It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Hebrews3;- Moses and the promised rest

page: 1
5

log in

join
share:

posted on Jan, 20 2017 @ 05:08 PM
link   
The epistle to the Hebrews was written to Jewish Christians, perhaps to a specific Jewish church.
The message of the letter is that Christ has brought “completeness”.
That is, God is making available, through him, a much greater and more decisive revelation than anything they have received from him previously.

So in the first chapters the writer showed how the Son, who brought this final revelation, was greater than the angels who had brought (as was believed) the revelation of the Law of Moses.

By the same token, he must be greater than the human agents of the older revelation.
The writer addresses his expected readers as “holy brothers”, who share in [METOCHOI] the “heavenly calling” (ch3 v1)
For they have been set apart for God, called to be among the “many sons” who are to be brought to glory in the world to come (as described in the previous chapter).
He invites them to focus their attention upon Jesus, who is the Apostle and High Priest of their faith-community, just as Moses and Aaron were the “Apostle” and High Priest of the original community.
He begins by comparing Jesus with Moses (the comparison with Aaron will come later).

Jesus and Moses are similar in one respect.
They’ve both been faithful in their appointed work, in relation to God’s house.
But their responsibilities come to them in different ways.
Jesus has more glory than Moses, in the same way that the builder of a house has more honour than the house which he builds.
That is, Moses came from within the system. He was part of the community which he was appointed to govern.
But Jesus stands above the system, as the builder himself.
This follows on from what we learned in the opening verses of this letter.
Putting it another way; Moses was managing God’s house with delegated authority, as one of the servants of the household.
His main function was to “testify to the things which were to be spoken later”.
That is, the revelation he brought was pointing forward to the more final revelation of Jesus.
Whereas Jesus came under his own authority as the son of the household and one of the owners of the house (vv2-6).

We are his house. That is, “we” the followers of Jesus, displacing those who are only followers of Moses.
However, we remain part of his house only if we continue to be followers of Jesus, if we “hold fast our confidence and pride in our hope”.
Delivering that warning is the whole point of writing this letter.
The writer fears the possibility that these Jews who have accepted Christ will be falling back into pre-Christian Judaism.

The story of Moses suggests the parallel of the Israelites who rebelled against God’s plan announced through Moses, because they were too fearful to trust in his power.
He was angry with them as a result, and refused to allow them to enter the promised land.
So the writer proceeds to give a detailed exposition of a passage in the psalms which reflects on that episode;
“Today, when you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness, where your fathers put me to the test and saw my works for forty years.
Therefore I was provoked with that generation… and swore in my wrath ‘They shall never enter my rest’” (Psalm 95 vv7-11).

He develops his thought first from the words “Today, when you hear his voice” (vv12-13).
The message in the warning voice is that they should not allow an evil, unbelieving heart to make them fall away from the living God (which is what they will be doing if they turn away from Christ).
They should also take care to exhort one another, echoing the same warning voice to each other.
For, as he repeats, we are all “sharing in Christ” [METOCHOI again], but only if we hold our original confidence in him firmly to the end.
That is, as long as the time may still be called “today”.
The end of “today”, when time runs out, would be the onset of death or judgement;
“We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night comes, when no-one can work” (John ch9 v4).

Then he takes three keywords from the rest of the passage; “rebellion”, “provoked”, and “swore” (vv16-18).
Three times he asks the same question, and he gets three versions of the same answer.
The question is “Who were these people?”

Rebellion; Who were the people who rebelled even after hearing God’s voice?
The very same people who had been saved from Egypt in the events of the Exodus.
His readers should take note of this, because they too were saved and set on the path to the promised land when they originally put their faith in Christ.

Provoked; Who were the people who provoked God for forty years, even after seeing his work?
The same people who had just rebelled against him.
His readers should take note of this, because they too have seen the works of God (and this letter was probably written nearly forty years after the death of Jesus).

Swore; About whom did God swear that they should never enter into his rest?
The very same people, those who had been disobedient.
His readers should take note of this too. The implication is that if they imitate their forefathers in disobedience, they will share the same fate. They will not be allowed to enter into God’s rest.

