Useful Bible Studies > Hebrews Commentary > chapter 1

The rule of Godís Son

Hebrews 1:8-9

Here, the author of Hebrews chooses Psalm 45:6-7. That Psalm is about a royal wedding. The Bible often uses marriage as a word-picture for the relationship between God (or Christ) and his people. Whole books of the Bible are about this subject Ė see the Book of Ruth and the Song of Solomon. And Jesus often spoke about it, for example Matthew 22:1-14; Matthew 25:1-13; Mark 2:19. So it should not surprise us to know that Psalm 45 contains God the Fatherís words to his royal Son.

And there is something else in those words that makes this even clearer. In Hebrews 1:9, we see the word Ďanointedí, which means Ďput oil oní. Everyone knows that word in the Greek language, although most people do not realise its real meaning. It is the word from which ĎChristí comes.

This action (to put oil on someone) was a special ceremony to separate that person for Godís work. The Jews (Godís people) carried out this ceremony whenever they appointed a king or a chief priest.

Jesusí title, Christ, shows that God separated him to be both king and priest. We read about him as a king in Hebrews chapter 1. But most of the rest of Hebrews is about his work as priest.

Now it is clear to us why Psalm 45 calls the king, ĎGodí. It is because the king in that Psalm is Godís Son, in other words, Christ. Christ is God, even as God the Father and the Holy Spirit are God. They are not separate gods, because there is one God.

The passage from Psalm 45 mentions two objects that show authority to rule. They are the sceptre and the throne. Since the ancient world, kings had sat on thrones and they have held sceptres.

The sceptre is a stick that a king carries. It shows that he has power over people. He shows kindness to the people that please him (Esther 5:2). And he punishes people who oppose his rule (Psalm 2:9).

A cruel king uses his power in an evil manner. But the Christ, the king whom God has appointed, does not do that. His judgements and his laws are always right and good. He loves what is right. He hates what is wicked.

The throne is the kingís royal seat. There is a description of a great throne in 1 Kings 10:18-20. The greatness of the throne helped people to know the greatness of the king and his government. Ancient kings liked to imagine that they would always rule (Daniel 2:4). But of course, only Godís rule really lasts always (Daniel 2:20-21).

Next part: God declares the greatness of his Son (Hebrews 1:10-12)

 

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© 2014, Keith Simons.