Fifth Lesson on Hebrews

In our fifth lesson on Hebrews, we continue to learn about the supremacy of Christ.  We learn that the 1st century Jew had a high regard for Moses.  Christ is even greater than Moses.  We will compare in this lesson some of the aspects of Moses' greatness with what Christ has accomplished.  We will study the first six verses of Hebrews chapter three.

Read Hebrews 3:1-6 to begin our Fifth Lesson on Hebrews

Christ is Superior to Moses.

Who is the most revered person in all of American history?

Who do we remember and think, “Wow, they were great!”?

We have political figures that we look up to and remember like Washington and Lincoln.  We have social leaders that we admire and respect such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Susan B. Anthony.  We read in school our literary masters, for instance Twain and Steinbeck.

Even with all of the respect that we have for these American heroes, our admiration doesn't come close to the high view that the Israelites had for Moses.

Can you think of some of the incredible things that God did with and through Moses?  Here are some:

  • Heard God speak from the burning bush
  • Witnessed the 10 plagues
  • Saw the Israelites freed from slavery
  • Parted the red sea and passed through
  • Saw the presence of the Lord God before them as fire and smoke
  • Manna was provided in the wilderness
  • Water poured out of a stone
  • God gave the Law to Moses to give to the people
  • Moses brought the people to the edge of the Promised Land

This just names SOME of the awesome things that God did through Moses.  So it makes sense that the Israelites held Moses in so high regard.  Today, in our fifth lesson on Hebrews, we find that the author is continuing to describe the supremacy of Christ.  He does this by arguing that Christ is superior to (or greater than) Moses.

Read Hebrews 3:1-6

Verse 1 - Remember, therefore means because of this.  If we look back at chapter two we can understand the context.  Because we can call Jesus “Brother”, because we are saved by His sacrifice, we should fix our thoughts on Jesus.

Verse 2 - God appointed Jesus.  He gave Him the unimaginably difficult task of becoming our stand in sacrifice.  He took the punishment we deserve.  Even though this was difficult, Jesus was faithful to God.  He was faithful just as Moses was faithful.  However. . . 

Verse 3 - Jesus is worthy of (deserves) even more glory than Moses.  Wow!  Do you remember who the audience is?  Who's receiving this letter that the author is writing?

It's first century Jews.

Do you remember how the Jews feel about Moses?

To say that Jesus deserves more glory than Moses would have been a shock for the original audience.  They might've thought, “Jesus may be a great prophet, but greater than Moses?!”

Hebrews 3:4

Read verses 3-6

The logic here is that any man who recognizes a beautiful house gives more honor to the builder than to the house itself.  Moses, while he is honored for what he accomplished for God, will not receive as much honor as Christ, the agent of creation.  

It's through Jesus that all things have been made (see Gospel of John chapter 1).  Therefore, Jesus, as the son “over God’s house”, receives honor for the task he accomplished, and for the faithfulness of every prophet.

Where's the Scripture where we see that Jesus is superior to Moses?

Moses is close to God:

Read Deuteronomy 34:10-12

This scripture tells us that Moses was a great prophet who spoke face to face with God.

There's no doubt Moses had an incredible relationship with God.

Jesus is God:

Read Hebrews 1:3

Jesus is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of His nature.  

Jesus upholds the universe by the word of His power.

As we learned in lesson 1, Jesus is God.  Jesus is one member of the triune Godhead.  Father, Son, and Spirit are in perfect relationship together as the one true God.

Moses delivered the Israelites from their slavery in Egypt:

Read Exodus 3:10                                           

This is a wonderful true story that recorded in scripture.  

Moses, enabled by God, performed miracles and ultimately was able to see the Israelites freed.

Jesus can deliver you from the slavery of sin:

Read the Gospel of John 8:34-36 and Romans 6:17-18.

Faith in Jesus is the only way to be freed from sin and its consequences. 

Moses was an intercessor for a time:

Read Exodus 20:18-21

To intercede is to intervene on behalf of another; to take up for, or to speak in favor of someone.  Because of the Israelites fear of God, Moses was given the job of speaking for the Israelites.

Jesus intercedes eternally for us:                            

Read Romans 8:34

On the day when you'll be judged by God, if you're saved, Jesus will intercede for you.  You'll escape God’s wrath that you deserve because Jesus will say that He has taken that punishment for you.

Moses gave the law:

Read Deuteronomy 4:1

It was into Moses' hands that God delivered the 10 commandments and the rest of the Law.

Jesus fulfilled the Law:

Read Gospel of Matthew 5:17-20

We no longer are bound by the Law.  We recognize that we're now under a new covenant.  Our striving for Holiness is out of respect of Jesus’ sacrifice.

Moses presented legal code:

Read Deuteronomy 4:1

By the strict standard of the law we begin to see how far short we fall of God’s perfection.

Jesus lived a perfect life:

Read Gospel of John 8:46

Jesus openly asks of the men who do not like Him, can you point out even ONE way that I've sinned?  The silence and Jesus’ confidence to ask gives us a picture of the perfect, holy, sinless life that He lived.

These comparisons make it incredibly clear, as great as Moses was, He is not Supreme like Christ.  The Author is focused on convincing His audience of the greatness of Christ.  Why?  What is the point of studying Christ’s supremacy?  Before we close this fifth lesson on Hebrews, let's look at the two main purposes of studying the supremacy of Christ.

Now, as we close this fifth lesson on Hebrews,

There are 2 main purposes to studying the supremacy of Christ:

1.  Recognize the awesomeness of His sacrifice.

If we can understand the depth of His sacrifice, we can be compelled to give our lives to God.

The fact that the supreme Christ gave His life for us is so backwards.  It would be as if the President took the bullet in order to save the bodyguard.

2.  Recognize Christ’s authority and submit to it.

Some of us claim to be Christians but live no differently than the rest of the world.  Read James 2:19.  The demons and Satan believe in Jesus, but they do not submit to his Lordship.  As true followers of Christ we must submit to His Lordship.

If we can grasp these all-important concepts from this fifth lesson on Hebrews we'll understand why Jesus is worthy of our love, devotion, labor, our whole lives.

We pray this fifth lesson on Hebrews has blessed you.

› Lesson 5