AND NOT THROUGH THE BLOOD OF GOATS AND CALVES: oude di haimatos
tragon kai moschon: (Hebrews 9:13; 10:4; Leviticus 8:2; 9:15; Lev
16:5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 = "Yom Kippur" = Day of Atonement)
Hebrews 9:13 (note)
For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer (see
sprinkling those who have been defiled, sanctify for the cleansing of
Hebrews 10:4 (note)
For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away
"Take Aaron and his sons with him, and the garments and the anointing
oil and the bull of the sin offering, and the two rams and the basket
of unleavened bread;
Then he presented the
people's offering, and took the goat of the sin offering which was for
the people, and slaughtered it and offered it for sin, like the first.
he shall take from the congregation of the sons of Israel two male
goats for a sin offering and one ram for a burnt offering. 6 "Then
Aaron shall offer the bull for the sin offering which is for himself,
that he may make atonement for himself and for his household. 7 "And
he shall take the two goats and present them before the LORD at the
doorway of the tent of meeting. 8 "And Aaron shall cast lots for the
two goats, one lot for the LORD and the other lot for the scapegoat. 9
"Then Aaron shall offer the goat on which the lot for the LORD fell,
and make it a sin offering. 10 "But the goat on which the lot for the
scapegoat fell, shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make
atonement upon it, to send it into the wilderness as the scapegoat.
Phillips comments that...
As a candle fades into total
insignificance before the full blaze of the noonday sun, so the Old
Testament priesthood fades into nothing before that of Christ. Who
needs a candle when standing in the full blaze of day? As the majesty
of the sun obliterates whatever majesty a candle might have had in the
darkness of the night, so Christ's majesty obliterates that of the
Levitical priesthood (Phillips,
John: Exploring Hebrews: An Expository Commentary)
(oude) indicates absolute negation - "absolutely not through
the blood of goats and calves" like the Jewish High Priest Aaron on
the Day of Atonement, yom kippur...
Aaron shall enter the holy place
with this: with a bull for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt
offering. (Leviticus 16:3)
Day of Atonement (Lev 16:1-34) pointed to the redeeming work of Christ
more adequately than any other sacrifice or ceremony of the OT (cf.
Heb. 9). But in itself, the Day of Atonement was still inadequate,
"for it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take
away sins" (He 9:11, cf. Heb. 10:4-note).
The Hebrew verb "to make atonement" is kaphar, which means "to cover,
to make a covering." The teaching of Scripture is that the sins of the
OT saints were covered over until Christ came and removed them (cf.
It was as if sins were forgiven "on credit" in the OT, with Christ
later paying the debt in full through His death on the cross.
Jamieson notes that it was
not a bullock, such as the
Levitical high priest offered for himself, and a goat for the people, on the
day of atonement (Lev 16:6,15),
year by year, whence the plural is used, goats...calves.
Besides the goat offered for the people the blood of which was sprinkled
before the mercy seat, the high priest led forth a second goat,
namely, the scapegoat; over it he confessed the people's sins,
putting them on the head of the goat, which was sent as the sin-bearer into
the wilderness out of sight, implying that the atonement effected by the
goat sin offering (of which the ceremony of the scapegoat is a part, and not
distinct from the sin offering) consisted in the transfer of the people's
sins on the goat, and their consequent removal out of sight...Christ's death
is symbolized by the slain goat; His resurrection to life by the living goat
sent away. Modern Jews substitute in some places a cock for the goat as an
expiation, the sins of the offerers being transferred to the entrails, and
exposed on the housetop for the birds to carry out of sight, as the
scapegoat did; the Hebrew word for "man" and "cock" (gebher) being similar. (!)
Tale Of Two Goats - Two goats without blemish stood before the high
priest in the bright Middle Eastern sun. Lots were cast, and the priest
slowly led one to the altar to be killed as a sin offering for the people.
Its blood was sprinkled on the mercy seat. That goat was a sacrifice.
