Jesus is the Radiance of God’s Glory (Advent 8)

The writer of the book of Hebrews starts with a bold statement. He wants his Jewish audience to persevere in their faith in Jesus, and to resist the temptation to go back to their Judaism even though they face persecution because of it. If we were to sum up the message of the book, it would be something like, “Don’t go back, Jesus is infinitely better than your Jewish past! Keep moving forward in Christ! Everything in your Jewish history pointed towards Jesus. He is the great fulfilment of all your expectation. And he is the only one who can carry you through to your eternal home.”

And the essential reason that Jesus fulfils everything in Judaism is because of who Jesus is. He is not just a prophet, a great teacher, or someone with great insight. He is the Son of God.

Jesus Christ is God“In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.” (Hebrews 1:1-3)

Paul said pretty much the same thing in his letter to the church at Colossae: “The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to imself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” (Colossians 1:15-20)

There’s so much that can be said on these deep, deep verses.  But I’m not going to say much. My point in these short daily advent messages is to show you that the baby born in Bethlehem is not just special. He is the focal point of all history.

As the Son of God, he was involved in the creation of the universe. That the creator should come and be part of creation, live as a human being, is truly amazing. And now, having accomplished our salvation, he sits enthroned over the universe.

 

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