And about the angels He says, "Who makes His angels spirits, and His ministers a flame of fire."
The Trinitarian Claim
Trinitarians claim God the Father is the speaker at Hebrews 1:10 and referring to the Son as the Creator. Trinitarians begin by presuming God is the speaker in verse 7, and then this claim is then carried into verse 8 and verse 10 where Trinitarians claim God the Father is still the speaker and He is addressing the Son. Some translations, such as the NIV, even go as far as inserting "He says" or "God says" into the text at verse 8 and verse 10. The Trinitarian claim at verse 10 rests completely upon this false claim.
The Claim vs. The Facts
The Scriptural facts show God the Father is not the speaker at Hebrews 1:10 but the writer is referring to God the Father as the Creator.
The Problems with the Claim
1. An Assumption By Design
The Trinitarian must assume that God the Father is speaking to the Son and referring to him as the Lord Creator. Without substantiating this presumption this is the practice of eisegesis - reading a notion into the text which is not expressed by the text itself.
2. Psalm 102
Hebrews 1:10-12 is a quotation from Psalm 102:25-27. The Trinitarian claim is shown to be obviously false when it is realized they are interpreting the speaker in verse 10 as God the Father. However, if we just go back and actually read Psalm 102, it is clearly evident that God is not the speaker of these words.
1Hear my prayer, O LORD!
And let my cry for help come to You...
12 You, O Lord, abide forever,
And Your name to all generations.
You will arise and have compassion on Zion;
For it is time to be gracious to her,
For the appointed time has come.
Surely Your servants find pleasure in her stones
And feel pity for her dust.
So the nations will fear the name of the LORD
And all the kings of the earth Your glory.
For the LORD has built up Zion;
He has appeared in His glory.
He has regarded the prayer of the destitute
And has not despised their prayer.
This will be written for the generation to come,
That a people yet to be created may praise the LORD.
For He looked down from His holy height;
From heaven the Lord gazed upon the earth,
To hear the groaning of the prisoner,
To set free those who were doomed to death,
That men may tell of the name of the LORD in Zion
And His praise in Jerusalem,
When the peoples are gathered together,
And the kingdoms, to serve the LORD.
He has weakened my strength in the way;
He has shortened my days.
I say, "O my God, do not take me away in the midst of my days,
Your years are throughout all generations.
Of old You founded the earth,
And the heavens are the work of Your hands.
Even they will perish, but You endure;
And all of them will wear out like a garment;
Like clothing You will change them and they will be changed.
But You are the same,
And Your years will not come to an end.
The children of Your servants will continue,
And their descendants will be established before You.”
So is the Father saying to the son, "O my God" too? The Psalmist is the speaker, not God, and he is saying these words to God and about God. The speaker is not God but a human being. The point here is that Psalm 102 shows us that God is not the speaker of these words but the Psalmist is the speaker, while the Trinitarian interpretation of Hebrews 1:10 necessarily claims God is the speaker of these words in direct contradiction to Psalm 102 itself.
3. The Trinitarian Blunder
The Trinitarian blunder begins when they assume God is the speaker at Hebrews 1:7. Having assumed God is the speaker at Hebrews 1:7, they presume God is the speaker at verses 8 to 9 and again at verses 10-12. Hence, they need God to be the speaker in verse 7 for Him to be the speaker in verse 10. However, we have seen God is not the speaker of Psalm 102 being quoted at Hebrews 1:10-12. And God is not the speaker in verse 7 either. Again, the Psalmist is the speaker and he is speaking to God and about God.
Bless the LORD, O my soul!
O LORD my God, You are very great.
You are clothed with splendor and majesty,
Covering Yourself with light as with a cloak,
Stretching out heaven like a tent curtain.
He lays the beams of His upper chambers in the waters;
He makes the clouds His chariot;
He walks upon the wings of the wind;
He makes His angels spirits,
His ministers flaming fire.
