Fisher on Jesus being Lower than the Angels

Christopher Fisher provides commentary on Hebrews 2:9:

Heb 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone.

The entire thrust of the whole passage is to prove to his audience that Jesus was superior to the angels. Jesus would be in charge of the apocalypse, not the angels. Apparently, in the time of the author there were rumors that Jesus a powerless messenger. Hebrews counters that idea. One would think that if the author was trying to communicate the strange idea that Jesus was “setting aside” his Godhead to make himself “lower than the angels” that this point would be explicit as to heighten the overall point of the chapter. Instead, what is present is a desperate attempt to show that Jesus, although less powerful than the angels, would be superior to them in the coming apocalypse. The context does not fit an Augustinian understanding.

Because Godhood is not synonymous with omnipotence, omnipresence, omniscience or any other Greek concept, Jesus can be lower than the angels yet be divine. As Will Duffy pointed out to me, the entire passage undermines the basic concept of immutability, the heart of the Augustinian concept of God. The Augustinian obsession with extra-Biblical attributes forces them into strange interpretations of these texts.

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