| || |An Alphabetical Analysis Volume 6 - Doctrinal Truth - Page 17 of 270 INDEX | |
Epistle, we shall find ground for confidence and assurance as we consider the
meaning and bearing of this great office. The theme of the Epistle to the
Hebrews is the superiority of the Sacrifice and the Priesthood of Christ over
all other sacrifices, offerings and priests of the law. While there are a
series of differences, each one being enough in itself to set the Levitical
offerings aside, the one that is stressed more than any other in Hebrews is
connected with life. This may be seen in Hebrews 7. Contrasting the
Priesthood of Christ with that of Aaron, the Epistle says of Christ:
'Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the
power of an Endless Life ... by so much was Jesus made a Surety of a
better testament (covenant). And they truly were many priests, because
they were not suffered to continue by reason of Death: but this Man,
because He continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood' (Heb. 7:16
The sacrifices of the law are set aside: 'It is not possible that the
blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins' (Heb. 10:1 -4). The
Epistle goes on to speak immediately of Christ, saying: 'Lo, I come (in the
volume of the book it is written of Me), to do Thy will, O God'. 'But this
Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the
right hand of God' (Heb. 10:7 -12). In both references to priest and
sacrifice 'this Man' excels by reason of resurrection life.
A sinner, should he even pay the penalty of his own sins, has no claim
upon life. He is finished. The sacrifices offered under the old covenant
were substitutes for the sinner, but their efficacy was in the fact that they
pointed on to a better sacrifice. The penalty was inflicted, death endured,
the blood shed, but where after that was the possibility of a new life? Were
any of the bulls and goats ever raised from the dead? There is something
deeper and fuller even than substitution, and that is identification, and it
is in this blessed relationship that Christ is seen as the Surety, Whose
sacrifice for sin is the only one that could put away sin, and Whose
resurrection from the dead alone gives to those identified with Him the hope
In Hebrews, Christ is seen as the Surety of the better covenant.
Although the word 'surety' is not used in Ephesians and Colossians, we hope
to show that every passage that speaks of dying 'with Christ', or being
raised 'with Christ', passes beyond the thought of sacrifice and substitution
to that fullest and closest of all relationships expressed by the titles of
the Kinsman -Redeemer and Surety.
The meaning of the word. The word translated 'surety' in the Old
Testament is the Hebrew word arab, which in the form arrhabon is brought over
into New Testament Greek, occurring in Ephesians 1:14 as 'earnest'. This
word corresponds with 'pledge' in Genesis 38:17,18: 'Wilt thou give me a
pledge till thou send it?' The root idea appears to be that of mixing or
'A mixed multitude' (margin, a great mixture) (Exod. 12:38).
'The holy seed have mingled themselves' (Ezra 9:2).
'A stranger doth not intermeddle with his joy' (Prov. 14:10).
'In the warp, or woof' (Lev. 13:48).