The other goat, known as the scapegoat, portrays another truth. The priest
placed both his hands on its forehead and confessed the sins of Israel. Then
the goat was led out into the desert and turned loose. As it wandered away,
never to be seen again, it symbolically took Israel's sins along with it.
They were gone. The people were reconciled to God. That goat was a
Both of these goats were pictures of what Christ would do for us. The cross
became an upright altar, where the Lamb of God gave His life as a sacrifice
for sin. And what the scapegoat symbolically portrayed for Israel—the
removal of their sins—Jesus fulfilled in reality. He became our substitute.
Because of our identification with Him as believers, our sins have been
taken away completely.
Two goats representing two truths: sacrifice and substitution. Both were
fulfilled in Christ when He died on the cross and made full atonement for
our sins. Praise God! —David C. Egner
Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted by
permission. All rights reserved)
Guilty, vile, and helpless we,
Spotless Lamb of God was He;
Full atonement! Can it be?
Hallelujah, what a Savior! —Bliss
Jesus took our place to give us His peace.
BUT THROUGH HIS OWN BLOOD: dia de tou idiou haimatos:
1:3; He 10:9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14; Acts 20:28; Ep 1:7; Col 1:14; Titus 2:14;
1Pe 1:18,19; Re 1:5; Re 5:9)
Hebrews 1:3 (note)
And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His
nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made
purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on
then He said, "BEHOLD, I HAVE COME TO DO THY WILL." He takes away the first
in order to establish the second. 10 By this will we have been sanctified
through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. 11 And
every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same
sacrifices, which can never take away sins; 12 but He, having offered one
sacrifice for sins for all time, SAT DOWN AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD, 13
waiting from that time onward UNTIL HIS ENEMIES BE MADE A FOOTSTOOL FOR HIS
FEET. 14 For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who
are sanctified. (see notes
Acts 20:28 "Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among
which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God
which He purchased with His own
Ephesians 1:7 (note)
In Him we have redemption through His
blood, the forgiveness of our
trespasses, according to the riches of His grace,
1 Peter 1:18 (note)
knowing that you were
not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way
of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as
of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the
blood of Christ. (see note
1 Peter 1:18;
Revelation 1:5 (note)
and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the first-born of the dead, and
the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us, and released us
from our sins by His
Revelation 5:9 (note)
And they sang a new song, saying, "Worthy art Thou to take the book, and to
break its seals; for Thou wast slain, and didst purchase for God with Thy
blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.
But - strong
Through His own
blood - A T Robertson notes that...
This is the great distinction between
Christ as High Priest and all other high priests. They offer blood (He 9:7), but he offered his own blood. He is both victim and High Priest.
rightly says that...
Jesus’ sacrifice was superior in that it
was perfect, voluntary, rational, and motivated by love.
The blood offered was different. In
the case of the Aaronic priests, it was the blood of goats and calves.
In the case of Messiah, it was His own blood. The words "His own" are
the translation of idios. Had the personal pronoun autos been used,
the reference would be merely to the fact that it was by means of His
blood that He entered the Holy of Holies. But the word idios speaks
not merely of ownership, but of a personal, private, unique ownership.
For instance, John in his Gospel (5:18) states the fact that the Jews
tried to kill our Lord because He had said that God was His personal
unique Father. Had John used autos, there would have been no
justification for their accusation, for each one of these Jews claimed
God as his Father. John used idios, reporting the Lord Jesus as
saying that God was His private, unique Father. God was His Father in
a different sense from that in which He might be the Father of others.
Our Lord claimed unique Sonship, and, therefore, Deity. And these Jews
recognized that fact.
Now, the efficacy of our Lord's blood rested, not in the fact that it
was human blood, but that it was human blood of a unique kind. It
flowed in the veins of One who was as to His humanity, sinless, and as
to His Person, Deity. And the combination of these two, sinless
humanity, and Deity, made it unique, efficacious. It was the only
sacrificial blood that could be sprinkled on the Mercy Seat in the
heavenly Holy of Holies, the only blood which the High Court of Heaven
would accept as atonement for human sin. It was this blood poured out
on Calvary's Cross that gave Messiah access as High Priest into the
Holy of Holies of heaven.
