New International Version
For to which of the angels did God ever say, "You are my Son; today I have become your Father"? Or again, "I will be his Father, and he will be my Son"?
New Living Translation
For God never said to any angel what he said to Jesus: "You are my Son. Today I have become your Father." God also said, "I will be his Father, and he will be my Son."
English Standard Version
For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son”?
New American Standard Bible
For to which of the angels did He ever say, "YOU ARE MY SON, TODAY I HAVE BEGOTTEN YOU"? And again, "I WILL BE A FATHER TO HIM AND HE SHALL BE A SON TO ME"?
King James Bible
For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
Holman Christian Standard Bible
For to which of the angels did He ever say, You are My Son; today I have become Your Father, or again, I will be His Father, and He will be My Son?
International Standard Version
For to which of the angels did God ever say, "You are my Son. Today I have become your Father"? Or again, "I will be his Father, and he will be my Son"?
For to which of the angels did God ever say, "You are my son! Today I have fathered you"? And in another place he says, "I will be his father and he will be my son."
Aramaic Bible in Plain English
For to which one of the Angels did God ever say, “You are my Son; today I have begotten you”, and again, “I shall be to him The Father and he shall be to me the Son” ?
GOD'S WORD® Translation
God never said to any of his angels, "You are my Son. Today I have become your Father." And God never said to any of his angels, "I will be his Father, and he will be my Son."
Jubilee Bible 2000
For unto which of the angels did he say at any time, Thou art my Son, this day I have begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
King James 2000 Bible
For unto which of the angels said he at any time, You are my Son, this day have I begotten you? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
American King James Version
For to which of the angels said he at any time, You are my Son, this day have I begotten you? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
American Standard Version
For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, This day have I begotten thee? and again, I will be to him a Father, And he shall be to me a Son?
For to which of the angels hath he said at any time, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
Darby Bible Translation
For to which of the angels said he ever, Thou art my Son: this day have I begotten thee? and again, I will be to him for father, and he shall be to me for son?
English Revised Version
For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, This day have I begotten thee? and again, I will be to him a Father, And he shall be to me a Son?
Webster's Bible Translation
For to which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
Weymouth New Testament
For to which of the angels did God ever say, "My Son art Thou: I have this day become Thy Father;" and again, "I will be a Father to Him, and He shall be My Son"?
World English Bible
For to which of the angels did he say at any time, "You are my Son. Today have I become your father?" and again, "I will be to him a Father, and he will be to me a Son?"
Young's Literal Translation
For to which of the messengers said He ever, 'My Son thou art -- I to-day have begotten thee?' and again, 'I will be to him for a father, and he shall be to Me for a son?'
Parallel CommentariesMatthew Henry's Concise Commentary
1:4-14 Many Jews had a superstitious or idolatrous respect for angels, because they had received the law and other tidings of the Divine will by their ministry. They looked upon them as mediators between God and men, and some went so far as to pay them a kind of religious homage or worship. Thus it was necessary that the apostle should insist, not only on Christ's being the Creator of all things, and therefore of angels themselves, but as being the risen and exalted Messiah in human nature, to whom angels, authorities, and powers are made subject. To prove this, several passages are brought from the Old Testament. On comparing what God there says of the angels, with what he says to Christ, the inferiority of the angels to Christ plainly appears. Here is the office of the angels; they are God's ministers or servants, to do his pleasure. But, how much greater things are said of Christ by the Father! And let us own and honour him as God; for if he had not been God, he had never done the Mediator's work, and had never worn the Mediator's crown. It is declared how Christ was qualified for the office of Mediator, and how he was confirmed in it: he has the name Messiah from his being anointed. Only as Man he has his fellows, and as anointed with the Holy Spirit; but he is above all prophets, priests, and kings, that ever were employed in the service of God on earth. Another passage of Scripture, Ps 102:25-27, is recited, in which the Almighty power of the Lord Jesus Christ is declared, both in creating the world and in changing it. Christ will fold up this world as a garment, not to be abused any longer, not to be used as it has been. As a sovereign, when his garments of state are folded and put away, is a sovereign still, so our Lord, when he has laid aside the earth and heavens like a vesture, shall be still the same. Let us not then set our hearts upon that which is not what we take it to be, and will not be what it now is. Sin has made a great change in the world for the worse, and Christ will make a great change in it for the better. Let the thoughts of this make us watchful, diligent, and desirous of that better world. The Saviour has done much to make all men his friends, yet he has enemies. But they shall be made his footstool, by humble submission, or by utter destruction. Christ shall go on conquering and to conquer. The most exalted angels are but ministering spirits, mere servants of Christ, to execute his commands. The saints, at present, are heirs, not yet come into possession. The angels minister to them in opposing the malice and power of evil spirits, in protecting and keeping their bodies, instructing and comforting their souls, under Christ and the Holy Ghost. Angels shall gather all the saints together at the last day, when all whose hearts and hopes are set upon perishing treasures and fading glories, will be driven from Christ's presence into everlasting misery.
