Hebrew chapter 5:1-10

The Word

Musing

The Epistle to the Hebrews – especially chapter 5 vs 1-11

Regarding a date for the Epistle, we hypothesise that it was penned about 80-90 C.E., therefore well after the destruction of the Temple.

We may surmise that if not written solely to Jewish Christians it was written to a Congregation consisting of Jews.

One of the Themes of the Epistle is Apostasy in that it has been said mention is made of Jewish Christians wanting to return to Judaism and the assurance of the Law and the Prophets. Given when the Epistle is thought to have been written, this does not seem at all likely.

What has come to my attention during previous studies is that the influx of Jewish Christians may have led to the desire to include Practises of Judaism into the Liturgy. At this point the topic appears to be Temple Sacrifice – which by then had ceased.

The passage points out the vast difference between a High Priests and the Great High Priest who is Jesus Christ. First of all, during the time of Jesus and up to 73 AD the high Priests were Sadducees, they wielded immense power, both Political and Religious, at that time. Their beliefs were as follows:

  • With special emphasis on the first five books of Moses (the Torah) they believed the Bible, our Old Testament, was the only authority on matters of faith and life.
  • Sadducees flatly rejected the Pharisee teaching That oral tradition was equal to Scripture in authority.
  • They believed in unrestrained free will—meaning God had no role in The personal lives of humans. Everyone was master of his or her own destiny.
  • Sadducees rejected entirely the supernatural, refuting belief in angels, demons, heaven, hell, and resurrection. To their way of thinking "souls i.e. with the bodies." The End.
  • In spite of the previous, they believed strongly in ritual purity as prescribed by Moses. They didn't want anything to disqualify them from "leading the temple services that generated income."
  • https://www.christianity.com/wiki/people/who-were-the-sadducees-in-the-bible-what-were-their-beliefs.html

And it does seem that for some reasons these standards were preferable or perhaps not as challenging as being Christians? Or perhaps the Priests desired a measure of power in the early church.

The Verses we have before us speak of Our Great High Priest. Earthly High Priests were elected and had the honour of performing Rites and Rituals to cleanse people of their sins. Being human and sinful themselves, they firstly had to offer sacrifices for their own sins so that they might be clean enough to offer sacrifices for the people.

Christ, the high priest chosen by God, being as he is, the Son of God, but who is also human, Christ knows exactly what it is like to be us since he experienced all the temptations that we do. Christ is first likened to Aaron who was called by God and consecrated by Moses, chosen by God to plead our cause before God in Heaven.

The Scripture says this of Christ:

“7 who in the days of his flesh offered up both prayers and supplications, with loud crying and tears, to the one who was able to save him from death, and he was heard as a result of his reverence. 8 Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered, 9 and being perfected, he became the source of eternal salvation to all those who obey him, 10 being designated by God a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.”

It mentions that “in the days of his flesh Jesus offered up both prayers and supplications, with loud crying and tears, to the one who was able to save him from death, and he was heard as a result of his reverence.” “Christ was obedient even unto death” – it says in Philippians 2:8

A separation – almost of Father and Son that the only way to explain what is occurring is to continue to describe God as a duality of persons, one human, the other divine.

Christ, the high priest chosen by God, being as he is, the Son of God, but who is also human, God had said through David” You are my Son, this day I have begotten you” Psalm 2:7KJV

You are a Priest forever after the Order of Melchizedek!

Melchizedek, considered to have no known father or mother was the first of all priests, his is an eternal Priesthood since neither his birth nor death was recorded, Melchizedek was also King of Salem and offered Bread and wine to Abraham. The Protype of the Great High Priest, Jesus the Christ, both Prophet and Priest.

Yet some of the Hebrew Christians were contemplating leaving the certainty of what Christ was offering them to return to the rules and regulations of the Scribes, Pharisees and Sadducees.

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