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*Scripture verses covered in this section's commentary are noted in italics

Hebrews 1:13-14 meaning

Verses covered in this passage:

  • Hebrews 1:13
  • Hebrews 1:14

God has never told the angels to sit at His right hand or told them He will make their enemies a footstool. Angels are made to do what God commands to help believers.

These verses focus on the final and complete victory of Jesus, which belongs to Him and not the angels. Jesus is currently sitting at the right hand of the Father, but one day all of Jesus’s enemies will be destroyed:

But to which of the angels has
He ever said, “Sit at My right hand,
Until I make Your enemies
A footstool for Your feet?”
(v 13).

The expected answer to this question is “None.” God has not and will not install angels over His realm.

God’s promise of inheritance is to His Son, which will be His final victory. Jesus will take sole possession as ruler of the earth.

The angels, in comparison, exist as ministering spirits to serve those believers who will inherit salvation. Are they not all ministering spirits, sent out to render service for the sake of those who will inherit salvation? (v 14).

Note that the inheritance is in the future; believers have not yet inherited this salvation. Salvation just refers to something being delivered, and in context we must determine what is being delivered from what. Those believers who live faithful lives of obedience to God get to share in the inheritance that Christ has been given—they will be delivered from trials of this life and inherit these great rewards. Part of the inheritance that Jesus received is the final victory over His enemies. The angels are currently serving those faithful believers who will one day share in God’s final victory over His enemies.

As we will see more clearly in Chapter 2, the future salvation/deliverance being referred to includes humanity being delivered from the adverse effects of the Fall of Man. Humans were designed to reign over the earth (Hebrews 2:7). This was to be in harmony with God, nature, and one another. But that is not what is currently happening (Hebrews 2:8). Rather, the world is filled with chaos, violence, and disunity. In the future, believers have the opportunity to inherit the salvation of being delivered from the futility and frustration of not being able to fulfill our design. Those who follow Jesus in His walk of obedience will be fully restored to completely fulfill the purpose for which they were designed.

In Hebrews, the Pauline Author continually emphasizes the surpassing glory and reward available to believers if they walk in the obedience of faith. It takes the eyes of faith to look to the rewards of a future life while enduring difficulty in this life (Hebrews 11:6). It might be that the Pauline Author’s Jewish friends were being tempted by persecution for following Jesus as God’s true Messiah, much as the Apostle Paul and his co-ministers endured persecution (2 Corinthians 11:23-28). Thus, the Pauline Author seeks to remind his readers to persevere, because a great reward is available for those who hold fast.

Biblical Text
13 But to which of the angels has He ever said,
“Sit at My right hand,
Until I make Your enemies
A footstool for Your feet”?
14 Are they not all ministering spirits, sent out to render service for the sake of those who will inherit salvation?




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