Hebrews 9: 1-28
This epistle of Hebrews was written to implore the first-century Jewish Christians not to drift back to Judaism, temple worship, sacrifices, rituals, religiosity, law, legalism, etc.
VV 1-5, 1Then indeed, even the first covenant had ordinances of divine service and the earthly sanctuary. 2 For a tabernacle was prepared: the first part, in which was the lampstand, the table, and the showbread, which is called the sanctuary; 3 and behind the second veil, the part of the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of All, 4 which had the golden censer and the ark of the covenant overlaid on all sides with gold, in which were the golden pot that had the manna, Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tablets of the covenant; 5 and above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat. Of these things, we cannot now speak in detail.
The tabernacle is the tent of meeting between God and the Jews. It had an outer court, the Holy place, and the Holy of Holies. The Holy Place contained the table of shewbread, the golden menorah, and the altar of incense. The veil separates the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies. The Holy of Holies contained the ark of the covenant which had the tablets of the 10 commandments, Aaron’s rod that budded, and the pot of manna. Covering the ark was the mercy seat and above the ark were two golden cherubims.
VV 6-10, 6 Now when these things had been thus prepared, the priests always went into the first part of the tabernacle, performing the services. 7 But into the second part the high priest went alone once a year, not without blood, which he offered for himself and for the people’s sins committed in ignorance; 8 the Holy Spirit indicating this, that the way into the Holiest of All was not yet made manifest while the first tabernacle was still standing. 9 It was symbolic for the present time in which both gifts and sacrifices are offered which cannot make him who performed the service perfect in regard to the conscience, 10 concerned only with foods and drinks, various washings, and fleshly ordinances imposed until the time of reformation.
The priest could access to Holy Place daily but only the High Priest could access the Holy of Holies once a year on Yom Kippur day or Day of Atonement, to atone for unintentional sins or sins committed in ignorance. For 1 year only, Leviticus 16. There was no provision for atonement of intentional sins under the old covenant. Under the new covenant, the resurrection of Jesus, our High Priest on Easter to atoned for our forever.
The outer court is the place of salvation. The Holy place is the place of service. The Holy of Holies is the presence of God. Do not remain in the outer court and the Holy place. Go all the way into the Holy of Holies into the presence of God.
VV 11-12, 11 But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. 12 Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
With the new covenant, came Jesus, our perfect High Priest, with the perfect heavenly tabernacle made by God. He entered the Holy of Holies with His own blood to secure our eternal salvation.
VV 14-14, 13 For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, 14 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?
If the blood of bulls and goats and ashes of a heifer could sanctify and purify our flesh, how much more the blood of Christ, which can purify our conscience? The blood of bulls and goats cover sins externally but not internally. The blood of Christ covers sins externally and internally to purify our conscience. God became a man to die in our place, to pay the punishment of sins for us.
VV 15-17, 15 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. 16 For where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. 17 For a testament is in force after men are dead, since it has no power at all while the testator lives.
Christ is the testator or mediator of the new covenant or New Testament. For a testament to be in force, the testator must be dead first. When Jesus, the testator of the New Testament died, the law died and we died with Him. Jesus rose from death and became the testator or mediator, of the new covenant or New Testament. Jesus died a testator but rose from death as a mediator.
VV 18-22, 18 Therefore not even the first covenant was dedicated without blood. 19 For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water, scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people, 20 saying, “This is the blood of the covenant which God has commanded you.” 21 Then likewise he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle and all the vessels of the ministry. 22 And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.
The author quoted Exodus 24; 6, “Moses took half of the blood and put it in bowls, and the other half he splashed against the altar” and Exodus 24: 8, “Moses then took the blood, sprinkled it on the people, and said, “This is the blood of the covenant that the Lord has made with you.” Under Moses, almost all things were cleansed with blood, and without blood, there was no remission of sin.
VV 23-27, 23 Therefore it was necessary that the copies of the things in the heavens should be purified with these, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. 24 For Christ has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us; 25 not that He should offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood of another, 26 He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.
Jesus Christ entered the presence of God in the heavenly tabernacle for us. Jesus Christ entered into our time-space continuum through His incarnation and sacrificed Himself once and for all to pay the punishment of our sins.
VV 27-28, 27 And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, 28 so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him, He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.
It is appointed for men to die once and after that to face the judgment of God. There is no such thing as reincarnation. Christ died once to pay the punishment for our sins. He will come back again not to deal with sin but for salvation and to consummate His Kingdom.