- Speaks of the instrument by which something is effected. Notice that the
Greek word is not sun or meta which would be "with". Some teach that Christ
entered the heavenly tabernacle with His blood, but if we take this
text literally, it seems to declare that it was not with but through (by the
instrumentality of) His precious blood. It is notable that some translations
are rendered in a way that supports that premise that Jesus took His own
blood to heaven. For example...
He has entered the sanctuary once and for
all, taking with Him not the blood of goats and bull calves, but his
own blood (New Jerusalem Bible)
with His own blood He entered the
Most Holy Place once for all (NKJV)
Once for all time he took blood into that
Most Holy Place (NLT)
He took his own blood and obtained
eternal salvation for us (TEV)
Christ didn’t take the blood of goats and
calves to sprinkle on the altar. Rather, He went there “through His own
blood.” Some have erroneously taught that Jesus had to carry His blood into
heaven to secure our redemption. But He didn’t go there with His blood, but
through His blood. He secured our redemption on the cross. (Hebrews 9:1-14 God's Remedy for
adds that "we are not to understand that
our Lord took His blood into heaven. That precious blood was
poured out on the Cross and dripped into the earth. But it was by
virtue of that fact that He entered heaven, having accomplished
salvation by the sacrifice of Himself. It was in that bloodless,
glorified human body which is an eternal testimony that sin is paid
for, that our blessed Lord entered heaven."
The point that it was
Christ's own blood is emphasized by repetition later in this
nor was it that He (Messiah) should offer
Himself often, as the high priest enters the holy place year by year with
blood not his own. (see note
redemption of man is attributed to the blood of Christ; and this blood is
stated to be shed in a sacrificial way, precisely as the blood of bulls,
goats and calves was shed under the law.
The author is showing the complete
supremacy and finality of the blood of Christ over the old system. Through
His death, our guilt is atoned for once and for all, for all eternity! The
penalty has been paid. There is nothing that we can add to what Christ did.
Through Him we have direct access to God! (Hebrews 9:1-14 God's Remedy for
Remember that a
"bloodless gospel is no gospel" for without the shedding of blood there is
no remission of sins.
NOTHING BUT THE BLOOD
by Robert Lowry
What can wash away my
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
What can make me whole again?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
Oh! precious is the flow
That makes me white as snow;
No other fount I know,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
A T Robertson notes that
This is the great distinction between
Christ as High Priest and all other high priests. They offer blood (Hebrews
9:7-note), but he offered his own
blood. He is both victim and High Priest.
Through His own
blood - There is some disagreement on the interpretation of this
passage, as some commentators such as J Vernon McGee state that Christ went into Heaven with His
blood. The Greek and (most) English renderings state that He entered Heaven
not with His own
blood, but through (or by) His own blood. The preposition
dia may be translated through, by reason of, or by
virtue of. This would lead one to understand that Christ is now seated in Heaven as the High Priest
of His sacrificial death and precious blood. On the Cross Jesus stated
"It is finished" ("paid in full") indicating that His blood
was efficacious the moment it was shed, an interpretation that is also
supported by the fact that veil in the temple was torn in two from top to
Albert Barnes adds that it was
by His own blood
shed for the remission of sins. The meaning is, that it was in virtue of
own blood, or “by means” of that, that He sought the pardon of His people.
That blood was not shed for Himself - for He had no sin - and consequently
there was a material difference between His offering and that of the Jewish
high priest. The difference related to such points as these. (1) the
offering which Christ made was wholly for others; that of the Jewish priest
for himself as well as for them. (2) the blood offered by the Jewish priest
was that of animals; that offered by the Saviour was his own.(3) that
offered by the Jewish priest was only an emblem or type - for it could not
take away sin; that offered by Christ had a real efficacy, and removes
transgression from the soul.
