'Today's Little Lift' with Jim Bullington
Originally posted on 12/02/2019
Jude and the Hebrews writer were the only two New Testament scribes to use the term Majesty. It is probably not by happenstance that each of them used the term to refer to Deity rather than humanity, or as we have styled before, Majesty belongs to God.
In his second usage of the word, the author of Hebrews said, "Now this is the main point of the things we are saying: We have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, a Minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man." (Hebrews 8.1-2). In his first usage as well as in this one, he places Jesus Christ at the right hand of the Father, a place of unequaled prominence. In this passage, you will note that the Christ is seated on the right hand of the Father while in Hebrews 1.1-3, He is pictured as sitting at His right hand. This subtle distinction deserves some comment.
In the first chapter of Hebrews, Jesus’ preeminence is demonstrated by the fact that the Father allowed Him to sit at His right hand. In the eighth chapter of the Hebrew epistle, His continuing function as High Priest is highlighted by the fact that He was seated or set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty. His function as High Priest is one which will never end so long as time stands; He is a continual High Priest whose "once for all sacrifice" continues to provide a means by which we can also access His throne.
Although the Father and the Son sit in unequaled Majesty, believers are granted access into their presence. The position of Majesty which Jesus occupies gives Him the authority to grant access to others. Just as a King on a literal throne controls those who come into his presence, so it is with the Christ. As One who occupies the throne, He has the right to determine who approaches the throne. The Hebrews writer addressed this point when he wrote, "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." (Hebrews 4.16). There is no need for timidity or trepidation; He has already given His clearance. Again he says, "Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water." (Hebrews 10.19-22).
When we speak of the Majesty of God we speak of that of which we only have limited knowledge. We can imagine what it might be like, but we can not know beyond that which is written. Like Job of old, when we speak of God and His Majesty, we stand in danger of having to say, "’Who is this who hides counsel without knowledge?’ Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know." (Job 42.3)
The Majesty of God is a right that He has possesses; not a privilege that He earned. Being Deity entitles Him to that position. He grants access to "the throne of the Majesty" only to believers.
1. In what capacity does Jesus serve around the throne according to Hebrews 8?
2. What word in Hebrews 8.1 indicates that this is a permanent and unchanging position?
3. What or who gives believers the authority to boldly approach the Throne of God?
4. How much can we actually know about the Majesty of that throne and of God?
Focus Text: Jude 1.25