is the Source of Eternal Salvation because He is the...
Purification ("Purifier") (Hebrews 1:3)
Author (Captain, Pioneer, Champion,
Propitiation ("Propitiator") (Hebrews
Torn Veil (Hebrews
Great Shepherd (Hebrews
Why is He our eternal Source? Because His sacrifice was once
for all and thus He abides a Priest forever according to the order of
Melchizedek. And from a practical standpoint eternal salvation is a
deliverance which keeps the believer safe both in time and in eternity. In
other words "in Christ' (see discussion
in Christ Jesus)
the believer is safe for ever. There are no circumstances that can pluck him
from Christ’s hand.
Eternal salvation - It is somewhat surprising that there are only
three adjectives used in the New Testament to describe our salvation...
so great salvation (He 2:3-note)
salvation (He 5:9-note)
the common salvation (Jude 1:3)
Eternal salvation is contrasted with the temporary nature of the Old
Testament sacrifices, which could never make perfect those who offered them
(He 10:1, 2, 3, 4). The word translated “the source” (NASB, NIV;
“author,” NKJV) of eternal salvation means “the cause.” The cause of our
salvation is not that God foresaw that we would believe. The cause of our
salvation is that the triune God “chose us in Him before the foundation of
the world” (Eph. 1:4). (Hebrews
5:1-10 The Kind of Priest You Need)
Praise Him, praise Him—Jesus, our blessèd Redeemer,
For our sins He suffered, and bled, and died;
He our rock, our hope of eternal salvation,
Hail Him, hail Him, Jesus the Crucified.
Him, Praise Him)
means perpetual eternal, everlasting, without beginning or end (as of God),
that which is always. Eternal is a key word
Hebrews: blood of eternal covenant (He 13:20-note).
He offered Himself through His eternal spirit (He 9:14-note)
and has become the Author/Source of eternal salvation (He 5:9-note).
He has obtained eternal redemption (He 9:12-note)
and enables men to receive of the eternal inheritance (He 9:15-note;
Vincent comments that an
eternal salvation is...
a salvation of which all the
conditions, attainments, privileges, and rewards transcend the
conditions and limitations of time.
In this affirmation, too, the
thought of Hebrews 2:10-note
is recapitulated, for the description of Christ here as "the source
of eternal salvation" corresponds to his designation there as "the
pioneer of our salvation." He, and no one else, is the cause of man's
redemption: it is from him that it flows to us. His bearing of our
imperfection, the punishment of which he endured and exhausted, made
available his perfection for the rehabilitation of mankind—with the
qualification, however, that the eternal salvation of which he is the
source is a reality in the experience only of those who obey him. As
Westcott observes, "continuous active obedience is the sign of real
faith"; and this applies quite pointedly to the recipients of this
letter whose obedience shows signs of wavering. Here again, then, they
are being reminded, as previously they have more forcefully been
reminded (cf. He 2:3-note;
He 3:12, 13-note,
He 3:14, 15-note,
He 3:16, 17-note,
He 3:18, 19-note.;
that this great salvation belongs only to those who persevere in
obedience to Christ. (A
Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews)
soter = Savior in turn from
sozo = save, rescue, deliver) (Click
here for in depth discussion of the related
sozo) describes the rescue or deliverance
from danger, destruction and peril. "Salvation" is a
broader term in Greek than we often think of in English. Other concepts that
are inherent in soteria include restoration to a state of safety,
soundness, health and well being as well as preservation from danger of
The idea of salvation is that
the power of God rescues people from the penalty of sin, which is spiritual
death which is followed by eternal separation from the presence of His
Glory. Salvation delivers the believer from the power of sin (see
discussion on Romans 6:1 thru Ro 8:31 beginning with notes at
carried tremendous meaning in Paul’s day, the most basic being “deliverance,”
and it was applied to personal and national deliverance. The emperor was
looked on as a "savior" as was the physician who healed you of illness.
It is interesting that Collin's
(secular) dictionary defines "salvation" as
"the act of preserving or the state of
being preserved from harm...deliverance by redemption from the power of sin
and from the penalties ensuing from it."!
