1) Jesus is Superior Because He is the Heir of All Things
2) Jesus is Superior Because He is the Creator of All Things
3) Jesus is Superior Because He is God’s Revelation of Himself to Mankind
Hebrews 1:3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person…
Who is Jesus? That has been a question many have asked down through the centuries. Consider two truths taught here by our teacher.
a. Jesus is the Radiance of God’s Glory
Some try to suggest that Jesus merely reflected the glory of God, the same way the moon reflects the glory of the sun. Yet other portions of scripture teach us that the proper definition of ‘brightness’ is not “reflection” but rather – “radiance.” Because Jesus is God, He radiates the glory of God. How do we know this?
Matthew 17:2 And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light.
On the Mount of Transfiguration, the veil of flesh was pulled back for a moment and the three disciples saw Jesus in all of His glory. John had a similar experience when he received his revelation.
Revelation 1:14 His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; 15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. 16 And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength. 17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead.
b. Jesus is the Exact Representation of God’s Image
The phrase ‘express image’ means a precise representation in every aspect. Because Jesus is God, He could say to His disciples:
John 10:30 I and my Father are one.
John 14:9 …he that hath seen me hath seen the Father…
The Jehovah’s Witnesses try to raise Jesus to an exalted level, yet not regard Him as being equal with God. They refer to Him as an exalted angel. Yet the writer of the book of Hebrews clearly teaches us differently.
Hebrews 1:4 Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. 5 For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son? 6 And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him. 7 And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. 8 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.
Someone will say – “But doesn’t the Bible tell us that Jesus ‘was made’? Doesn’t that indicate that Jesus was created?” ‘Being made’ doesn’t refer to His creation, but rather His exaltation. Perhaps the Apostle Paul best explains this important truth.
Philippians 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
First we see that God the Son existed before Bethlehem. Before there was a child in the manger, the Son of God was considered as being ‘equal with God.’ How can one be equal with God and not be God? Consider also Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born , unto us a son is given : and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. How can the Son be called ‘the Everlasting Father’? God the Father and God the Son are one.
Secondly, we see Jesus at His incarnation. Php 2:7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: The term ‘incarnation’ means – “In flesh.” Whenever I ponder the birth of Jesus, I think about the name Emmanuel, which means – “God with us.” How could God be with us, unless God was with us?
Thirdly, we see Jesus at His crucifixion. Php 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. The Son of God became the Son of Man so that as a man He might die for the sins of mankind.
Fourthly, we see Jesus at His ascension and exaltation. Php 2:9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
The writer of the book of Hebrews asks- “When did God ever tell an angel to sit at His right hand until all of creation be brought under his authority? When did He ever command an angel to be worshiped? When did God ever address an angel as being ‘God’? The answer is never! Never did God exalt either a mere man or an angel in such a way. To do so would be blasphemy. (see Jn 10:33) But God has exalted His Son in such a way.
Hebrews 1:8 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.