We live in a culture that is fascinated with identifying “the best.” New parents jump through hoops to get on long waiting lists at the “best” preschools. If we’re traveling, we might search reviews to find the best burger, best pizza, or some other best food a city is known for. And radio and TV personalities engage in intense debates over who should be considered the best athlete, actor, musician, president, or world leader of all time.
The writer of Hebrews recognized this same tendency in the people of his day. It was hard to follow Jesus. Following Jesus’s leadership required personal sacrifice. So they considered other leaders and wondered if following Jesus was the best option.
After all, Moses was a good leader, too. Moses had given them the Law. If they struggled to follow the rules Moses had helped to establish, there was a high priest to pick up the slack. Moses and the high priest had been considered their “best” leaders for centuries.
But Hebrews was written to assure them that living their spiritual lives vicariously through the leadership of Moses, the high priest, or any other person—no matter how faithful—was inferior and insufficient.
There is no better leader than Jesus. Not Moses or a high priest. Not Gandhi or Buddha or Confucius or Joseph Smith. Not the best business leader. Not your family. Not your pastor or favorite author.
That’s not to say these people can’t teach or lead us. They can. But, ultimately, their leadership is only effective to the extent that they point us to Jesus.
If it weren’t for the phrase, “holy brothers and sisters,” you might think these words were written to people who don’t know Jesus. “Holy brothers and sisters” have already considered Jesus — considering Jesus is what led them to follow Him in the first place.
But even people who follow Jesus get distracted.
We are prone to get sidetracked by momentary interests. Our eyes drift from Jesus and fix themselves on other leaders. We look back to the past and remember leaders from history and believe those people had it better back then. And so Hebrews asks us to consider Jesus again and again.
No matter how long you’ve followed Jesus, you need to consider Him again.
Hebrews directs that consideration by way of comparison. Moses was seen as the pinnacle of faithfulness in the Old Testament. He heard from God, served God well, and led others to do the same. But the point of Moses’s faithfulness was to point to the superior faithfulness of Jesus Christ.
No leader, however gifted, can outmatch what Jesus accomplished. Moses was a godly man, but Jesus is God in human flesh. Moses was a servant, but Jesus is the Son. He owns the house and provides everything needed in it — that is, everything needed for us, who stand as God’s household servants alongside Moses.
Considering Jesus in the way the author of Hebrews is encouraging us to do will guide us to see that nothing and no one is worth comparing to Jesus.
We might get distracted along the way. We all have people and leaders we look to, but when we consider Jesus for who He really is, our eyes will quickly shift back to Him. Jesus is beyond comparison. He is uniquely qualified to lead us to God.
Adapted from Hebrews: Jesus is Better from the Storyteller series.