THE CHRONICLES OF THE ELECT

A Look at Hebrews Chapter 1: Part 19

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And:“ You, LORD, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the work of Your hands.

The crescendo of the writer’s argument to these confused Hebrews who were in consideration of defecting back to their former religion is now upon us. These last four verses embellish and elucidate the previous passages. It is imperative that we take note of the opening term of this verse found in a little three letter word “and”. The term is a translation from the Greek kai which is used to demonstrate the continuation of the Father’s address of the Son. The flow of the address was initiated previously in v.8 with the expression “but to the Son He says”. The whole point of the term “And” is that the Father is not finished speaking of His Son!

The writer maintains the same line of argumentation by quoting from another Psalm; mainly the 102nd Psalm. We must emphasize the importance of understanding that this quote that is attributed to the Son is one of great importance. Scholar F.F. Bruce gives a brief description of the motives of God in this Psalm:

The Psalm, which begins “Hear my prayer, O Yahweh,” is truly described in its superscription as “a prayer of one afflicted, when he is faint, and pours out his complaint before Yahweh.” Both he and Zion, his city, have experienced the judgment of God, but he makes confident supplication for mercy and restoration for himself and Zion, that men and women may assemble there once more to give praise to God. He is oppressed by a sense of the brevity of his personal span of life, with which he contrasts the eternal being of God. IN comparison with his short life, heaven and earth are long-lived; yet heaven and earth must pass away. They had their beginning when God created them, and they will grow old and disappear one day; but the God who created them existed before they did, and he will survive their disappearance. As one man in his lifetimes outlives many successive suits of clothes, so God has seen and will yet see many successive material universe, but he himself is eternal and unchanging.[i]

The significance of recognizing that the God of the scriptures is a unique God is vital to our argument. Jehovah is a God that possesses characteristics that make Him God that no other being can possess no matter how exalted they might be. What makes Him God is found in the verses of the Psalm and here attributed to the Son.

The first unique trait of Jehovah is found in the exclusiveness of His name.  Notice an often-missed expression “You, LORD” which, since it is quoting the OT Psalm, could be rendered “ You, Jehovah”[ii]. The most unique characteristic of God is found in His name, the name that was set apart as a token of expressing His being and Holiness. The Father applies to His Son the very name that is never used of a mere creature.

The second divine attribute is that of creatorship. This we have dealt with previously in verse 2. The expression sought to be articulated by the writer in based upon the word “Beginning” and should be taken as a parallel expression to that found in other portions of Holy scripture. God created “in the beginning” (Genesis 1:1) while the Father and Son were together (John 1:1; 1 John 1:1). The uniqueness of this attribute can be examined in the trial of the false gods found in Isaiah 40-48 which argues for the sole deity of Jehovah, the God of Israel especially in v.44:24. 

 


[i] The Epistle to the Hebrews, F.F. Bruce, Eerdmans Publishing, Page 61-62

[ii] It should be noted that in the Psalm the writer refers to this portion as “You my God” which is paralleled with the term “You, LORD”.

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Written by shawnkjmcgrath

August 20, 2009 at 1:39 pm

Posted in Hebrews Ch.1

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