“Christ, in the work of mediation, acts according to both natures; by each nature doing that which is proper to itself (Heb. 9:14; I Pet. 3:18).” As taught in the first three sections of this chapter, Jesus the Christ was a person made of two natures – the Divine and human. In both natures, that is, his whole person, he fulfilled, and continues to fulfill the work of the Mediator between God and the elect. Only one who was of both natures, could truly represent both parties. As noted by Paul, “Now a mediator does not mediate for one only, but God is one” (Gal. 3:20). “For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (I Tim. 2:5). This is also one of the main reasons why the new covenant administration of the one covenant of grace is ‘better’. “Now he has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises” (Heb. 8:6).
As noted in the immediately preceding section, He also brought redemption to those saints under the administration of the first covenant. “For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance” (Heb. 9:13-15). As noted by Shaw, the second person of the Trinity also acted as Mediator before, under the first covenant. “It is a mediatorial act – the act of a prophet, to reveal the will of God; and it cannot be questioned that Christ was the author of revelation.”1
It was not only in his office as prophet that he also acted as Mediator under the first covenant, but also as priest. “It is a mediatorial act to intercede for the church; but this Christ did long before his incarnation.”2“Thus, also, the human nature of Christ was also necessary in order that his person should be “made under the law;” and it is the subject of his vicarious sufferings, and the organ of his vicarious obedience and intercession as our representative Priest and Intercessor.”3“Yet, by reason of the unity of the person, that which is proper to one nature is sometimes in Scripture attributed to the person denominated by the other nature (Acts 20:28; Jn. 3:13; I Jn. 3:16).” Shaw also clarifies these points with the following. “The human nature alone could suffer and die; yet it is said, ‘The Lord of glory was crucified’; and, ‘God purchased the church with his own blood’ (I Cor. 2:8; Acts 20:28).”4
Also, as our kinsman-Redeemer (Heb. 2:5-18), he had to take on flesh and blood, “that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death , that is, the devil, and release those who fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. For indeed He does not give aid to angels, but He does give aid to the seed of Abraham. Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For in that He Himself has suffered, bring tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted” 2:14b-18). He therefore also reigns as King, from the moment he created all things, and in the Triune God’s will, appointed humanity to bear the image of this reign on the earth. So Jesus as our Mediator, fulfilled the role as Prophet, Priest, and King, in both natures and one person.
1. Shaw, (157 Cf. Hodge, )
2. Ibid., (157)
3. Hodge, (152)
4. Shaw, (157)