This problem begins in verse 7 where they translate the Greek verb legei as "HE says" and assume that God is the speaker of the two Psalms quoted in verses 6 and 7. And then they infer that verses 8 and 10 are to be read as if God is still the speaker (the Greek does not say "God says" or "He says" for either of these two verses). Hebrews 1:8 quotes Psalm 45. But a review of Psalm 45, Psalm 102, and Psalm 104, shows that God is not the speaker in any of these Psalms. The Greek verb legei is often used to refer to what "He says" or "She says" or "It says" or what Scripture says or what the Law says. It does not necessarily mean "HE says." Let the reader compare various translations of Romans 5:10; Ephesians 4:8; 5:14 and James 4:5-6 to see how translators sometimes translate legei as "He says" and sometimes as "it says" when the same verb refers to what Scripture says.
Moreover, when God IS indeed the speaker at verses 5 and 13, the writer uses a different verb, the Greek verb eipon, and not legei. It is quite clear that the translation "HE says" at verse 7 is a translation blunder since makes it appear God is the speaker when a cursory examination of each the three Psalms quoted plainly shows that God is not the speaker. And so Trinitarians are basing their entire interpretation of verse 10 on an obvious mistranslation of verse 6 and 7 resulting in a mistaken interpretation.
The NT writers would use the word legei when they wanted to refer to what Scripture or the Law says, what IT says. It is most likely that the Hebrews writer is referring to what Scripture says. At the very least, if we translate legei as "HE says," it is obvious that this necessarily refers to what the Psalmist says, not God, since we know that God is definitely not the speaker.
3. The Antecedent to "He" at Verse 13
Verse 13 provides even further evidence of the Trinitarian blunder. The most natural antecedent for the pronoun "He" at verse 13 is "the Lord" of verse 10. Since the "He" in verse 13 is obviously the Father this means "the Lord" of verse 10 is also the Father.
(v.10) And, "You, Lord, did found the earth in the beginning....
(v.13) But to what angel has HE ever said, "Sit at my right hand till I make your enemies a stool for your feet"?
The "He" in verse 13 is obviously God the Father who instructs the Son to sit at his right hand. Therefore, it should be clear to anyone that the antecedent is the Lord of verse 10.
Analysis of the Facts
1. The Speaker: Assumptions & Blunders vs. The Facts
Trinitarians read Hebrews 1:10 as if the Father is speaking to the Son. They do this by first presuming the Father is speaking to the Son in verse 7 then read verses 8 through 12 as if the Father is still speaking. But as we have seen God is not the speaker of any of the Psalms quoted between Hebrews 1:7 and Hebrews 1:12.
2. The Writer's Arguments
The writer's point throughout the chapter is that Jesus is superior to the angels. In this chapter he contrasts Jesus and the angels several times.
1. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high. v. 3
having become as much superior to angels as the name he has obtained is more excellent than theirs. v.4
2. For to what angel did God ever say? v. 5
Thou art my Son, today I have begotten thee"? Or again, "I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son"? v.5
3. And again, when he brings the first-born into the world. v.6
he says, "Let all God's angels worship him. v.6
4. And of the angels he says, "Who makes his angels winds, and his servants flames of fire. v.7
But of the Son, "Your throne ho theos to the age of the age. v. 8
5. And, "You Lord did found the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of Your hands v. 10.
But to what angel has he ever said.... v. 13
Let the reader observe what is happening here. In verse 7, the writer says something concerning God and His angels. In verses 8 and 9 he is contrasting this with what God does concerning the Son. In verse 10, he is starting a new argument. God is the Creator and everything is the works of His hand, but (v. 13) he has never set an angel at His right hand over all the works of His hands.
Verse 10-12, and verse 13, are to be read as a contrast argument. Essentially, what Trinitarians are attempting to do, is take the passage (1:10-12) out of its context by severing it from verse 13 and attaching it to verses 8 and 9 and thereby shifting it to another context in the following manner:
But to the Son [God says].... God your God has anointed you to be above your fellows...... And "You Lord in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth."
However, the writer is making contrast arguments between Jesus and the angels, more specifically he is contrasting what God has done concerning angels versus what God has done concerning Jesus. Verses 8 through 12 are not to be read as one of these arguments. Verses 7 through 9 are to be read as a single argument and then verses 10 through 13 are to be read as another argument.
Argument 1: And of the angels he says, "Who makes his angels winds, and his servants flames of fire. v.7
But of the Son, "Your throne ho theos to the age of the age. v. 8
Argument 2: You Lord in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth....
But to which of the angels has He ever said..."