William Newell comments on Hebrews
Nor yet through the blood of goats and
calves—the means by which Israel’s high priest came before Jehovah, even
into His presence, on the Great Day of Atonement. But such blood was a
typical, temporary shadow, of what was to be done. Such offerings could not
maintain man, nor even his representative, the high priest, in Jehovah’s
presence; nor, indeed, give him liberty to open his mouth from behind the
veil in Jehovah’s presence, the Holy of Holies, All he could do was to swing
a censer of incense which spoke of that “sweet savor” which Christ’s
sacrifice was one day to be before God; and then sprinkle the blood, the
laid-down life of the sacrifice, upon the mercy seat, then seven times
before the mercy seat, and then withdraw. (Addendum: Mark well,
however (Lev. 16), that the high priest was also to cleanse, to “make
atonement for the holy place” (Lev 16:16), “because of the uncleanesses of
the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions, even all their
sins,” AND “go out unto the altar … and make atonement for it … and cleanse
it, and hallow it from all the uncleanessess of the Israel” (Lev 16:18, 19).
The holiness of God’s being and the effect of the blood in Heaven, was the
primary consideration in the Great Day of Atonement, as afterwards on the
But through His own blood, entered in
once for all into the Holies—Here we learn several astonishing things.
First, these words, through (dia) His own
blood, reveal that Christ entered Heaven with a memorial of His own
sacrifice. “Named of God [a High Priest] forever after the order of
Melchizedek,” He comes back to Heaven in that character! Not merely as Son
of God, Creator of all things; not as Heir, nor as the sinless Man,
returning (as in Heb 7:26), “holy, guileless, undefiled, separated from
sinners, and made higher than the heavens.” (He could indeed say to the
Jews, “Which of you convicteth Me of sin?”) But it was not on that ground or
in that capacity that He sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high.
He entered in by virtue of His blood. He might have entered Heaven at any
moment during His perfect life here. But He would have gone alone as He came
alone. But He has not entered Heaven in that way. Always pleasing unto the
Father, through the eternal Spirit He offered Himself without blemish [at
the Cross] unto God (Heb 9:14). We glory in Him as the sinless One, but as
such our sins were laid upon Him, with the guilt thereof. So they became
His, on the Cross. Indeed, He was “made to be sin on our behalf.” He was
forsaken of God. He cried:
“For innumerable evils have compassed Me
Mine iniquities have overtaken Me, so that I am not able to look up;
They are more than the hairs of My head;
And My heart hath failed Me”
We had committed those sins, of which He
“Mine iniquities are gone over My head:
As a heavy burden they are too heavy for Me”
He said, “That which I took not away” (man’s standing with God) “I have to
restore” (Ps. 69:4). He recognized our iniquities now as His. Hear Psalm 22:
“Forsaken … groaning … My heart is like
wax; it is melted within Me … My strength is dried up … My tongue cleaveth
to My jaws … brought into the dust of death.”
Such words were His in the day that your
load of guilt and mine lay upon Him! Then after He had said, “It is
finished,” there came the piercing spear, and the outflowing blood and
He was buried. But according to His
frequent words to His disciples concerning His death, that the third day He
would be raised up, He was “raised from the dead by the glory of the
Father.” Forty days He spent with His beloved disciples, “showing Himself
alive after His passion by many proofs.” Then He ascended on high, saluted
by God as a High Priest “after the order of Melchizedek,” as we have seen.
He was the Creator—“All things have been
created through Him and unto Him.” But not as the Creator did He enter
Heaven, “now to appear before the face of God for us.” He kept the Law
perfectly, as Israel had not; but He did not go back to Heaven as one who
had kept that Law. He was the Son of God, but He did not return to Heaven
merely as the Son.
