Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Post #48 Doctrine of God - Observing the Triune God At Work In The Book Of Hebrews


    In the last post I introduced readers to the doctrine of "eternal relations of origin" (eroo) and did a review of the doctrine of the Trinity in terms of our working definition here Growing Christian Resources: Post #47 Doctrine of God - An Introduction To Eternal Relations of Origin In The Trinity

What I want to do in today's post is continue our survey of the Bible with how it develops the doctrine of the Trinity. Understanding important doctrine like "eroo" (eternal relations of origin) can help us navigate the revelation of God in His Word. I thought today we would focus on the Book of Hebrews and see how the Triune God works in creation, redemption, and the Christian life. 

The Trinity’s work in creation, redemption, and the Christian life in Hebrews

    Hebrews 1:1-4 shows how The Father speaks and the Son shows. The Father was not incarnated, yet the Son became incarnated.  This gives us an example of appropriations, namely, how fitting it is that the Son become man, to reveal, make plain, and manifest the character of the Father in the work of salvation. The Son is begotten eternally of the Father, thus He is the Second person of the Trinity, revealed secondly, while revealing the One from whom He ever receives His identity as the “only begotten God” (John 1:18). 

    Hebrews 1:5-9 reveals The Father unbegotten, The Son begotten. The Father and the Son are distinguished by their eternal relations of origin as to the Father’s paternity or being “unbegotten, not made”, and the Son’s filiation or being “begotten, not made”. Here we see illustrated the inseparable operations of the Father and Son in the work of creation, both being One God (Hebrews 1:8-9). 

    Hebrews 1:10-13 reveals how The Father started creation and the Son situated it. Yet, both Persons are one Creator God (1 Corinthians 8:6). 

    In Hebrews 2:1-4, The Father bore witness by signs and wonders. The Son witnessed by His earthly ministry. The Spirit testified by gifts and miracles. Yet all three inseparably revealed salvation by the One shared will of God. 

    In Hebrews 2:5-18, The Father subjected all things under the Son. Note: “It was fitting for Him” in Hebrews 2:10. This is the language of appropriations, namely, it was fitting or appropriate for the Son to become incarnate, since He reveals the Father and with the Father, sends the Spirit. In His incarnation, the Son subjected His human will under the Father’s will, while still sharing that One will with the Father as truly God. 

    In Hebrews 2:5-18, The Father royally adopts the Christian as a son or daughter by faith (Hebrews 2:8). Meanwhile the Son represents Christians by His intercession and help as “man for us” and God with us” (Hebrews 2:14-18). 

In Hebrews 3:1-19, The Father is the builder of the house (all true Christians), whereas the Son is over the house (all true Christians), i.e. “The Church”. The Spirit draws sinners to become part of the household of faith. This is the Trinity’s inseparable work in our salvation. 

       In Hebrews 4, The Father is the source of spiritual rest. The Son is the Savior of spiritual rest. The Holy Spirit, by the scriptures, sustains spiritual rest. All three as One God grants spiritual rest. Here we see the doctrines of appropriations and inseparable operations together. 

In Hebrews 5:1-6, The Father eternally begets the Son His eternal identity. The Son is begotten of the Father, equally God with Him. This illustrates the eternal relations of origin between the Father and the Son.

        In Hebrews 5:7-11, The Son became man, praying to the Father, while ever the eternal Son, equal to the Father. As man, the Son as incarnate Christ learned things (such as obedience). As truly God at the same time, the Son knew all things. 

In Hebrews 6:1-8, The Holy Spirit illuminates truth. The Father judges by the truth. The Son is the truth. Yet all three Persons are the One true and living God. Here again we see the doctrine of appropriations and inseparable operations working hand-in-glove.

         In Hebrews 6:13-19, The Father swore the covenant to Abraham. The Son, in His redemptive work, would secure the covenant, a covenant of grace whose spiritual promises to Abraham are applied by the Holy Spirit to all who trust in Christ by faith.

 In Hebrews 7, The Father appointed the Mediator for the Christian – the Son. The Son became incarnate to be our Mediator. This eternal covenant is called “the covenant of redemption” (see Titus 1:2). The Holy Spirit affirms this “Covenant of Redemption” in Hebrews 8. 

         In Hebrews 9:14, the Son became man to offer His life to the Father. The Father sent the Son to be the offering whom He would receive. The Holy Spirit made possible the offering by the Son of Himself as the incarnated Jesus on the cross. Yet One God is the source of our salvation. 

In Hebrews 10:1-18, The Son, becoming also man, expressed in His human will the desire to perform the Father’s will. The Father had sent the Son, with whom He shared One Divine will. The Holy Spirit confirms this united will with the Father and Son in making possible the Son’s incarnation. 

        In Hebrews 10:19-39, The way of salvation is planned by the Father. The way of salvation is provided for by the Son in His incarnated flesh. The way to salvation is persuaded by the Holy Spirit. 

In Hebrews 11:1 - 12:11, The Father is the aim of faith (see Hebrews 11:6). The Holy Spirit is the Agent of faith (see Ephesians 2:8-9; Hebrews 11:1). The Son is the Author and Finisher of faith (Hebrews 12:1-2).

        In Hebrews 12:12-29, The Father is the Voice thundering from Heaven (see Hebrews 12:19,25-27). The Son is the Theme of Heaven (Hebrews 12:24). 

In Hebrews 13:5, the writer quotes Deuteronomy 31:6-8, which spoke of Yahweh, The LORD, going ahead of the Israelites to lead the way, not forsaking them. Isaiah 63:9-14 indicates all three Persons of the Godhead were inseparably involved. When I feel alone, afraid, and not knowing what to do, I have the entire Trinity to Whom I can call for help at anytime. 

        Then finally, In Hebrews 13:8, The immutability of the Son and the enduring work of the Father. Note: This is how One Book of the Bible shows the inseparable operations and appropriated working of the Father, Son, and Spirit in creation, redemption, and the Christian life. The richness of the Trinity is seen somewhat similarly in every New Testament book!

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