The Letter to the Hebrews Message Twenty Two
D. Christ is superior in Mediation. Hebrews 4:14-10:18
Jesus is uniquely qualified to be superior in mediation as our High Priest. He only is worthy!
1. Because of His qualifications. 4:14-7:25
2. Because of His exaltation. . 7:26 – 8:5
The Lord Jesus Christ is the perfect Mediator – “…for such an high priest became us…” He was suited to the need. His Being, Who He is, fulfills all that is needed for the salvation of man.
Last week we considered His Character, crucifixion, and call as the High Priest. We saw –
a. His character described. 7:26 His is –
1). Holy ‘Pure’
2). Harmless ‘without malice’ not looking for a reason to fight
3). Undefiled ‘untainted’, “real, ethical cleanness”
4). Separate from sinners – both in nature and in proximity.
(Sinless Person – the Son of God; Sinless place –
“Made higher than the heavens.”
b. His crucifixion. 7:27 “…he offered up himself…”
c. His call. 7:28 ‘Our perfect High Priest – forever’
And we were reminded of the overarching purpose of the ages is to glorify God.
We noted the satisfaction and of the justice of God through His death.
We noted the provision of salvation by grace through faith.
What learned of His purpose for us, here and now. We were reminded that His purpose in this age of grace – “I will build my church
d. His church.
We learned that as He is our High Priest, we are priest also as revealed by God through the Apostle Peter and are of the Spiritual Household He is building –
1 Peter 2:5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
Today we will be reminded by Paul that man did not create God, but God created man. He was before all things created. He is the beginning, the middle, and the end of all things. He is unchanging, “…the same yesterday, today, and forever…”. Most men are desiring for God to do their will, but we must remember that this is God’s plan and we must obey His will. Is this a bad thing? Look at what Paul writes to the Hebrews and to us about God’s will. He reminds us that God wants us to be with Him. He is the One who created us. He is the One who searches for us. He is the One who desires to live among us.
Paul wrote of our Great High Priest and he wrote of the place of service of the High Priest and the order of priest among men.
In chapter 8 Paul summarized the Position of the Lord Jesus – “Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum…A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.
In these first five verses, he wrote of the preeminence Jesus, with His people worshipping on earth and Jesus ministering in Heaven.
He is the Perfect Priest ministering in the Perfect Tabernacle in Heaven, of which the earthly Tabernacle was but a type, a shadow on earth of the true in Heaven.
Hebrews 8:5 Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount.
The time is coming that we will see the Heavenly Sanctuary, not just a representation, with God accomplishing His purpose to live among His people –
Revelation 21:2-3 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
Christ is superior –
3. Because of His ministering. Hebrews 8:6-10:18
Paul wrote in 8:6-13 that we have a better High Priest and He is ministering to us a better promise, which Paul called a New Covenant. He told them not to look back to the Law when God is minister that which is better! He has fulfilled the Law in Himself and is accomplishing His purpose on earth now –
Do not look back when that which is behind simply led us to that which is better!
Paul then told them to have faith in Christ and His ministry which is –
a. Performed through a better service. Hebrews 9:1-22
Remember at the creation, God created the world, the creatures of the world, and a people to populate the world. He placed the first couple, Adam and Eve, in a garden and there He had fellowship with them: God walking with His people. When Adam and Eve sinned, they lost that fellowship with Him. In order to restore fellowship with God, a sacrifice had to be given. Adam and Eve’s sin brought death into the world. The only answer for that sin is death: the innocent for the guilty. This is the first lesson that God taught Adam –
Genesis 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.
He covered their sin with the skin of an animal. The animal was innocent and was killed, shedding its blood to cover their nakedness. Only by the shedding of blood in death would sin be covered and man able to be near unto God. From that time until the time of the Lord Jesus, the offerings were made by the people of God according to His instructions. The individuals would give offerings for their sins and once a year, the High Priest gave an offering for the sin of the people. As these sacrifices were made, the people were reminded of their sin and of God’s holiness. God’s righteousness, holiness, and love were shown through the offerings and His desire to be among His people.
He wrote how God gave them a wonderful picture of His home in Heaven. The plan of the temple on earth is a shadow of that perfect place in Heaven. Think of that, the Light of God shining onto the earth and we can see the design of the Heavenly Tabernacle on here on earth. Each part of the Tabernacle had a purpose in describing sacrifice and the fellowship of man and God.
1). The Sanctuary. 9:2-5
Exodus 25:8 And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them.
a). The Holy Place – fellowship (Note the furnishings)
We learn from the furnishings in the Tabernacle –
(1). Lampstand, table – service
(2). Shewbread – “The bread laid before Him” – fellowship
(3). Incense – service and fellowship with prayer
b). The Holy of Holies – forgiveness. (Note the significance of the mementos God commanded to be kept in this place)
(1). Golden censer – obedience (Dangerous to invade into the presence of God)
(2). Ark of the Testimony – Relationship (Tables of Law, Manna, Aaron’s Rod)
(3). Mercy Seat – Propitiation. God is satisfied with the offering.
Do you know what this describes? Does this sound familiar to you? Does it remind you of a family home?
The Tabernacle –
You enter through the door because you are a part of the family.
(I am the Door…”
You go by the altar knowing that you can enter the house in peace.
You stop by the Laver and wash your hands and feet, keeping the house clean.
You enter into the front room and feel so welcome and at peace as the light of the candlestick illuminates the room with the bread on the table and the conversation (prayer) offered through the smoke of the incense.
You see the curtain and you know that behind the curtain is the very presence of God above the mercy seat and you can experience the peace of God, knowing you are protected by His presence.
This is the experience of the Hebrews. Paul instructed them and us that this is an illustration of the glorious truth that we in this day of grace have a better position than they did. For all that God provided Israel through the Tabernacle was told to the people by the priest and what was within the veil was told the priest by the High Priest.
We have so much better than they because all believers are priest and can enter into the presence of God at any time and any place. Does this help us understand the promise given in chapter 4 that we can enter boldly into the presence of God to find help in the time of need?
I hope that you when you read of the tabernacle or the Temple, you will not just pass over it as something from Old Testament history. I hope that you see it as the shadow cast from the Light in Heaven of the true Tabernacle, the House of God. Are you looking forward to living in that house forever?