Verse 5 - Hebrews 3:1. - THE SON SUPERIOR TO THE ANGELS. Here the argumentation of the Epistle begins, the thesis of the first section of the argument having been given, as aforesaid, in the preceding verse, that "the SON is superior to the angels." The second section begins at Hebrews 3:1, the thesis being that "the SON is superior to Moses." Through angels and Moses the Law was given: "Ordained through angels in the hand of a mediator" (Galatians 3:19), the "mediator" being Moses. To show that the Son, in the Old Testament itself, is represented as above both, is to show, what it is the main purpose of the whole Epistle to establish, that the gospel, given through the SON, is above the Law, and intended to supersede it. The conclusion is that the gospel stands in the same relation to the Law as does the Son to angels, who are but "ministering spirits," and to Moses, who was but a "servant." With regard to the agency of angels in the giving of the Law, we do not find it so evident in the Old Testament as might have been expected from the references to it in the New. The "angel of Lord," who appeared to Moses (Exodus 3:2) and went before the people (Exodus 14:19; Exodus 23:20, etc.), seems in the earlier books of the Bible to signify a certain presence and manifestation of the Lord himself, rather than a created minister of his will (see Genesis 16:7, 13; Genesis 22:15, 16; Exodus 3:2, 4; Exodus 23:20, 21; cf. Acts 7:31, 35, 38); and this has been identified by theologians with the Word, not yet incarnate, through whom all Divine communications have been made to men. It is to be observed, however, that, after the sin of the golden calf, a distinction seems to be made between the presence of the Lend with his people and that of the angel to be thenceforth sent before them (Exodus 33:2, 3). Ebrard sees in the "angel of the LORD" generally, though understood as signifying a Divine presence, a justification of the statement that the Law was given "through angels," on the ground that, though God did so manifest himself, it was not a direct manifestation, as in the Son, but through forms borrowed from the sphere of the angels. It was an angelophany, denoting an unseen Divine presence, not a true theophany. The only distinct allusion to "angels," in the plural, in connection with the giving of the Law, is in Deuteronomy 33:2, "He came with ten thousands of saints;" with which comp. Psalm 68:17. But there is no doubt that it came afterwards to be the accepted rabbinical view that the dispensers of the Law were angels - whether as attendants on the Divine Majesty, or as agents of the fiery phenomena on Mount Sinai (natural operations being often attributed to angels), or as the utterers of the voice that was heard. "Locutus est Deus per angeles" (Bengel). And the writers of the New Testament plainly recognize this view (see below, Hebrews 2:2; Acts 7:53; Galatians 3:19). Hence our author takes for granted that his readers will understand and recognize it, and so implies it in his argument, expressing, as it does, a true conception of the nature of the Mosaic dispensation, and especially of its relation to the gospel. To resume our view of the argument that follows. The first section (as aforesaid) is from Hebrews 1:5 to Hebrews 3:1, having for its thesis the superiority of the SON to angels. The second section is from Hebrews 3:1 to Hebrews 5:1, having for its thesis the superiority of the Son to Moses. Each section consists of two main divisions, between which in each case an appropriate exhortation is interposed; the first division in each case treating of what the Son is in his own person, the second of his work for man; and both sections leading separately to the conclusion that he is the High Priest of humanity. Then, in Hebrews 5, the subject of his priesthood is taken up. Ebrard happily illustrates the symmetrical plan of the argument thus: "The author, having thus been led from these two different starting-points to the idea of the ἀρχιερεύς, now proceeds to place on the two first parts, which may be viewed as the pillars of the arch, the third part, which forms the keystone." In this third part it begins to be shown, at Hebrews 5:1, how Christ fulfilled in his humanity the essential idea of priesthood. But, for reasons that will appear, the full doctrine of his eternal priesthood is not entered upon till Hebrews 7:1 - 10:19, which may be called the central portion of the whole Epistle. The remainder (Hebrews 10:20 - end) may be distinguished from the rest as being the distinctly hortatory part (though her-ration has been frequently interposed in the argument), being mainly devoted to practical application of the doctrine that has been established. The following plan of the argument of the first two sections, showing the parallelism between them, may assist us in entering into it as it proceeds: - SECTION I. Thesis: Christ superior to the angels. Division 1 (Hebrews 1:5-2:1). The name SON, as applied to the typical theocratic kings, and in its final reference and full meaning (as you all acknowledge) pointing to the Messiah, expresses a position altogether above any assigned anywhere to angels. The Son is represented as one associated with God in his majesty, a sharer of his everlasting throne. Angels are referred to only as ministering spirits or attendant worshippers at