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Hebrews 1:1

Introduction: God Has Spoken Fully and Finally in His Son

1:1 After God spoke long ago 1  in various portions 2  and in various ways 3  to our ancestors 4  through the prophets,

Hebrews 3:1-19

Jesus and Moses

3:1 Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, 5  partners in a heavenly calling, take note of Jesus, the apostle and high priest whom we confess, 6  3:2 who is faithful to the one who appointed him, as Moses was also in God’s 7  house. 8  3:3 For he has come to deserve greater glory than Moses, just as the builder of a house deserves greater honor than the house itself! 3:4 For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God. 3:5 Now Moses was faithful in all God’s 9  house 10  as a servant, to testify to the things that would be spoken. 3:6 But Christ 11  is faithful as a son over God’s 12  house. We are of his house, 13  if in fact we hold firmly 14  to our confidence and the hope we take pride in. 15 

Exposition of Psalm 95: Hearing God’s Word in Faith

3:7 Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, 16 

Oh, that today you would listen as he speaks! 17 

3:8Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, in the day of testing in the wilderness.

3:9There your fathers tested me and tried me, 18  and they saw my works for forty years.

3:10Therefore, I became provoked at that generation and said,Their hearts are always wandering 19  and they have not known my ways.

3:11As I swore in my anger,They will never enter my rest!’” 20 

3:12 See to it, 21  brothers and sisters, 22  that none of you has 23  an evil, unbelieving heart that forsakes 24  the living God. 25  3:13 But exhort one another each day, as long as it is called “Today,” that none of you may become hardened by sin’s deception. 3:14 For we have become partners with Christ, if in fact we hold our initial confidence 26  firm until the end. 3:15 As it says, 27 Oh, that today you would listen as he speaks! 28  Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” 29  3:16 For which ones heard and rebelled? Was it not all who came out of Egypt under Moses’ leadership? 30  3:17 And against whom was God 31  provoked for forty years? Was it not those who sinned, whose dead bodies fell in the wilderness? 32  3:18 And to whom did he swear they would never enter into his rest, except those who were disobedient? 3:19 So 33  we see that they could not enter because of unbelief.

1 tn Or “spoke formerly.”

2 tn Or “parts.” The idea is that God’s previous revelation came in many parts and was therefore fragmentary or partial (L&N 63.19), in comparison with the final and complete revelation contained in God’s Son. However, some interpret πολυμερῶς (polumerw") in Heb 1:1 to mean “on many different occasions” and would thus translate “many times” (L&N 67.11). This is the option followed by the NIV: “at many times and in various ways.” Finally, this word is also understood to refer to the different manners in which something may be done, and would then be translated “in many different ways” (L&N 89.81). In this last case, the two words πολυμερῶς and πολυτρόπως (polutropw") mutually reinforce one another (“in many and various ways,” NRSV).

3 tn These two phrases are emphasized in Greek by being placed at the beginning of the sentence and by alliteration.

4 tn Grk “to the fathers.”

5 tn Grk “brothers.” See note on the phrase “brothers and sisters” in 2:11.

6 tn Grk “of our confession.”

7 tn Grk “his”; in the translation the referent (God) has been specified for clarity.

8 tc ‡ The reading adopted by the translation follows a few early mss and some versions (Ì13,46vid B vgms co Ambr). The majority of mss (א A C D Ψ 0243 0278 33 1739 1881 Ï lat sy) insert “all” (“in all his house”), apparently in anticipation of Heb 3:5 which quotes directly from Num 12:7. On balance, the omission better explains the rise of ὅλῳ ({olw, “all”) than vice versa. NA27 puts ὅλῳ in brackets, indicating doubts as to its authenticity.

9 tn Grk “his”; in the translation the referent (God) has been specified for clarity.

10 sn A quotation from Num 12:7.

11 sn The Greek makes the contrast between v. 5 and v. 6a more emphatic and explicit than is easily done in English.

12 tn Grk “his”; in the translation the referent (God) has been specified for clarity.

13 tn Grk “whose house we are,” continuing the previous sentence.

14 tc The reading adopted by the translation is found in Ì13,46 B sa, while the vast majority of mss (א A C D Ψ 0243 0278 33 1739 1881 Ï latt) add μέχρι τέλους βεβαίαν (mecri telou" bebaian, “secure until the end”). The external evidence for the omission, though minimal, has excellent credentials. Considering the internal factors, B. M. Metzger (TCGNT 595) finds it surprising that the feminine adjective βεβαίαν should modify the neuter noun καύχημα (kauchma, here translated “we take pride”), a fact that suggests that even the form of the word was borrowed from another place. Since the same phrase occurs at Heb 3:14, it is likely that later scribes added it here at Heb 3:6 in anticipation of Heb 3:14. While these words belong at 3:14, they seem foreign to 3:6.

15 tn Grk “the pride of our hope.”

16 sn The following quotation is from Ps 95:7b-11.

17 tn Grk “today if you hear his voice.”

18 tn Grk “tested me by trial.”

19 tn Grk “they are wandering in the heart.”

20 tn Grk “if they shall enter my rest,” a Hebrew idiom expressing an oath that something will certainly not happen.

21 tn Or “take care.”

22 tn Grk “brothers.” See note on the phrase “brothers and sisters” in 2:11.

23 tn Grk “that there not be in any of you.”

24 tn Or “deserts,” “rebels against.”

25 tn Grk “in forsaking the living God.”

26 tn Grk “the beginning of the confidence.”

27 tn Grk “while it is said.”

28 tn Grk “today if you hear his voice.”

29 sn A quotation from Ps 95:7b-8.

30 tn Grk “through Moses.”

31 tn Grk “he”; in the translation the referent (God) has been specified for clarity.

32 sn An allusion to God’s judgment pronounced in Num 14:29, 32.

33 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “So” to indicate a summary or conclusion to the argument of the preceding paragraph.

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