1 πολυμερῶς καὶ πολυτρόπως πάλαι ὁ θεὸς λαλήσας τοῖς πατράσιν ἐν τοῖς προφήταις 2 ἐπ’ ἐσχάτου τῶν ἡμερῶν τούτων ἐλάλησεν ἡμῖν ἐν υἱῷ, ὃν ἔθηκεν κληρονόμον πάντων, δι’ οὗ καὶ ἐποίησεν τοὐς αἰῶνας· 3 ὃς ῶν ἀπαύγασμα τῆς δόξης καὶ χαρακτὴρ τῆς ὑποστάσεως αὐτοῦ, φέρων τε τἀ πάντα τῷ ῥήματι τῆς δυνάμεως αὐτοῦ, καθαρισμὸν τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ποιησάμενος ἐκάθισεν ἐν δεξιᾷ μεγαλωσύνης ἐν ὑψηλοῖς, 4 τοσούτῳ κρείττων γενόμενος τῶν ἀγγέλων ὅσῳ διαφορώτερον παρ’αὐτοὺς κεκληρονόμηκεν ὄνομα.
1 God, who at various times and in various ways in the past spoke to our fathers through the prophets, 2 in these last days spoke to us through a son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he even made the ages; 3 who being the radiance of the glory and the representation of his substance, bearing quite all things by the word of his power, having made a cleansing for sins, sat on the right hand of majesty in high places, 4 having become so much better than the angels, even as he has inherited a more excellent name than them.
Participle phrases and relative clauses abound in this passage. Without these descriptive expressions, we have, “God in these last days spoke to us by a son.” That is not to say that the relative clauses and participles are not important, don’t get me wrong. These play a major role in bringing out the thrust of the writer, to highlight God’s continued work and the Son’s clear superiority over creation and the angels.
So a run-down of relative and participle phrases concerning God:
- spoke to our fathers by the prophets
And concerning the Son:
- the one appointed heir of all things
- involved in the making of “the ages” – universe or time itself?
- the radiance of God’s glory
- the representation of God’s substance
- the one who sustains all things
- the one who made cleansing for sins
- the one having become better than the angels
Overall, what we have is a powerful description of the authority and place of the Son and the hope we have though him.
Grace and peace this week!