the Son's advent. Interposed exhortation (Hebrews 2:1-5). This being so, beware of not appreciating the revelation now given in the Son. In transgression of the Law given through angels was so severely visited, what will be the consequence of neglecting this, accredited to us as it has been? Division 2 (Hebrews 2:5-3:1). The Son also, but never angels, is denoted in prophecy as Lord of the coming age. For the eighth psalm (based on and carrying out the idea of the account in Genesis of the original creation) assigns a supremacy over all created things to man. Man, as he is now, does not fulfill the ideal of his destiny. But Christ, as Son of man, in his exaltation, does. And in him man attains his destined dignity forfeited through sin. His humiliation, suffering and death were for the purpose of thus raising man. His humiliation with this and was a design worthy of God, and in accordance with the purport of Messianic prophecy. For such prophecy intimates association and sympathy of the Messiah with his human brethren. Thus Christ, the SON, is the sympathizing High Priest of humanity. SECTION II. Thesis- Christ superior to Moses. Division 1 (Hebrews 3:1-7). Moses is represented in the Old Testament as but a servant in the house of God. The SON is lord over the house. Interposed exhortation (Hebrews 3:7-4:1). This being so, beware of hardening your hearts, like the Israelites under Moses. If they failed, through unbelief, of entering into the rest offered to them, you may similarly fail of entering into the rest intended for you. Division 2 (Hebrews 4:1-5:1). A rest, symbolized by that of the promised land, is still offered to you, and you may enter into it. The ninetieth psalm shows that the rest into which Joshua led the Israelites was not the final one intended for God's people. The true rest is the rest of God himself (" my rest," Psalm 90.), spoken of in the account of the creation - the sabbath rest of eternity. Christ, after sharing our human trials, has passed into that eternal rest, and won an entrance into it for us. Thus, again, a renewed exhortation being interposed, Christ, the SON, is again set forth as the sympathizing High Priest of humanity. Verse 5. - For to which of the angels said he at any time. Observe the form of the question, which has been already noticed. It is not, "When were angels ever called sons?" but to this effect: "To which of them did he ever speak (individually) in the following remarkable terms?" The first quotation is from Psalm 2:7; the second from 2 Samuel 7:14. The second having had undoubtedly a primary reference to Solomon, and the first presumably to some king of Israel, probably to David, we may here properly pause to consider the principle of the application of such passages to Christ. It must be allowed that, not only in this Epistle, but in the New Testament generally, sayings which had a primary reference to events or personages in the past, are applied directly to Christ; and in some cases where the justness of the application may not be to all of us at first sight obvious. With regard to this usage, Bengel says, "Veri interpretes verborum divinorum sunt apostoli; etiamsi nos sine illis talem sententiam non assigneremur." But such applications are plainly not arbitrary. They rest on a principle of interpretation which it is of importance for us to understand. First, we may observe that the method was not originated by the New Testament writers; it was one received among the Jews of their time, who saw throughout the Old Testament anticipations of the Messiah. This appears both from rabbinical literature and also from the New Testament itself. For instance, the priests and scribes consulted by Herod (Matthew 2:5) referred Micah 5:2 as a matter of course to the Messiah; and the Pharisees (Matthew 22:44) never thought of disputing the application of Psalm 110. to him. And not only so. The Old Testament itself suggests and exemplifies such applications. For students of the prophetic writings must be aware how utterances that had a primary fulfillment in one age are sometimes taken up in a subsequent one as though yet to be fulfilled, their scope enlarged, and their final reference often thrown forward to "that day" - the Messianic age - which alone terminates the view of the later prophets. Now, it has been said, in explanation of this mode of treatment, that prophecy often had a double meaning, referring partly to one thing and partly to another; or several meanings, with reference to several different things. But this way of putting the matter is unsatisfactory. Bacon better hit the mark, when, in a well-known passage in his 'Advancement of Learning' (bk. 2.), he spoke of "that latitude which is agreeable and familiar unto Divine prophecies, being of the nature of their Author, with whom a thousand years are but as one day, and therefore are not fulfilled punctually at once, but have springing and germinant accomplishment throughout many ages; though the height or fullness of them may refer to some one age." We may put it thus: It was of the nature of prophetic inspiration to lift the seer above and beyond his immediate subject to the contemplation of some grand ideal, which it suggested to his vision, and more or less perfectly fulfilled. He has, for instance, as the basis of his vision, a David, a Solomon, a Hezekiah, or