Nor is it as though He came to the earth
and did something for us and then went back to Heaven, leaving us to get
there if we could; but, contrariwise, having entered through His own blood,
He has us there already potentially; and to simple faith, actually. (See
Addendum at end of this note)
Behold, then, the Son of God, the Man
also, without blemish, returning whence He came: and entering God’s presence
through His own blood. He must enter thus or leave the redeemed behind
forever. But His character now forever was that of a Redeemer. For did He
not enter in … having obtained eternal redemption? He must be forever before
God as One Who “bare our sins in His own body on the Tree.” Ours was the sin
and guilt; His was the finished sacrifice of the Cross. That work was done.
But He returns gladly in the character God gave Him: “Thou art a Priest
forever.” (See Addendum #2 at end of this note) He would forever be
connected with those whom He had redeemed.
Christ went into God’s presence for us
with only one claim on our behalf: His shed blood! That blood was the
witness that in the person of our Substitute, Divine wrath and judgment had
been endured. That blood witnessed that we who believe dared not in
ourselves approach God, that we abandoned all hopes in ourselves, and were
“made nigh in the blood of Christ.” There is nothing that should bring men
to despair of self-righteousness like the story of the Cross, for all we can
do is to sit there in the darkness and let Another be judged in our place!
As Priest, that is, as representing us,
not God: God’s claims against us having all been satisfied at the Cross,
forever—as Priest He is committed to our interests. (For, we repeat, a
prophet came out from God, representing God to the people; while a priest
went in to God, representing the people to Him.†) Indeed, having borne our
sin with the guilt thereof, Christ entered in above as our Substitute and
Representative, not alone, but taking us with Him, in the right and power of
His infinite sacrifice. Thus He is before God, and thus, as to fact and
standing, are all those in Him. Is Christ there? Then we are there in Him,
blessed be God.
When the redeemed are in the glory above,
there will be this consciousness: Christ, the Son of God, became what I was.
I committed the sin; He bore the sin. He even became sin on my behalf, and
here I am, the righteousness of God in Him! I am not only righteous now
before God, but I am the righteousness of God! (2 Cor. 5:21). Therefore, to
bring me here, Christ exchanged places with me. My Lord, Himself, became so
completely my sin, that when He returned to the glory there, He entered in
through His own blood. Therefore, when I look at my righteousness, my heart
turns with unspeakable love back to where He put away my sin, and when I
look at the Cross and its finished work I look at this, that I am now
forever more “the righteousness of God in Him.” Unspeakable Grace surrounds
me, whichever way I turn. I am overwhelmed with the Grace of God that
brought this salvation. (See Addendum below)
So if He, our Sin-Bearer, entered the
Holies above through His own blood, we whose sins He bore find a glad
welcome there also. A sense of eternal unchanging welcome at the throne of
grace possesses our hearts. Oh, if we could always abide in this, that God
is evermore delighting in Christ, that dear Son Who, after finishing the
work of redemption the Father had given Him to do, entered the Holies above
through His own blood, and now “appears before the face of God for us.” What
a rest of heart would be ours!
Here then, let our conception of the
priesthood of Christ find its eternal foundation. He entered into Heaven
itself, through His own blood, as having borne our sins, having been once
offered to bear the sins of many.† If Christ, Who did no sin, yet bore mine,
entered into the Holies “before the face of God” through His own blood, shed
at Calvary, how shall I, being invited through that blood also to enter with
boldness—how can I shrink back?
It is not (far, far be the thought!) that
we sinners learn that our sins have been borne, that the work is finished,
and we can forget that, and pass on to something beyond and deeper. THERE IS
NOTHING DEEPER, for all eternity! The gift of God was infinite: His only
begotten Son. The devotion of Christ was infinite: “The cup My Father hath
given Me, shall I not drink it?” The devotion of God to His Son (always
unmeasured) is now communicated to creatures, yea, sinful creatures. It is
beheld by the holy beings of Heaven with endless marvel!
But some say they are on a higher level
than those newly pardoned through Christ’s blood, because they are now new
creatures and are seated in heavenly places. But in Whom were they created?
