Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Hebrews: The Superiority Of Christ To Errant Religions
Part V: The Superiority Of Christ's Priesthood To Other Priesthoods, Hebrews 5:1-10:39
G. The Superiority Of Christ's Service, Hebrews 8:1-10:18
2. Christ's Superior Covenant
(Hebrews 8:7-9:15)
  1. Introduction
    1. An especially significant part of Christ's priesthood that makes it so abundantly superior to all other human priesthoods, including the Old Testament Aaronic priesthood, is its superior covenant provisions.
    2. We view these provisions for insight and encouragement to cleave to Christ above all competing priests:
  2. Christ's Superior Covenant, Hebrews 8:7-9:15.
    1. The covenant God made with Israel in the Mosaic Law did not provide adequate ministry since it "failed because of the nation's sinfulness, for which it had no remedy," Bible Know. Com., N. T. , p. 800.
    2. Verification of this failure is given in Hebrews 8:8-12 that cites Jeremiah 31:31-34 which predicts a new covenant, Hebrews 8:7-8a, 13. God promised a new covenant as the former arrangement was lacking.
    3. Insight into the superior provisions of that new covenant is given in the Jeremiah 31:31-34 prediction:
      1. Unlike being under the Law where there was no inner inclination to obey Him, God would institute a new covenant where He would put His law in "their minds and write it on their hearts," Jer. 31:33b.
      2. Unlike being under the Law where there was no firm relationship between individuals and God, He would institute a new covenant where He would be His people's God, and they His people, Jer. 31:33c.
      3. Unlike being under the Law where the mature had to teach the immature to know God, He would institute a new covenant where all His people, the least to the greatest, would know Him, Jer. 31:34a.
      4. Unlike being under the Law where there was no full forgiveness of Israel's sins due to her apostasy, God would institute a new covenant where He would fully forgive the nation's sins, Jeremiah 31:34b.
    4. Not only does the new covenant offer superior provisions, but the practice of its ordinances indicates infinite superiority over the old covenant that had imperfect ordinance practices, Hebrews 9:1-15:
      1. The Mosaic Covenant instituted ordinances for service that used an earthly sanctuary, Hebrews 9:1. It included the tabernacle with its candlestick and table of shewbread, and beyond the veil to the Holy Place where was located the Holiest of Holies in which was the ark of the covenant overlaid with gold that held the golden pot of manna, Aaron's rod and the tables of the Law, Hebrews 9:2-4. Also, the gold cherubim shadowed the mercy seat above it where abode God's presence, Hebrews 9:5.
      2. When these items were ordained for service, the priests often entered the tabernacle, but the High Priest entered the Holiest of Holies only once a year with the blood of animals he had offered first for his own sins and then for the sins of the people, Heb rews 9:6-7. The Holy Spirit thus signified the way into the Holiest of Holies was not yet manifest while the earthly tabernacle was still instituted, Hebrews 9:8-10.
      3. Yet, Christ entered the heavenly tabernacle not made with hands (Heb. 9:11), and not with the blood of animals, but by His own perfect sacrifice (Heb. 9:12a) "once for all" (ephapax, Arndt & Ging ., A Grk.-Eng. Lex. of the N. T., 1967, p. 330), having gained eternal redemption for us, Heb. 9:12b-13.
      4. For this reason, the blood of Christ who offered Himself without spot through the eternal Holy Spirit much more purges our consciences from [the] dead works [of Judaism in the context of the Epistle] to serve the living God, Heb. 9:14! (Ibid., B. K. C., N. T., p. 802) [This applies to all other faiths, too: our consciences are to be purged from the dead works of all other faiths besides Biblical Christianity!]
      5. For this cause, Christ is thus the mediator of a new covenant that we might receive an eternal inheritance unlike what the old Mosaic Law's covenant could not begin to achieve for us, Heb. 9:15!
Lesson: The new covenant involving Christ's "once for all" atonement and offering of it in the superior heavenly tabernacle that puts an inner inclination in the believer's heart to obey God, making a firm relationship between God and His people, making all believers know the Lord and fully forgive their sins, offers provisions and practices infinitely superior to any other priestly work, including that of the Old Testament Aaronic priesthood. Thus, we must adhere to Christ's priesthood versus being swayed to leave Christianity for any other faith's priesthood or feel obliged to observe any other faiths' works!