Everything depends on their faith (ch4 vv1-3).
For they have received the “good news”, just as their forefathers did in the time of Moses.
Their forefathers lost out, in the end, because God’s words were not received with faith.
Only we who have believed (and continue to believe) can enter that rest.

To complete this argument, he needs to demonstrate that God’s rest is available for us to enter.
Of course he connects God’s rest, “my rest”, with the statement in the Creation account, that on the seventh day God rested from all his works (vv3-4).
So God himself has already entered into the state of rest.
The words of the Psalmist show that the rebellious generation could have joined him in the same rest, if they had not been disobedient.
Thus we know that it must be possible, in principle, for men to enter into God’s rest.

We might be tempted to think that this means the physical promised land towards which Moses was leading them. The rebellious generation were not allowed to enter the land, because they died in the wilderness, and the next generation entered instead.
However, that cannot be right, because the Psalmist is writing long after Joshua brought the people into the land.
He proclaims “Today” as the time to hear God’s voice, avoiding the mistake of their forefathers in the desert.
This implies that the opportunity to enter into God’s rest, which was denied to the rebellious generation, is available “Today”.
And since the Psalmist was addressing people who were already living in the promised land, the entrance into God’s rest must be something different.
It must be a “sabbath rest” for God’s people in general, shared with God (vv6-10).

So the warning of the Psalmist is applicable to the first readers of this letter, and in general all those who have accepted Christ.
They must resist the temptation to turn back from the path which leads them into that rest.




posted on Jan, 20 2017 @ 05:09 PM
link   
N.B. The words of the opening post are my own, but the commentary of B.F. Westcott has been my invaluable guide to the sense of the original text.



posted on Jan, 20 2017 @ 11:50 PM
link   
a reply to: DISRAELI

I think he is only saying that they should rejoice lest their hearts be hardened (as their forefathers' were) and they go astray (like their forefathers did).

edit:

i.e. If you do not count your blessings you might forget that you are blessed, hardened your heart towards God, and go astray.
edit on 1/21/2017 by Bleeeeep because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 21 2017 @ 08:33 AM
link   
a reply to: Bleeeeep
The writer is asking for more than "rejoicing". This is about commitment to the chosen path, as we see from other parts of the letter.
"Therefore we must must pay the closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it... How shall we escape if we neglect such a great sallvation?" ch2 vv1-2
Hence the metaphors about not drifting away, not turning back on the road and failing to enter.
It is not enough to be happy that we have found the indispensable anchor- we need to hang on to it, as well.
The message is about the need for continuing commitment to Christ. In the immediate context of the letter, not falling back into pre-Christian Judaism.




edit on 21-1-2017 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 21 2017 @ 09:57 AM
link   
a reply to: DISRAELI

He starts out by saying,

"Come, let’s sing to Adonai!
Let’s shout for joy to the Rock of our salvation!

Let’s come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let’s shout for joy to him with songs of praise."

Then he basically explains the importance of rejoicing / giving praise to God: by renewing their hearts with the joy of their blessings, by expressing their love and joy for God, they keep from becoming hardhearted (the err that lead their forefathers astray.)

He is calling them to rejoice so they remember their blessings and renew their hearts for God. That is the lesson: renew your heart so you don't become hardhearted.

It like when you first receive a blessing or a gift but then you forget it was a blessing and you start to think nothing of it or you may even resent it.

By rejoicing, I meant, "to express joy".



posted on Jan, 21 2017 @ 10:08 AM
link   
a reply to: Bleeeeep
You are talking about one of the Psalms.
That doesn't help you towards the meaning of Hebrews ch3, which is what this thread is discussing.



posted on Jan, 21 2017 @ 10:36 AM
link   
a reply to: DISRAELI

It's the same thing. They did not receive rest because of their hearts.