The only answer is, In the Risen Christ: the Christ of the wounds; the
Christ Who entered Heaven through His own blood. It is a fearful undertaking
to try, as some (like Bullinger)* do, to describe a condition beyond and
above being redeemed by the shed blood of Christ, Who Himself sits at God’s
right hand, through His own blood!
It will be found in eternity that the
endless love of an infinite God was expressed at Calvary; also the
quenchless affection of our Great High Priest, even Jesus. Get beyond that,
you never will!
To have been redeemed will be the highest
place in glory, because God is most revealed by the sacrifice of His Son,
and the Son most revealed by His offering of Himself! And mark this, it is
not as having left the shedding of that blood behind as a past event,
merely, that He enters into the glory above, but it is strictly in the
character of One Who has shed His blood, which character He will retain for
Should He, my friend, He the Holy One,
enter God’s presence through His own blood, and you dare dream of entering
in apart from that blood? Would you as a sinner (and you know you are that)
pass right by the blessed Son of God, Who entered God’s presence through His
own blood, and present yourself to that Holy God as one who had “done his
best”; who had “tried to keep the Law”; one who “had been a ‘church member’,
and recognized on earth as ‘good’ ”? I say, would you dare, you who have
never as a guilty sinner fled to Him for refuge, thus enter God’s holy
There could be no more absolute and
eternal insult to the God Who gave His Son, and Whose Son entered His
presence through His own blood, than for you to undertake to come to God
apart from the blood of Christ.
Hear the description of the saints in
Those “that draw near unto God through
Those that “enter into the holy place by
the blood of Jesus, … by a freshly-slain and living way, through the veil,
that is to say, His flesh.”
Those who, “having a Great Priest over
the house of God, … draw near with a true heart in fullness of faith, having
our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience.”
Those who “have grace, whereby we may
offer service well-pleasing to God with reverence and awe.”
Those who “offer up a sacrifice of praise
to God continually, that is, the fruit of lips which make confession to His
Those who “endured a great conflict of
sufferings,” for their faith’s sake; being “in subjection” [as sons] under
their Father’s chastening hand.
Those who “bear the reproach” of Jesus,
Who “suffered without the gate”; “laying aside every weight” and besetting
sin; “running with patience the race that is set before us.”
Those who refuse to “cast away their
boldness” toward God, despite all obstacles and temptations; looking for THE
PROMISE: “He that cometh shall come”—“shall appear a second time, apart from
sin, to them that wait for Him, unto salvation.”
If you and I find ourselves among this
company, blessed are we! But take heed: the Divine elevator is about to
start for Heaven, but there is a great sign above its door, “FOR SINNERS
ONLY.” Paul is in it, who of sinners is the chief. Peter is there, who swore
he did not know Christ. Jerry McAuley, “the river rat,” is there; and John
Newton, “once a libertine and infidel, a servant of slaves in Africa,” as
reads his epitaph written by himself and a great multitude of others.
(Tertia, who is writing this dictation,
says that readers will object, saying, “These men are already in Heaven.” It
is not my thought when they go there, but how they go there. This I am
illustrating by the elevator.)
“FOR SINNERS ONLY”: Here comes a Jew,
saying, “I belong to the Chosen People.” Paul’s answer is ready, “He is not
a Jew who is one outwardly.” Nobody gets on the elevator for Heaven because
of racial descent.
But now comes a Presbyterian, and the
keeper of the door (a faithful pastor or teacher of the word of God), says
“Do you see the sign above the door, ‘For Sinners Only’? Will you step in as
a sinner only?” The reply of this estimable person is, “I am a
“Keep back, then, with the Jew.”
Then comes the great roll of “church
people”: Episcopalians, Methodists, Baptists, Congregationalists, Lutherans,
Christians. The question of the faithful man who keeps the door always is,
“Do you enter only as a sinner?” How evasive are the replies! Once in a
while, one, like the publican, says, “Indeed, yes! Nothing but a sinner,
thanking God for the news that Jesus died for me!”
“Step right in!”
