Useful Bible Studies > Hebrews Commentary > chapter 9

The way into the holiest place

Hebrews 9:8

The design of Godís house (called the tabernacle or, afterwards, the temple) was Godís plan. By it, Godís Holy Spirit was teaching an important lesson to Godís people.

Godís house had an inner room and an outer room. Most of Godís people could never enter either room. A few priests performed daily duties in the outer room. But only the chief priest ever entered the inner room. But he could only enter it on one special day each year.

Godís lesson was not difficult to understand. It was clear to anyone who thought about the matter.

This was the lesson. God had provided a system of priests for Israel. He had shown them how to offer the sacrifices (gifts) that he accepted. He had established his house on earth among them. These things gave people an opportunity to have a relationship with him. But that relationship was not yet complete.

God lived among his people, but he was still separate from them. The way into the holy place, where God is, was not yet open. But God does not want to be separate from the people whom he loves. So it was clear that all these arrangements were temporary. At the proper time, God would do something new (Hebrews 8:8).

That change happened when God sent Christ into the world. Christ is a better priest than Israelís priests were (Hebrews chapter 7). He offered a better sacrifice (Hebrews 10:11-12). And he entered a better house of God (Hebrews 9:24) Ė the one that is in heaven.

So the author of Hebrews declares that Christ has established a Ďnew and living wayí into the holiest place (Hebrews 10:20). Perhaps he was referring to Christís own words in John 14:6. There, Jesus calls himself Ďthe true and living wayí to God the Father.

Next part: The parable of Godís house (Hebrews 9:9-10)


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© 2014, Keith Simons.