Confraternity Bible: New Testament and Supplemental Commentary

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HEBREWS - Chapter 5

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Hebrews 5

Supplemental Commentary:


2.  A Superior High Priest  4, 14 -- 7, 28 (continued)

5, 1-10:  Christ the High Priest.  Christ has all the qualifications of a high priest, namely, a human nature, sympathy for human infirmity, and appointment by God.

1.  Gifts and sacrifices: the unbloody and bloody offerings.    5.  Christ was called to the high priesthood by the Father.  The words of Ps. 2, 7 are understood here as being addressed by the eternal Father to Christ at the moment of the Incarnation.  It was then that Christ became the mediator between God and man.    6.  According to the order of Melchisedech: according to the type of Melchisedech, or according to the manner of Melchisedech (Ps. 109, 4; cf. 7, 1-10).    7.  Christ as man surrendered himself absolutely to God.    8.  Learned obedience: the earthly life of Christ was a process of doing God's will.    9.  When perfected: having brought to completion His mission.

5, 11-14:  Importance of the Doctrine.  As the readers by their neglect of the Faith have grown dull of understanding in spiritual things, it is difficult to explain the high priesthood of Christ to them.  Rudiments of the words of God: the fundamentals of Christian doctrine.

Confraternity Bible:

Christ the High Priest  1 For every high priest taken from among me is appointed for men in the things pertaining to God, that he may offer gifts and sacrifices for sins.  2 He is able to have compassion on the ignorant and erring, because he himself also is beset with weakness, 3 and by reason thereof is obliged to offer for sins, as on behalf of the people, so also for himself.  4 And no man takes the honor to himself; he takes it who is called by God, as Aaron was.  5* So also Christ did not glorify himself with the high priesthood, but he who spoke to him,
"Thou art my son, I this day have begotten thee."
6* As he says also in another place,
"Thou art a priest forever, according to the order of Melchisedech." 
7 For Jesus, in the days of his earthly life, with a  loud cry and tears, offered up prayers and supplications to him who was able to save him from death, and was heard because of his reverent submission.  8 And he, Son though he was, learned obedience from the things that he suffered; 9 and when perfected, he became to all who obey him the cause of eternal salvation, 10 called by God a high priest according to the order of Melchisedech.

Importance of the Doctrine  11 On this point we have much to say, and it is difficult to explain it, because you have grown dull of hearing.  12 For whereas by this time you ought to be masters, you need to be taught again the rudiments of the words of God; and you have become such as have need of milk and not of solid food.  13 For everyone who is fed on milk is unskilled in the world of justice; he is but a child.  14 But solid food is for the mature, for those who by practice have their faculties trained to discern good and evil.


5: Ps. 2, 7.

6: Ps. 109, 4.