Dear friends, pardon this crude
illustration. It is for your soul’s sake, and we hope it is spoken in tender
love. No one will get to Heaven as a Presbyterian, as a Baptist, as a
Congregationalist, as a Lutheran, as a Plymouth Brother, for they all are
sinners only! But we ask you solemnly to consider: Is your hope that of a
sinner only? No righteousness of yours, whether personal, or attained (in
your imagination) through “church work,” or denominational “membership,” has
anything whatever to do with your entering the heavenlies above. Christ
Himself entered there through His own blood. Have you given His shed blood
that absolute place God has given it? We do not now pray, “God be merciful
to me a sinner” for since Christ spoke those words, God has been merciful,
and has transferred the sin of the world to the Substitute, even Christ, Who
put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. Is that your only hope?
O “professing Christians,” “church
members,” down here on earth—whether “active” in “church work” or not,
hearken! Whereon are your hopes of Heaven built? What right have you, who
committed the sins Christ bore, what possible right have you to Heaven? None
whatever! If He entered through His own blood, how do you expect to enter?
God has shut out all “good works.” I beg you, trust not in “confirmation,”
or “baptism,” or in any ordinance whatever; or in your “church duties,” or
generous giving, or “regular attendance,” or zeal in “Christian activities”,
whether at home or abroad, and however approved by men. Nay more, trust not
in your fancied “spirituality,” your “prayer-life,” your separation from the
world, your being persecuted, even.
For Christ Himself entered in through His
own blood. And what do you mean, you poor sinner? Do you dream that God will
look at your “works”? Why then did not Christ return to Heaven in view of
His works? He was sinless, and His life, perfect. You are a poor sinner,
nothing else: “All have sinned”! hear it; and, “There is no difference”:
God, Who cannot lie, says that! You, a sinner, thinking to enter Heaven by
works, while Christ the Holy One entered through His own blood—though he had
never sinned, entered with blood—not works! Oh, the damning delusions under
which many so-called “Christians” walk! Never having known their guilty,
lost, state; never told by their preachers that guilty men can be made nigh
to a holy God only by shed blood; that “apart from shedding of blood there
is no remission”: that Christ has entered Heaven and God’s presence through
His own blood; that He is there representing only sinners, who, as guilty
sinners, have seen their guilt put away by the shedding of Christ’s
Oh, the vast multitude of so-called
“Christians” relying on their own profession, and not upon the blood of
And what about your “moralists,” your
“evolutionists,” your “worldlings,” your careless crowds (for whom, all, the
undertaker is patiently waiting: for, “It is appointed unto men once to die,
and after this cometh judgment”)—what about these? “Modern education,” and
“modern life,” leave the Bible out; these millions, God will leave without!
For Christ entered Heaven through His own blood, and these know nothing,
willingly know nothing, of the way to God, of pardon through Christ’s blood.
Nay, do not begin to say that you
“believe in a God too merciful to shut out forever these creatures—who were
ignorant of His salvation.” Ignorance! You say you believe in such and such
a God—a god made in your own sin-darkened imagination; a God that does not
exist! You will find this to be true at “the revelation of the Lord Jesus
All sinners who enter God’s presence
enter by the shed blood of Jesus.
Tell me, sinner, Do you desire to spend
eternity in Heaven, like the elect angels whom God’s power kept from all
transgression? Or do you desire, yea, long, to be eternally on exhibition as
one toward whom the unaccountable love of God was extended in pardon, wholly
on the ground of the shed blood of his Creator-Redeemer?
Christ in Heaven can only say to any
human being, that He is forever in the character of One Who has borne sin.
