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Mediator of a Better Covenant


Now the main point in what we are saying is this: we have such a high priest, one who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, 2a minister in the sanctuary and the true tent that the Lord, and not any mortal, has set up.

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Heb 8:1-13. Christ, the High Priest in the True Sanctuary, Superseding the Levitical Priesthood; the New Renders Obsolete the Old Covenant.

1. the sum—rather, "the principal point"; for the participle is present, not past, which would be required if the meaning were "the sum." "The chief point in (or, 'in the case'; so the Greek, Heb 9:10, 15, 17) the things which we are speaking," literally, "which are being spoken."

such—so transcendently pre-eminent, namely in this respect, that "He is set on the right hand of," &c. Infinitely above all other priests in this one grand respect, He exercises His priesthood IN HEAVEN, not in the earthly "holiest place" (Heb 10:12). The Levitical high priests, even when they entered the Holiest Place once a year, only STOOD for a brief space before the symbol of God's throne; but Jesus SITS on the throne of the Divine Majesty in the heaven itself, and this for ever (Heb 10:11, 12).

2. minister—The Greek term implies priestly ministry in the temple.

the sanctuaryGreek, "the holy places"; the Holy of Holies. Here the heavenly sanctuary is meant.

the true—the archetypal and antitypical, as contrasted with the typical and symbolical (Heb 9:24). Greek "alethinos" (used here) is opposed to that which does not fulfil its idea, as for instance, a type; "alethes," to that which is untrue and unreal, as a lie. The measure of alethes is reality; that of alethinos, ideality. In alethes the idea corresponds to the thing; in alethinos, the thing to the idea [Kalmis in Alford].

tabernacle—(Heb 9:11). His body. Through His glorified body as the tabernacle, Christ passes into the heavenly "Holy of Holies," the immediate immaterial presence of God, where He intercedes for us. This tabernacle in which God dwells, is where God in Christ meets us who are "members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones." This tabernacle answers to the heavenly Jerusalem, where God's visible presence is to be manifested to His perfected saints and angels, who are united in Christ the Head; in contradistinction to His personal invisible presence in the Holy of Holies unapproachable save to Christ. Joh 1:14, "Word … dwelt among us," Greek, "tabernacled."

pitchedGreek, "fixed" firmly.

not man—as Moses (Heb 8:5).