One of the subtle yet truly magnificent truths in Hebrews 2:5-18 is the new reality and in a sense the re-ordering of the celestial hierarchy by the incarnation of Christ.
Follow along with me here:
In the days before Christ, only men inhabited the earth. Men who, like Adam, were of the dust of the earth. From time to time angelic beings came to the men of earth, with messages from deity (Genesis 16:7, Genesis 22:11) or on a mission for God (Exodus 14:19) They fought battles (Judges 2:1, 6:12; 2 Sam 24:16) spoke to those in error (Num22:22-31), communicated both Gods will or his judgement, (Genesis 19) and announced special births (Judges 13:3). They enjoyed a place of prominence as Gods envoys on earth from the heavenly realm. (Exodus 3:2, Exodus 14:19, Judges 2:1, Judges 6:22, Judges 13:6, 2 Kings 1:15, Ps 34:7)
But with the coming of Christ, now God has a new Messenger (Heb 2:5) and it is to Him and His offspring that ‘the world to come’ will belong (Heb 2:5-16). It was not to the angels that Jesus was sent, but to MEN, the descendants of Abraham.
The significance of this for us:
When Jesus wanted to show the cosmos what God valued, he did not come to earth as an angelic form, but in a body like ours. This ‘lowering’ of himself does not diminish Him, but elevates us supremely. Since Jesus has ‘come down’ to us in human form, not in an angelic or body-less form, humanity becomes the new gold standard, the new valuable ‘body’ in God’s created world. This choice to inhabit a body of flesh provides the very assurances that we need;
1; God values our humanness enough to participate with us in this nature
2; Jesus human suffering brings a special mercy for us (Heb 2:17)
3; Jesus humanity gave him the specific power to challenge and defeat death by surrendering himself to it, and rising from the dead. (Heb 14-15)
4; Jesus humanity dignified all humanity and gave us position and power that even angels do not possess; to rule in the world to come! (Heb 2:5-6)
The lowering of Jesus was not only his exaltation, but also ours. Because he was brought low, we also have been truly lifted up.Read more "The ‘low down’ on Hebrews 2"