Christ Is Our High Priest
1Here is the main point: We have a High Priest who sat down in the place of honor beside the throne of the majestic God in heaven. 2There he ministers in the heavenly Tabernacle, the true place of worship that was built by the Lord and not by human hands.
3And since every high priest is required to offer gifts and sacrifices, our High Priest must make an offering, too. 4If he were here on earth, he would not even be a priest, since there already are priests who offer the gifts required by the law. 5They serve in a system of worship that is only a copy, a shadow of the real one in heaven. For when Moses was getting ready to build the Tabernacle, God gave him this warning: “Be sure that you make everything according to the pattern I have shown you here on the mountain.”
The verses above are making clear the supremacy of Jesus's ministry as our "high priest" He took upon himself the punishment for our since and his life was the gift and sacrifice. When he entered Heaven he not only serves in the presence or our Father but on behalf of those of us who have entrusted our lives in Him. So here are 6 areas according to my Fire Bible Study notes that His ministry is effective as our priest and sacrifice.
1. He offered Himself as a perfect sacrifice by shedding His own blood and dying in the sinner's place.
2. He establishes and mediates the new and better covenant-God's plan of salvation
3. Jesus is the Father's presence to give God's grace, his unearned and undeserved favor.
4. Jesus serves as the mediator between God and all who have broken God's la but want to be forgiven.
5. He is our permanent priest, who extends his mercy, empathizes with our struggles and temptations and helps us with our needs.
6. Jesus lives forever, to intercede continually for all those in faith. He will bring believers' salvation to final fulfillment when he brings them to be with him in heaven.
6But now Jesus, our High Priest, has been given a ministry that is far superior to the old priesthood, for he is the one who mediates for us a far better covenant with God, based on better promises.
7If the first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no need for a second covenant to replace it.
First of all, you need to understand Covenant.. I am simply going to post the Fire Bible's definition of Covenant because they explain it so well. No need for me to add to or take away from it.
COVENANT DEFINED. A covenant is a formal, binding agreement or pledge between two parties. It is like a contract; but while a contract is a legal agreement involving specific terms and requirements, a covenant is a “life agreement” in which the parties pledge themselves to one another. A marriage is a form of a covenant. In the case of God’s covenant with his people, it is his pledge to be their God and for them to reserve themselves as his people. Basically, the “old covenant” was God’s prescribed means of maintaining a right relationship with him and receiving forgiveness for offenses against him before he sent Jesus to give his life to pay the full and complete penalty for our sin. The old covenant, as established with Israel (see article on GOD’S COVENANT WITH THE ISRAELITES), was based on God’s laws and promises for the people and on the people’s faithfulness and obedience to God. As long as the people were faithful to God and abided by the conditions and requirements of that covenant, they would enjoy a special relationship with him and experience the life and purpose he desired for them.
The provisions of the old covenant, however, were designed to be temporary and to symbolize and foreshadow the perfect covenant–the “new covenant”–that was to come. This new covenant is God’s plan of spiritual salvation and a renewed relationship with people based on the life and sacrifice of his Son, Jesus Christ, whose work on earth fulfilled and replaced all of the provisions of the old covenant. Unlike the old covenant rituals and sacrifices that had to be constantly repeated, Jesus’ work and personal sacrifice was perfect and complete (10:1- 18) and everlasting. Jesus has provided the complete and perfect means of forgiveness, restoring people to a right relationship with God if they accept that forgiveness and surrender control of their lives to him. This article summarizes the relationship between the old and new covenants
8But when God found fault with the people, he said:
“The day is coming, says the lord,
when I will make a new covenant
with the people of Israel and Judah.
9This covenant will not be like the one
I made with their ancestors
when I took them by the hand
and led them out of the land of Egypt.
They did not remain faithful to my covenant,
so I turned my back on them, says the lord.
10But this is the new covenant I will make
with the people of Israel on that day, says the lord:
I will put my laws in their minds,
and I will write them on their hearts.
I will be their God,
and they will be my people.
We are being told here that the new covenant will be "in" us virtually. He says that the Lord will put his laws in our minds and write his will on our hearts. If the new covenant is part of us, it is personal. It will allow us to both know God and experience a personal relationship with him. Far better than the old covenant where you have so many rules and laws that are man managed and have to be followed just to as for forgiveness. Now we can come to Jesus right were we are. We can know him and ask for forgiveness at any time. We are already covered by the sacrifice of the blood of Jesus. This new covenant is an agreement, a promise and a statement of intention of God to provide grace and to offer forgiveness. To turn away from this new covenant that is part of us it to truly turn away from God.
11And they will not need to teach their neighbors,
nor will they need to teach their relatives,
saying, ‘You should know the lord.’
For everyone, from the least to the greatest,
will know me already.
12And I will forgive their wickedness,
and I will never again remember their sins.”
13When God speaks of a “new” covenant, it means he has made the first one obsolete. It is now out of date and will soon disappear.
The book of Hebrews reveals that the first covenant was imperfect and incomplete. It was a temporary provision by God until the time he gave his Son, Jesus. So that means that the new covenant was not an afterthought or a back up plan but necessary and part of God's incomplete plan before establishing the earth. Even though the scripture states that the the new covenant has made the first one obsolete and out of date and that it will disappear, it doesn't mean the moral principles of the old covenant disappear. The practical teachings and real life examples are relevant and apply to God's people today. Much of the OT points to Jesus and as God's inspired Word, the scriptures are useful for teaching and rebuking and training in righteousness.