Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Don't be deceived by any other "priest"

As we read Hebrews it is important to remember that the writer is addressing the “religious Jews” (is that a proper term?). The writer is spending much time establishing the things of Judaism that they would already know, such as, the history and function of the priests. As a short recap, the high priest had to make sacrifices; first for his own sin and then for the sins of the people. When the high priest would die, another one was put in place; however, the sacrifices required remained.

The Jews knew two things for sure; 1. they were sinners that needed atonement for their sin; 2. this atonement came through blood sacrifice carried out by the high priest. I'm sure the recipients of this letter may have been thinking, “yes, we know all this.” But, after all the foundation was laid, the writer says, “there is a new and better covenant”.

The old covenant of Levitical Law and the sacrifices of the high priest are done away with because there has come a High Priest that has made a sacrifice once and for all. This High Priest lives forever and His sacrifice is final.

Hebrews 7:15-17 And it is yet far more evident if, in the likeness of Melchizedek, there arises another priest 16 who has come, not according to the law of a fleshly commandment, but according to the power of an endless life. 17 For He testifies: "YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER ACCORDING TO THE ORDER OF MELCHIZEDEK."

The Law made nothing perfect, which is the requirement to enter the Kingdom of God:

Hebrews 7:18-19 For on the one hand there is an annulling of the former commandment because of its weakness and unprofitableness, 19 for the law made nothing perfect; on the other hand, there is the bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.

Romans 8:3 For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh,

Hebrews 7:22 by so much more Jesus has become a surety of a better covenant.

Jesus is the only High Priest that you can be redeemed through. You do not need to confess to, get atonement from, or trust in ANY not only can be, but must be, all through Jesus Christ:

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

Hebrews 7:24-27 But He, because He continues forever, has an unchangeable priesthood. 25 Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them. 26 For such a High Priest was fitting for us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and has become higher than the heavens; 27 who does not need daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the people's, for this He did once for all when He offered up Himself.

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