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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Hebrews 1:13

But to which of the angels has He ever said, "SIT AT MY RIGHT HAND, UNTIL I MAKE YOUR ENEMIES A FOOTSTOOL FOR YOUR FEET"?

Adam Clarke Commentary

But to which of the angels - We have already seen, from the opinions and concessions of the Jews, that, if Jesus Christ could be proved to be greater than the angels, it would necessarily follow that he was God: and this the apostle does most amply prove by these various quotations from their own Scriptures; for he shows that while he is the supreme and absolute Sovereign, they are no more than his messengers and servants, and servants even to his servants, i.e. to mankind.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https: 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

But to which of the angels - The apostle adduces one other proof of the exaltation of the Son of God above the angels. He asks where there is an instance in which God had addressed any one of the angels, and asked him to sit at his right hand until he should subdue his enemies under him? Yet that high honor had been conferred on the Son of God; and he was therefore far exalted above them. “Sit on my right hand;” see notes on Hebrews 1:3. This passage is taken from Psalm 110:1, a Psalm that is repeatedly quoted in this Epistle as referring to the Messiah, and the very passage before is applied by the Saviour to himself, in Matthew 22:43-44, and by Peter it is applied to him in Acts 2:34-35. There can be no doubt, therefore, of its applicability to the Messiah. “Until I make thine enemies thy footstool.” Until I reduce them to entire subjection. A footstool is what is placed under the feet when we sit on a chair, and the phrase here means that an enemy is entirely subdued; compare notes on 1 Corinthians 15:25. The phrase “to make an enemy a footstool,” is borrowed from the custom of ancient warriors who stood on the necks of vanquished kings on the occasion of celebrating a triumph over them as a token of their complete prostration and subjection; see notes on Isaiah 10:6. The enemies here referred to are the foes of God and of his religion, and the meaning is, that the Messiah is to be exalted until all those foes are subdued. Then he will give up the kingdom to the Father; see notes on 1 Corinthians 15:24-28. The exaltation of the Redeemer, to which the apostle refers here, is to the mediatorial throne. In this he is exalted far above the angels. His foes are to be subdued to him, but angels are to be employed as mere instruments in that great work.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https: 1870.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

But of which of the angels hath he said at any time, Sit thou on my right hand, Till I make thine enemies the footstool of thy feet?

The seventh quotation is Psalms 110:1; and the complete verse is thus: "The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool." Here is another instance of God's being both the speaker and the person spoken to; and it is upon the most convincing evidence that this Psalm is considered Messianic, seeing that Christ himself thus applied it when he pressed the question upon the Pharisees, "How then doth David in the spirit call him Lord?" (Matthew 22:43,44). Added to this, Jesus also identified himself as one "sitting upon the right hand of power" (Mark 14:62), and Paul declared that "He must reign until he hath put all enemies under his feet" (1 Corinthians 15:25).

This reference to "enemies" is a reminder of the opposing forces of evil, against which the servants of Christ are destined to strive throughout the days of their pilgrimage; and, as Exell expressed it,

Even so with the Church of Christ, in which this day we confess ourselves to have our portion, from the first day of her peregrination in earth until her last entrance into glory, there is a perpetual hatred between the serpent and her Head and between the seed of the serpent and her children, in which strife every one of us particularly have our fight, so that from our mother's womb until we lie down in the grave our life is a warfare upon the earth.[20]

From that beleaguered citadel of faith in which every child of God is besieged and threatened by the encroachments and frustrations imposed by the evil one, how glorious is the refreshment that comes from a glance heavenward where the Head and Redeemer sits in eternal enthronement, exercising all authority in heaven and upon the earth. Not to lose sight of the argument the author made from this passage, how utterly beyond the glory and authority of angels is that of Christ!


[20] Ibid., p. 60.

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James Burton Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.

Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". https: Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

But to which of the angels said he at any time,.... That is, he never said to any of them in his council, or covenant; he never designed to give them any such honour, as hereafter expressed; he never promised it to them, or bestowed it on them; he never called up any of them to so high a place, or to such a dignity:

sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool; yet this he said to his Son, Psalm 110:1 for to him, the Messiah, are they spoken, and have had their fulfilment in him: See Gill on Matthew 22:44; and therefore he must be greater than the angels.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Gill, John. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https: 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

10 But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool?

(10) He proves and confirms the dignity of Christ revealed in the flesh, by these six evident testimonies by which it appears that he far surpasses all angels, so much so that he is called both Son, and God in (Hebrews 1:5-8) , (Hebrews 1:10) , (Hebrews 1:13).

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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https: 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Quotation from Psalm 110:1. The image is taken from the custom of conquerors putting the feet on the necks of the conquered (Joshua 10:24, Joshua 10:25).

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This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https: 1871-8.

William Godbey's Commentary on the New Testament

13...”Sit Thou on my right hand until I make Thy enemies Thy footstool.” This verse reveals the congratulation of the So by the Father when He flew up from Mt. Olivet, having triumphed on the cross and victoriously evacuated the sepulcher, thus having gloriously consummated the expiatory work, for whose execution He evacuated His celestial throne. This gushing, welcome reception on the part of the Father was an indisputable confirmation of His perfect satisfaction with the work wrought by His son, vindicatory of the violated law, and expiatory of a guilty world. Therefore, the Father actually crowns Him mediatorial King forever, having the sole and perfect right to rule this world in righteousness and live through all eternity. Jesus is Prophet, Priest and King simultaneously. Yet these offices have their respective periods of predominance. While on earth, His prophetic office predominated, and He was the most indefatigable preacher the world ever saw. When He offered up His body on the cross, a sacrifice for the whole world, His official High Priesthood became predominant, and has so continued ever since, and will be pre-eminent till he descends on His royal throne, to inaugurate the millennial reign. Then His Kingship will rise pre-eminent, brighten through the millennial ages, and sweep on through all eternity. Since the Son has actually redeemed this world by His blood, and conquered it by His heroic labor and suffering, He has the sole right to possess and rule it forever. Therefore, it is the province of the Fatter as the executive of the Diving Government, to enforce the claim of His Son over all the kingdoms of the earth. Consequently, in His royal, Fatherly, congratulatory reception, He says, “Well done, my Son; sit down on the mediatorial throne till I make all of thine enemies thy footstool.” This the Father has been faithful to do in His castigatory judgments against wicked nations in all ages, but the grand finale of this fulfillment will be consummated during the great Tribulation.

“I beheld till the throne was cast down and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of His head like pure wool; His throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire. A fiery stream issued and came forth before Him; a thousand thousands ministered unto Him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before Him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened.” (Daniel 7:9-10)

I saw in the night visions, and behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought Him near before Him. And there was given Him dominion and glory and a kingdom that all people, nations and languages should serve Him; His dominion is an everlasting dominion which shall not pass away, and His kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.” (Daniel 7:13-14)

We see clearly and unequivocally in these visions of Daniel the final and summary fulfillment of the Father’s promise to the Son, to make His enemies His footstool. We see clearly how the Father will come down in the great Tribulation and shake every potentate from his throne, both political and ecclesiastical, thus preparing the way for the universal reign of His Son. “I beheld till the thrones were cast down.” The connection shows plainly and positively that these thrones are none other than all the dominions of this world, both political and ecclesiastical. Whiteness signifies the perfect purity of God and His administration. Fire, throughout the Bible, symbolizes destruction. No one will question that the Ancient of days means the Father, in contradistinction to the Son. Now remember, the Father has no incarnation. Hence, He will be utterly invisible, though present on the earth in His awful castigatory judgments. While the Ancient of days will be invisible, Antichrist will rise, visible to mortal eyes, and lead myriads after him to perdition. The “horn” here mentioned means the pope, who will be Antichrist in the Tribulation, speaking “great words.” “I beheld till the beast was slain and his body given to the burning flame.” Beast here means human government in contradistinction to the Theocracy. The fact that the beast was slain and his body given to the burning flame, can mean nothing less than the utter destruction of all human kingdoms. God’s original plan was to rule the world by righteousness, love and wisdom, both in state and church. When the people became so wicked as to utterly reject the divine government they set up governments of their own, ruled by men instead of God. The Holy Ghost constantly in the prophecies designates them “wild beast governments.” The Greek word theerion, meaning a cruel, bloodthirsty wild beast, is constantly used by the Holy Ghost to designate human governments. This is strictly pertinent, because they all rule by brute force, selfish and cruel as the grave. These wild beast powers have already killed enough people in wars to populate the globe fourteen times. Still the people, blinded by the devil, hold on to the wild beast, and reject God who has always wanted to rule the world in peace, righteousness and love. Theologians have generally applied these prophecies to the final judgment, which is utterly untrue, because here we see the Ancient of days, i.e., the Father, presides; whereas in the final judgment, at the end of time, the Son will encumber the judgment seat. You clearly see the connection of the Son and the Father, in the execution of these judgments. The Father comes and casts down all human thrones, destroys all human power, political and ecclesiastical, for Babylon falls meanwhile (Revelation 18:2), and with her all human ecclesiasticism goes down. Since the Son of God has the sole right to the sovereignty of this world, in both church and state, all human governments, both political and ecclesiastical, which are not really subordinated to divine rule, are His uncompromising enemies, and destined to fall beneath His conquering tread. In these prophecies you plainly see the Father descending in His awful retributive judgments, and preparing the whole world for the reign of His Son. After which the Son rides down on the throne of His glory and enters upon the millennial reign.

“But the saints of the Most High shall take the kingdom and possess the kingdom forever, ever’ forever and ever.” (Daniel 7:8)

“Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the Most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom.” (Daniel 7:22)

Away with the popular theology which construes this to be the spiritual kingdom. Common sense teaches you that every saint has already received the spiritual kingdom, otherwise he could not be a saint. There is no possible evasion of the conclusion that “the kingdom” here means the government of the world, political and ecclesiastical. Christ will rule the world during the millennial ages through the instrumentality of His transfigured saints. Since He is to encumber the final judgment throne, and then reign over the sanctified, renovated and celestialized world forever, “to His kingdom there will be no end.” Hence, you see the pertinency of the declaration that the saints will “possess the kingdom forever, even forever and ever.”

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Godbey, William. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "William Godbey's Commentary on the New Testament". https:

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Hath he said (ειρηκενeirēken). Perfect active common use of the perfect for permanent record. This seventh quotation is proof of the Son‘s superiority as the Son of God (his deity) to angels and is from Psalm 110:1, a Messianic Psalm frequently quoted in Hebrews.

Sit thou (κατουkathou). Second person singular imperative middle of κατημαιkathēmai to sit, for the longer form κατησοkathēso as in Matthew 22:44; James 2:3.

On my right hand
(εκ δεχιων μουek dexiōn mou). “From my right.” See Hebrews 1:3 for εν δεχιαιen dexiāi “at the right hand.”