a Zerubbabel; he has as its framework the circumstances of his own time or of the time near at hand; but we find his language, as he proceeds, rising far above his vision's original scope, and applicable to those comprised within it only so far as they embody and realize the ideal which they represent to his mind. Hence the taking up of old prophecies by succeeding prophets, their enlargement and reapplication to new fulfillments; and this, too, in terms transcending the reality of these new fulfillments; as, for instance, when Isaiah, taking up the idea of Nathan's message to David (2 Samuel 7.), applies it apparently to a son and a reign to be looked for in his own age, but at length in language which can have no other than a Messianic reference (Isaiah 9:6, etc.; Isaiah 11:1, etc.; cf. Jeremiah 33:15). Hence, lastly, the application in the New Testament of all such ancient utterances at once to Christ, as being the final and complete fulfillment of the ideal of prophecy, the true Antitype of all the types. A clear perception of this view of the drift of prophecy will remove difficulties that have been felt as to the application of many quotations from the Old Testament, in this Epistle and elsewhere, to Christ. Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee; a quotation from Psalm 2:7. This psalm is expressly quoted as David's in Acts 4:25, and has internal evidence of being his, and of having had primary reference to his reign. For the mention of Zion (ver. 6) precludes an earlier date, while the circumstances of warfare alluded to do not agree with the peaceful reign of Solomon, nor the picture of undivided empire with any period after the secession of the ten tribes. Further, the rising and consequent subjugation by David of subject races, described in 2 Samuel 8, presents to us a state of things very likely to have suggested the psalm; and to this period of David's reign it is usually referred with probability by modern commentators. But the question of date and authorship is not material to our view of the prophetic meaning of the psalm. Taking it to be David's, we find as follows: There is a rebellious confederation of subject kings against the dominion of the King of Israel, who is spoken of as "the Anointed" of the LORD. In view of their hostile preparations, the LORD in heaven is conceived as laughing to scorn their devices against him whom he himself had enthroned on Zion. Then the king speaks, "I will declare the decree [or, 'I will tell of a decree']; the Load said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I will give thee the nations for thine inheritance, and for thy possession the ends of the earth." Then follows an admonition to the rebels to do homage to this SON, submission to whom is submission to the Loan, and whose anger is as the LORD'S anger. Now, it is evident that the language used transcends literal application to any earthly king. Hence some commentators have been led to suppose that it had no even primary reference to one, being simply prophetic of the Messiah, though suggested by the circumstances of David's day. Thus Ebrard, supporting his view by the assumption (which is usually made) of the message of Nathan to David (2 Samuel 7:14) being the "decree" referred to in the psalm, and the foundation of the confidence expressed in it. He argues that it was not to David, but to his posterity (זֶרַע), that the position of sonship was assigned, and eternal dominion promised; and hence that David in this psalm (which he considers to have been certainly by him) must have been speaking, not in his own name, but in that of his seed after him, looking adoringly forward to the fulfillment of that glorious hope in the distant future (2 Samuel 7:19). Thus, he concludes, the insurrection of the Syrians forms merely the occasion, but not the object and import, of the second psalm. But, even if the message of Nathan were certainly the basis of the idea of the psalm, we find an instance of the express application of that message to David himself; as well as to his posterity, in Psalm 89. (see vers. 20-28). It may be, however, that the reference in the psalm is to some Divine intimation, possibly to some prophecy or oracular utterance, delivered to David himself at the time of the inauguration of his own sovereignty, and long before Nathan's message. In any case, it is in accordance with the genius of prophecy, as above explained, that the words should have had a primary reference to David himself, so far forth as he imperfectly fulfilled their meaning. The main thing to be observed is that they represent an ideal of sonship and unlimited sovereignty beyond any that could, as a matter of fact, be considered as fulfilled in David. And this view of its meaning, suggested by the psalm itself, is confirmed by the use made of it in later Scripture. For it is evident that this psalm, together with the passage from 2 Samuel 7. (to be cited next) is made the basis of a long series of Messianic prophecies (cf. 2 Samuel 23:1, etc.; Psalm 110; Psalm 89; Psalm 132; Isaiah 7-9; Isaiah 11:1, 10; Jeremiah 23:5; Jeremiah 33:15; Micah 4-5; Zechariah 6:12, etc.). Its application to Christ in the New Testament is distinct and frequent (cf. Acts 4:25; Acts 13:33; Revelation 2:27; Revelation 12:5; Revelation 19:15). As to the phrase, "This day have I begotten