First United Presbyterian Church

Hebrews 1:1-4

Hebrews 1:1-4

Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, 2but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds.  3He is the reflection of Gods glory and the exact imprint of Gods very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word.  When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs  

I grew up in a small town as a PK (preacher’s kid). Ironically, PKs had a reputation in that town of being particularly delinquent. Among my transgressions was throwing a snowball through a stained-glass window of our church. I often had to ask for forgiveness.

In Jesus’ day only the High Priest could enter the innermost room of the Temple, the Holy of Holies, on the Day of Atonement. There he would ask forgiveness for the sins of the people. The High Priest was by Hebrew law a descendent of Aaron, Moses’ brother, and a member of the priestly tribe of Levi. Today, devout Catholics bring their confessions to their parish priest. 

The Book of Hebrews was written to convince a Jewish audience that Jesus has made atonement, once and for all, by his death on the cross. Jesus by human birthright was not a descendent of Aaron of the tribe of Levi, but of King David of the tribe of Judah. How could Jesus be both king and priest? The answer is in Jesus’ spiritual birthright as the Son of God—bearing the exact imprint of God’s nature. We read that at Jesus’ death the curtain of the Holy of Holies was torn in two.  (Matt 27:51)

As Reformed Christians we embrace the “priesthood of all believers.” We believe that through Christ’s sacrifice we have been sanctified – transformed by grace to bring our confessions directly to God and be assured of forgiveness. Through this assurance we are set upon a path of justification, or growing into a right relationship with God. Resolve to live your life as a forgiven  child of God!

Contributed by Dennis Brewer

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