Till I make
(εως αν τωheōs an thō). Indefinite temporal clause about the future with εωςheōs and the second aorist active subjunctive of τιτημιtithēmi with ανan (often not used), a regular and common idiom. Quoted also in Luke 20:43. For the pleonasm in υποδιονhupodion and των ποδωνtōn podōn (objective genitive) see Matthew 5:35.

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)

Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https: Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

d Seventh quotation, Hebrews href="/desk/?q=heb+1:3&sr=1">Hebrews 1:3, which marked the act of assuming the place.

On my right hand ( ἐκ δεξιῶν μοῦ )

Lit. “from my right hand.” The usual formula is ἐν δεξίᾳ . The genitive indicates moving from the right hand and taking the seat. The meaning is, “be associated with me in my royal dignity.” Comp. Daniel 7:13, Daniel 7:14, and the combination of the Psalm and Daniel in Christ's words, Mark 14:62. Comp. also Matthew 24:30; Acts 2:34; 1 Corinthians 15:25; 1 Peter 3:22.

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https: Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool?

Psalm 110:1.

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Wesley, John. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https: 1765.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

Hebrews 1:13; Psalms 110:1.

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Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https: 1878.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

13.But to whom of the angels, etc. He again by another testimony extols the excellency of Christ, that it might hence be evident how much he is above the angels. The passage is taken from Psalms 110:1, and it cannot be explained of any but of Christ. For as it was not lawful for kings to touch the priesthood, as is testified by the leprosy of Uzziah; and as it appears that neither David, nor any other of his successors in the kingdom, was ordained a priest, it follows, that a new kingdom as well as a new priesthood is here introduced, since the same person is made a king and a priest. Besides, the eternity of the priesthood is suitable to Christ alone.

Now, in the beginning of the Psalm he is set at God’s right hand. This form of expression, as I have already said, means the same, as though it was said, that the second place was given him by the Father; for it is a metaphor which signifies that he is the Father’s vicegerent and his chief minister in exercising authority, so that the Father rules through him. No one of the angels bears so honorable an office; hence Christ far excels all.

Until I make, etc. As there are never wanting enemies to oppose Christ’s kingdom, it seems not to be beyond the reach of danger, especially as they who attempt to overthrow it possess great power, have recourse to various artifices, and also make all their attacks with furious violence. Doubtless, were we to regard things as they appear, the kingdom of Christ would seem often to be on the verge of ruin. But the promise, that Christ shall never be thrust from his seat, takes away from us every fear; for ho will lay prostrate all his enemies. These two things, then, ought to be borne in mind, — that the kingdom of Christ shall never in this world be at rest, but that there will be many enemies by whom it will be disturbed; and secondly, that whatever its enemies may do, they shall never prevail, for the session of Christ at God’s right hand will not be for a time, but to the end of the world, and that on this account all who will not submit to his authority shall be laid prostrate and trodden under his feet

If any one asks, whether Christ’s kingdom shall come to an end, when all his enemies shall be subdued; I give this answer, — that his kingdom shall be perpetual, and yet in such a way as Paul intimates in 1 Corinthians 15:25; for we are to take this view, — that God who is not known to us in Christ, will then appear to us as he is in himself. And yet Christ will never cease to be the head of men and of angels; nor will there be any diminution of his honor. But the solution of this question must be sought from that passage.

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https: 1840-57.

William Newell's Commentary on Romans and Revelation

But of which of the angels hath He said at any time, Sit Thou on My right hand, Till I make Thine enemies the footstool of Thy feet?

This is the seventh of these wonderful citations concerning the Son of God's position above all angelic creation. Angels and saints are much in the mouths of Romanists, as with the early Gnostics, who built up a series of higher and higher powers they called "demiurges"--finally to reach God! How we praise God for the simplicity of His Word! Christ, and Christ alone, God's dear Son, is the Word of God! As to God's purposes for the future, Christ's enemies shall be by God placed beneath His feet. For this we see our Lord waiting, in Chapter 10:13. Note this word "enemies." We have it here in Chapter 1:13, from Psalm 2; and in Chapter 10:13: "Henceforth expecting till His enemies be made the footstool of His feet"; and again, Chapter 10:27, "A fierceness of fire which shall devour the adversaries." We shall not pause here to describe these "adversaries," except to say that they are those who "will not that this Man reign over them" (Lk. 19:14, 27).

Perhaps no utterance of Scripture is more misunderstood than this 13th verse, yet see how plain it is:

  1. The Son of God is asked to sit at the Father's right hand.
  2. It is promised, as to His enemies, not that they shall be converted, but that they shall be made the footstool of His feet.
  3. The Father is seen bringing back His Son to this earth, for it is on earth that both human enemies and Satan himself are, at Christ's coming, put beneath His feet. See Revelation 19:11-21. Compare 1 Corinthians 15:25, which we have noted above; and see that Psalm 110:1 is quoted by our Lord in Matthew (22:44), Mark (12:36), and Luke (20:42); and by Peter at Pentecost (Acts 2:34, 35)--besides here in Hebrews 1:13.
  4. At the time when God the Father will bring back His Son into this world, men are seen arrayed against Him: His "enemies." Only the willfully blind can possibly deny this. This absolutely contradicts the mouthings of "Modernists" that this world is going to be won by "moral suasion," and what they call "the kingdom," by human effort: "movements," "uplifts," man's appeals to "what is best in humanity." No less does this Scripture give the lie utterly to "Postmillennialism," together with the horrid bastard, "a-millennialism."

"Enemies"! Yes, this world has not changed, except every day for the worse, since "both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, were gathered together, against the Lord, and against His Anointed" (Acts 4:26). "The mind of the flesh is enmity against God." We have not words, nor this book pages, to paint the picture! The Son believes exactly what the Father tells Him of His future "enemies," and that they shall be made the footstool of His feet, and therefore is "expecting" this event. This 13th verse of Hebrews looks forward to the stupendous scene of Revelation 19:5 ff., when, against the glorious Lord Who comes riding with the armies of Heaven to tread "The winepress of the fierceness of the wrath of God, the Almighty," we find the kings of the earth lined up, under God's great enemy, the Beast, the Antichrist (Rev. 19:19).

But "Modernism," along with the wretched sect-slaves whose "standards" declare that man will make a "better world," that "the kingdom is already here," and that this world shall be prepared for Christ by being better instructed, better exampled and led, until it is so turned to God that Christ will be welcomed here!--all this, the first chapter of Hebrews proclaims to be a lie! That any so-called "great denominations" and their Bible-ignorant "standards" that hold it, only proves it is false. "Great"? In whose eyes, pray you? In His Who forbade sects? Great in numbers, property, worldly religious influence, yes. But all that is Laodicea! Christ will spue it out.

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Newell, William. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". William Newell's Commentary on Romans, Hebrews and Revelation. https: 1938.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

13 But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool?

Ver. 13. Sit on my right hand] As mine equal in honour and power. It seems to be a metaphor from some king, who, having an only begotten, lets him in the throne as heir and successor to reign with him, and use right of dominion over all as partner in the empire. Thus David dealt by Solomon, Vespasian by Titus, and our Henry II by his eldest son Henry, whom he crowned while he was yet alive; though afterwards he suffered him not to be what himself had made him.

Until I make thine enemies, &c.] Till the mystery of man’s redemption be finished, death the last enemy destroyed, 1 Corinthians 15:26, the saints perfected and placed at his right hand, Matthew 25:33; Revelation 3:21; Psalms 45:1-17.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https: 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Hebrews 1:13. But to which of the angels, &c.— "But, not to insist on the manner in which men have addressed their homage and their praises to him, even under the inspiration of an unerring Spirit; let me refer you to another passage, in which the Father himself speaks to him under the character of his Son, exalted to his mediatorial kingdom; that you may thence take an idea of his grandeur. For to which of the angels, &c."

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https: 1801-1803.

Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

This verse contains a farther proof of Christ's pre-eminence above the angels, and that he is in reality the Son of God; namely, because he sits in the quality of a Son, at the right hand of God the Father; equal to him in dignity, power, and glory, commanding all the visible and invisible world, most easily, yet irresistibly; though gradually, subduing his enemies to a consummate and complete victory.

To which of the angels said he at any time? The words are an interrogation, which have the force of a vehement negation: and imply that God the Father did never say this to any of the angels, nor put such honour upon any of them, as to say, Sit on my right hand until I make thy foes thy footstool; but to Christ he said it, Psalms 110:1. The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.

Learn hence, 1. That Jesus Christ is a spiritual King; and as such has many enemies to his kingdom and government. Sin is an enemy to Christ and his kingcom; and makes an universal opposition to Christ and his government; Satan is a sworn enemy to Christ and his throne, and he exerts his enmity temptations and persecutions. The world is an enemy also in the things of it, in the men of it, in the rule of it. The law is an enemy to Christ and his kingdom, not absolutely, but accidentally, by reason of the consequences that attend it. It slays them, Romans 7:9-11 which is the work of an enemy. In a word, death, the grave, and hell, are Christ's enemies.

2. All Christ's enemies shall, in Christ's time, be made his footstool they are conquering now initially and gradually, they shall be conquered ere long finally and perfectly; and all his people shall be made complete sharers in his victory and conquest.

3. Christ's sitting at God's right hand, in a certain and assured expectation of having his foes become his footstool, is an undoubted proof of the divinity of his person, and that he is essentially and really God. To none of the angels, or any of the creatures, said he, at any time, Sit on my right hand; but to the Son he said, Sit on my right hand, &c.

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Burkitt, William. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament. https: 1700-1703.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

13.] But (the contrast is again taken up from Hebrews 1:8. δέ is often found after the second word of a sentence and even later, when a preposition begins it: so κατὰ πόλεις δέ, Herod. viii. 68. 2: ἐν τοῖς πρῶτοι δέ ἀθηναῖοι, Thuc. i. 6:.… οὐχ ὑπὸ ἐραστοῦ δὲ κ. τ. λ., Plato, Phædr. 227 D: ξὺν τύχῃ δὲ πρόσφερε, Soph. Philoct. 764: πρὸς κακῶν δʼ ἀνδρῶν μαθών, ib. 959: ἐν νυκτὶ δυσκύμαντα δʼ ὠρώρει κακά, Æsch Agam. 653. See also other cases without the prepositional construction, in Klotz ad Devar. p. 379: Hartung, Partikellehre, i. p. 190: the account to be given being, that the particle may be thus postponed, whenever for any reason the previous words can be considered as one) to whom of the angels hath He (God, as before) ever said, Sit thou on my right hand (see above on Hebrews 1:3. The phrase ἐκ δεξιῶν is not found in classical writers: but we have in Diod. Sic. iv. 56, τὴν γῆν ἔχοντας ἐξ εὐωνύμων. It is very common of standing or sitting or being on the right hand of another, in Hellenistic Greek: see reff.) until I place thine enemies (as) a footstool ( ὑποπόδιον, a word of later Greek, found in Athenæus, v. p. 192 E, ὁ γὰρ θρόνος.… ἐλευθέριός ἐστι καθέδρα σὺν ὑποποδίῳ: and xii. p. 514 f., Sextus Empir., al. The allusion is to the custom of putting the feet on the necks of conquered enemies, see Joshua 10:24 f.) of thy feet? Hardly any Psalm is so often quoted in the N. T. with reference to Christ, as Psalms 110. And no Psalm more clearly finds its ultimate reference and completion only in Christ, as even those confess, e. g. Bleek and De Wette, who question its being immediately addressed to Him at first: and regard the argument of our Lord to the Pharisees, founded on this place, as merely one ‘ex concesso.’ On the theocratic principle of interpretation, there is not the slightest difficulty in the application of the words directly to Him who is (and was ever regarded, even in David’s time, as Ebrard well shews against Bleek) Israel’s King, the Head and Chief of the theocracy.

