He Took On Him The Seed of Abraham, Heb 2

In Heb 2:16, we read that Jesus “took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham”.  Why?

To accomplish so great salvation – Heb 2:1-4.  The gospel of the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ is “great salvation”.  By God’s grace Jesus tasted “death for every man”, v.9, and made “reconciliation for the sins of the people”, v.17.  He could not have done this without becoming a man.  Therefore, he took on him the seed of Abraham rather than the nature of angels.

The great salvation wrought by Jesus Christ is so important that Paul encouraged his readers to “give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard”, v.1, concerning this great salvation.  He didn’t want us to “let them slip”.  Notice the preeminence of “the things which we have heard”.

In the Old Testament, for example, the word spoken by angels (i.e., Ex 23:20-22, Jud 2:1-2, etc) was stedfast, and transgression and disobedience received a just recompense, v.2.  By contrast, however, the gospel was preached by the Lord, himself, and was confirmed by the apostles who heard him, v.3.  God bore witness to their testimony with signs, wonders, miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, v.4 (i.e., 2 Cor 12:12, Rom 15:19, etc).  

This is why Paul asked, “How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation”?  If disobedience of the word spoken by angels received just recompense, how much more the words spoken by the Lord himself.  There is no escape for neglecting his great salvation.

To put all in subjection under him – Heb 2:5-9.  God has not put the world to come in subjection to the angels, v.5.  Rather, according to Ps 8:4-6, God made man a little lower than the angels, crowned him with glory and honor, and set him over the works of his hands, v.6-7 (Gen 1:26, Gen 9:2).  He left nothing that is not put under him, v.8.  Nevertheless, all things are not yet put under him because of Adam’s fall.  The devil is the god of this world, 2 Cor 4:4, and death still reigns, Rom 5:17.

In order for all things to be put under Jesus Christ, he had to be made a man, because dominion was originally given to man.  Therefore, Jesus was made man and was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death.  Following his resurrection, he is crowned with glory and honor, Phil 2:9-11.  And, when he returns, all things will be put under him and be subject to him, 1 Cor 15:24-27.

To bring many sons unto glory – Heb 2:10-14.  As we studied in the prior lesson, all things were made by Jesus, v.10, Col 1:16-17.  Likewise, through his great salvation, Jesus brings many sons to glory.  Everyone who believes on the Lord Jesus Christ is a son of God, Jn 1:12, Rom 8:14-16.  Thus, he is the captain of our salvation.  As Heb 12:2 says, he is “the author and finisher of our faith”.  

In his great salvation, Jesus humbled himself and obeyed his Father even unto death, Phil 2:7-8.  When he willingly suffered for us he was made perfect, v.10.  He was the perfect sacrifice, fully satisfying all the demands and requirements of God for every man, Heb 5:8-9.

Those who trust Jesus are born of God, Jn 1:13, and are “all of one”, v.11, Jn 17:20-21.  Therefore, since Jesus is the Son of God, he is not ashamed to call us “brethren”.  

This relationship of Jesus to his “brethren” is particularly true of saved Jews in the Tribulation, Matt 25:34-40.  Paul quoted Ps 22:22 and Is 8:17-18 to show the Hebrews some Old Testament references to this relationship.  Saved Hebrews and Jesus are “all of one” in that they and Jesus are “the seed of Abraham”, v.16, partakers of flesh and blood, v.14, and “children” of God, v.13.

To destroy him that had the power of death – Heb 2:14-15.  By partaking of flesh and blood, Jesus was able to die.  And in dying, Jesus tasted death for every man, v.9.  Yet, when he arose from the dead, he abolished death, 2 Tim 1:10.  Death hath no more dominion over him, Rom 6:9.  Instead, Jesus will destroy death, 1 Cor 15:26, Rev 20:14, and the devil, Rev 20:10.  And he will deliver those he has sanctified from the bondage of death, 1 Cor 15:54-55, Rev 20:4, for example.

To be a merciful and faithful high priest – Heb 2:17-18.  When Jesus became like his brethren, he became a high priest in the things pertaining to God, just like the high priests taken from among men, v. 17, Heb 5:1.  And like the high priest, he made reconciliation for the sins of the people.   

Those high priests taken from among men have compassion because they are also compassed with infirmity, Heb 5:2.  Likewise, Jesus understands what it is to be tempted, since he was tempted like we are, v.18, Heb 4:15.  Therefore, he is a merciful and faithful high priest, willing and faithful to extend mercy every time and in every instance that we need it, Heb 4:16.  He is able to succor us when we are tempted, v.18.

To study the prior lesson, see Jesus Is Better Than the Angels. To study the next lesson, see Consider Christ Jesus.