Saturday, September 7, 2013

Jesus’ superiority to Moses according to Hebrews 3

Discuss the significance of Jesus’ superiority to Moses according to Hebrews 3. In what ways is Jesus superior to Moses according to Hebrews 3? What are the implications of that superiority for the original recipients of the letter? What are the implications for Christians today?
For the modern-day believer in may be difficult to understand the significance of Jesus’s superiority to Moses needing to be explained. The reason this is so difficult is because we have a clearer understanding of who Jesus is and are not solely dependent on the law and the prophets. It is extremely significant the comparison between Moses and Jesus, the author of Hebrews makes because previously he compared Jesus and the angels. According to Guthrie, “other evidence suggests that Moses held an even higher status than the Angels because of his special intimacy with God. Therefore, the author of Hebrews most naturally from his discussion of the Angels as Old Testament messengers (2:1-2) to the pre-eminent messenger of the old covenant-- Moses himself.”[1]
In chapter 3 of Hebrews the author compares the faithfulness of Moses and that of Jesus.[2] The pastor in his writing made two different comparisons between these two men, he pointed out that Moses was a servant in the house of God; while Jesus Christ was the son of God. Guthrie states, “the sphere of Moses his ministry was “in all of God’s house,” meaning that his authority and leadership extended over all of God’s people at that time.”[3] Guthrie also points out that, “Christ, on the other hand, was “over God’s house,” not in it.”[4] Also when dealing with the house, the author of Hebrews shows that the builder of the house deserves more honor than the house itself. Moses was part of the house himself and the steward over it, while Jesus was the builder and creator of the house. Cockerill assert, “there is no need to belittle Moses, for the greater Moses is, the more the Son’s superiority will be magnified.”[5]
The implications of this superiority in the original document, help those believers who received it appreciate Jesus that much more. For the believer today we can look and see the type of life that we should pattern ourselves after. While we understand Moses as a faithful steward, we ultimately seeing Jesus as a faithful son; and it is the pattern of Jesus that we should follow being co-heirs with him. Something that I found very interesting said by Richard D. Phillips, he says, “… Despite differences raced on every temptation of historical setting, Israel. In the church are one. This passage exposes the error of dispensationalism, which sees Israel and the church has fundamentally different peoples in God’s economy.”[6]

[1] George H. Guthrie, the NIV Application Commentary-Hebrews. (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1998) 127.
[2] Gareth Lee Cockerill, The Epistle to the Hebrews. (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Edermans Publishing Co., 2012)163.
[3] Guthrie, Hebrews, 128.
[4] ibid., 128.
[5] Cockerill, Hebrews, 168.
[6]Richard D.  Phillips, Hebrews: Reformed Expository Commentary. (Phillipsburg: P&R Publishing, 2006)86.

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