"...Christ came as high priest..." Hebrews 9:11
As we continue our study through Hebrews, chapter nine clarifies to the reader the worship practice of the old order, recognizing the High Priest's role to enter the "Most Holy Place" or the 'Holy of Holies', but never without the sprinkling of blood to atone for both his own sin and the sins of the nation. (v.'s 6-7) The assertion is made that, "...the gifts and sacrifices being offered were not able to clear the conscience of the worshiper." (v.9) Indeed, the old order was ceremonial - an external display of what would later be an internal dynamic when the new order would be ushered in for all humanity. (v.10)
The sanctification Jesus provides in the New Order is qualified by the preparation given to Jesus' arrival on earth:
- He went through a tabernacle, not of this world. (v.11)
- He was not sanctified by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood. (v.12)
- His sacrificial death is recognized by God as unblemished by man - as holy God. (v.14)
- His sacrificial death cleanses the worshipers conscience, superior to animal sacrifice which could only cleanse outwardly through ceremonial compliance to the first order's regulation. (v.'s 13-14)
One of the most important verses in all scriptural text then follows the description of Christ's worthiness to be the final sacrifice:
"For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that He has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant." (v,15)
Further explanation is then provided, recognizing the precedent set by Moses in the sprinkling of blood - making the historical connection, yet again, with the Hebrews. The writers then offer this concluding remark: "...without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness." (v.22)
Read the closing verses twenty-three through twenty-eight to understand the answers to these questions:
- What were the copies of the heavenly things?
- How were the copies purified?
- Who appears for us in God's presence at this very moment?
- How many times does Jesus have to enter heaven to offer Himself?
- What is the difference in our death and Christ's death?
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Give glory to our High Priest!