Hebrews 2:2

2 For since 1the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and 2every transgression or disobedience received a just 3retribution,

Hebrews 2:2 Meaning and Commentary

Hebrews 2:2

For if the word spoken by angels was steadfast
This is a description of the law, from whence the apostle argues to a stricter regard to the Gospel, as from the lesser to the greater: this is called "the word", and a terrible one it was; it was a voice of words, which they that heard entreated they might hear no more; it was the word "spoken" with an articulate voice, and was heard by the Israelites, and it was spoken "by angels". Jehovah the Father's voice was never heard; when he came to give the law, ten thousand angels came along with him; and the ministry of these he used in the delivery of the law; by them he spoke it; they formed in the air the voices heard; it was ordained by them, and given by the disposition of them; see ( Acts 7:53 ) ( Galatians 3:19 ) . To which agree those words of Herod, spoken to the Jews, recorded by Josephus F2; that we learn of God, (di' aggelwn) , "by angels", the best of doctrines, and the most holy things in the law. And this was "steadfast"; firm, and sure, being the word of God, which cannot pass away, until it be fulfilled: it was confirmed by terrible signs attending it, and by the people's assent unto it; the penalty of it is sure and certain, in case of disobedience; and as to the form and ministration of it, it remained until Christ, the end of it, came; and as to the matter of it, so far as of a moral nature, it still remains: the judicial and ceremonial parts of it are abrogated; and the whole of it is abolished, as in the hands of Moses, and as a covenant of works, and as to the curse and condemnation of it, and with respect to justification by it; but it still continues as a cursing law to all that are under it; and as a means of conviction to sinners in the hands of the Spirit; and as a rule of walk and conversation to saints, as in the hands of Christ:

and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense
of reward;
every precept of the law had a penalty annexed to it; and every breach of it was punished as that penalty required; and that according to the strict justice of God, and the just demerit of sin; and none escaped, but suffered the punishment due to the violation of the precept either in themselves, or in their surety; so steadfast and immovable was this law.


FOOTNOTES:

F2 Antiqu. l. 15. c. 5. sect. 3.

Hebrews 2:2 In-Context

1 Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it.
2 For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution,
3 how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard,
4 while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.
5 Now it was not to angels that God subjected the world to come, of which we are speaking.

Cross References 3

  • 1. See Acts 7:53
  • 2. [Hebrews 10:28; Numbers 15:30, 31; Deuteronomy 4:3; Deuteronomy 17:2, 5, 12; Deuteronomy 27:26]
  • 3. Hebrews 10:35; Hebrews 11:26