Hebrews 2:10, Jesus, the (Im)perfect Being

And it was only right that [God] should make Jesus, through his suffering, a perfect leader, fit to bring them into their salvation.

//Hebrews is a fascinating book, one of the deeper theological works of the Bible. While the New Living Translation is not my favorite by any stretch, it seems to be the only translation which makes clear the point of this verse. Consequently, many readers gloss over this verse without reaching its conclusion:

Jesus was not initially perfect, but was made perfect through suffering.

That does not mean he sinned! Indeed, verse 4:15 makes it clear he did not. Rather, as verse 5:8-9 explains, Jesus learned obedience through his suffering, and “once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.”

Interesting theology from an anonymous author, a book that even conservative scholars struggle to assign authorship to.


  1. Alan Keohane

    Perhaps perfect here means ‘complete’
    If so, Jesus mission was completed by his suffering & sacrifice

    • Lee Harmon

      Thanks, Alan, that does make more sense. I confess, I chose the NLT specifically because it speaks plainly, which seems to contradict that interpretation.

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