And see this further carried out in the note on ch. Hebrews 5:6. Delitzsch, in loc., has devoted several pages to the discussion of the subject and arrangement of the Psalm.

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Alford, Henry. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https: 1863-1878.

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

Hebrews 1:13. Further citation from Psalms 110:1, according to the LXX. The psalm was looked upon universally in the time of Christ (comp. Matthew 22:44 ff.; Mark 12:35 ff.; Luke 20:41 ff.), and also in later times by many Rabbins (see Wetstein on Matthew 22:44), as a prophecy relating to the Messiah; inasmuch as on the ground of the superscription לְדָוִד David himself was regarded as the author of it, and in connection with this view the reference to the Messiah was easily proved on the ground of the words at the beginning: “to my Lord speaketh Jehovah,” according to which David acknowledges, in addition to his God, also a Lord over him. The superscription לְדָוִד, nevertheless, indicates not the writer, but the subject of the psalm. It is in its historic sense an oracle pronounced to David, when the latter was preparing for war against his powerful foes. See Ewald on the Psalm.

πρὸς τίνα δέ] δέ he in the third place, as often occurs after prepositional combinations. Comp. Klotz, ad Devar. p. 378 f.; Hartung, Partikellehre, I. p. 190 f.; Ellendt, Lexic. Soph. I. p. 397; Winer, Gramm., 7 Aufl. p. 519.

The sitting at the right hand, figure of the highest honour and dominion, see on Hebrews 1:3.

ὑποπόδιον τῶν ποδῶν σου] the footstool of Thy feet. There lies in the expression an allusion to the custom of the victor of placing his foot upon the neck of the vanquished, in token of the complete subjection of the latter; comp. Joshua 10:24.

ὑποπόδιον] first used in the Greek of a later age. Comp. Sturz, de dial. Alex. et Maced. p. 199.

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Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https: 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

Hebrews 1:13. δὲ, but) An Epitasis. [See Append.]

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https: 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

But to which of the angels said he at any time? This introduceth the last demonstration of the gospel Minister’s pre-eminency for state, office, and name, above angels. The form is thus; He that is God’s fellow, and right-hand man, is more excellent, and hath a better name, than those who are only ministers to his saints. This is to be the state of Christ he proves here; for to none of the angels did Jehovah ever say this, he never gave them that honour by his word. It is an interrogatory challenge to the Hebrews to produce that text in Scripture, which doth assert, that at any time, in any place, God gave such an honorary word to angels: this was impossible for them to do. Though God the Father never said this to any angel, yet did he say this, and records it in the Scripture, to the Lord Christ. And it was a word to him constitutivum rei, fixing the very thing. This is recorded in Psalms 110:1, where God’s powerful word settled Christ in the honour, glory, and dignity of universal lordship over angels and men, so as to reign over them, 1 Corinthians 15:25; which administration he is now in the flesh solemnly managing at the right hand of his Father, Hebrews 1:3, ever since his ascension, and so is to continue.

Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool; during all the time of this world, until by his power he reduce, subdue, and subjugate all to him, even every thing and person that should be adverse to his sovereign person and kingdom, all devils and men, subjugating of them to the basest condition, to be trod under his feet, as mire in the street, utterly destroying them, when he glorifieth his saints, 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10. The term of this word

until doth not denote the end of his reign, as if after this he should not reign, but is declarative of his reign all the time before: though his enemies were many and strong, yet it is said, 1 Corinthians 15:24,28, that then he shall deliver up the kingdom to his Father. As to his natural kingdom, which is his as God the Son, that is, equally enjoyed with the Father, and that for ever, there is no end of it; but as to his mediatory kingdom, given him by choice, and in a special manner appropriated to him as God-man for his season, this, when his work is done, and all his enemies subdued, he will resign unto the Father, that God may be all in all.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https: 1685.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

Sit on my right hand; Psalms 110:1. The Saviour interprets these words of himself. Matthew 22:41-45.

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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Family Bible New Testament". https: American Tract Society. 1851.

Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges

13. ὑποπόδιον. This same passage from Psalms 110:1 had been quoted by our Lord, in its Messianic sense, to the Scribes and Pharisees, without any attempt on their part to challenge His application of it (Matthew 22:41-44). It is also referred to by St Peter in Acts 2:34 and by St Paul (1 Corinthians 15:25). The Greek expression for “till” (ἕως ἂν) implies entire indefiniteness of time. The reference is to the oriental custom of putting the feet on the necks of conquered kings (Joshua 10:24).

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"Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges". https: 1896.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

13. Sit on my right hand—Words applicable to Christ’s exaltation at his ascension. See notes on Hebrews 1:3; Matthew 28:18.

Until—During the interval between that ascension and the completion of the work of his second coming.

Make… footstool—Note on Acts 2:35. This is to be being accomplished during the present dispensation, and fully accomplished at the final judgment.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https: 1874-1909.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

‘But of which of the angels has he said at any time,

“You, sit on my right hand,

Until I make your enemies the footstool of your feet?” ’

It will be noted that this is the seventh quotation, a number seen as the number of divine perfection in all nations from the time when numbering was first invented. The sevenfold witness is thus seen as divinely decisive. This quote is taken from Psalms 110:1 and refers to God’s king being told by God to take His seat at God’s right hand while God makes His enemies His footstool. The placing of the foot on a conquered king’s neck may well have been an evidence of his submission, but the thought may simply be to picture submission. To which of the angels, the writer asks, did God ever say that? So do we have the sevenfold witness to the superiority of Christ over the angels.

Tositin the presence of God was the Davidic king’s prerogative (2 Samuel 7:18; Ezekiel 44:3). It was in itself a clear indication that He enjoyed God’s favour and was God’s viceroy. To have all enemies ( here both of heaven and earth) His footstool is an indication of His guaranteed final triumph.

So we note here the advancement in thought of the quotations:

· 1). He is declared to be God’s Son and ‘begotten’ as His anointed (compare ‘in a Son’ - Hebrews 1:2).

· 2). He continually shares in a special relationship with God whereby God is His Father and He is God’s Son (compare again ‘in a Son’ - Hebrews 1:2).

· 3) As the Firstborn Who will come again into the world He receives homage and worship continually from God’s angels (compare ‘heir of all things - Hebrews 1:2).

· 4) His throne is God and therefore His rule is everlasting and perfectly righteous, with Him being anointed as Supreme Ruler, high above all (compare ‘heir of all things’ - Hebrews 1:2).

· 5) As ‘Lord’ He is the Creator, Sustainer and Culminator of Creation, so that all awaits His will, while He Himself is everlasting (compare ‘through whom also He made the worlds’ and ‘upholding all things by His word of power’ - Hebrews 1:2-3).

· 6) He has been called to sit at God’s right hand until all His enemies are subjected to Him (compare ‘sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high’ - Hebrews 1:3) .

And within it all is set the contrast with the angels. This contrast between the Son and the angels (Hebrews 1:4-9; Hebrews 1:13) is then brought to its conclusion by a positive declaration of what the position and responsibilities of the angels are.

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Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https: 2013.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

The seventh and last quotation in this series is from Psalm 110:1. Angels stand and serve, but the Son sits and rules (cf. Hebrews 1:3; Hebrews 8:1; Hebrews 10:12; Hebrews 12:2; Matthew 22:43-44; Matthew 26:64; Mark 16:19; Acts 2:33-34; Romans 8:34; Colossians 3:1; 1 Peter 3:22). The vindication predicted here will take place when Jesus Christ returns at His second advent and at the various judgments of God"s enemies that will follow that return (cf. Matthew 25:31-46; Revelation 20:11-15; et al.). Jesus Christ"s present rule on His Father"s throne over the church is not the same as His rule on David"s throne over David"s earthly kingdom (cf. Hebrews 1:3; Hebrews 8:1; Hebrews 10:12; Hebrews 12:2). [Note: See Rogers, pp81-82.] Eventually every knee shall bow to Him ( Philippians 2:10-11).

One writer identified a chiasm in the quotations in Hebrews 1:3-13.

"A The Son"s status as royal King ( Psalm 2:7; 2 Samuel 7:14) ( Hebrews 1:5)

B The Son"s status as Divine Wisdom ( Deuteronomy 32:43 : Psalm 104:4) ( Hebrews 1:6-7)

C The Son"s status as royal King and Divine Wisdom ( Psalm 45:6-7) ( Hebrews 1:8-9)

B" The Son"s status as Divine Wisdom ( Psalm 102:26-28) ( Hebrews 1:10-12)

A" The Son"s status as royal King ( Psalm 110:1) ( Hebrews 1:13)" [Note: Herbert W. Bateman, IV, "Two First-Century Messianic Uses of the OT: Hebrews 1:5-13and4QFlor11-19 ," Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society38:1 (March1995):26.]

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https: 2012.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Hebrews 1:13. Sit thou, etc., from Psalms 110:1. The right hand is the place of authority and honour. Thy footstool, lit. a footstool of thy feet—not a resting-place for the feet, but what is to be trodden under by them. The application of this Psalm to the Messiah is accepted by the Jews, as appears from the Targums and other Jewish writings, is affirmed by Christ (Matthew 22:43-46) and by His apostles (Acts 2:34-35; 1 Corinthians 15:25; Ephesians 1:20-23), and by different passages in this Epistle. Whom else could David acknowledge as his Lord? and to whom else did God swear that he should be a priest for ever?

