Thursday, 9 August 2018
You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.” Hebrews 1:9
The words of this verse are found in Psalm 45:7 –
Two things bear on the first words of the verse, as cited in Hebrews. First, the previous verse said, “A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom.” Thus, it is inferred from those words that Christ Jesus has “loved righteousness and hated lawlessness.” Secondly, the descriptions prophesied of Christ Jesus throughout the Old Testament bear witness to this same fact as well (e.g. see Isaiah 32:1 and Jeremiah 23:5). Therefore, the author knowing these things, and having known the fully righteous work of Christ under the law, next says, “Therefore.”
It is because of His faithfulness to righteousness and His hatred of lawlessness, that the author says, “God, Your God, has anointed You.” The anointing spoken of here is the anointing of a king, as the term Messiah, or “Anointed One,” relays. The word “Christ” in the Greek carries the same meaning. Because of Christ’s upholding of perfect righteousness, never failing under the Law of Moses, Christ was resurrected to eternal life. He has prevailed over death. In that, God anointed Him to His eternal kingship. In this is seen the Son’s divine glory in His exaltation. In confirmation of the excellence of the anointing, it then says, “With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.”
Thus far, Christ Jesus has been seen compared and contrasted to the angels. This is what is being referred to here. The angels are heavenly beings who attended to Christ during His earthly ministry, for example. But this verse must also surely refer to men as well. Any and all who are companions of the Lord, and who have served God faithfully, stand in comparison to Christ. And yet, Christ has been elevated above them all – angel and man. He stands above them in a Father/Son relationship with God. All of creation, including all creatures in creation, are subjected to the rule and authority of Christ Jesus.
Life application: Offshoot cults and aberrant sects of Christianity will always attempt to diminish the Person and work of Jesus Christ. Jehovah’s Witnesses claim Jesus is a created being. Mormons state that Jesus was a man who became a god. Hebrews Roots adherents claim that we are obligated to follow the Law of Moses, implying that Christ’s work in fulfillment of it was insufficient to save us, and implying that we need to save ourselves apart from Him. On and on it goes. Jesus Christ is God, and to Jesus Christ belongs all of our praise, honor, and glory – to the glory of God the Father.
Lord God, help us to never diminish the glory of what You have done through Jesus Christ by lessening His glory. Your word says that all should honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. If we fail to honor Christ Jesus, we fail to honor You. May this never be! Give us wisdom to always be glorifying of You through our glorying in, and glorifying of, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.