The Perfect High Priest
1For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed [to act] on behalf of men in things relating to God, so that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins. 2He is able to deal gently with the spiritually ignorant and misguided, since he is also subject to human weakness; 3and because of this [human weakness] he is required to offer sacrifices for sins, for himself as well as for the people. 4And besides, one does not appropriate for himself the honor [of being high priest], but he who is called by God, just as Aaron was.
5So too Christ did not glorify Himself so as to be made a high priest, but He [was exalted and appointed by the One] who said to Him,
“You are My Son,
Today I have begotten (fathered) You [declared Your authority and rule over the nations]”;
6just as He also says in another place,
“You are a priest [appointed] forever
According to the order of Melchizedek.”
7In the days of His earthly life, Jesus offered up both [specific] petitions and [urgent] supplications [for that which He needed] with fervent crying and tears to the One who was [always] able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverent submission toward God [His sinlessness and His unfailing determination to do the Father’s will]. 8Although He was a Son [who had never been disobedient to the Father], He learned [active, special] obedience through what He suffered. 9And having been made perfect [uniquely equipped and prepared as Savior and retaining His integrity amid opposition], He became the source of eternal salvation [an eternal inheritance] to all those who obey Him, 10being designated by God as High Priest according to the order of Melchizedek.
11Concerning this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull and sluggish in [your spiritual] hearing and disinclined to listen. 12For though by this time you ought to be teachers [because of the time you have had to learn these truths], you actually need someone to teach you again the elementary principles of God’s word [from the beginning], and you have come to be continually in need of milk, not solid food. 13For everyone who lives on milk is [doctrinally inexperienced and] unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a spiritual infant. 14But solid food is for the [spiritually] mature, whose senses are trained by practice to distinguish between what is morally good and what is evil.