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https: 1879-90.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Hebrews 1:13. But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit thou, &c. — In this interrogation a vehement negation is included; He said not at any time to any of the angels, as he said to his Son in the human nature, Psalms 110:1. Sit thou on my right hand — Reign thou over the universe; till, &c. — He never spake these words, or the like, concerning them; there is no testimony to that purpose recorded in the whole book of God, the only means of such knowledge, and rule of our faith in such things. Our Lord (Matthew 22:43) spake of it to the Pharisees as a thing certain, and allowed by all the Jewish doctors, that David wrote the cxth Psalm (from which this quotation is made) by inspiration of the Spirit, concerning Christ. This passage, therefore, is rightly applied to Christ by the writer of this epistle. See note on Psalms 110:1. I make thine enemies thy footstool — The eastern princes used to tread on the necks of their vanquished enemies, in token of their utter subjection, Joshua 10:24. And some of the more haughty ones, in mounting their horses, used their enemies as a footstool. This passage, therefore, is a prediction of the entire conquest of evil angels and wicked men, Christ’s enemies. Are they not all ministering spirits, &c. — The apostle having proved the pre- eminence of the Son, as Mediator of the new covenant, above all the angels, from the attributes of honour and glory that are ascribed to him in the Scripture, that he might not appear to argue merely in a negative manner, from what is not said concerning them, he adds here such a description of their natures and office, or employment as shows that indeed no such thing can be rightly affirmed concerning them, as he had before manifested to be spoken and recorded concerning the Son: 1st, As to their nature, they are πνευματα, spirits, or spiritual substances; not qualities, or natural faculties, as the Sadducees imagined: and 2d, As to their offices, they are πνευματα λειτουργικα, ministering spirits. So they are termed Psalms 103:21. Bless the Lord all ye his hosts, λειτουργοι αυτου, ye ministers of his that do his pleasure. And how they execute their office we here learn. They are εις διακονιαν αποστελλομενα, sent forth unto a ministry: δια τους μελλοντας κληρονομειν σωτηριαν, on account, or for the sake of those that shall be heirs of salvation — Perhaps this is said in allusion to the Hebrew name of angels, which properly signifies messengers. The word all is here emphatical, denoting that even the highest orders of angels, dominions, thrones, principalities, and powers bow the knee and are subject to Jesus; ministering in the affairs of the world according to his direction. But although the Scriptures speak of all the angels as thus ministering, the word all does not imply that every individual angel is actually employed in this way, but that every one is subject to be so employed. It must be observed also, that the expression is not, sent forth to minister to, but δια, for — Or on account of; them who shall be heirs of salvation. And herein the harmony subsisting between both parts of God’s family is still preserved. As in the service of the church the ministers thereof do not, properly speaking, minister to man, but to the Lord in the behalf of men, (Acts 13:2,) so is it with these spirits also; they are sent forth to minister for the good of men, but properly it is the Lord to whom they minister. His servants they are, not ours: rather, they are our fellow-servants. As all the servants of a king, though otherwise they greatly differ, agree in this, that they are all servants to the same person. Wherefore this passage affords no ground for believing that every heir of salvation has a guardian angel assigned him. Of the ministry of angels for the benefit of the heirs of salvation we have many examples both in the Old and in the New Testament.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https: 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary


Sit on my right hand, &c. The ancient Jews themselves understood this 109th psalm of their Messias, nor could they answer Christ's words, (Matthew xxii. 45.) when he shewed them by these same words, that their Messias was not only the Son of David, but also the Lord of David, of whom it was said: the Lord said to my Lord, sit thou on my right hand, until I make thy enemies thy footstool. See also 1 Corinthians xv. 52. and in this epistle, Chap. x. 13. --- Are they not all ministering spirits? &c. The apostle, in this chapter, not only shews how much the dignity of Christ is superior to that of the highest Angels, but also his divinity; and that he is both true God and true man, as the ancient Fathers took notice against the Arians. (Witham) --- The holy Angels, says St. Augustine, to whose society we aspire, help us without difficulty, because their notion is pure and free. (De Civit. lib. 11. chap. xxxi.) Having then Jesus Christ for our advocate and mediator at the right hand of God, and his Angels for our guardians, ministering spirits, what can we wish for more?

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https: 1859.

John Owen Exposition of Hebrews

The next verse contains the last testimony produced by the apostle for the confirmation of the pre-eminence of the Lord Christ above angels, in the words ensuing: —

Hebrews 1:13. πρὸς τὶνα δὲ τῶν ἀγγέλων εἴρηκέ ποτε· κάθου ἐκ δεξιῶν μου, ἕως ἃν θῶ τοὺς ἐχθροὺς σου ὑποπόδιον τῶν ποδῶν σου·

There is no difference about the reading of these words. As they are here expressed by the apostle so are they in the translation of the LXX., and the original text is exactly rendered by them.

Hebrews 1:13. — But unto which of the angels said he at any time, Sit thou on my right hand, until I make [put, place] thine enemies thy footstool [the footstool of thy feet]?

The usefulness of this testimony for the confirmation of the dignity and authority of the Messiah is evident by the frequent quotation of it in the New Testament: as by our Savior himself, Matthew 22:44; by Peter, Acts 2:34-35; and twice by our apostle, in this place and 1 Corinthians 15:25.

As the words are here used, we may consider the introduction the testimony, and the testimony itself.

The introduction of the testimony is by way of interrogation: “Unto which of the angels said he at any time?” And herein three things may be observed: —

1. That in the interrogation a vehement negation is included: ‘He said not at any time to any angels;’he never spake words or the like concerning them; there is no testimony unto that purpose recorded in the whole Book of God. The way of expression puts an emphasis upon the denial. And the speaking here relates unto what is spoken in the Scripture; which is the only means of our knowledge and rule of our faith in these things.

2. That he makes application of this testimony to every angel in heaven severally considered; for whereas he had before sufficiently proved the pre- eminence of the Messiah above the angels in general, to obviate their thoughts about the especial honor and dignity of any one or more angels, or angels in a singular manner, such indeed they conceived, he applies the present testimony to every one of them singly and individually considered: “Unto which of the angels said he at any time?”

3. A tacit application of this testimony unto the Son, or Messiah: ‘Unto the angels he said not, but unto the Son he said, Sit thou on my right hand.’

That the testimony itself doth clearly prove the intendment of the apostle, provided the words were originally spoken of him or to him unto whom they are applied, is beyond all exceptions; for they contain an eulogium of him of whom they are spoken, and an assignation of honor and glory to him, beyond whatever was or can be ascribed unto any angel whatever. It remains, therefore, that this be first proved, and then the importance of the testimony is self-explained.

1. For those that believe the gospel, the authority of the Lord Christ and his apostles applying this testimony unto him is sufficient for their conviction. By our Savior, as was observed, it is applied unto the Messiah in thesi, Matthew 22:42-44. And had not this been generally acknowledged by the scribes and Pharisees, and whole church of the Jews, as it had not been to his purpose to have mentioned it, so they had not been reduced unto that conviction and shame by it as they were. The apostles apply it unto the true Messiah in hypothesi; and herein doth our faith rest.

2. But a considerable part of the controversy which we have with the Jews relating much unto this 110th psalm, we must yet further clear the application of it unto the Messiah from their exceptions.

Of the Targum or Chaldee paraphrase there are two copies, — one printed in Arias’Bible, the other in the Basle edition by Buxtorf. The title of the psalm in both of them is, על יד דוד תשבחתא, — “A song by the hand of David,” and the beginning of it is thus rendered by the former of them:

“The Lord said by his Word that he would give me the kingdom, because I studied the doctrine of the law of his right hand. Wait thou until I make thine enemies thy footstool.” By the other thus: “The Lord said by his Word that he would appoint me the lord of all Israel. But he said unto me again, Stay, for Saul, who is of the tribe of Benjamin, until he die, for a kingdom will not admit of a companion; and after that I will make thine enemies thy footstool.” Besides what appears from other considerations, it is hence sufficiently evident that this Targum was made after the Jews began to be exercised in the controversy with Christians, and had learned to corrupt by their glosses all the testimonies given in the Old Testament unto the Lord Christ, especially such as they found to be made use of in the New. Their corrupting of the sense of the Holy Ghost in this place by a pretended translation is openly malicious, against evident light and conviction. The psalm they own from the title to be written by David; but they would have him also to be the subject of it, to be spoken of in it. And therefore these words, “The LORD said unto my Lord,” they translate, “The Lord said unto me:” which assertion is contrary to the text and false in itself; for whoever was the penman of the psalm, he speaks of another person; —

“The LORD said unto my Lord;” say they, “The Lord said unto me.” And thereunto are annexed those imaginations about studying the law and waiting for the death of Saul, which in no case belong to the text or matter in hand.

Others, therefore, to avoid this rock, affirm that the psalm speaks of David, but was not composed by him, being the work of some other who calls him lord. So David Kimchi on the place. And this he endeavors to prove from the inscription of the psalm. לְדָוִד מִזְמוֹר: that is, saith he, “A psalm spoken to David;” for it denotes the third, and not the second case or variation of nouns.

But this is contrary to the use of that prefix throughout the whole Book of Psalms; and if this observation might be allowed, all psalms with this title, לְדָוִד, “le David,” which are the greatest part of those composed by him, must be adjudged from him, contrary to the received sense and consent of Jews and Christians. But fully to manifest the folly of this pretense, and that the author of it contradicted his own light out of hatred unto the gospel, there are sundry psalms with this title, לְדָוִד, “le David,” which are expressly affirmed to be composed and sung by him unto the Lord; as Psalms 18, whose title is, “To the chief musician, לְעֶבֶד יְהָֹוח לְדָוִד,” (where the prefix is repeated) — “to David, the servant of the LORD, who spake unto the LORD the words of this song.” So directly do the modern rabbins contradict their own light, out of hatred unto the gospel.

Evident, then, it is that David is not treated of in this psalm, in that he, being the penman of it, calleth him his Lord concerning whom he treats. Besides, to omit other instances of a like cogency, how or when did God swear unto David that he should be a priest, and that for ever, after the order of Melchizedek? The Jews knew well enough that David had nothing to do with the priesthood. So that David had no concernment in this psalm, but only as he was the penman of it. He was not herein so much as a type of the Messiah, but speaks of him as his Lord.

Wherefore others of them, as Jarchi, and Lipman, and Nizzachon, affirm that it is Abraham who is spoken of in this psalm; of whom the one says it was composed by Melchizedek; the other, by his servant, Eliezer of Damascus. But the fondness of these presumptuous figments is evident. Melchizedek, on all accounts, was greater than Abraham, above him in degree, dignity, and office, as being a king and priest of the most high God; and therefore blessed him, and received tithes of him, and on no account could call him his lord. Eliezer did so, being his servant; but how could he ascribe unto him the sitting at the right hand of God? how the sending forth the rod of his power from Zion? how being a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek? or, indeed, any one thing mentioned in the psalm? These things deserve not to be insisted on, but only to manifest the woeful pretences of the present Judaical infidelity.

It appears from the Dialogue of Justin Martyr with Trypho, that some of them of old applied this psalm to Hezekiah. But not one word in it can rationally be conceived to respect him; especially that which is spoken about the priesthood utterly excludes him, seeing his great-grandfather, a man of more power than himself, was smitten with leprosy, and lost the administration of his kingdom, for one single attempt to invade that office, 2 Chronicles 26.

It remains, then, that this psalm was written concerning the Messiah and him alone, for no other subject of it can be assigned. And this use in our passage we may make of the Targum, that whereas these words, “The Lord said,” do not intend a word spoken, but the stable purpose or decree of God, as Psalms 2:7, its author hath rendered them אמר ייי במימרה, — “The Lord said in” (or “by”) “his Word;” that is his Wisdom, his Son,with whom and to whom he speaks, and concerning whom his decree and purpose is here declared.

