Central Baptist Church
Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Morning Worship Sermon

Hebrews 1:1-3
Hebrews 1:1-3 "God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, 2  Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; 3  Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;”
          The Book of Hebrews introduces us to the true Christ as He really is.  It's theme is the high priestly office and the supreme glory of Jesus Christ - the Son of God who became the Son of man that men might become the Sons of God through His finished work.
          Hebrews was written to encourage Christians in danger of giving up in the face of their suffering. 
          In the light of so many dropping out of Church and returning to the world we need that kind of encouragement - every Christian does, and in the Book of Hebrews we will discover that Christ is the key to not giving in or giving up in the Christian life.
          The Book of Hebrews admonishes the Christian to press on to the perfection of full growth in spiritual things - especially in the knowledge and power of the Lord Jesus Christ who saves us, directs us, and intercedes for us.
          We know that the message in every epistle, though directed to a specific person, group, or Church is profitable to all members of the Church until the end of the Dispensation of Grace - the Church age.
          Paul consistently draws the contrast between the law and the "better things" found in Christ :
-  better Hope - 7:19-22
-  better Covenant - 8:6
-  better Promises - 8:6
-  better Sacrifices - 9:23
-  better Substance - 10:34
          It's Paul's purpose in this epistle to lead immature Christians to a deeper, fuller Christian life.  He admonishes the Hebrew Christians to put away the "good things" of Judaism for the "better things" of Christianity.
          He wanted them to learn that the Lord Jesus Christ is not only the author of our faith but also the finisher of our faith.  He is the beginning and the ending of our faith, but He is also all we need between the beginning and the ending.
          There are 3 words that are highlighted in the Book of Hebrews :

     When you combine these three important words, you discover that Jesus Christ and the Christian life He gives is better because these blessings are eternal and they give us a perfect standing before God.
          Never before has the Biblical portrait  of Jesus Christ been so belittled and drug through the mud as He is today. 
-  comedians belittle Him and crack crude jokes about Him.
-  movies mock Him
-  Elton John declared that Jesus was "a compassionate, super intelligent gay man who understood human problems."
-  before his death John Lennon declared that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ.
          We could spend all morning citing many more examples of this in our culture but just these few examples justify a fresh look at the Christ of the Scripture - and there is no better place to turn to than the Book of Hebrews.
          Paul gives a hint as to part of the problem his recipients had in :
Hebrews 5:12-14 "For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. 13  For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. 14  But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."
          Instead of growing in Christ, they were still babes in Christ.  Instead of being ready for meat, they still required milk. 
          How true this is of so many Christians today.  They reach a plateau of maturity and don't continue to press onward in Christ.  Folks it's no wonder that discouragement sets in when opposition or trials surface.
          The Letter of Hebrews appeals to Christians to keep their faith anchored in the truth, and confident in Christ and go on to maturity and not backward in discouragement.
          Hebrews begins by telling us that God has spoken in two ways, in fragments and in finality.  Let's read Hebrews 1:1-3 again :
Hebrews 1:1-3 "God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, 2  Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; 3  Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;"
          This Book is primarily about Jesus, the Son of God.  No better verse points this out than :
Romans 8:1 "Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;"
          In the Book of Hebrews we are taught that Jesus is better, He is better that Moses, Aaron, and He is better than the priest.  Folks the best just got better.
          He is better than the Old Testament sacrifices, and better than the Old Covenant itself.  Jesus is better in every way.
          The Old Testament served as a faithful guide for thousands of people over thousands of years.  It was the best offered to man.  But when Christ came, the best got better!
          The best - Judaism - just got better - Jesus!
          Jesus is the key to understanding the entire Word of God.  If you do not know Him you can never understand the riches of the blessing He has for you.
          I thank God that I can stand in this pulpit and preach Jesus and lift Him up because He is the center of this book and He should be the center of our life.
