HOUSMAIL HM#044 - THY THRONE O GOD IS FOR EVER - Heb 1:8                                         2 November 1999

"But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever:
a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.
Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; t
herefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with
the oil of gladness above thy fellows." (Hebrews 1:8-9)

This verse has long been wrongly used to support the Doctrine of the Trinity. It is alleged that because the verse addresses Jesus as "God", He must therefore be a part of a Triune "godhead".

However, as we shall see, that conclusion goes one big step beyond what is actually written.

We note first that, in John 17:3, Jesus addresses His Father as "THE ONLY TRUE GOD". In the same prayer He also carefully identifies Himself as distinct from the "one true God", by whom He is sent (delegated) to perform the task of glorifying His Father's name on earth.

This verse from John, should be enough in itself, to remind us to tread a little more carefully with the reference in Hebrews 1:8. However if we need more, it is contained in the immediate context in verse 9.

There we read two things which make it quite clear that Jesus is NOT the supreme deity.

This word "anointed", points us directly back to the OT prophecies about the Messiah. (Messiah is an Anglicised form of the Hebrew word for "anointed one", which is directly equivalent to the Greek "christos", and our English "Christ") Reference to those prophecies will quickly reveal that the Messiah is NOT the ONE GOD of the OT. Instead He is clearly described as someone else, quite distinct and separate from God.

This confirms again that, although addressed as "God", Jesus is NOT Himself the supreme God. Instead He also worships that God, as the one who has anointed Him with a (delegated) authority to rule over His (future) Kingdom.

(For a discussion about how the Bible applies the word "God" to others apart from the Supreme God, see HOUSMAIL No HM#014 _________________________________________________________________________

Hebrews 1:8-9 is a direct quotation from Psalm 45:6-7. In verse 6, in place of "Thy throne, O God" the RSV has "Your Divine throne". And a marginal note in the RSV offers a further possible alternative as - "Your throne is a throne of God". The NEB has "Your throne is like God's throne".

Since I am not a Hebrew Scholar, I won't attempt to resolve the reason why the translators feel it necessary to offer these alternatives. We merely note in passing that if correct, they only serve to emphasise what is already clear from verse 7 ..... that there is a distinction drawn between Jesus and God. The "anointed one" is NOT Himself the Supreme God, but a worshipper of that God.