It remaineth only that we consider the objections of the Jews against our application of this psalm unto the Messiah. And these are summed up by Kimchi in his exposition of the text. “The heretics,” saith he, “expound this psalm of Jesus. And in the first verse they say the Father and Son are designed. And they read ‘Adonai’with kamets under Nun; in which use the true God is signified by that name. And verse the third, in עמךְ they read khirik under Ain; so making it signify ‘with thee.’And what is there said of the ‘beauty of holiness,’they ascribe unto that which is from the womb. But in all copies that are found, from the rising of the sun to the going down of it, khirik is with Nun in ‘Adonai,’and pathakh with Ain in

‘Hammeka.’And Gerolmus [Jerome] erred in his translation. And for the error, if the Father and Son be the Godhead, how doth one stand in need of the other? and how can he say unto him, ‘Thou art a priest?’He is a priest who offers sacrifice, but God doth not.” Of the like nature are the rest of his exceptions unto the end of his notes on that psalm. To this Lipman adds a bitter, blasphemous discourse about the application of these words, “from the womb,” Psalms 2:3, unto the womb of the blessed Virgin.

Ans. Our cause is not at all concerned in these mistakes, whether of Jews or Christians. For the Jews, their chief enmity lies against the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ; and therefore, whatever testimony is produced concerning him, they presently imagine that it is for the proof of his divine nature. This lies at the bottom of these exceptions of Kimchi. Hence he conceives that our argument from this place lies in the word אֲדֹנָי, and the pointing it with kamets, “Adonai,” so making it to be the proper name of God; when we acknowledge that it is Adoni, pointed with khirik, and signifies, “my Lord.” So it is rendered by the evangelist, Matthew 22:44; so by the LXX.; and by Jerome, “Domino meo.” And the argument of our Savior lies not in the word אֲדֹנָי; but that he being the son of David was also then the lord of David, which he could no otherwise be but upon the account of his divine nature.

In the words reflected on by Kimchi it is confessed that there have been mistakes amongst translators and expositors. These words, עמְּךָ נְדָבֹת, are rendered by the LXX. ΄ετὰ σοῦ ἡ ἀρχή· and by the Vulgar from them, “Tecum principium,” — “With thee is the beginning;” which hath misled many expositors. But Kimchi knew that Jerome had translated them, “Populi tui duces spontanei,” — “Thy people shall be willing leaders;” giving both the significations of נְדָבֹת, though one would suffice, “Thy people are” (or “shall be”) “willing.” But this pertains not to the cause under consideration. In like manner have these other words been misrendered by the same translation, מֵרֶחֶם מִשְׁחָר לְךָ טַל יַלְדֻתֶךָ. ᾿εκ γαστρὸς πρὸ ῾εωσφόρον ἐγέννησά σε, say the LXX.; and the Vulgar, “Ex utero ante luciferum genui te,” — “ From the womb before the morning star have I begotten thee:” which gave occasion to many uncouth expositions in Justin Martyr, Tertullian, Epiphanius, Austin, and others, But the words are rightly rendered, “The dew of thy birth is from the womb of the morning,” and express the rise and flourishing of the kingdom of the Messiah. These things prove, indeed, that it is dangerous to interpret the Scripture without heedful attending unto the original text; but that the Messiah is not intended in this psalm they prove not.

For what they further object, on our supposition of the divine nature of Christ, “That there was no need that God should promise God his assistance,” it is but an open effect of their ignorance or malice. Assistance is not promised the Messiah as God, but as made man for our sakes. And so as a priest did he offer that sacrifice without an interest wherein both they and we must eternally perish.

To conclude this discourse, we have many of their own masters concurring with us in the assignation of this psalm unto the Messiah; and to that purpose they freely express themselves when their minds are taken off from the consideration of the difference that they have with Christians. Thus the author of ספר אבקת רוכל, in his signs of the coming of the Messiah. “Armillus shall stir up all the world,” saith he, “to war against the Messiah, למלחמה אלא אומר לישב לימיני יאז הקבה אינו מצרינו;” —

“whom the holy God shall not compel to war, but shall only say unto him, ‘Sit thou at my right hand;’”

referring unto this place. So Saadias Gaon on Daniel 7:13 : צדקנו כדכתוב נאם י לאדני שב לימיני והו משיח; —

“This is Messiah our righteousness, as it is written, ‘The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand.’”

They affirm the same in Midrash Tehillim; on Psalms 18:35 : יהוה לאדני שב לימיני ריודן אמר לעתיד לבא הקבה מושיב מלךְ משיח לימינו שכנאם; —

“Rabbi Joden said, In the world to come, the holy, blessed God shall cause Messiah the king to sit on his right hand; as it is written, ‘The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand.’”

And to the same purpose are the words of R. Moses Haddarshan in Bereshith Rabba on Genesis 18:1 : בשם רלוי פתח ותתן לי מגן ישעךְ וימינךְ הסעדני לעתיד לבא הקבה מושיב למלךְ רברכיה יהוה לאדני שב לימיני ואברהם ישב על שמאלו ופני אברהם בן בנךְ על ימיני ואני על ימינךְ הוי וענותךְ תרבנו מכספת ואומר בן בני ישב על הימין ואני ישב על השמאל הקבה מפיסו ואומר לו המשיח לימינו שכינאם; —

“Rabbi Berechia, in the name of Rabbi Levi, opened that which is spoken, ‘Thou shalt give me the shield of thy salvation, and thy right hand shall sustain me,’Psalms 18:35. In the world to come, the holy, blessed God shall cause Messiah the king to sit on his right hand; as it is written, ‘The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand.’And Abraham shall sit at his left hand. And the face of Abraham shall be pale, and he shall say, ‘The son of my son sits on the right hand, and I on the left.’But God shall appease him, and say unto him, ‘The son of thy son sits at my right hand, but I am at thy right hand;’as it is written, ‘Thy loving-kindness shall increase me.’”

And so on Psalms 17 : Rabbi Joden in the name of R. Chijah, לבא הקבה מושיב למלךְ המשיח לימינו שנאמר נום יהיה לאדוני לעתיד, —

“In the world to come the holy blessed God shall place Messiah the king at his right hand, as it is said, ‘The LORD said unto my Lord.’”

Thus, setting aside the mixture of their follies and impieties, wherein we are not concerned, we have a sufficient suffrage from the Jews themselves unto our assignation of this prophetical psalm to the Messiah; which is enough to stop the mouths of their modern gainsayers, who are not able to assign any other person unto whom it should belong. Having, then, removed their objections, we may return unto the interpretation of the words. The matter intended in the first part of these words, or sitting at the right hand of God, hath been somewhat spoken unto already, and I shall add but little in the further expiration of it in this place.

Some things controverted on these words we may well omit the consideration of; as whether were the more honorable place of old, the right hand or the left Besides, they have been sufficiently spoken unto already on Psalms 17:3. For whereas there is no mention made anywhere of sitting at the left hand of God, as was observed, there is no comparison to be feigned between the one and the other. Besides, the pretense of the left hand to have been the most honorable place of old is most vain, insisted on by some who had a desire to vent new observations on old matters to little purpose. And Bellarmine shows what good leisure he had in managing of controversies, when he spent more time and labor in answering an objection against the pope’s supremacy, from Peter’s being placed in old seals on the left hand of Paul, than on many texts of Scripture plainly overthrowing his pretensions.

Neither shall we consider their claim unto this testimony, who, understanding the human nature of Christ to be only intended and spoken to, affirm that its sitting at the right hand of God consists in a real communication of all divine properties and attributes unto that nature; a pretense very remote from the apostle’s design and importance of the words,

For the introductory preface of this testimony, “Unto which of the angels said he at any time?” we have already considered it. In the testimony itself we must consider, —

1. The person speaking, “The LORD.”

2. The person spoken unto, “my Lord.”

3. The nature and manner of this speaking, “said.”

4. The thing spoken, “Sit on my right hand.”

5. The end hereof as to work and operation, “make thine enemies thy footstool.”

6. The limitation of it as unto duration, “until.”

1. The person speaking is the LORD, “The LORD said.” In the Greek, both the person speaking and the person spoken unto are expressed by the same name, κύριος, “Lord;” only the person spoken unto is not absolutely called so, but with relation to the psalmist, κυρίῳ μου, “to my lord.” David calls him his lord, Matthew 22:45. But in the Hebrew they have different denominations. The person speaking is Jehovah, נְאֻם יְהָֹוה, — that is, God the Father; for though the name be often used where the Son is distinctly spoken of, and sometimes in the same place each of them is mentioned by that name, as Genesis 19:25, Zechariah 2:8-9, because of their equal participation of the same divine nature, signified thereby, yet where Jehovah speaketh unto the Son or of him, as here, it is the person of the Father that is distinctly denoted thereby, according as was showed at the entrance of this epistle.

2. The person spoken unto is the Son, אֲדוֹן, “the Lord,” David’s Lord; in what respect we must now inquire. The Lord Christ, the Son, in respect of his divine nature, is of the same essence, power, and glory, with the Father, John 10:30. Absolutely, therefore, and naturally, in that respect he is capable of no subordination to the Father or exaltation by him, but what depends on and flows from his eternal generation, John 5:26. By dispensation he humbled himself, and emptied himself of this glory, Philippians 2:7-8; not by a real parting with it, but by the assumption of human nature into personal union with himself, being made flesh, John 1:14; wherein his eternal glory was clouded for a season, John 17:5, and his person humbled to the discharge of those acts of his mediation which were to be performed in the human nature, Philippians 2:9-10. This person of Christ is here spoken unto, not in respect of his divine nature only, which is not capable of exaltation or glory by the way of free gift or donation; nor in respect of his human nature only, which is not the king and head of the church; but with respect unto his whole person, wherein the divine nature, exerting its power and glory with the will and understanding of the human nature, is the principle of those theandrical acts whereby Christ ruleth over all in the kingdom given him of his Father, Revelation 1:17-18. As he was God, he was David’s Lord, but not his son; as he was man, he was David’s son, and so absolutely could not be his Lord; in his person, as he was God and man, he was his Lord and his son, — which is the intention of our Savior’s question, Matthew 22:45.

3. For the nature and manner of this speaking, when and how God said it, four things seem to be intended in it: —

(1.) The eternal decree of God concerning the exaltation of the Son incarnate. So David calls this word the “decree,” the statute or eternal appointment of God, Psalms 2:7. This is λόγος ἐνδιάθετος, the internal and eternal word, or speaking of the mind, will, and counsel of God, referred unto by Peter, 1 Peter 1:20. God said this in the eternal purpose of his will, to and concerning his Son.

(2.) The covenant and compact that was between the Father and Son about and concerning the work of mediation is expressed also in this saying. That there was such a covenant, and the nature of it, I have elsewhere declared. See Proverbs 8:30-31; Isaiah 53:10-12; Zechariah 6:12-13; John 17:4-6. In this covenant God said unto him, “Sit thou at my right hand;” which he also pleaded in and upon the discharge of his work, Isaiah 50:8-9; John 17:4-5.

