The implication is, having come to the first Sunday after Christmas is that we are to move on from the birth event to the life and purpose of Jesus Christ. And there is no one better to do that then the apostle Paul.
“It was fitting that God, for whom and through whom all things exist, in bringing many children to glory, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For the one who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father. For this reason Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters, saying, “I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters, in the midst of the congregation I will praise you.” And again, “I will put my trust in him.” And again, “Here am I and the children whom God has given me.” (Hebrews 2:10 – 13)
best understand what Paul is saying, and what he is explaining what
Jesus might have/did say, image that “Your Name”, “You” and
“Him” refer to the Lord God, the One that Jesus calls “Father”.
It also helps if you consider “Pioneer” capitalized as well,
signifying Deity and Divinity. It further helps if you set aside your
expectations that Paul does not understand inclusive language.
“Since, therefore, the children share flesh and blood, he himself likewise shared the same things, so that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by the fear of death. For it is clear that he did not come to help angels, but the descendants of Abraham.” (Verses 14 – 16)
That is us, beloved reader. Whether spiritual descendants or direct descendants, we are the ones that Jesus the Christ came to help. And so we are moved on from Jesus’ birth to Jesus’ life, and because puts such an accent on it, Jesus’ death and resurrection. Yes, definitely being moved on.
is a good moving on though. Because Paul also gives reassurance that
while Jesus might have been Divine, he was also kin to us.
“Therefore he had to become like his brothers and sisters in every respect, so that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make a sacrifice of atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself was tested by what he suffered, he is able to help those who are being tested.” (Verses 17 – 18 )
This reassurance was planned from the very beginning, as if the Divine would know some time down history humanity would need something or Someone to get them/us out the difficulties that we in the history of humanity had gotten into. Not that the sins of the past have been visited on the present; but simply that the nature of humanity in each generation is to “mess up.” It is from the scripture passages that are noted for the Advent/Christmas season that Paul’s writings are also used. From Christmas Season 2019, Year A: the Epistle Passage we read,
“Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds. He is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son; today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be his Father, and he will be my Son”? And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says, “Let all God’s angels worship him.”
Of the angels he says, “He makes his angels winds, and his servants flames of fire.”
But of the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, and the righteous scepter is the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.”
And, “In the beginning, Lord, you founded the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands; they will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like clothing; like a cloak you will roll them up, and like clothing they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will never end.” (Hebrews 1:1- 12)
I am not sure how reassuring it is to be likened to a rolled up cloak; but the fact that Jesus was sent to save, redeem, and change us like old clothing that is exchanged for new should reassure us that humanity has value. Whether our distinctiveness is retained has been a question in my mind for many years. But here and now is not the time to explore that. But it is an indication that my thoughts are indeed moving on! Shalom!