Some Thoughts on Suffering, Temptation, and Persecution in Hebrews

The themes of suffering, temptation, and persecution are at the forefront of Hebrews. They are important to the authors development of his homily, especially as it relates to Christ.

1. Jesus, Crowned with Glory and Honor Because of the Suffering of Death (Heb 2.9)

The author (from here on out, Auctor) continues his comparison of the angels with Christ in Heb 2. Auctor informs us that the world that is about to come (την οικουμενην την μελλουσαν) has not been subjected to the angels (2.5). Auctor then quotes from Ps 8.5-7(LXX) as scriptural proof that the world to come is subjected to the Son, although not everything is yet seen as being subjected to him.

In midrashic style, Auctor informs us that the one we see for a little while lower than the angels is none other than Jesus. In an amazing event, the crowning with glory and honor is seen in relation to the suffering that Jesus experienced in death. Heb 2. 9 reads: “But we do see Him who was made for a little while lower than the angels, Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, so that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone.” The crowning with glory and honor that the Messiah experienced was only because he was willing to die, by the grace of God, for everyone.

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