(3.) There is also in it the declaration of this decree and covenant in the prophecies and promises given out concerning their accomplishment and execution from the foundation of the world, Luke 1:70; 1 Peter 1:11, Genesis 3:15. He said it “by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began.” And in this sense David only recounts the prophecies and promises that went before, Luke 24:25-27. And all these are comprised in this speaking here mentioned, — thus “the LORD said unto him;” and all these were past when recorded by David.

(4.) But he yet looks forward, by the Spirit of prophecy, unto the actual accomplishment of them all, when, upon the resurrection of Christ, and the fulfilling of his work of humiliation, God actually invested him with the promised glory, (which is the fourth thing intended in the expression,)

Acts 2:33; Acts 2:36; Acts 5:31; 1 Peter 1:20-21. All these four things center in a new revelation now made to David by the Spirit of prophecy. This he here declares as the stable purpose, covenant, and promise of God the Father, revealed unto him: “The LORD said.”

And this also gives us an account of the manner of this expression, as to its imperative enunciation, “Sit thou.” It hath in it the force of a promise that he should do so, as it respected the decree, covenant, and declaration thereof from the foundation of the world. God, engaging his faithfulness and power for the effecting of it in its appointed season, speaks concerning it as a thing instantly to be done. And as those words respect the glorious accomplishment of the thing itself, so they denote the acquiescence of God in the work of Christ, and his authority in his glorious exaltation.

4. The thing spoken about, is Christ’s sitting at the right hand of God. Wherein that consists hath been declared on 1 Peter 1:3. In brief, it is the exaltation of Christ unto the glorious administration of the kingdom granted unto him, with honor, security, and power; or as in one word our apostle calls it, his reigning, 1 Corinthians 15:25; concerning which we have treated already at large.

And herein we shall acquiesce, and not trouble ourselves with the needless curiosity and speculation of some about these words. Such is that of Maldonate on Matthew 16, before remarked on Matthew 16:3. Saith he,

“Cum Filius dicitur sedere ad dextram Patris, denotatur comparatio virtutis Filii et Patris, et potentia Filii major dicitur ratione functionis officii et administrationis ecclesiae. Paterque videtur fecisse Filium quodammodo se superiorem, et donasse illi nomen etiam supra ipsum Dei nomen, quod omnes Christiani tacite significant, cum audito nomine Jesu detegunt caput, audito autem nomine Dei, non item;” —

than which nothing could be more presumptuously nor foolishly spoken; for there is not in the words the least intimation of any comparison between the power of the Father and the Son, but only the Father’s exaltation of the Son unto power and glory expressed. But, as was said, these things have been already considered.

5. There is in the words the end aimed at in this sitting down at the right hand of God; and that is, the making of his enemies the footstool of his feet. This is that which is promised unto him in the state and condition whereunto he is exalted. For the opening of these words we must inquire, —

(1.) Who are these enemies of Christ;

(2.) How they are to be made his footstool;

(3.) By whom.

(1.) For the first, we have showed that it is the glorious exaltation of Christ in his kingdom that is here spoken of; and therefore the enemies intended must be the enemies of his kingdom, or enemies unto him in his kingdom, — that is, as he sits on his throne carrying on the work designed and ends of it. Now, the kingdom of Christ may be considered two ways ; — first, In respect of the internal, spiritual power and efficacy of it in the hearts of his subjects; secondly, With respect unto the outward, glorious administration of it in the world. And in both these respects it hath enemies in abundance, all and every one whereof must be made his footstool. We shall consider them apart.

The kingdom, rule, or reigning of Christ in the first sense, is the authority and power which he puts forth for the conversion, sanctification, and salvation of his elect. As he is their king, he quickens them by his Spirit, sanctifies them by his grace, preserves them by his faithfulness, raiseth them from the dead at the last day by his power, and gloriously rewardeth them unto eternity in his righteousness. In this work the Lord Christ hath many enemies; as the law, sin, Satan, the world, death, the grave, and hell. All these are enemies to the work and kingdom of Christ, and consequently to his person, as having undertaken that work.

[1.] The law is an enemy unto Christ in his kingdom, not absolutely, but by accident, and by reason of the consequents that attend it where his subjects are obnoxious unto it. It slays them, Romans 7:9-11, which is the work of an enemy; is against them and contrary unto them, Colossians 2:14; and contributes strength to their other adversaries, 1 Corinthians 15:56; which discovers the nature of an enemy.

[2.] Sin is universally and in its whole nature an enemy unto Christ, Romans 8:7. Sinners and enemies are the same, Romans 5:8; Romans 5:10; Colossians 1:21. It is that which makes special, direct, and immediate opposition to the quickening, sanctifying, and saving of his people, Romans 7:21; Romans 7:23; James 1:14-15; 1 Peter 2:11.

[3.] Satan is the sworn enemy of Christ, the adversary that openly, constantly, avowedly opposeth him in his throne, Matthew 16:18; Ephesians 6:12; 1 Peter 5:8. And he exerts his enmity by temptations, 1 Corinthians 7:5; 1 Thessalonians 3:5; accusations, Revelation 12:10; persecutions, Revelation 2:10; — all which are the works of an enemy.

[4.] The world is also a professed enemy of the kingdom of Christ, John 15:18. In the things of it, the men of it, the rule of it, it sets itself against the work of the Lord Christ on his throne. The things of it, as under the curse and subject to vanity, are suited to alienate the hearts of men from Christ, and so act an enmity against him, James 4:4; 1 John 2:15-17; 1 Timothy 6:9-10; Matthew 13:22. The men of the world act the same part, Matthew 10:22; Matthew 24:9. By examples, by temptations, by reproaches, by persecutions, by allurements, they make it their business to oppose the kingdom of Christ. But to that end, [that all things may be under his feet], is the rule of it for the most part directed or overruled, 1 Corinthians 15:24-25.

[5.] Death is also an enemy; so it is expressly called, 1 Corinthians 15:26. It designs the execution of the first curse against all believers, and therein contributes aid and assistance unto all other adversaries; giving up itself to the service of Satan, and therefore said to be in his power, Hebrews 2:14 of this epistle; and it borrows a sting from sin, 1 Corinthians 15:56, to make itself the more terrible and sharp.

[6.] The grave is an adversary also. It fights against the faith of the subjects of Christ by reducing their mortality unto corruption, and holding fast the dead until they are powerfully rescued from the jaws of it.

[7.] Lastly, hell is that enemy in a subordination whereunto all these others do act. They all aim to bring men into hell; which is an eternal enemy where it prevails. This attends the workings and successes of those other adversaries, to consume and destroy, if it were possible, the whole inheritance of Christ, Revelation 6:8. All these are enemies to Christ in his work and kingdom, with every thing that contributes aid or assistance unto them, every thing that they make use of in the pursuit of their enmity against him.

Now, all these enemies, as far as they oppose the spiritual, internal carrying on of the work of Christ, must be made the footstool of his feet.

The expression is metaphorical, and is to be interpreted and applied variously, according to the nature and condition of the enemies with whom he hath to do. The allusion in general is taken from what was done by Joshua, his type, towards the enemies of his people, Joshua 10:24. To show the ruin of their power, and his absolute prevalency against them, he caused the people to set their feet upon their necks. See 2 Samuel 22:39; Psalms 8:6. To have his enemies, then, brought under his feet, is to have an absolute, complete conquest over them; and their being made his footstool implies their perpetual and unchangeable duration in that condition, under the weight of whatever burden he shall be pleased to lay upon them.

(2.) This being that which is to be done, we may consider how it is accomplished. Now, this whole work of conquest and prevalency over all his enemies is done, — [1.] Meritoriously; [2.] Exemplarily; [3.] Efficiently.

[1.] Meritoriously. By his death and blood-shedding he hath procured the sentence of condemnation in the cause depending between him and them to be pronounced against them; so that they shall have no more right to exert their enmity against him or his. He hath given them all their death’s wounds, and leaves them to die at his pleasure.

1st. So hath he prevailed against the law, Galatians 3:13; Colossians 2:14; Romans 7:6. He hath removed that strength which it gave to sin, 1 Corinthians 15:55-56; so that it hath no right to disquiet or condemn any of his subjects for the future. And,

2dly. Against sin, Romans 8:2-3, so that it should not reign in nor condemn his anymore. And,

3dly. Satan also, Hebrews 2:14-15, as to all pretense of liberty or right unto any part of his cursed work. And,

4thly. So likewise the world, John 16:33; Galatians 1:4. And against,

5thly. Death, Hebrews 2:14-15; 1 Corinthians 15:55-56; with,

6thly. The grave; and,

7thly. Hell, or the wrath to come, 1 Thessalonians 1:10. They are all meritoriously conquered in his death and resurrection. And all this hath he done for his church.

[2.] Exemplarily. All these adversaries peculiarly exercised their enmity against and tried their strength and power upon his own person. The law brought its curse upon him, Galatians 3:13; sin its guilt, 2 Corinthians 5:21; Romans 8:2-3; Satan put forth all his power against him, Colossians 2:15; as also did the world, in all sorts of things and persons, in all kinds of oppositions and persecutions; death also he tasted of, Hebrews 2:9; and lay in the grave, descending into the lower parts of the earth, Ephesians 4:9; and he was not unassaulted by the pains of hell when he bare our iniquities, Isaiah 53:4-6; Isaiah 53:10. Now all of them did he absolutely conquer in his own person: for he satisfied the law, removed the curse, and took it away, Romans 8:3; made an end of sin, Daniel 9:24; destroyed the devil, Hebrews 2:14, and triumphed over him, Colossians 2:15; subdued the world, John 16:33; conquered death, Acts 2:24, and the grave, Acts 2:27, and hell also. And in his own person hath he set an example of what shall be done in and for the whole church.

[3.] It is done efficiently in, by, and for his whole church; and this in three instances: —

1st. Initially, in their union with himself. When and as he unites any of them unto himself, he begins the conquest of all enemies in them and for them, giving them a right to the complete, total, and final victory over them all.

2dly. Gradually he carries them on in their several seasons towards perfection, treading down their enemies by degrees under them. And

3dly. Perfectly at the last day, when, having freed them from the law and sin, trodden down Satan, prevailed against the world, recovered them from death, rescued them from the grave, and delivered them from hell, he shall be himself perfectly victorious in them, and they made completely sharers in his victory; wherein the making of all his enemies his footstool consisteth.

Secondly, The kingdom of Christ respects his administration of it visibly in this world, in the profession and obedience of his subjects unto him; and this also, with the opposition made unto it, is respected in this expression. God the Father, in the exaltation of Jesus Christ, hath given unto him all nations for his inheritance, and the utmost parts of the earth for his possession, Psalms 2:8. Upon this grant a twofold right ensued: —

[1.] A right to call, gather, and erect his church, in any nation, in any part of the world, and to give unto it his laws and ordinances of worship, to be owned and observed by them in a visible and peaceable manner, Matthew 28:18-20.

