Hebrews 1

Hebrews was written to Jewish Christians whose faith was being challenged by their many trials especially persecution trials. Its subject was "the superiority of Christianity over Judaism" (Pink). Its aim was to show that "The very things which Judaism most highly esteemed are.... far inferior to what God has now made known in the Christian revelation" (Pink). The book of Hebrews is in two parts. The first ten chapters of Hebrews are about the doctrine of Christ, Who is the foundation of Christianity. The last three chapters of Hebrews are about the deportment of Christians. The first ten chapters exalt Christ as better than anything Judaism had to offer; the last three chapters exhort Christian conduct which is better than Judaism's standards. The author of Hebrews we believe is the Apostle Paul, though it is not specifically stated in the book. Gaebelein believes Paul's authorship was attested by the early church within a hundred years of the writing. Also his reference to prison (Hebrews 10:34; 13:19) and to Timothy (13:23) encourage the conclusion of Paul's authorship. Furthermore, Peter's reference to Paul writing the Jews (II Peter 3:15) can only be answered by Paul's authorship of the book of Hebrews. Hebrews 1 can be divided into two main parts as follows:

  1. The Superiority of Christ to the Seers (Hebrews 1:1-3)
  2. The Superiority of Christ to the Seraphs (Hebrews 1:4-14)


Hebrews 1:1-3

The first few verses of this chapter introduce Christ and also show His superiority to the prophets of Israel's history. "Israel regarded them with the highest veneration.... for they were the instruments Jehovah had condescended to employ in giving forth of the revelation of His mind and will in Old Testament times. But Divine as were their communications, they were but introductory to something better and grander" (Pink). This text lists at least seven ways Christ is superior to the prophets.

1. Christ is Superior in Proclamations (Hebrews 1:1, 2)

"God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son" (Hebrews 1:1, 2). The proclamations of the prophets were great but Christ's were superior.

The seers' proclamations. "God.... sundry times.... divers manners.... spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets." The prophets' proclamations were not evil but good. Christ is not a contrast to them because He was good and they evil but because He was superior to their best. Some aspects of the prophets' proclamations are given. First, the many in the proclamations. "Sundry times." Many times God spoke to the "fathers" (Israel's previous generations). Second, the moment