          There are some things in these first few verses :
          A.  Before Christ came God spoke to man in fragments
                -  He spoke a little to Adam, Noah, Moses, and Prophets, but it was only in fragments!  No single prophet received the full revelation from God.
                -  Some speaking was in the form of law, prophecy, wisdom, or songs, but it was all the Word of God, each part a fragment.
               -   He spoke in various ways, to Moses - Through thundering and lightening
                   Elijah - A still small voice
                   Daniel - Dreams
                   Abraham - In human form
                   Jacob - He was an angelic visitor
               -   He also revealed Himself in type and parable
          In the Old Testament God spoke in fragments in various times and in various ways, so the Old Testament is pieced together but it is not final it is fragmentary.
But notice what it says in Verse 2 :
Hebrews 1:2 "Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;"
          B.  God Has Spoken in Finality
          In our day - "in these last days" - God has "spoken to us by His Son."
          In both Testaments we have the Written Word of God - but only in the New Testament do we have the living Word, Jesus Christ.
          He is the perfect revelation of the will of God for mankind :
John 1:14 "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth."
          When God spoke to men in Christ, He said everything that He had to say, which means He has said everything man needs to hear.  In Christ we have God's final message and we need look for no other.
          This is the message of Hebrews - Christ is better than all other fragments of revelation God has revealed.
          In Hebrews we see :
Hebrews 1:2b -   ".... whom he hath appointed heir of all things,...."
          This expression likely comes from :
Psalm 2:8 "Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession."
          The whole earth belongs to God, and God has made His Son the "heir" of it all.
          We - believers - are also part of His inheritance :
Ephesians 1:18 ".... that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,"
          One day all believers will be presented to Christ as His Bride, His Inheritance, to dwell with Him forever.
Hebrews 1:2c "....by whom also he made the worlds;"
          Christ is better because :
               He is the final Word
               He is the future heir        
               And also because He is the first cause of creation.
John 1:1-3 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2  The same was in the beginning with God. 3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made."
          Paul confirmed this in :
Colossians 1:15-16 "Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: 16  For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:"
          Folks the Bible tells us plainly how the world came into being - Christ created it!
          Who brought the universe into existence - Christ!  There is no reason to hypothesize about other theories that explain our existence when the Bible clearly states that Christ created the world.
Hebrews 1:3a "Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person,"
          If you are ever asked to describe Jesus Christ, this verse is a good way to answer.
Colossians 1:19 "For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;"
          Any view of Jesus Christ that does not include Him being God is simply wrong.  There is only one way to know who God is or what He is like, and that is to look at Christ, for in Him is the fullness of God in human form.
          You can't have Jesus just as a good teacher and example.  You have to have Him for what He is - God in the flesh.
Hebrews 1:3b -  "....when he had by himself purged our sins,...."
          The One who is the final Word from God, future heir of all things, first cause of creation, and fullness of the Godhead is the facilitator of all things, He is the one who came into the world to take away our sins. 
          He didn't send an angel.
          He didn't ask the Holy Spirit to make it happen
          No!  He came to earth for our sake to be the sacrifice for our sin!
          Before Christ Jews went through the process of having their sins removed every year.  But Christ has done it once and for all :
Hebrews 9:25-26 "Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others; 26  For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself."
Hebrews 1:3d "....sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;"
          This is extremely significant!
          In the tabernacle and temple in the Holy of Holies, the high priest never sat down - there was no chair for him to sit in, for his work was never done.
          With His sacrifice, Christ's work was finished :
John 19:30 "When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost."
          As our heavenly priest, His atoning work was finished, so He sat down at the right hand of God.
          Is it not clear why Jesus is worthy of so much more than our world gives Him today?  They don't see Him as being worthy of worship for what He has done.
          Jesus is better than anything, better than everything.
          If you have never accepted Christ for who He claims to be - the Son of God who took away your sins once and forever - now would be the right time to receive Him by faith.
          Put your faith in Him today, and you will know that your sins have been taken away - that it is finished!