May 20 Devotional

Today we’ll be in Hebrews 2:5-9:
For it was not to angels that God subjected the world to come, of which we are speaking. It has been testified somewhere,
“What is man, that you are mindful of him,
    or the son of man, that you care for him?
You made him for a little while lower than the angels;
    you have crowned him with glory and honor,
    putting everything in subjection under his feet.”
Now in putting everything in subjection to him, he left nothing outside his control. At present, we do not yet see everything in subjection to him. But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.
It’s important to note here that when the author says “It has been testified somewhere…” that the reason he doesn’t give chapter and verse is because the Scriptures they had access to were in scrolls. The scrolls were not labeled in easy to distinguish places so people would know he was quoting from the Old Testament, and may even be able to tell it where it was from, but they hadn’t broken the Bible down into chapters and verses the same way we have in our Bibles today. In fact, there’s even some debate as to where the verses are drawn up! My former Greek professor would sometimes joke that some verse markers were put in place because as William Whittingham was putting the verse markers in, his horse would jolt and he’d put it in the wrong spot! The verse numbers sometimes are (I’ve found!) detrimental to effectively tracing the flow of thought, so some Bibles have recently come out that remove those entirely (Places like Bibliotheca and the ESV Readers Bible). These have opened to me a whole new way of trying to read and faithfully interpret the Bible, and I’d encourage you to check them out! It’s also the reason I’ve been removing the verse numbers as I’ve sent out these devotionals the past few months!
As we saw in last week’s passage, the author has just finished reminding us to not drift away from our salvation. Now he moves on to comfort us, instead of being scared and operating out of fear, we can remember that God has given us dominion to oversee certain things and spheres of his creation. Looking at the larger context of what was quoted here, David is saying in Psalm 8: “What I look at the heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him.” If you haven’t spent extra time outside during this quarantine something’s wrong with you!! I’m convinced that Colorado has the most beautiful sunsets in the world! Seeing the colors change from night to night, and the starts starting to poke out is awe-inspiring! Yet God cares more about us as humans than the rest of that creation.
The author then specifies his focus to Jesus. Jesus serves as the pinnacle of everything God created. Jesus serves both as the ultimate example for us, and the firstborn of the new creation order. Everything is under Jesus’ sovereign control. This is what we see in places like Colossians 1, everything is held together by Christ! However, this is key, we don’t see the full ramifications of that yet. The lion still eats the lamb instead of lying down with it! There’s still wars and rumors of wars. There’s still discord even among those who are indwelt by the Holy Spirit. That’s why the author reminds us that we don’t see the spiritual reality taking place in the physical reality, yet. This is the inaugurated eschatology that  preached about a couple weeks ago! The Kingdom is here, being built, but we don’t see the full outworking of that yet. We see just a taste of it. As we sing in ‘Come Behold the Wondrous Mystery’ “What a foretaste of deliverance, how unwavering our hope!”
I’m going to throw it back a bit to my upbringing here with an old Rich Mullins song that was released after he died called ‘My Deliverer.’ I would crank this song up every time I heard it on the radio! If memory serves me correctly I even copied it to a cassette tape so I could listen to it whenever I wanted! You can listen to it on YOUTUBE or SPOTIFY.
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