[2.] A right, power, and authority to dispose of and order all nations and persons for the good, benefit, and advantage of his kingdom. In pursuit of this grant and right, erecting his church, and therein his visible kingdom, in the world, great opposition is made unto him by all sorts of persons, stirred, excited, and instigated thereunto by Satan. And as this enmity was first acted against himself in his own person, Psalms 2:1-3, so it hath continued against him in his church in all ages and places, and will do so unto the end of the world. The world understands not his right, hates his government, and would not have him to reign. Hence hath been all that rage which hath been executed upon the professors of his name. Kings, rulers, potentates, counsellors, the multitude, have set themselves against him. They are and have been, many of them, his enemies. Great havoc and destruction have they made of his subjects all the world over, and continue to do so in most places unto this very day. Especially, in these later ages, after other means failed him, Satan hath stirred up a fierce, cruel, subtle adversary unto him, whom he hath foretold his disciples of under the name of antichrist, the beast, and false prophet. After the ruin of many others, this enemy by various subtleties and pretences hath drawn the world into a new combination against him, and is at this day become the greatest and most pernicious adversary that he hath in this world. Now, the aim and design of all these is to dethrone him, by the ruin of his kingdom which he hath set up in the world. And this in every age they have hoped to accomplish, and continue to do so unto this day, but in vain; for as hitherto his kingdom and interest in the world have been maintained against all their enmity and opposition, themselves been frustrated and brought to destruction one after another, so by virtue of this promise he shall reign in security and glory until all their heads be broken, their strength ruined, their opposition finished, and themselves brought under his feet unto all eternity, as our apostle declares, 1 Corinthians 15:24-25. And this may suffice to declare the meaning of these words.

(3.) We are to consider by whom these enemies of Christ shall be made thus his footstool. ‘I will make them,’saith God the Father unto him. And this expression wanteth not its difficulty; for is it not the work of Christ himself to subdue and conquer his enemies? is it not said that he shall do so? So doing is he described in the Revelation with glory and power, Revelation 19:11-16, from Isaiah 63:1-6. Whom should this work more become or belong unto than him who was persecuted and oppressed by them? And doth it not directly belong unto his kingly power? Whence is it, then, that he is here described as one resting in glory and security at his Father’s right hand, whilst he subdues his enemies?

Ans. There is no doubt but that the work of subduing the enemies of the mediation and kingdom of Christ is immediately wrought by himself. All prophecies of him, all promises made unto him, the nature of his office, do all require that so it should be; and so the apostle directly expresseth it, 1 Corinthians 15:26. But yet there are sundry reasons why that work which is immediately wrought by the Son may by the way of eminency be ascribed unto the Father, as we see this to be.

[1.] Power and authority to subdue and conquer all his enemies is given unto the Lord Christ by the Father in the way of reward; and it is therefore said to be his work, because the authority for it is from him. See Isaiah 53:12; John 5:27; Philippians 2:9; Romans 14:9. This power then, I say, of subduing all his enemies being granted unto the Lord Christ in the love of the Father, as a reward of the travail of his soul which he underwent in his work on the earth, is ascribed unto the Father as his. And this expression signifies no more but that as God hath given him authority for it, so he will abide by him in it until it be accomplished; and on this account he takes it on himself as his own.

[2.] The work of subduing enemies is a work of power and authority. Now, in the economy of the holy Trinity, among the works that outwardly are of God, those of power and authority are peculiarly ascribed unto the Father; as those of wisdom, or wisdom in the works of God, are unto the Son, who is the eternal Wisdom of the Father. And on this account the same works are ascribed unto the Father and the Son. Not as though the Father did them first, or only used the Son as an immediate instrumental cause of them, but that he worketh by him as his own eternal and essential Wisdom, John 5:17; John 5:19. But there is also more in it, as the Son is considered as mediator, God and man; for so he receives and holds his especial kingdom by grant from his Father, and therefore the works of it may be said to be his.

6. The last thing remaining for the exposition of these words, is the consideration of the appearing limitation of this administration of the kingdom of Christ, in his sitting at the right hand of God: עד, “Until I make thine enemies,” etc. “until:”

First, it is confessed, and may be proved by instances, that those particles thus used are sometimes exclusive of all things to the contrary before the time designed in them, but not assertive of any such thing afterwards. In this sense no limitation of the duration of the kingdom of Christ is here intimated, but only his secure and glorious reign unto the accomplishment of his work in the subduing of his enemies is asserted. The only time of danger is whilst there is opposition; but this saith God, ‘I will carry it through unto the end.’And this sense is embraced by many, to secure thereby the promises that are made unto the Lord Christ of the perpetuity of his kingdom. So Isaiah 9:7,

“Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever.”

His “kingdom shall never be destroyed,” but “shall stand for ever,”

Daniel 2:44; it is an “everlasting kingdom,” Daniel 7:27.

Others suppose that this perpetuity of the kingdom of Christ is not absolutely exclusive of all limitation, but that these two things only are intimated in those prophecies and promises: —

(1.) That his kingdom shall not be like the kingdoms of the earth, obnoxious to change and mutation, by intestine divisions, or outward force, or secret decay; by which means all the kingdoms of the earth have been ruined and brought to nought. In opposition hereunto, the kingdom of Christ is asserted to be perpetual, as that which no opposition shall ever prevail against, no means ever impair; which yet hinders not but that a day may be prefixed for its end.

(2.) The continuance of it unto the total, full accomplishment of all that is to be performed in it or by it, in the eternal salvation of all his subjects and final destruction of all his enemies, is in these and the like places foretold; but yet when that work is done, that kingdom and rule of his may have an end.

And in this sense the term of limitation here expressed seems to be expounded by the apostle, 1 Corinthians 15:24, “Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father;” for although these words may admit of another interpretation, — namely, that he shall give up an account unto the Father of the accomplishment of the whole work committed unto him as king of his church, which he may do and not cease from holding the same kingdom still, — yet as they are further interpreted by the Son’s coming into a new subjection unto the Father, “that God may be all in all,” as 1 Corinthians 15:28, they seem to imply directly the ceasing of his kingdom. Though this matter be not indeed without its difficulty, yet the different opinions about it seem capable of a fair reconciliation, which we shall attempt in the ensuing proposals: —

(1.) The Lord Christ, as the Son of God, shall unto all eternity continue in the essential and natural dominion, over all creatures, and they in their dependence upon him and subjection unto him. He can no more divest himself of that dominion and kingdom than he can cease to be God. Suppose the being of any creatures, and that subjection unto him which is the rise of this kingdom is natural and indispensable.

(2.) As to the economical kingdom of Christ over the church, and all things in order unto the protection and salvation thereof, the immediate ends of it will cease. All his saints being saved, all his sons brought unto glory, all his enemies subdued, the end of that rule, which consisted in the guidance and preservation of the one, and in the restraint and ruin of the other, must necessarily cease.

(3.) The Lord Christ shall not so leave his kingdom at the last day as that the Father should take upon himself the administration of it. Upon the giving up of his kingdom, whatever it be, the apostle doth not say the Father shall rule, or reign, as though he should exercise the same dominion, but that “God shall be all in all;” that is, God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, without the use or intervention of such ways or means as were in use before, during the full continuance of the dispensatory kingdom of Christ, shall fill and satisfy all his saints, support and dispose of the remanent creation.

(4.) This ceasing of the kingdom of Christ is no way derogatory unto his glory or the perpetuity of his kingdom, no more than his ceasing to intercede for his people is to that perpetuity of his priesthood which he hath by oath confirmed unto him. His prophetical office also seems to cease, when he shall teach his people no more by his word and Spirit.

(5.) In three respects the kingdom of Christ may be said to abide unto eternity: —

[1.] In that all his saints and angels shall eternally adore and worship him, on the account of the glory which he hath received as the king and head of the church, and be filled with joy in beholding of him, John 17:22; John 17:24.

[2.] In that all the saints shall abide in their state of union unto God through him as their head, God communicating of his fullness to them through him; which will be his eternal glory when all his enemies shall be his footstool.

[3.] In that, as the righteous judge of all, he shall to all eternity continue the punishment of his adversaries.

And this is the last testimony insisted on by the apostle to prove the pre- eminence of Christ above angels, and consequently above all that were used or employed of old in the disposition and administration of the law; which was the thing he had undertaken to make good. And therefore, in the close of this chapter, having denied that any of these things are spoken concerning angels, he shuts up all with a description of their nature and office, such as was then known and received among the Jews; before the consideration whereof, we must draw out, from what hath been insisted on, some observations for our own instruction, which are these that follow: —

I. The authority of God the Father, in the exaltation of Jesus Christ as the head and mediator of the church, is greatly to be regarded by believers. He says unto him, “Sit thou at my right hand.” Much of the consolation and security of the church depend on this consideration.

II. The exaltation of Christ is the great pledge of the acceptation of the work of mediation performed in the behalf of the church. ‘Now,’saith God, ‘sit thou at my right hand;’— ‘the work is done wherein my soul is well pleased.’

III. Christ hath many enemies unto his kingdom; saith God, ‘I will deal with all of them.’

IV. The kingdom and rule of Christ is perpetual and abiding, notwithstanding all the opposition that is made against it. His enemies rage, indeed, as though they would pull him out of his throne, but altogether in vain; he hath the faithfulness and power, the word and right hand of God, for the security of his kingdom.

V. The end whereunto the Lord Jesus Christ will assuredly bring all his enemies, let them bluster whilst they please, shall be unto them miserable and shameful, to the saints joyful, to himself victorious and triumphant. It is the administration of the kingdom of Christ in the world that this truth principally respects. Great is the enmity of this world against it; great the opposition that is and hath always been made unto it. But this will be the assured issue of it, — ruin to the enemies, joy to the saints, glory to Christ. This is that which is typed unto us in the prophecy of Gog. That prophecy is a recapitulation of all the enmity that is acted in the world against the interest of Christ. What his counsel is the prophet declares: Ezekiel 38:11, I will go up to the land of unwalled villages; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates.” They look upon the church of Christ as a feeble people, that hath no visible power or defense, and therefore easy to be destroyed; this encourageth them to their work. Who or what can deliver them out of their hand? With this resolution they come up on the breadth of the earth, and compass the camp of the saints, and the beloved city, Revelation 20:9. They go about their work with glory and terror, as if they would do it in a day. So they have done in all ages; so they continue to do to this day. And what is the issue? The city, which they look on as an unwalled town, no way defensible or tenable, is not yet taken by them, nor ever shall be; but there they fall before it, one after another, and their bones lie under the walls of the city they oppose. They fall upon the mountains of Israel, and leave a stink behind them, the shame and reproach of their names unto eternity. Sometimes, they seem to have prevailed, and to have done their work; but still the issue is that they die, or are destroyed and go down to the pit, and come under the feet of Christ, leaving the city untaken. Disappointment, shame, and everlasting punishment, is their portion. And they find at last by experience that this “feeble folk,” whom they so despise, are wise, and have their habitation in a rock. This pledge we have already of the truth proposed, that all who have formerly risen up in enmity to the kingdom of Christ are dead, gone, perished under his feet, and have left their work undone, as far from accomplishment as the first day they undertook it. The same shall be the lot of those that are, and those that follow, to the end of the world. And when they have all done their utmost, then shall the end be; then shall all their misery be completed, the joy of the saints filled, and the glory of Christ exalted.

