The words ‘Moses was faithful in all (God’s) house’ come from Numbers 12:7. We shall study the importance of that passage when we reach Hebrews 3:5. But first, let us do what the author of Hebrews asks us to do. Let us think about Jesus.
In particular, we should think about how Jesus is similar to Moses. In English translations, the first 2 verses of chapter 3 usually appear as separate sentences. But in the original language, there is just one sentence here.
But Moses and Jesus were ‘faithful’ to God. In other words, they were loyal and responsible in their work for God. Moses remained loyal even when nearly all the people in his nation decided not to obey God. This happened on several occasions. Each time, Moses prayed for them. He urged God not to destroy the nation. And God did what Moses had requested.
‘God’s house’ means God’s people in this passage (see Hebrews 3:6). Moses was faithful among all God’s people. He was faithful even when they were not.
And Jesus was faithful, too. He obeyed his Father, God, completely. He did the work that God gave him to do. The devil urged Jesus not to obey God. Jesus suffered greatly because he had chosen to obey God. But still, he obeyed.
And that is why Jesus has become our apostle and chief priest. Usually, we only use the word ‘apostle’ to mean the first Christian leaders. But clearly, the meaning is different here.
The word ‘apostle’ actually means someone whom a person sends to carry out a special task. We call the first Christian leaders ‘apostles’ because God sent them to declare his good news. Jesus is called our apostle because God sent him into the world. He sent Jesus here so that, by his death, Jesus would save us (John 3:16).
And that is why we have a confession (Hebrews 3:1). A confession means something that we must declare. In the original language, the word means something that we agree about. The same word also appears in Hebrews 4:14 and Hebrews 10:23. Those verses tell us to hold (to remain loyal to) our confession.
The things that we agree as Christians are not just a list of beliefs or ideas. We declare what God has done in our lives (1 Timothy 6:12). We declare our relationship with Christ. Only the people whom Christ has saved are really Christians.
God has an invitation for everyone whom Christ has saved. Christ has prepared a place for each one in heaven (John 14:2). They are ‘holy’ people because they belong to God. And they are ‘brothers’ because God has made them one family: the family of God.
And that is what the word ‘house’ means in Hebrews 3:1-6. God’s family are here called his ‘house’.
Next part: A great house (Hebrews 3:3-4)
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© 2014, Keith Simons.