thee," there is a difference of view among both ancient and modern expositors. The word "begotten" (γεγέννηκα) naturally suggests μονογενὴς, and is hence taken by some as referring to the eternal generation of the Son; in which case it can have had no application in any conceivable sense to the human type. "This day" has also in this case to be explained as denoting the ever-present today of eternity. So Origen, in a striking passage, "It is said to him by God, to whom it is always today. For God has no evening, nor (as I deem) any morning, but the time which is coextensive with his own unbegotten and eternal life is (if I may so speak) the day in which the Son is begotten, there being thus found no beginning of his generation, as neither is there of the day." Athanasius takes the same view; also Basil, Primasius, Thomas Aquinas, and many others. The main objection to it is the inapplicability of such a meaning of the words, even in a subordinate sense, to David or any other king of Israel. Alford, indeed, urges that this meaning agrees best with the context in the Epistle, on the ground that the eternal being of the Son, having been stated in the exordium, might be expected to be referred to in the proof. But this is hardly to the point. The writer has now begun his argument from the Old Testament, and is engaged in showing the idea involved in the term Son as applied therein to the Messiah. This, therefore, and not what he has said previously, is what we have to regard in our interpretation; and the most obvious view of the phrase, as it occurs in the psalm itself, is to regard it as a figure denoting forcibly the paternity of God; cf. Jeremiah 2:27, "They say to the wood, Thou art my father; to the stone, Thou hast begotten me." It expresses the idea that the "Son of God" spoken of derives his existence as such from him, and not from human ancestry. Chrysostom, among the ancients, understands the phrase as thus referring to the sonship assigned to the Messiah in time, and not to his eternal being. This view being taken, "this day," in reference to the king, may mean the day of the "decree," or that of his enthronement on Mount Zion. In reference to Christ it has been variously understood of the time of his incarnation, or resurrection, or ascension. If it be thought necessary to assign any definite time to it in its application to Christ, the view of its being the day of the resurrection is supported by such passages as Colossians 1:18, πρωτότοκος ἐκ τῶν νεκρῶν: and Romans 1:4, τοῦ ὁρισθέντος υἱοῦ Θεοῦ ἐν δυνάμει ... ἐξ ἀναστάσεως νεκρῶν: cf. Acts 2:30 and Acts 13:32, etc., "The promise that was made unto the fathers, God hath fulfilled the same unto their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again: as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee." This last text, be it observed, is almost conclusive against the eternal generation being understood as referred to; as is also the application of the same text infra, Hebrews 5:5, where it is quoted in proof of Christ's appointment to the eternal priesthood. [" The title of begetting is ofttimes in sacred language to be measured, not by the scale of philosophers' or naturalists' dialect, but of moral or civil language or interpretation. For they that are sons by adoption only, or next heirs by reversion to a crown or dignity, are said to be begotten of those which adopt them, or of whom they be the immediate heirs or successors: and in this sense in the sacred genealogy (Matthew 1:12) Jeconiah is said to have begotten Salathiel. So that David upon his own occasions (whether upon his anointing to the crown of Judah in Hebron, or of Israel in Zion) might in the literal sense avouch these words of himself, 'I will preach the law whereof the Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my son; this day have I begotten thee.' For David to call the day of his coronation, or of his designation to the crown of Judah, or of all Israel, his birthday, or begetting of God, by whose special power and providence he was crowned, is not so harsh as some haply would deem it that either know not or consider not that it was usual in other states or kingdoms beside Judah to celebrate two natales dies, two solemn nativities or birthdays in honor of their kings and emperors: the one they called diem natalem imperatoris, the other diem natalem imperii; the one the birthday of the emperor when he was born of his natural mother, the other the birthday of him as he was emperor, which we call the coronation day. The reason might hold more peculiar in David than in any other princes, because he was the first of all the seed of Abraham that took possession of the hill of Zion, and settled the kingdom of Judah, prophesied of by his father Jacob, upon himself and his posterity Thus Ego hodie genuite, with submission of my opinion to better judgment, is a prediction typically prophetical, which kind of prediction, as hath been observed before, is the most concludent; and this one of the highest rank in that kind; that is, an oracle truly meant of David according to the literal sense, and yet fulfilled of Christ, the Son of God, by his resurrection from the dead, both according to the most exquisite literal and the mystical and principally intended sense" (T. Jackson's 'Works,' bk. 9. Hebrews 31:6, 7, Oxford edition, 1844, vol. 