Imagine you are in the greatest place in the world (you're with God) but you stop counting your blessings. What happens? You grow weary of the place, you become restless, and you go off wandering, looking for greener pastures.



posted on Jan, 21 2017 @ 12:41 PM
link   
Nobody knows who wrote Hebrews, although it was passed off as Pauline, then not, so I am suspicious about it.

But it seems like it wants to convince Hebrews that Christ is greater than Moses, which I agree with but not for the silly reasons the author of Hebrews suggests.

Jesus is more worthy because the builder of a house has more honor than the house?

What if the builder is Nimrod, is he more honorable than the Tower of Babel?

A builder can have no honor, and therefore be less honored than a building. Many people honor Temples without even knowing the builder. Where is the logic in that?

Jesus is not a builder anymore than Moses was, so on this note they are equal.

Then the author quotes the Holy Spirit but I can't find the quote, my footnotes always tell me where quotes are from so I wonder if this quote from 3:7 is from the Bible or the author, who certainly has no authority to speak for the Spirit.

Another thing, Christ is a Messiah, not an apostle. Apostle means emissary but is not a term for the Messiah, it is for the 12 chosen BY the Messiah and the author is here on dangerous ground, there are 12 apostles and no more, James the brother of the Messiah wasn't even called apostle.

This leads me to believe that Hebrews was not written by a Nazarene Jew, probably by a Roman with incomplete knowledge of Judaism.

Then he borrows the Logos=Melchizedek idea from Philo Judaeus.

Jesus is better than Moses because he is the Messiah, and was a better person and Moses was kind of portrayed as the puppet of a tyrant.

Jesus and Moses are still equal though, Moses was annointed by God to lead the Israelites and spoke in person with God. Jesus never saw the God of Moses, but he did see Moses and Elijah.

Jesus died a horrible death, and a mythology was made up about him ressurecting from the dead and ascending to Heaven, but this is an allegory and doesn't mean Jesus is God.

Also, the last shall be first, so status is unimportant.
edit on 21-1-2017 by Joshuabennone because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 22 2017 @ 01:28 AM
link   

originally posted by: DISRAELI
The epistle to the Hebrews was written to Jewish Christians, perhaps to a specific Jewish church.
The message of the letter is that Christ has brought “completeness”.
That is, God is making available, through him, a much greater and more decisive revelation than anything they have received from him previously.

So in the first chapters the writer showed how the Son, who brought this final revelation, was greater than the angels who had brought (as was believed) the revelation of the Law of Moses.


INCORRECTLY believed. Moses spoke to God directly so either the author didn't read the Torah or didn't care, either way, the Spirit is the Spirit of Truth.

Not erroneous beliefs unsupported by scripture.



By the same token, he must be greater than the human agents of the older revelation.
The writer addresses his expected readers as “holy brothers”, who share in [METOCHOI] the “heavenly calling” (ch3 v1)
For they have been set apart for God, called to be among the “many sons”... Jesus, who is the Apostle and High Priest of their faith-community, just as Moses and Aaron were the “Apostle” and High Priest of the original community.


Jesus was called many things, apostle and High Priest not among them. This guy clearly is not under inspiration from the Spirit.



He begins by comparing Jesus with Moses (the comparison with Aaron will come later).

Jesus and Moses are similar in one respect.
They’ve both been faithful in their appointed work, in relation to God’s house.
But their responsibilities come to them in different ways.
Jesus has more glory than Moses, in the same way that the builder of a house has more honour than the house which he builds.
That is, Moses came from within the system. He was part of the community which he was appointed to govern.
But Jesus stands above the system, as the builder himself.
This follows on from what we learned in the opening verses of this letter.
Putting it another way; Moses was managing God’s house with delegated authority, as one of the servants of the household.
His main function was to “testify to the things which were to be spoken later”.
That is, the revelation he brought was pointing forward to the more final revelation of Jesus.
Whereas Jesus came under his own authority as the son of the household and one of the owners of the house (vv2-6).

