It is not to angels that he has subjected the world to come, about which we are speaking. But there is a place where someone has testified: “What is mankind that you are mindful of them, a son of man that you care for him? You made them a little lower than the angels; you crowned them with glory and honor and put everything under their feet.”
In putting everything under them, God left nothing that is not subject to them. Yet at present we do not see everything subject to them. But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.
(New International Version)
Humanity, mankind, men, women, boys, girls… we are all so much more than mere extra intelligent animals. While we ARE animals, mammals to be a little more precise, we are physical creatures who occupy a unique place in God’s ordained order of things. From what I can tell from the scripture, that order being:
- GOD – The Father, The Son, The Holy Spirit
- The Four Created Beings – as seen in Revelation 4:6-9
- The Sons of God – as seen in Job 1:6, 2:1
- The Archangel (Michael) – Daniel 10:13, 12:1; I Thess. 4:16; Jude 9; Rev. 12:7
- The Chief Princes (Michael and others) – as seen in Daniel 10:13
- Seraphim (attendants, servants) – as seen in Isaiah 6:1-3
- Cherubim (warriors, guardians, protectors) – as seen in Genesis 3:24, Ezekiel 10:1-8
- Human Beings (mankind) – as described in Hebrews 2:5-9
- Animals – of varying degrees of intelligence
Hebrews 2:6-8 is a reference to King David’s statement in Psalm 8:3-8. According to this passage of scripture, it was God’s intention that humanity, even though having been created to be “a little lower than the angels,” would have jurisdiction and control over all the earth. If we will remember, when God first created Adam and Eve, the Bible says:
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So, God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
(Genesis 1:26-28, NKJV)
When we consider the earth, its life, its resources, and all that it contains—let alone the incomprehensible size and scope of the known universe, insofar as we currently can attempt to understand it—it is easy to think that, perhaps, we are not very important to the grand scheme of things. However, these passages of scripture indicate that we are not insignificant beings. From the Creator’s viewpoint, He has endowed humanity with glory and honor. The primary reason for this is that we have been created “in His own image.” While it is true that we currently inhabit a mammalian, animal body, we are spiritual beings. And that makes us incredibly beautiful and significant in our Creator’s eyes.
Isn’t it a shame that humanity—either not understanding, or flatly denying, our unique creation—has so terribly abused itself, as well as the responsibility that God has given us to care for the earth and all its inhabitants.
But the main point of the Hebrews writer is that Jesus, the only begotten Son of the only true and living God, became one of us. My thoughts drift back to the Apostle John’s testimony, when he writes:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not [a]comprehend it… And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.
(John 1:1-4 & 14, NKJV)
Can you imagine God, our Creator, the One who made the heavens and the earth, the giver and sustainer of all life, stepping down out of eternal glory and becoming one of us for a little while? Well, that is exactly who Jesus was and precisely what He did. For a little while, the bible says, He “was made lower than the angels.” But the ultimate result of that is that he is “now crowned with glory and honor.” And the reason He is so honored and glorified in heaven and on earth is because of the reason He did that. And that reason is us!
We are the reason He “suffered death.” We are the reason that Jesus, “although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:6-8, NASB).
Can you put a price on your importance, your significance, to your Creator, or your meaning and purpose in this world? To say that you and I are “invaluable” is dismal understatement. How precious to you would someone have to be in order for you to willingly offer yourself to die for them? How much would someone have to mean to you before you would voluntarily suffer the kind of horrible physical torture and mental/spiritual anguish for them that Jesus suffered for you?
I believe that the Holy Spirit, through the writer of the Book of Hebrews, is prompting us not only to see the incredible holiness, sublime beauty, and eternal glory and honor that belongs to Jesus—and to love Him both for who He is and for what He has done—but also to see our own incredible worth to God.
“Oh Lord, my God, thank you having created us a little lower than the angels. And thank YOU, Lord Jesus for Your willingness to step into our world and to be made, for a little while, lower than the angels. And having suffered, bled, and died for us and now, conquering death, having been resurrected for us, You have returned to Your rightful place at the right hand of the Majesty on High. I thank You. I praise You. I ask You to ever keep before me the incredible sacrifice You’ve made for me and my eternal worth and significance to You. And I pray for all of us, Oh Lord, that we as human beings will come to recognize our value to You and that, as a result, we will learn to value one another. Help me to treat every human being with the honor that is due one created in the very image of God. Help me to treat every person with the grace, dignity, and consideration that is due one who is so highly valued by You.”
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