8. p. 411).] And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son (2 Samuel 7:14); from Nathan's message to David, which has been spoken of above. The words do not in themselves express so unique a sonship as those used in the psalm; but, viewed in connection with the psalm, with their own context, and with subsequent prophecy, they suggest the same meaning. David had formed the design of building a temple; Nathan, by the word of the Lord, forbids his doing so, but tells him that his "seed" after him should build a house for the LORD'S Name, and that the Load would establish the throne of his kingdom for ever." Then comes the text," I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son;" followed by, "If he commit iniquity, I will chastise him with the rod of men ... but my mercy shall not depart away from him And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever." Now, there can be no doubt that there was a primary and partial fulfillment of this promise in Solomon, who built the temple after David's death. He took it to himself, so far as it was applicable to him, after his completion of the temple (1 Kings 8:17, etc.). But it is equally evident that its meaning could not be exhausted in him. The eternity assigned to the throne of the kingdom points to a distant as well as an immediate fulfillment, and the word translated "seed" (Hebrew, זֶרַע), though applicable in a concrete sense to an individual offspring (cf. Gem 4:25; 1 Samuel 1:11), is properly a collective noun, denoting "posterity," and thus naturally lends itself to a far-reach ng together with other passages which have been referred to in connection with the second psalm. Thus we may properly apply to this particular passage the view of the meaning of prophecy which has been set forth in general terms above, according to which we must regard Solomon, with respect to the sonship assigned to him as well as to his kingdom and the house which he was to build, as but a type and imperfect realization of a grand ideal to be in due time fulfilled.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For unto which of the angels said he at any time,.... That is, he never said to any of the angels what he has said to Christ; namely, what follows,
thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee for though angels are called the sons of God, Job 1:6 yet are never said to be begotten by him; or, with this clause annexed to it, "this day have I begotten thee"; nor are they ever so called in a proper sense, or in such sense as Christ is: this is said to Christ, and of him, in Psalm 2:7 and that agreeably to the sense of the Jewish church at this time, or the apostle would never have produced it to the Hebrews in such a manner; and not only the whole psalm in general, but this verse in particular, is owned by Jewish writers (t), both ancient and modern, to belong to the Messiah. Christ is the Son of God, not by Creation, nor by adoption, nor by office, but by nature; he is the true, proper, natural, and eternal Son of God; and as such is owned and declared by Jehovah the Father, in these words; the foundation of which relation lies in the begetting of him; which refers not to his nature, either divine or human: not to his divine nature, which is common with the Father and Spirit; wherefore if his was begotten, theirs must be also, being the same undivided nature, common to all three; much less to his human nature, in which he is never said to be begotten, but always to be made, and with respect to which he is without Father; nor to his office, as Mediator, in which he is not a Son, but a servant; besides, he was a Son, previous to his being a prophet, priest, and King; and his office is not the foundation of his sonship, but his sonship is the foundation of his office; or by which that is supported, and which fits him for the performance of it: but it has respect to his divine person; for as, in human generation, person begets person, and like begets like, so it is in divine generation; though care must be taken to remove all imperfection from it, as divisibility and multiplication of essence, priority and posteriority, dependence, and the like; nor can the modus, or manner of it, be conceived, or explained by us: the date of it, today, designs eternity, as in Isaiah 43:13, which is one continued day, an everlasting now; and this may be applied to any time and case, in which Christ is declared to be the Son of God; as at his incarnation, his baptism, his transfiguration on the Mount, and his resurrection from the dead, as in Acts 13:33 and at his ascension to heaven, when he was made Lord and Christ, and his divine sonship more manifestly appeared; which seems to be the time, and case, more especially referred to here. And again, I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a Son: which words are taken from 2 Samuel 7:14 and the sense is, not that he should be his son by adoption; or that he would be instead of a father to him; or that he should be as dear to him as a son is to a father; but that he was really and properly so; and he would make it manifest, and own him as such, as he did at Jordan's river, upon the Mount, and at his resurrection and ascension; though the words are spoken of Solomon, as a type of Christ, they properly belong to the antitype, who is greater than Solomon.