For the enemies themselves, what can be more shameful unto them, than to be so stupid as not to learn from the experience of so many hundreds of years to give over a work wherein never any prospered? more miserable, than to engage in that design wherein they must necessarily fail and be ruined? more woeful, than to work out their own eternal destruction under the wrath of Christ, in a business wherein they had no success? And what profit is it if for the present they grow a little rich with the gain of oppression, if there be a worm in it that will devour both it and them? what advantage if they drink a little precious blood and find sweetness in it, if it make them sick, and swell, and die? The beloved city still abides, and their misery shall never end.

For the saints, what more joyful thing can there be, than for them to take a view of these things, to look backward and see all the Nimrods of the earth, that have opposed the kingdom of Christ, lying in shame and misery, with their necks under the footstool of his feet? There they may see Pharaoh lying, and Nebuchadnezzar, Nero, Domitian, Diocletian, with all their multitudes, and all that have walked in their steps, “brought down to the sides of the pit,” in shame and eternal misery, for their opposition to the kingdom of Christ. There are they fallen and perished “all of them, who laid their swords under their heads, and caused terror in the land of the living.”

And the like prospect may they take of what is to come. They may by faith see Babylon fallen, the whole conspiracy that is in the world against them and their Lord disappointed, and all his enemies that shall arise, even to the consummation of all things, brought to ruin. How may they triumph in a glorious prospect of this certain and unavoidable issue of the opposition that is made to the kingdom of their Redeemer! And this must be the issue of these things; for, —

1. God hath promised unto the Lord Christ from the foundation of the world that so it should be. It was part of his eternal covenant and compact with him, as hath been declared. And after the first promise of breaking the serpent’s head, and prevailing therein against the enmity of his seed, no season of the church passed wherein the promises of the same success and issue were not renewed; and hereunto do the writings of Moses, the Psalms, and the prophets bear witness. And hereof it was that Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied so expressly unto the old world before the flood, Jude 1:14-15. Other prophecies and promises to the same purpose occur everywhere in the Scripture. And this God also in several ages, for the greater pledge of his veracity, typed out: as in the victory of Abraham over the four kings, representing the great monarchies of the world, wherein he had a pledge that he should be heir of the world in his Seed; in the conquest of Canaan, the seat and inheritance of the church, by Joshua; in the successes and victories of David; and by many signal instances given in the visible ruin of the most potent opposers of his interest in the world. And it cannot be that this word of God should be of none effect.

2. The Lord Christ expects this issue and event of all things, and shall not be frustrated in his expectation. Having received the engagement and faithful promise of his Father, he rests in the foresight of its accomplishment. And hence it is that he bears all the affronts that are put upon him, all the opposition that is made unto him and his kingdom, with patience, long-suffering, and forbearance. When we consider the injuries, reproaches, oppressions, persecutions, blasphemies, that he is exposed unto, in his ways, his servants, his Spirit, and worship, we are ready to admire at his patience (as we ought to do) that he breaks not forth against his enemies as a consuming fire. But he knows the time and season that is allotted for the execution of vengeance upon them, and nothing of their pride, rage, boasting, or triumphing against him, shall ever provoke him to anticipate their ruin; so secure he is of their destruction in the appointed season, and so certain of their day that is coming.

3. He is himself furnished with authority and power for the accomplishment of this work, when and how he pleaseth. He hath not only assurance of the Father’s concurrence, but is himself also thoroughly armed and furnished with power to destroy all his enemies, even in a moment. And he will not fail to put forth his power in the appointed season; he will “bruise them all with a rod of iron, and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.” Though all his enemies should at once combine themselves against him, should the world receive the utmost contribution of craft, subtlety, and strength, that hell is able to afford unto it, what is it all to stand before the incomprehensible power of Jesus Christ? See Revelation 6:16.

4. His glory and honor requires that it should be so. This is a thing that he is very tender in. God hath raised him up, and given him glory and honor, and care must be taken that it be not lost or impaired. Now, if his enemies should go free, if they could by any means subduct themselves from under his power, or be delivered from his wrath, where would be his glory, where his honor? Here they reproach him, blaspheme him, despise him, persecute him. Shall they escape and go free? shall they always prosper? What then would he do to his great name? The glory of Christ indispensably requires that there be a season, a day, appointed for the eternal ruin of all his stubborn adversaries.

5. His saints pray that it may be so; and that both upon his account and their own: — Upon his, that his glory, which is dearer to them than their lives, may be vindicated and exalted; their own, that their miseries may be ended, that the blood of their fellow-servants may be avenged, that the whole church may be delivered, and all promises fulfilled. Now, he will not disappoint their prayers nor frustrate their expectations in any thing, much less in those that are of so great importance. He will avenge his elect; he will avenge them speedily.

6. His enemies deserve it unto the utmost; so that as well his justice, as his glory, and interest, and people, is concerned in their destruction. In the most of them their rage against him is notorious, and visible to the eyes of men and angels; in all of them there is a cruel, old, lasting enmity and hatred, which he will lay open and discover at the last day, so that all shall see the righteousness of his judgments against them. God hath given him a kingdom, appointed him to reign; they declare that he shall not do so, and endeavor their utmost to keep him from his throne, and that with scorn, spite, and malice. So that whilst God is righteous, and the scepter of Christ’s kingdom a scepter of righteousness, themselves call aloud for their own destruction.

The uses of this truth, in the comfort of the disciples of Christ against all fears, despondencies, and other effects of unbelief, with the terror of wicked men, are obvious and exposed unto all.

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Owen, John. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "John Owen Exposition of Hebrews". https: 1862.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

to. Greek. pros. App-104.

on. Greek. ek. App-104.

Thy footstool = a footstool (Greek. hupopodion) of Thy feet. See Matthew 22:44. Cited from Psalms 110:1.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https: 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool?

(Psalms 110:1) The image is from conquerors putting the feet on the necks of the conquered (Joshua 10:24-25).

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https: 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(13) But to which of the angels.—The final appeal is made to that Psalm which more frequently than any other is quoted in reference to Christ, and which we have already seen to be the source of all the New Testament references to the Saviour’s session at the right hand of God. It is not necessary to say much here respecting Psalms 110, to which so many allusions will be made in the course of this Epistle. That it was regularly understood by the Jews of our Lord’s time to be a Messianic Psalm is clear both from Matthew 22:43-44, and from the independent notices which we possess. Most probably, it stands alone amongst the Psalms as being simply prophetic: the words of Hebrews 1:1 have never been addressed either to angels or to an earthly king. On the special words of the quotation see Hebrews 1:3.

Said he at any time.—Better, hath He ever said.

Until I make . . .—Literally, until I shall have made Thine enemies a footstool of Thy feet.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https: 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool?
3; 10:12; Psalms 110:1; Matthew 22:44; Mark 12:36; Luke 20:42; Acts 2:34-36; 7:55
Psalms 21:8,9; 132:18; Isaiah 63:3-6; Luke 19:27; 1 Corinthians 15:25,26; Revelation 19:11-21; Revelation 20:15

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https:

The Bible Study New Testament

God never did say. None of the angels are given authority to rule the earth. Angels are servants (Hebrews 1:4). Sit here at my right side. This is quoted from Psalm 110:1. What God never did say to any of his angels, He did say to the Son. The right side is the place of honor. Until I put. See Acts 2:35; 1 Corinthians 15:25-28 and notes.

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Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "The Bible Study New Testament". https: College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament

The second part of this verse is a quotation from Psalm 110:1, in which David states something that God said of Christ. The point that Paul is making is that since nothing like this was ever said to any one of the angels, Christ is to be regarded as superior to them. Making His enemies his footstool is equivalent to subjecting all things to him, which is the thing predicted in 1 Corinthians 15:25-26.

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Zerr, E.M. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament. https: 1952.

Haldane's Exposition on the Epistle to the Romans

But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool?

The Apostle here returns to his argument to prove the superiority of the Lord Jesus to angels, of which, indeed, he had never lost sight; but had soared so high in describing the Divinity of the Son of God, as to leave every created being far beneath Him. The honor of sitting at the right hand of God is such, that it never was given to any of the angels. They are described as round about the throne; but Christ, in the character of mediator, sits upon the throne at the Father's right hand. Thus Christ is distinguished from all angels of every order, from the highest to the lowest.

Sit on my right hand, is a quotation from Psalm 110:1; Psalm 110:5; it was quoted by our Lord in the days of His flesh, as having been written by David under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in reference to Christ. The great mystery of godliness, God manifest in the flesh, was hid from the scribes and pharisees, although plainly declared in the Scriptures; but, like many other predictions, was not understood till its fulfilment.

The reference to Psalm 110 : was exactly to the Apostle's purpose in proof of Messiah's superiority to angels. It also contained a powerful argument to induce the believing Hebrews to hold fast their allegiance to Christ, because all His enemies must be made His footstool. Isaiah 60:12. Psalm 72:9.

Enemies.—The devil and his angels are in a state of rebellion against God; and it would appear that their rebellion arose from the intimation of the exaltation of Christ, and that our Lord refers to this when He said, "He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth" John 8:44. It was God's eternal purpose to make known by the Church to the principalities and powers in heavenly places His manifold wisdom. Ephesians 3:10. In furtherance of this design He seems to have revealed to the heavenly hosts His determination to put all things under the Son of Prayer of Manasseh , Satan, then an angel of light, and, it may be, superior to all other angels, scorned the thought of being subject to a creature formed of the dust. He therefore set himself to defeat bis Maker's purpose. He knew His justice and His truth; he heard the intimation, "in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." If, then, he could lead man to transgress, the exaltation of Adam, or any of bis posterity, appeared absolutely impossible. He succeeded, he brought mankind under the curse; but there is no counsel or divination against the Lord. His purpose was accomplished by the very means employed to defeat it; for, in the fulness of time, the Son of God was manifested to destroy the works of the devil, and now in human nature is seated at God's right hand to gather in his redeemed, and to take vengeance on all his enemies. Satan bas thus become the dupe of his own subtlety, and has been made the unwilling instrument of accomplishing the Divine purpose.

Not only are the devil and his angels the enemies of Christ, but all the children of men who have not been chosen in Him—called by His grace, are among the number of His enemies. But all His enemies shall be made His footstool. They shall not only fail in their attempts to injure those who are called into the fellowship of God's dear Song of Solomon , but their enmity shall be overruled to promote the benefit of Christ's people. As a footstool is a convenience to one seated on a chair of state, so all the machinations of Satan and his adherents shall advance the glory of the Son of God.

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Haldane, Robert. "Commentary on Hebrews 1:13". "Haldane's Exposition on the Epistle to the Romans and Hebrews". https: 1835.

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