Nothing in comparison with Christ’s priestly position
Because of this, he must make an offering for his own sins as well as for the people. No one takes this honor on himself; instead, a person is called by God, just as Aaron was. Hebrews 5:3-4 CSB
Referring back to verse 2 on how the high priest is “clothed in weakness,” meaning that because they are human and have sin within their nature, “because of this, he must make an offering for his own sins as well as for the people.” We can see an example of this action by Aaron, Moses’ brother, in Leviticus 16:6, “Aaron will present the bull for his sin offering and make atonement for himself and his household.” Christ also shared with us the common human nature, experience physical pain on the cross and temptation in the desert by Satan. Yet, the key difference between us and Christ is that He was perfect and did not sin. He never had to offer a sacrifice for His own actions. Instead, He offered Himself as a sacrifice for humanity, for the sins of the people. Then, in verse 4, we see that no one should have taken the position of the high priest for themselves, it is a calling: “No one takes this honor on himself; instead, a person is called by God, just as Aaron was.” There were catastrophic instances when an individual defied God and tried to take on the position of high priest, such as Saul in 1 Samuel 13:8-15, which led to his army unable to be equipped with weapons for the coming battle, or King Uzziah in 2 Chronicles 26:16-21 when he offered incense in the Lord’s sanctuary which led him having an incurable skin disease until he died. Aaron and his line, however, were called to be high priest in Exodus 28:1-4 and Numbers 20:22-29. Yet, in the present time of the author of Hebrews, the readers were aware of how the high priest began to deteriorate spiritually, leading the nation to spiritual and physical ruin. But there was hope: Jesus Christ as the High Priest, restoring not only Jew but also Gentile to God through His sacrifice of Himself on the cross. The Lord Jesus Christ did not presumptuously appropriate the office of high priest. He has been crowned with glory and honor. Therefore, let us offer Him the honor and worship He deserves. “For this reason God highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow—in heaven and on earth and under the earth—and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord” (Philippians 2:9-11).
Isaac De Guzman