Christ as Son over the House of God.

Hebrews 3:1-6.

E. L. Bevir.

Christian Friend vol. 19, 1892, p. 146.

It has often been pointed out to us that there is a peculiar glory and position of our Lord in the sixth verse of this passage of Scripture - that of Son over the house of God.

The Holy Spirit, in the first verse, calls attention to two offices of Christ which depend upon the glories of chapters 1 and 2, the apostleship upon His divine words spoken on earth (Hebrews 1), and the high priesthood upon His perfect humanity (for the Word became flesh), so wonderfully presented to us in Hebrews 2.

"Consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession." It may be said that this is for converted and professing Jews, and that this is the force of "our." This is true, but the passage has its full force for us, and it is well for us to pause and consider these two glories of our Lord. In the day in which we live, it is a lamentable fact that Christendom is settled down as a vast earthly system; it is no longer the Holy Ghost calling to converted Jews to come out of the camp (Judaism), but rather awakening Christians to the true meaning of Christianity, and to that of the heavenly calling; hence the passage has a peculiar interest to all those who call themselves Christians. What is Christianity? Partakers of a heavenly calling are exhorted to consider the Apostle and High Priest in heaven. How many sincere souls repeat the "Apostles" Creed, and firmly believe in the resurrection and ascension of Jesus, without knowing the import of His present position! And how many mere professors admit that He is ascended above all heavens and seated on high, and fervently wish that He may remain there and leave them to enjoy this world! They hope that the day "when He shall come, to be their judge," may be far distant!

But God is awakening souls, and the grand fact of the heavenly calling is not a mere theory with every one, through God's grace. He has awakened, and is awakening His saints to the great truth of their vocation, and to the presence of the Lord at the right hand of the Majesty on high, and to the significance of this. "Consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession." The glories of the heavenly Christ throw completely into the shade those of an earthly religion, and it was by contemplating by faith the Apostle and High Priest in heaven that the Jews who had believed were brought out from the tangible and visible things of a worldly sanctuary, so difficult to leave.

It is a most important exhortation in the present day, for one cannot really consider the Lord in these two characters without giving up the form of earthly religion into which, alas! Christendom has subsided. An earthly authority, a priesthood with its source down here, are two immense facts in that which calls itself the "Church," and the whole of this is set aside when our blessed Lord is known as the Apostle, now in heaven, but having the authority of His own divine Person (God has spoken in the Son) and as the High Priest, perfect Man in the presence of God in the highest heaven, to sustain our souls there as we cross the wilderness. This when truly understood will bring a believer out of all earthly ritual; he will come out of the whole region of altars made after a worldly pattern, and of priestly vestments of whatever shape, to own the sole authority of Christ and His priesthood as pertaining to heaven.

This brings us to the third glory of our blessed Lord, as Son over the house of God.

Moses is brought forward as a faithful servant, and in the interesting character of servant in the house of God. It is difficult to find a faithful servant, and Moses had a peculiar place and was faithful in it. But there is One whose glory is infinitely superior, and who occupies the place, not of servant in the house, but of Son over the house of God.

And what is the house of God? No doubt in a general sense it is the universe itself, and we have the Son, by whose energy the universe was created (verses 3, 4), over the whole structure which He Himself built. "He who built all things is God." In a certain sense God deigns to dwell in the universe, and this has been clearly and well stated by another.

But the house of God has another and more intimate signification: "Whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end." The believing Jews are called out of Judaism, and coming forth as a godly remnant, from earthly to heavenly things (with a Messiah no longer down here, but in the highest glory above) form the house of God. It is needless to say that the passage has its full application to us who were Gentiles; we are brought into these same blessed privileges, and we consider Christ Jesus as Apostle and High Priest, and have to do with Him as Son over the house of God.

It becomes a real practical question for us, for it is a question of obedience to the Son whilst we are here upon earth. If we have understood that the glorious Person of the chapter has made the purification of sins by Himself, that He alone has divine authority, and at the same time full compassion for us as the perfect Man of chapter 2, we can enter with joy and adoration into the meaning of His position as Son over the house of God. "He has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses." Is it not perfectly beautiful - that is, the manner in which the Holy Ghost draws our attention to the divine and human glory of this one all-glorious Person? We are truly encouraged to hold fast the confidence and the joy of the hope to the end; for if we have been taught not to believe in human infallibility, and to reject an earthly priesthood, we have the infallible authority of the Son's word, His heavenly, untiring Priesthood, and with joy and thanksgiving we look up to Him - who created all things as God, and who became man and was made perfect through sufferings - who is Son over God's house.

May we shew, in all our difficulties, that our trust is in Him, and may we own His authority in everything. E. L. B.

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Had I to perform the smallest act, as that through which I needed to get completeness before God, it would be a denial of the perfectness of the Lord Jesus Christ.