In short, this so great a salvation
is not just escape from the penalty of sin but includes the ideas of safety,
deliverance from slavery and preservation from danger or destruction. In
addition, this so great a salvation includes the idea of what is
often referred to as the
Three Tenses of Salvation (justification =
past tense salvation = deliverance from sin's penalty, sanctification =
present tense salvation = deliverance from sin's power and glorification =
future tense salvation = deliverance from sin's presence). It follows that
the discerning student will
check the context to determine which of the
three "tenses" a given use of soteria is referring to.
Mankind has continually looked for
salvation of one kind or another. Greek philosophy had turned inward and
begun to focus on changing man’s inner life through moral reform and
self-discipline. The Greek Stoic philosopher Epictetus called his lecture
room “the hospital for sick souls.” Epicurus called his teaching “the
medicine of salvation.” Seneca taught that all men were looking ad
salutem (“toward salvation”) and that men are overwhelmingly conscious
of their weakness and insufficiency in necessary things and that we
therefore need “a hand let down to lift us up”. Seneca was not far from the
truth as Scripture testifies
"(Jehovah speaking) Is My hand so short
that it cannot ransom? Or have I no power to deliver?...Behold, the LORD'S
hand is not so short that it cannot save...(Jeremiah speaking) 'Ah Lord GOD!
Behold, Thou hast made the heavens and the earth by Thy great power and by
Thine outstretched arm! Nothing is too difficult for Thee" (Isa 50:2...Isaiah
59:1... Jeremiah 32:17)
through Christ is God’s powerful hand extended down to lost souls to lift
In context of Hebrews 1, this great
salvation has first of all such a great Savior, Who has completed the
purification for our sins (which deserved death) and has furnished us with
His ministering angels to help those who will inherit salvation. This
salvation was first spoken thru the Lord Jesus (it not so clearly spoken in
Harry Ironside observes...
How carefully the Holy Ghost guards against the least suggestion of
defilement in Christ's nature while insisting on the reality of His
humanity. Great indeed is the mystery of godliness, for He, the Holy One,
appeared in flesh. And now as the exalted Priest, He enters into all the
sorrows of His people, sympathizing with them in all their infirmities. He
does not sympathize
with our sins, and indeed we would not wish Him to, but He does feel for us
in all our weakness and is waiting to supply needed strength for every
trial. (Ironside Expository Commentary on Hebrews)
THE PERFECTING OF CHRIST
by F B Meyer
THE long and steep ascent of life, our Father has given us a Companion, a
Captain of the march, a Brother, even Jesus our Lord, who passed through the
suffering of death, and is now crowned with glory and honour (Heb 2:9, 10, 11). He
has passed along our pathway, and climbed our steep ascents, that He might
become our merciful and faithful Friend and Helper. In this sense He was
perfected, and became unto all them that obey Him the Author of eternal
As regards His Nature, it was impossible for Him to be otherwise than
perfect. In Him all the fullness of the Divine Nature dwelt without let or
hindrance. But since the children partook of flesh and blood, He also
Himself partook of the same; it behooved Him in all things to be made like
unto His brethren. To each of us He says: "I have trodden this path before
Thee, and know every inch of the way."
Christ is the Great-Heart,
Companion for all pilgrim souls.
But if we are to walk with Him, and realize His eternal salvation, we must
learn to obey. This is the lesson taught to the scientist by Nature. He must
be exact, minute, microscopic in his attention and obedience to details. If
he should fail in one tiny point, his best-conceived plans and experiments
must fail. Exact obedience is essential to the engineer. The slightest
inadvertence will clog and stop the mightiest machine that human ingenuity
ever invented. It is, however,
in the spiritual sphere that disobedience
brings the greatest and most momentous catastrophes.
We must learn to obey,
even in the dark! (Ed: "Especially" in the dark!) Not ours to make reply, or to question God's dealings. He
withholds His reasons, but demands our obedience.
The strength to obey is God given. (Php 2:13, Ezek 36:27a) There appeared an angel from Heaven to
strengthen Christ, and to each of us treading dark and hard paths, that
angel comes still (Ed: Even better than an "angel", we now
have the eternally indwelling Spirit of Christ!). But you never know the angel till you reach your
Gethsemane. It is because our Lord learned these things by experience, that
He is perfected to impart eternal salvation to every soul of man.
