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God's King-Son Exalted

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Hebrews 1:5-14

This section is part of a larger section of the book of Hebrews which we could call GOD’S KING-SON.[1] As will be common in this book, the exposition throughout this larger section will be interspersed with several warning passages.[2] Thus the writer is seeking to get his readers to apply the truths they are hearing. In this section the writer will demonstrate the uniqueness of the Son and show his preeminence above the angels.

His More Excellent Name (verses 5-6)

The writer here draws from the Old Testament revelation – particularly the Psalms. The previous verses[3] have pointed out that God has appointed Jesus the “heir of all things”[4] and that “He has by inheritance obtained a more excellent name” than the angels.[5] The name that he has inherited is that of SON.[6] Here the writer quotes from the Psalms[7] and II Samuel[8] to point out that JESUS IS THE DAVIDIC HEIR [MESSIAH].[9] This will be fully evident when Jesus returns[10] - for then even the angels will openly worship Him.[11]

His Eternal Dominion (verses 7-9)

In contrast with the angels – who often blended their mutable natures with wind or fire[12] - the Son’s throne is eternal and immutable.[13] This King had “loved righteousness and hated lawlessness”[14] and therefore deserves a superlative joy.[15] However, the King will also have companions in that joy.[16] This later will be a significant theme for the writer[17] and stated here implies that such companions will share the King’s [Messiah’s] experience by a life of steadfast righteousness as well.[18]

His Immutability (verses 10-12)

The writer now quotes from the Psalms[19] to stress the immutability of the Son. Though the Son, Himself, created the heavens and the earth, they ultimately will wear out and be “exchanged” for a new heavens and earth.[20] By contrast, the years [eternal throne and joy] of the Son will never end[21] – along with that of His companions.

His Ultimate Triumph over His Enemies (verses 13-14)

The writer draws this section to a close with a quote from Psalm 110.[22] If the Son will enjoy an eternal throne,[23] then victory over His enemies awaits Him. It will, of course, be accomplished NOT by the angels – but by Himself.[24] The angels’ role, in contrast, is to serve those who will inherit this salvation.[25] The salvation mentioned here, however, should NOT be construed to mean the believer’s past experience of regeneration.[26] It most naturally refers to the deliverance of God’s people from the oppression of their enemies.[27] That the readers of Hebrews were under external pressure there is little reason to doubt.[28] Here the writer reminds them that the final victory over all enemies belongs to God’s King and that the angels presently serve those who are destined to share [inherit] in that victory.


[1] Hebrews 1:5 – 4:16.

[2] The two warning passages are 2:1-4 and 3:1 – 4:16 (chapters 3 and 4). There are 5 warning passages in the book of Hebrews.

[3] Verses 1-4.

[4] Vs. 2.

[5] Vs. 4.

[6] Vs. 5.

[7] Psalm 2:7

[8] 2 Samuel 7:14. This may also be quoting from 1 Chronicles 17:13.

[9] Psalm 2 is an “enthronement” Psalm in which God “adopts” the Davidic King [the Messiah] as His “Son”.  “Though, of course, Jesus has always been the eternal Son of God, the writer here was thinking of the title ‘Son’ in the sense of the Davidic heir who is entitled to ask God for dominion over the entire earth (Ps. 2:8)” [The Bible Knowledge Commentary].  “Today”  refers to Jesus sitting at the right hand of God (verse 3).

[10] When God “again brings His firstborn into the world” (vs. 6).

[11] Vs. 6 – which is a quote from Psalm 97:7.

[12] Heb. 1:7. The Septuagint also speaks about this (Cf. 2 Esdras 8:21-22).

[13] Heb. 1:8 (quoting from Ps. 45:6).

[14] Quoting Ps. 45:7.

[15] Vs. 9a. This undoubtedly points to the holiness and obedience of Christ while He was on earth (Heb. 3:1-2, 5:7-8, 7:26, 9:14).

[16] Vs. 9b.

[17] The word translated companions is the Greek word μέτοχοι metochoi = partners, companions. It is also used in Heb. 3:1, 14 and 12:8.

[18] This is very clearly stated in Heb. 12:28.

[19] Ps. 102:25-27.

[20] Verse 10-12. The new heavens and earth are referred to in 2 Pet. 3:10-13 (and other places) and will introduce the eternal state after the Millennial Kingdom. Of course, the Messiah’s kingdom would survive the final “shaking” of the creation (Heb. 12:26-28).

[21] Vs. 12. This certainly points to the Son’s personal eternality, but it is also likely that the word “years” stands for all that they will contain for the Son. This includes an eternal throne and scepter as well as unending joy with His comparnions.

[22] Ps. 110:1. The writer will also use this Psalm in his elaboration of the Melchizedek priesthood of Jesus Christ (beginning in chapter 5).

[23] Heb. 1:8.

[24] Heb. 1:13. Cf. Rev. 19:11ff,

[25] Heb. 1:14.

[26] For one thing, it is spoken of as future (“will inherit”).

[27] The word σωτηρία soteria is used repeatedly in the [Greek] Old Testament (and particularly in the Psalms) to describe the deliverance of God’s people from the oppression of their enemies and their consequent enjoyment of God’s blessings [Cf. Ps. 3:2, 8; 18:2, 35, 46, 50; 35:3; 37:39 etc].

[28] See Heb. 10:32-36

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