Superiority of the Mediator Over the Angels (Cont.)
And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth1; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed2: but thou art the same3, and thy years shall not fail. But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool4? Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?5
- 1 Ps 102:12, Lam 5:19, Heb 1:2
- 2 Ps 102:25-27, 2 Pet 3:10-12, Is 34:4
- 3 He 13:8
- 4 Ps 110:1, Heb 10:13
- 5 Ps 91:11
Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth…
- Continues the list of Old Testament references concerning the superiority of the Messiah to the angels
- Quotation of Ps 102:25-27 (LXX)
- Applies an Old Testament reference to the Almighty God directly to Jesus (see verse 2)
- “Lord” – compare Is 45:23 with Phil 2:6-11
- Applies a very clear Messianic Psalm directly to Jesus
- “In the beginning” shows the eternality of Christ (Ge 1:1, Jn 1:1)
…the heavens are the works of thine hands…
- Not only the earth, but the vast Heavens are His creation, also.
They [the earth and heavens] shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail.
- Ps 102:26
- Another reference to Diety applied directly to Jesus
- Christ (as God) is eternal and unchangeable – Heb 13:8.
- In contrast, creation IS changeable —
- “they will perish” – 2 Pet 3:10-12, Is 34:4
- “they shall be changed” – see Rev 21:1
But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool? Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?
- Quote from Ps 110:1, see also Heb 10:13 and Matt 22:44
- Another affirmation that Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father on the throne of heaven (verse 3)
- The angels in contrast are ministers who serve at the will of the one who sits on the throne
- The Lord sits, the angels minister and are sent
- This quote reflects both the divine and human natures of Christ:
- Divine: He sits on the throne of God
- Human: In His role as mediator, Christ subjects Himself to the Father – “Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool”
- “Until I make…” – Christ will return to establish His Kingdom of Glory. See Rev 19:11-21 and compare with Is 63:1-3.
- “…who shall be heirs of salvation…” – A faint hint at Sovereign election. He does not say, “might be” or “already are” believers; but rather he refers to those who “shall be heirs”
- What is the role of angels -> minister to the saints (Ps 91:11)
It should awaken within us a sense of wonderment. The angels are portrayed as our attendants! When we remember who and what they are—their exalted rank in the scale of being, their sinlessness, their wondrous capacities, knowledge and powers—it is surely an astonishing thing to learn that they should minister unto us. Think of it, the unfallen angels waiting upon the fallen descendants of Adam! The courtiers of Heaven ministering to worms of the earth! The mighty angels, who “excel in strength,” taking notice of and serving those so far beneath them! Could you imagine the princes of the royal family seeking out dwellers in the slums and ministering to them, not once or occasionally, but constantly? But the analogy, altogether fails. The angels of God are sent forth to minister unto redeemed sinners! Marvel at it.
It should awaken within us fervent praise to God. What an evidence of His grace, what a proof of His love that He sends forth His angels to “minister” unto us! This is another of the wondrous provisions of His mercy, which none of us begin to appreciate as we should. It is another of the blessed consequences of our union with Christ. In Matthew 4:11 we read, “angels came and ministered unto Him.” Therefore, because Divine grace has made us one with Him, they do so to us too. What a proof is this of our oneness with Him! Angels of God are sent forth to minister unto redeemed sinners! Bow in worship and praise.
This concludes a total of 7 Old Testament quotations given to demonstrate the superiority of Christ over all the spiritual realm. Verse 13 of this chapter furnishes the fullest demonstration of the superiority of Christianity over Judaism and the exaltation of Christ above the celestial hierarchies.