PRAYER - Eternal Saviour, who knowest each step of this difficult
pathway of life, we come to Thee for Thy gracious help; enable us to obey
Thy promptings, and in every hour of mortal weakness and fear stand beside
us to be our very present help. AMEN. (F B Meyer. Our Daily Walk)
Not Even Close! -
A 33-year-old Frenchman was nailed to a
cross in the patio of a plush hotel in the Dominican Republic as his
"contribution to salvation and peace among mankind." He wanted to hang there
for 3 days, but within 24 hours he was so weak that he was forced to give up
his plan. Even before that, the cross had to be laid horizontally on the
ground to alleviate his suffering. It was obvious to all that he couldn't
continue to endure the terrible ordeal he had imposed on himself.
The failure of this man's "sacrifice" stands in striking contrast to the
unique atoning work of the Lord Jesus, who truly became "the author of
eternal salvation" (Hebrews 5:9). The writer of Hebrews explained that
Christ is our High Priest forever, interceding continually before God's
throne on our behalf (7:25). As God in the flesh, He alone could become our
substitute and offer Himself as a sacrifice for sins "once for all" (10:10).
No other human being is able to take "this honor to himself" (5:4).
Throughout history, many have claimed to be the Messiah. But Jesus Christ is
in a class by Himself—and He died on Calvary's cross for you. Have you
trusted in the crucified and risen Savior? If not, do so today! —Mart De Haan (Our
Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted by
permission. All rights reserved)
Won't you accept this
For time is swift passing away;
There's no one to save you but Jesus,
There's no other way but His way. —Hunter
Only God's gift can erase man's guilt.
Fanny Crosby exhorts us in her
hymn to lay hold on eternal salvation (Play
The Hope Set Before You
Lay hold on the hope set before you,
And let not a moment be lost,
The Savior has purchased your ransom,
But think what a price it hath cost!
Lay hold on eternal salvation,
Lay hold on the gift of God’s only Son;
Lay hold on His infinite mercy,
Lay hold on the Mighty One!
Lay hold on the hope set before you,
Of life that you now may receive,
If, gladly His mercy accepting,
You truly repent and believe.
Lay hold on the hope set before you,
Of joy that no mortal can speak;
It telleth of rest for the weary,
Through Jesus, the lowly and meek.
Lay hold on the hope set before you,
A hope that is steadfast and sure;
O haste to the blessèd Redeemer,
The loving, the perfect and pure.
J C Philpot's devotional on He 5:9...
sufferings in the garden and upon the cross the Lord Jesus was made perfect.
But what perfection was this? It clearly does not mean that by these
sufferings in the garden and upon the cross our Lord was made perfect as the
Son of God, nor perfect as the Son of man, for he was perfect before as
possessing infinite perfection in his eternal Godhead, and was endued also
with every possible perfection of which his sacred humanity was capable. He
needed no perfection to be added to his Godhead; it was not susceptible of
it; no perfection to be added to his manhood, for it was "the holy one" in
union with eternal Deity.
But he needed
to be made perfect as a High Priest. It was through his sufferings that he
was consecrated or dedicated in an especial manner to the priesthood, for
this corresponds with his own words--"And for their sakes I sanctify myself"
(John 17:19); that is, I consecrate or dedicate myself to be their High
Priest. The two main offices of the high priest were to offer sacrifice and
make intercession. Sacrifice came first; and the sufferings of our Lord in
the garden and upon the cross were a part of this sacrifice. He was
therefore "made perfect through suffering," that is, through his sufferings,
blood-shedding, and death he was consecrated to perform that other branch of
the priestly office which he now executes.
Thus as Aaron
was consecrated by the sacrifice of a bullock and a ram, of which the blood
was not only poured out at the bottom of the altar and sprinkled upon it,
but put also on his right ear and hand and foot, so was his great and
glorious Anti-type consecrated through his own sacrifice and blood-shedding
on the cross; and thus being made perfect, or rather, as the word literally
means, being perfected, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all
those who obey him. (J. C. Philpot. Daily Portions).