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1For while the Law foreshadowed the blessings that were to come, it did not fully express them, and so the priests by offering the same sacrifices endlessly year after year cannot wholly free those who come to worship from their sins. 2Otherwise, would they not have ceased to offer these sacrifices, because those who offered them, having once been purified, would have had no further consciousness of sin? 3They really only serve to remind the people annually of the sins they have committed, 4for bulls’ and goats’ blood is powerless to remove sin. 5That is why the Christ, when he was coming into the world, said,
“You have not wished sacrifice or offering, but you have provided a body for me.
6You never cared for burnt-offerings and sacrifices for sin!
7So I said, ‘See, I have come! as the Book of the Law says of me,
O God, to do your will!’ ”
8At first he says, “You never wished or cared for sacrifices or offerings, or burnt-offerings or sacrifices for sin”—all of which the Law prescribes— 9and then he adds, “See, I have come to do your will!” He is taking away the old to put the new in its place. 10And it is through his doing of God’s will that we have been once for all purified from sin through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ in sacrifice. 11Every other priest stands officiating day after day, offering over and over again the same sacrifices, though they were powerless ever to remove people’s sins. 12But Christ has offered for all time one sacrifice for sin, and has taken his seat at God’s right hand, 13from that time waiting for his enemies to be made his footstool. 14For by that one sacrifice he has forever qualified those who are purified from sin to approach God. 15And we have the testimony of the holy Spirit to this, for after saying,
16“ ‘This is the agreement that I will make with them
In those later days,’ says the Lord,
‘I will put my laws into their minds,
And write them upon their hearts,’ ”
he goes on,
17“ ‘And their sins and their misdeeds I will no longer remember.’ ”
18But when these are forgiven, there is no more need of offerings for sin.
19Since then, brothers, we have free access to the sanctuary through the blood of Jesus, 20by the new, living way which he has opened for us, through the curtain, that is, his physical nature, 21and since in him we have a great priest set over the house of God, 22let us draw near to God in sincerity of heart and with perfect faith, with our hearts cleansed from the sense of sin, and our bodies washed with clean water. 23Let us hold unwaveringly to the hope that we profess, for he who has given us his promise may be trusted. 24By observing one another, let us arouse ourselves to rival one another’s love and good deeds. 25Let us not neglect meeting together as some do, but let us encourage one another, all the more as you can see that the great Day is coming nearer.
26For if we choose to go on sinning after we have so fully learned the truth, there is no sacrifice left to be offered for our sins, 27but only the dreadful prospect of judgment and that blazing indignation which is to devour God’s enemies. 28Anyone who breaks the Law of Moses is put to death without any show of pity, on the evidence of only two or three witnesses. 29How much worse a punishment do you think will anyone deserve who tramples the Son of God underfoot, and treats as worthless the blood of the agreement by which he has been purified, and outrages God’s spirit of mercy? 30For we know who it is that has said,
“Vengeance belongs to me! I will pay back!”
and in another place,
“The Lord will be the judge of his people!”
31It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God!
32But you must remember those early days when after you had received the light you had to go through a great struggle with persecution, 33sometimes being actually exposed as a public spectacle to insults and violence, and sometimes showing yourselves ready to share the lot of those in that condition. 34For you showed sympathy with those who were in prison, and you put up with it cheerfully when your property was taken from you, for you knew that you had in yourselves a greater possession that was lasting. 35You must not lose your courage, for it will be richly rewarded, 36but you will need endurance if you are to carry out God’s will and receive the blessing he has promised. 37For
“In a very little while
He who is to come will come and not delay,
38And he whom I accept as righteous will find life through his faith.
But if a man draws back, my heart can take no pleasure in him.”
39But we will not draw back and perish, but we will have faith and save our souls.
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