21That is why we must hold on all the more firmly to the truths we have heard, so that we will not be carried away. 2The message given to our ancestors by the angels was shown to be true, and all who did not follow it or obey it received the punishment they deserved. 3How, then, shall we escape if we pay no attention to such a great salvation? The Lord himself first announced this salvation, and those who heard him proved to us that it is true. 4At the same time God added his witness to theirs by performing all kinds of miracles and wonders and by distributing the gifts of the Holy Spirit according to his will.
5God has not placed the angels as rulers over the new world to come — the world of which we speak. 6
Instead, as it is said somewhere in the Scriptures:
“What are human beings, O God, that you should think of them;
mere human beings, that you should care for them?
7You made them for a little while lower than the angels;
you crowned them with glory and honour,2.7 Many manuscripts add: You made them rulers over everything you made (see Ps 8.6).
8and made them rulers over all things.”It says that God made them “rulers over all things”; this clearly includes everything. We do not, however, see human beings ruling over all things now. 9But we do see Jesus, who for a little while was made lower than the angels, so that through God's grace he should die for everyone. We see him now crowned with glory and honour because of the death he suffered. 10It was only right that God, who creates and preserves all things, should make Jesus perfect through suffering, in order to bring many children to share his glory. For Jesus is the one who leads them to salvation.
11He purifies people from their sins, and both he and those who are made pure all have the same Father. That is why Jesus is not ashamed to call them his family. 12
He says to God:
“I will tell my people what you have done;
I will praise you in their meeting.”13
14Since the children, as he calls them, are people of flesh and blood, Jesus himself became like them and shared their human nature. He did this so that through his death he might destroy the Devil, who has the power over death, 15and in this way set free those who were slaves all their lives because of their fear of death. 16
For it is clear that it is not the angels that he helps. Instead, he helps the descendants of Abraham. 17This means that he had to become like his brothers and sisters in every way, in order to be their faithful and merciful High Priest in his service to God, so that the people's sins would be forgiven. 18And now he can help those who are tempted, because he himself was tempted and suffered.
31My Christian brothers and sisters, who also have been called by God! Think of Jesus, whom God sent to be the High Priest of the faith we profess. 2
He was faithful to God, who chose him to do this work, just as Moses was faithful in his work in God's house. 3A man who builds a house receives more honour than the house itself. In the same way Jesus is worthy of much greater honour than Moses. 4Every house, of course, is built by someone — and God is the one who has built all things. 5Moses was faithful in God's house as a servant, and he spoke of the things that God would say in the future. 6But Christ is faithful as the Son in charge of God's house. We are his house if we keep up our courage and our confidence in what we hope for.
So then, as the Holy Spirit says:
“If you hear God's voice today,
8do not be stubborn, as your ancestors were when they rebelled against God,
as they were that day in the desert
when they put him to the test.
9There they put me to the test and tried me, says God,
although they had seen what I did for forty years.
10And so I was angry with those people and said,
‘They are always disloyal
and refuse to obey my commands.’
11I was angry and made a solemn promise:
‘They will never enter the land where I would have given them rest!’ ”
12My fellow-believers, be careful that no one among you has a heart so evil and unbelieving as to turn away from the living God. 13Instead, in order that none of you be deceived by sin and become stubborn, you must help one another every day, as long as the word “Today” in the scripture applies to us. 14For we are all partners with Christ if we hold firmly to the end the confidence we had at the beginning.
This is what the scripture says:
“If you hear God's voice today,
do not be stubborn, as your ancestors were
when they rebelled against God.”
Who were the people who heard God's voice and rebelled against him? All those who were led out of Egypt by Moses. 17With whom was God angry for forty years? With the people who sinned, who fell down dead in the desert. 18When God made his solemn promise, “They will never enter the land where I would have given them rest” — of whom was he speaking? Of those who rebelled. 19We see, then, that they were not able to enter the land, because they did not believe.
41Now, God has offered us the promise that we may receive that rest he spoke about. Let us take care, then, that none of you will be found to have failed to receive that promised rest. 2For we have heard the Good News, just as they did. They heard the message, but it did them no good, because when they heard it, they did not accept it with faith. 3
We who believe, then, do receive that rest which God promised. It is just as he said:
“I was angry and made a solemn promise:
‘They will never enter the land where I would have given them rest!’ ”He said this even though his work had been finished from the time he created the world. 4
“If you hear God's voice today,
do not be stubborn.”
If Joshua had given the people the rest that God had promised, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9As it is, however, there still remains for God's people a rest like God's resting on the seventh day. 10
For those who receive that rest which God promised will rest from their own work, just as God rested from his. 11Let us, then, do our best to receive that rest, so that no one of us will fail as they did because of their lack of faith.
12The word of God is alive and active, sharper than any double-edged sword. It cuts all the way through, to where soul and spirit meet, to where joints and marrow come together. It judges the desires and thoughts of the heart. 13There is nothing that can be hidden from God; everything in all creation is exposed and lies open before his eyes. And it is to him that we must all give an account of ourselves.
14Let us, then, hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we have a great High Priest who has gone into the very presence of God — Jesus, the Son of God. 15Our High Priest is not one who cannot feel sympathy for our weaknesses. On the contrary, we have a High Priest who was tempted in every way that we are, but did not sin. 16Let us have confidence, then, and approach God's throne, where there is grace. There we will receive mercy and find grace to help us just when we need it.