Jesus: Priest of the New Covenant
Scripture reading for October 23rd: Hebrews 8
“The point of what we are saying is this: We do have such a high priest, who sat down at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, and who serves in the sanctuary, the true tabernacle, set up by the Lord, not by man.” (Hebrews 8:1-2)
Jesus was a High Priest of the Order of Melchizedek. He is alive and seated at the throne of heaven at God’s right hand, a place of eternal honor. He now serves, not in a humanly constructed sanctuary or temple, but in the actual Tabernacle in Heaven. He offered one sacrifice–His own blood and body–for the sins of all men and women and sat down, his work of sacrifice now finished!
In contrast, the High Priests of the Order of Aaron were men who offered gifts and sacrifices prescribed by the law of God. The did this in a copy of the heavenly temple given to Moses on the Mount Sinai when he received the Ten Commandments, part of the Old Covenant. Under this Old Covenant, the people were obligated to keep or obey God’s law and offer sacrifices of blood when they failed unintentionally. The problem with this covenant was that the people disobeyed and broke the covenant. The Law could only reveal sin, it could not deliver men from sin! The blood sacrifices could only cover sin, not cleanse the inner man from sin and guilt.
But now, Jesus Christ is the mediator of the New Covenant. By faith in Him and His Blood, all who believe will be saved from sin’s penalty: death! We can know God personally and have His law written inside. “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” (Hebrews 8:12)