(t) Zohar in Numb. fol. 82. 2. Maimon. in Misn. Sanhedrin, c. 11. 1. & Abarbinel, Mashmia Jeshua, fol. 37. 4. & 38. 1.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
5. For—substantiating His having "obtained a more excellent name than the angels."
unto which—A frequent argument in this Epistle is derived from the silence of Scripture (Heb 1:13; Heb 2:16; 7:3, 14) [Bengel].
this day have I begotten thee—(Ps 2:7). Fulfilled at the resurrection of Jesus, whereby the Father "declared," that is, made manifest His divine Sonship, heretofore veiled by His humiliation (Ac 13:33; Ro 1:4). Christ has a fourfold right to the title "Son of God"; (1) By generation, as begotten of God; (2) By commission, as sent by God; (3) By resurrection, as "the first-begotten of the dead" (compare Lu 20:36; Ro 1:4; Re 1:5); (4) By actual possession, as heir of all [Bishop Pearson]. The Psalm here quoted applied primarily in a less full sense to Solomon, of whom God promised by Nathan to David. "I will be his father and he shall be my son." But as the whole theocracy was of Messianic import, the triumph of David over Hadadezer and neighboring kings (2Sa 8:1-18; Ps 2:2, 3, 9-12) is a type of God's ultimately subduing all enemies under His Son, whom He sets (Hebrew, "anointed," Ps 2:6) on His "holy hill of Zion," as King of the Jews and of the whole earth. the antitype to Solomon, son of David. The "I" in Greek is emphatic; I the Everlasting Father have begotten Thee this day, that is, on this day, the day of Thy being manifested as My Son, "the first-begotten of the dead" (Col 1:18; Re 1:5). when Thou hast ransomed and opened heaven to Thy people. He had been always Son, but now first was manifested as such in His once humbled, now exalted manhood united to His Godhead. Alford refers "this day" to the eternal generation of the Son: the day in which the Son was begotten by the Father is an everlasting to-day: there never was a yesterday or past time to Him, nor a to-morrow or future time: "Nothing there is to come, and nothing past, but an eternal NOW doth ever last" (Pr 30:4; Joh 10:30, 38; 16:28; 17:8). The communication of the divine essence in its fulness, involves eternal generation; for the divine essence has no beginning. But the context refers to a definite point of time, namely, that of His having entered on the inheritance (Heb 1:4). The "bringing the first-begotten into the world" (Heb 1:6), is not subsequent, as Alford thinks, to Heb 1:5, but anterior to it (compare Ac 2:30-35).
Hebrews 1:5 Additional Commentaries
The Supremacy of the Son
…4having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they. 5For to which of the angels did He ever say, "YOU ARE MY SON, TODAY I HAVE BEGOTTEN YOU"? And again, "I WILL BE A FATHER TO HIM AND HE SHALL BE A SON TO ME"? 6And when He again brings the firstborn into the world, He says, "AND LET ALL THE ANGELS OF GOD WORSHIP HIM."…
2 Samuel 7:14
I will be his father, and he will be my son. When he does wrong, I will punish him with a rod wielded by men, with floggings inflicted by human hands.
1 Chronicles 17:13
I will be his father, and he will be my son. I will never take my love away from him, as I took it away from your predecessor.
I will proclaim the LORD's decree: He said to me, "You are my son; today I have become your father.
he has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising up Jesus. As it is written in the second Psalm: "'You are my son; today I have become your father.'
In the same way, Christ did not take on himself the glory of becoming a high priest. But God said to him, "You are my Son; today I have become your Father."
In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways,
So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
For to which of the angels said he at any time, You are my Son, this day have I begotten you? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
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