(5) For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. (6) But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man that thou visitest him? (7) Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands: (8) Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. (9) But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
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Most Bibles capitalize pronouns that refer to Deity, yet here, the translators have not capitalized the many occurrences of the pronoun “him”! Notice that “son of man” in verse 6, unlike its many appearances in the gospels referring to Jesus, is also not capitalized. Why not here? The answer is simple: Paul does not intend us to understand this prophecy to be referring only to Jesus Christ but to “man”!
David and the author of Hebrews understood exactly what God was saying. The psalm has humans in mind, not just Jesus. Some commentators believe that Paul describes Christ alone in verses 6-8, but a close reading shows that he follows David's broader description of human potential until verse 9. There, he begins with “but,” a contrasting conjunction that ties two distinct thoughts together.
While the book of Hebrews begins by showing Jesus Christ's superiority over angels, by this passage in chapter 2, the author is including the elect of God, those who will inherit salvation, in the picture alongside their Savior and King. Like Christ, those God chooses as His heirs will have all things placed under them. They will sit at the Father's right hand with Jesus Christ on His throne (Revelation 2:26; 3:21 5:10; see Matthew 19:28; Luke 22:29-30; I Corinthians 6:2)!
Like Christ, we, the heirs of salvation, have been made a little lower than the angels. As human beings, we are inferior to them in just about every way. But God is working with us in a similar way as He did with Jesus so we can receive the same inheritance that He has. God is preparing us to live and work side by side with Him, always at His right hand, “crowned . . . with glory and honor”!
Paul writes in Hebrews 2:5, “For He has not put the world to come, of which we speak, in subjection to angels.” No, the world to come will be ruled by glorified human beings, beginning with the greatest Son of Man, Jesus Christ. Now God is training His elect to rule His Kingdom with Him.
The psalmist writes in Psalm 139:6, “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain it.” Like Job came to realize (see Job 42:2-6), he understood God's greatness compared to weak and puny man, and it boggled his mind that God would pay any attention to such lowly creatures. Even so, it is what God reveals in His Book.
Should we not, then, “give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard [the truth from Scripture], lest we drift away”? In the world's current situation—with viruses, war, forecasts of food shortages, and inept leadership on everyone's mind—a state of fear exists. Some people are afraid to leave their houses. Some have a bunker mentality, ready to go to ground at the slightest disturbance in society. Are we among those who are letting fear rule their lives?
Fear divides, makes one self-centered, and can destroy faith. Of all people, we need not fear because we are the ones whom Almighty God is focused on (see Deuteronomy 32:10; Psalm 17:8; Zechariah 2:8). He provides for His elect children “exceedingly abundantly above all that [they] ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20). He has sent those same angels who stopped the mouths of lions, the great angelic host that surrounded Elisha, the same mighty spirit beings who formed the hedge around Job, to watch over His inheritance, His heirs of salvation.
— Ronny H. Graham