Hebrews

Hebrews 9:11-15 The Mediator As The Perfect Sacrifice.

Christ came to be the High Priest of the new covenant, in a “greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation (v. 11). “With His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption” (v. 12). “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins” (10:4 Cf. 9:11). These sacrifices only sanctified or set apart the flesh, mere externals (v. 13 Cf. Lev. 16:14-15). Only the blood of Christ, as one without spot, that it sinless, can cleanse the conscience, which would otherwise continually convict us of falling short. Otherwise our works are dead before the living God (v. 14 Cf. I Jn. 1:7). “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 eternal inheritance” (v. 15 Cf. 3:1).

Redemption is “a payment to release someone from captivity (cf. v. 12). Violation of God’s covenant creates a liability to condemnation that can only be satisfied through the violator’s death, or by redemption through a substitute. Christ’s death inaugurates the new covenant, even as it brings redemption from the curse that rested on violators of the first covenant” (NGSB p. 1947). “As in 2:2, 3, the writer uses an argument from the lesser to the greater. The lesser is the blood of animals offered by the high priest on earth, the greater is the blood shed by Christ. The lesser had ceremonial power, the greater can take away guilt from the conscience” (Ibid. p. 1947). The point of redemption is not simply that we be forgiven, with our consciences cleansed. We are redeemed that we may “serve the living God” (v. 14 Cf. 12:18; 13:15-16, 21). To this end a sacrifice without spot was necessary (Nu. 6:14; I Pet. 1:19).

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