The New Covenant (part II)
It will help you to read Hebrews, chapter 7, vs 11-28, and then all of chapter 8. In this passage of scripture the Apostle Paul makes the statements that the ‘old covenant system that occurred in the temporary earthly tabernacle was a ‘temporary’ system. He says that even the high priest of the old system was a temporary mediator. Paul says the old system was a copy and shadow of the new system provided by and through Jesus Christ. The ‘old’ was a copy and temporary…the ‘new’ was the ‘original’ and forever.
In Exodus, chapter 25, vs 8, God says “Then have them make a sanctuary for Me, and I will dwell among them. Make this tabernacle and all its furnishings exactly like the pattern I will show you.” Now jump over to Hebrews chapter 8, vs. 5..”They (the priests of the old covenant tabernacle) serve at a sanctuary that is a copy and shadow of what is in heaven.” Wow. The pattern for the tabernacle and the old system was something that already existed in heaven.
Paul spends a lot of time in Hebrews 7 and 8 explaining the difference between the High Priesthood of Jesus in His New Covenant and the priesthood of the priests of the Old Covenant. Paul says ‘in chapter 7 that under the old system, there were many priests, none of them served forever because they died. He says because Jesus lives forever..that He has a permanent priesthood. Paul says that under the old system the priest is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices but Jesus offered a superior sacrifice…he offered Himself.
Paul says that Jesus, our permanent and forever High Priest, after His resurrection, ‘sat down’ at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven and that He serves (sitting down) in the original, the real, the ‘forever’ tabernacle that is in heaven. He ‘sits’ because the superior sacrifice He offered was a final work and thus He was ‘finished’. Now… what was it that Jesus said while he was dying on the cross (?)…’it is finished.’ His position of being ‘seated’ is declaration that ‘it is finished.’ In the Old Covenant tabernacle, the priest’s work was never finished and there was no place for him to sit down.
Paul says that this ‘forever’ tabernacle was not made by man, but by the Lord. Hebrews chapter 7, vs 22..”Because of this ‘oath’, Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant.” A covenant of grace, not works. A covenant that is identified by believing and receiving as opposed to trying to earn and deserve.
Ephesians, chapter 1, vs. 4, “For He (God) chose us in Him (Christ Jesus) before the creation of the world.” The High Priest of the New Covenant existed with the Father in Heaven before we were created. Wow. Do you see this? Do you see that if you have believed and received Jesus Christ as ‘your’ atoning sacrifice…do you see that God included you ‘in’ Jesus before you were ever born? Does this make you feel loved beyond any depth of love that you have every felt or known?? Amazing…just like the song..Amazing Grace.
In the next post we will continue looking at the ‘pattern and principles of the Old Covenant with the system of Atonement. God provided those in detail so that we would have a ‘pattern’ that was a physical illustration of what the New Covenant would provide.