1For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it.
2For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty,
3how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation?
The Jews as followers of the Law understood the literal and severe commands of the Law, such as an “eye for an eye,” etc. They fervently practiced the death penalty. It was a harsh religion that clearly emphasized that sin carries penalties. Furthermore, as the men of old received revelation from God, often it was given through angels (e.g. Genesis 19). The promises and judgments given by those angels proved unalterable. Judgments came and promises were fulfilled. Therefore, if it is indeed true that salvation is found in faith in Jesus Christ, the penalty for rejecting Christ could be assumed to be likewise severe if not more so. If the angel’s words were unchangeable, how much more the words of Christ? As such, it is imperative for the Jews and for every person to pay close attention to what we have heard in the Old Testament, through Christ, and in the New Testament Scripture so that we don’t drift away from it. Eternal ramifications exist depending upon what we do with Christ.
After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard,
4God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.
Salvation was preached by Jesus as He walked this earth. After He died and rose again, He revealed Himself to the twelve disciples and to the five hundred (1 Corinthians 15:6). God also bestowed gifts upon the disciples to do good works as God willed, never according to their own fleshly wills. These miracles were evidence that God had indeed come to indwell His people in the person of the Holy Spirit and that the church had been born. Establishing the church indwelt by Him was a large part of Christ’s purpose in coming.
5For He did not subject to angels the world to come, concerning which we are speaking.
6But one has testified somewhere, saying,
"WHAT IS MAN, THAT YOU REMEMBER HIM?
OR THE SON OF MAN, THAT YOU ARE CONCERNED ABOUT HIM? 7"YOU HAVE MADE HIM FOR A LITTLE WHILE LOWER THAN THE ANGELS;
YOU HAVE CROWNED HIM WITH GLORY AND HONOR,
AND HAVE APPOINTED HIM OVER THE WORKS OF YOUR HANDS; 8YOU HAVE PUT ALL THINGS IN SUBJECTION UNDER HIS FEET "
For in subjecting all things to him, He left nothing that is not subject to him But now we do not yet see all things subjected to him.
Drawing from Psalm 8:4-6, the author makes the point that part of God’s plan and design is to subject all things to Christ (1 Corinthians 15:27-28). The saints will one day reign with Christ in the world to come. It is not for the angels to rule but for Christ.
9But we do see Him who was made for a little while lower than the angels, namely, Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, so that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone.
Jesus, though He is God, also needed to be made for a time lower than the angels as He took on human flesh. This was so that He could die in our stead as the perfect sacrifice. Now, He is crowned with glory and honor, having by the grace of God tasted death for everyone. Those Who believe will have the promise of reigning in eternity with Jesus.
10For 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.
God’s delight and plan was to bring many sons and daughters to glory through knowing and loving Him. This was why He created Adam and Eve to begin with. It was for love, not because God needed something in addition to Himself. Rather, He wanted to share His goodness and sufficiency with them. Though mankins fell into sin, through Christ they can be restored into right fellowship with God and receive the promise of eternal life. All things exist for Jesus, since He is God. If God didn’t want things to exist, then they wouldn’t. As He walked this earth and died for sin, His suffering was great. As He endured it faithfully without sinning, it proved that He was indeed God and the perfect sacrifice.
11For both He who sanctifies and those who are sanctified are all from one Father; for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren,
"I WILL PROCLAIM YOUR NAME TO MY BRETHREN,
IN THE MIDST OF THE CONGREGATION I WILL SING YOUR PRAISE."
"I WILL PUT MY TRUST IN HIM "
"BEHOLD, I AND THE CHILDREN WHOM GOD HAS GIVEN ME."
14Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil,
15and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives.
Through salvation in Christ, we are adopted into the family of God, being made brothers and sisters of Him, all sons and daughters of the Father as Psalm 22:22 and Isaiah 8:17-18 indicate. Since we are made up of human flesh and blood, Jesus had to partake of the same and die as a man in order to free us from the devil’s hold and from sin. Christ’s victory over sin and death rendered the devil powerless for those who would believe and trust in the name of Christ.
16For assuredly He does not give help to angels, but He gives help to the descendant of Abraham.
Christ didn’t come to die in the form of an angel for the angels, but He came as a man to die for mankind, the descendants of Abraham whom God had promised to Him (Genesis 12:1-3).
17Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.
18For since He Himself was tempted in that which He has suffered, He is able to come to the aid of those who are tempted.
By having endured life in human flesh, Jesus is a merciful high priest for us. Since He was tempted in the same things in which we are tempted and since He suffered in the same ways that we suffer, He is able to come to our aid and deliver us from evil. He is both a faithful and merciful Savior, having shed His blood as a sacrifice for our sins.