Digging in Deeper: Hebrews 10:1-4

“Since the law has only a shadow of the good things to come, and not the reality itself of those things, it can never perfect the worshipers by the same sacrifices they continually offer year after year. Otherwise, wouldn’t they have stopped being offered, since the worshipers, purified once and for all, would no longer have any consciousness of sins? But in the sacrifices there is a reminder of sins year after year. For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

For the last several weeks we have been talking through the author of Hebrews’ argument that the new covenant Jesus made between us and God by His sacrificial death is greater than the old covenant God made between Him and Israel and which was rooted in the Law of Moses. The author has offered one look after another into the old covenant’s various points of weakness and shown how the new covenant resolves them. Here in chapter 10, as he is drawing near the end of this line of argument, he starts out with a statement that is perhaps the most direct he’s been so far. It’s hard to fathom how much a shock this would have been to his original audience. Let’s talk about it.

Read the rest…

Morning Musing: Hebrews 9:27-28

“And just as it is appointed for people to die once — and after this, judgment  —  so also Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

I love trick shot videos. Dude Perfect offers some of the best of these that are out there. I know because my kids have watched all of them. Twice. A week. For the last year. Okay, it’s not quite that bad, but we do watch a lot of Dude Perfect videos around my house. One of the thoughts that runs through my head every time I see a trick shot is, “He couldn’t do that again.” Sometimes when I’ve done something particularly hard, my first thought is, “I wouldn’t want to do that again.” That’s probably what Jesus thought after the ordeal of the cross. Thankfully, as the author of Hebrews explains here, He won’t have to. Let’s talk about it.

Continue reading “Morning Musing: Hebrews 9:27-28”

Morning Musing: Hebrews 9:25-26

“He did not do this to offer himself many times, as the high priest enters the sanctuary yearly with the blood of another. Otherwise, he would have had to suffer many times since the foundation of the world. But now he has appeared one time, at the end of the ages, for the removal of sin by the sacrifice of himself.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

One of the classic definitions of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results. Under the old covenant, worshipers offered an endless stream of sacrifices, one after the next, each time expecting them to take away their sins. Yet while those sacrifices did indeed provide the covering they needed in the moment, they never dealt with the root problem. It was crazy to think they could. In the new covenant, Jesus changed all of that. Let’s talk this morning about how.

Read the rest…

Morning Musing: Hebrews 9:24

“For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with hands (only a model of the true one) but into heaven itself, so that he might now appear in the presence of God for us.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Everybody wants access to the boss. One of the greatest gifts the leader of an organization has to give is his time and attention. People will compete with one another endlessly for these things because it gives them access to power. And if we can’t have power ourselves, having access to it is a close second. Under the old covenant, access to the time and attention of God was severely limited. Under the new covenant it is not. Let’s talk about why.

Read the rest…

Digging in Deeper: Hebrews 9:16-23

“Where a will exists, the death of the one who made it must be established. For a will is valid only when people die, since it is never in effect while the one who made it is living. That is why even the first covenant was inaugurated with blood. For when every command had been proclaimed by Moses to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and goats, along with water, scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll itself and all the people, saying, ‘This is the blood of the covenant that God has ordained for you.’ In the same way, he sprinkled the tabernacle and all the articles of worship with blood. According to the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. Therefore, it was necessary for the copies of the things in the heavens to be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves to be purified with better sacrifices than these.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Have you ever done something wrong? Actually, let’s go ahead and change up that question to: When was the last time you did something wrong? I mean anything wrong. I’m not talking about just the big stuff. Big stuff, small stuff, medium stuff, all the stuff. When was the last time you did something for which you needed to be forgiven? As the author of Hebrews continues to unpack in more detail how the new covenant in Christ was made, he says something here about how forgiveness happens that should get our attention. Let’s take a look at it together.

Read the rest…