Notice how the contrast argument in verse 13 sounds very odd unless it is read in this manner. The word "He" requires an antecedent and that antecedent is obviously the Lord of verse 10.
4. Kai vs. De: The Writer's Method of Argumentation
The Hebrew's writer uses one word to introduce another "Jesus vs. the Angels" contrast argument and that is the word kai ("and"). However, when he wants to make the contrast he uses the word de ("but").
Carefully observe how the writer uses the word kai to introduce another argument and uses the word de to make the contrast between Jesus and the angels for each particular argument:
Writer's First Contrast Argument
For to which of the angels did He ever say,..... v. 5
The word "BUT" makes the contrast.
(de) when He again brings the firstborn into the world......" v.6
Writer's Second Contrast Argument
The word "AND" introduces a NEW argument
(kai) of the angels it says (legei... v. 7
The word "BUT" makes the contrast.
(de) of the Son, "Your throne ho theos to the age of the age. v.8
Writer's Third Contrast Argument
And again, the word "AND" introduces a NEW argument
(kai), "You Lord, in the beginning laid the foundation..... v.10
The word "BUT" makes the contrast.
(de) to which of the angels did He ever say v.13
When the writer's argument structure is honestly appreciated, it is also clear that the Greek conjunction kai is being used to introduce a new argument and the Greek word de is being used to mark the contrast.
5. The Work of Whose Hands?
The Hebrew's writer does even more to leave us no doubt who he has in mind Hebrews 1:10. Notice what is said in verse 10:
You Lord in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth
The Heavens are the works of Your hands....
But to which of the angels did He ever say, "Sit at My right hand until I make your enemies your footstool?" (1:10-13)
Now notice what he says immediately after this:
For God did not subject to angels the world to come...
You have appointed him over the works of Your hands.
You have placed all in subjection under his feet (2:5-8).
Observe carefully how the writer is reasserting the same message. In chapter one he refers to the works of God's hands and then asks to which angel has God ever asked to sit at His right hand. To sit at God's right hand is to have authority over all the works of God's hands (see Matthew 28:18; Ephesians 1:20-21). Now observe how he says the same thing again in chapter 2. God placed all His creation under Jesus' feet, all the works of His hands. Both passages are about God the Father giving Jesus authority over all the works of His hands.
1:10 You Lord in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth. The heaves are the works of YOUR hands
2:8 You have appointed him (Jesus) over the works of YOUR hands
It is abundantly clear who the writer had in mind in verse 10, the Father, and the works of the Father's hands, the Father who asked Jesus to sit at His right hand (v.13) thereby appointing Jesus over all the works of His hands.
The evidence shows us beyond any doubt that God is not the speaker of the three Psalms quoted at verse 7, verses 8-9, or verses 10-12. The writer uses the Greek verb legei at verse 7 which must either be translated as "it says" to refer to what Scriptures says, or if translated as "He says," these words must be interpreted as "the Psalmist says" since God is not the speaker of these words. Hebrews 1:10-12 is obviously intended to be contrasted to Hebrews 1:13, not an addendum to Hebrews 1:8-9. The writer's style is also to use kai ("and") to introduce a new argument and de ("but") to make the contrast. Hebrews 1:10-12 is not to be read as a unit with Hebrews 1:8-9 but to be read as a unit with verse 13. Moreover, we have several contrasts in this chapter between what God does for Jesus vs. what God does for the angels. In verse 13, we find that HE asks Jesus to sit at his right hand, something he has never asked an angel to do. Who is this HE but the Lord of verse 10? And that is very the point of Hebrews 1:10-12, that is, in all the history of creation, from beginning to end, God the Father has never ever asked, and never will ask, an angel to sit at His right hand. The heavens are the works of the Father's hands and He has not appointed an angel (see 2:5) over His works by seating an angel at His right hand. He has appointed a man, the son of man, Jesus, over all the works of His hands by seating Jesus at His right hand crowning him with glory and honor. The writer's words at verses 2:5-8 leave absolutely no doubt who he had in mind at verse 1:10-12. The Father in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth; the heavens are "the works of His hands" (v. 1:10) and He has now appointed Jesus over these "works of His hands" (2:7).
Related Links: Hebrews 1:7
Last Revision/Update: March 22, 2016