We are his house. That is, “we”


We are a house? I thought we were Temples, this author is not knowledgeable



the followers of Jesus, displacing those who are only followers of Moses.
However, we remain part of his house only if we continue to be followers of Jesus, if we “hold fast our confidence and pride in our hope”.
Delivering that warning is the whole point of writing this letter.
The writer fears the possibility that these Jews who have accepted Christ will be falling back into pre-Christian Judaism.

The story of Moses suggests the parallel of the Israelites who rebelled against God’s plan announced through Moses, because they were too fearful to trust in his power.
He was angry with them as a result, and refused to allow them to enter the promised land.
So the writer proceeds to give a detailed exposition of a passage in the psalms which reflects on that episode;
“Today, when you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness, where your fathers put me to the test and saw my works for forty years.
Therefore I was provoked with that generation… and swore in my wrath ‘They shall never enter my rest’”

He develops his thought first from the words “Today, when you hear his voice” (vv12-13).
The message in the warning voice is that they should not allow an evil, unbelieving heart to make them fall away from the living God (which is what they will be doing if they turn away from Christ).
They should also take care to exhort one another, echoing the same warning voice to each other.
For, as he repeats, we are all “sharing in Christ” [METOCHOI again], but only if we hold our original confidence in him firmly to the end.
That is, as long as the time may still be called “today”.
The end of “today”, when time runs out, would be the onset of death or judgement;
“We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night comes, when no-one can work” (John ch9 v4).

Then he takes three keywords from the rest of the passage; “rebellion”, “provoked”, and “swore” (vv16-18).
Three times he asks the same question, and he gets three versions of the same answer.
The question is “Who were these people?”

Rebellion; Who were the people who rebelled even after hearing God’s voice?
The very same people who had been saved from Egypt in the events of the Exodus.
His readers should take note of this, because they too were saved and set on the path to the promised land when they originally put their faith in Christ.

Provoked; Who were the people who provoked God for forty years, even after seeing his work?
The same people who had just rebelled against him.
His readers should take note of this, because they too have seen the works of God (and this letter was probably written nearly forty years after the death of Jesus).

Swore; About whom did God swear that they should never enter into his rest?
The very same people, those who had been disobedient.
His readers should take note of this too. The implication is that if they imitate their forefathers in disobedience, they will share the same fate. They will not be allowed to enter into God’s rest.

Everything depends on their faith (ch4 vv1-3).
For they have received the “good news”, just as their forefathers did in the time of Moses.


Faith without works is dead, says James the brother of Jesus. Faith is one aspect of being a disciple, not everything is dependent on faith.

Why do we have to displace followers of Moses when Church history records the Pharisees and Nazarenes were friends?



To complete this argument, he needs to demonstrate that God’s rest is available for us to enter.
Of course he connects God’s rest, “my rest”, with the statement in the Creation account, that on
The words of the Psalmist show that the rebellious generation could have joined him in the same rest, if they had not been disobedient.
Thus we know that it must be possible, in principle, for men to enter into God’s rest.

We might be tempted to think that this means the physical promised land towards which Moses was leading them. The rebellious generation were not allowed to enter the land, because they died in the wilderness, and the next generation entered instead.
However, that cannot be right, because the Psalmist is writing long after Joshua brought the people into the land.
He proclaims “Today” as the time to hear God’s voice, avoiding the mistake of their forefathers in the desert.
This implies that the opportunity to enter into God’s rest, which was denied to the rebellious generation, is available “Today”.
And since the Psalmist was addressing people who were already living in the promised land, the entrance into God’s rest must be something different.
It must be a “sabbath rest” for God’s people in general, shared with God
So the warning of the Psalmist is applicable to the first readers of this letter, and in general all those who have accepted Christ.

David was a Prophet and Psalmist, Hebrews author is not.



posted on Jan, 22 2017 @ 01:28 AM
link   

edit on 22-1-2017 by Joshuabennone because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 22 2017 @ 12:21 PM
link   
This thread is one of a series. Preceding threads;
Jesus, the greater revelation
Jesus; Suffering death by the grace of God
edit on 22-1-2017 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



new topics

top topics



 
5

log in

join