On earth He said, “NO man cometh unto the Father but by Me.” Now in Heaven,
having entered through His own blood, He is infinitely ready to receive any
sinners who rely on the blood He shed on the Cross as having put away their
guilt. Read in the first two chapters of the Hebrews, of Who He is. Then
read in the ninth of Hebrews of how He put away human sin by the sacrifice
of Himself. And now and forever He is the Lamb that hath been slain. He can
receive only sinners! If you can, as nothing but a sinner, rely on Him, He
is your Great High Priest in Heaven. You need not fear: He bore your sin for
For us who have sinned, have been guilty,
to be able to have rest of conscience, is a miracle, an operation of God
within the soul. But Christ is seated in Heaven (and will be eternally so)
as having put our guilt away. Meditate upon that. For no half-measures are
possible: our sin has either been put away, or it has not. And God says it
Remember always to distinguish between
that eternal redemption which Christ purchased upon the Cross, and His
entering into the Holies through His own blood. People say, I thought
Christ’s work was finished at the Cross. It was, as bearing wrath and
judgment for our sin, as you read in Chapter 9:26: “Now once at the
consummation of the ages hath He been manifested to put away sin by the
sacrifice of Himself.” Therefore it is not in any sense an atoning work that
Christ as Priest is carrying on in Heaven.
But notice once more, and finally, lay to
heart with all your being, that Christ is eternally in the Holies on the
basis of having been the Sin-offering. He entered Heaven not, as He came, as
One that had no sin; but as One that had borne sin, and put sin away by the
pouring out of His blood on the Cross. That was the character in which He
entered, and continually abides, a High Priest forever! The Cross was
primarily atoning; our Lord’s place in Heaven is primarily positional.
Thus are we in Christ brought to God. God
extends to the believing sinner all the benefits of Christ’s death,
resurrection, ascension to Heaven, and place at God’s right hand! The
believer is in exactly the same infinite love and favor as His Redeemer!
Then the last words of this great twelfth
verse, eternal redemption—how they rest the heart! An Israelite who had
sinned brought a sin offering, and placed his hand upon its head, confessing
his sins. The victim was then slain, its blood presented before God, its
body burned without the camp. The priest could then say to him, Jehovah’s
word is, You are forgiven.
Nevertheless, on the yearly Day of
Atonement, the whole sin question is up again for all Israel. No Israelite
could leave that great concourse rejoicing in heart, saying, My sins have
been put away forever from Jehovah’s sight. I have eternal redemption. He
knew the Great Day of Atonement would come again in another year. Nay,
Moses, their leader, lamented,
“Thou hast set our iniquities before
Our secret sins in the light of Thy countenance” (Ps. 90:8).
That was the design and proper effect of
the Law, which was a ministration of condemnation and death, a stern
conductor of the soul to Christ and His salvation. “The Law is become our
tutor to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But now
that faith is come, we are no longer under a tutor” (Gal. 3:24–5).
To the Jews under Law, therefore, there
was no consciousness of the putting away of sin, for sin was not put away
until it was done once for all by Christ at the Cross.
Eternal redemption* in Hebrews 9:12
signifies everlasting freedom from the penalty of sin, Christ having borne
it at the Cross; and includes also complete and eternal deliverance from the
power of sin; not only from spiritual death. It also includes the redemption
of the body, for which believers are waiting; and finally, praise God,
complete deliverance from the power of the devil, who had the power of death
over the race (2:14) from the time that Adam fell. Such glorious words as
those of our verse should be kept in the heart and repeated over and over:
Having obtained eternal redemption. The opening word, “For,” of verse 13,
has in view this complete and eternal separation from the very presence of
sin which is the hope of the instructed believer.
Addendum - Inasmuch as this
wonderful phrase, through His own blood, is such a vital one, upon the
proper understanding of which so much depends, we think it well to subjoin a
brief extract from each of several comments thereupon, to set before the
reader’s mind the judgment of these godly saints whose aim has been to make
plain God’s truth as it has appeared to them:
Ridout well says: “Christ might have
entered Heaven at any moment during His perfect life here, but He would have
gone alone, as He came alone; there would not have been a single one to
share His glory with Him. But He has not entered Heaven in that way. He has
entered by, or in virtue of His blood—not by His perfect character, not by
His keeping the Law of God, not by His personal worthiness, even; but He has
entered by His own blood, after having accomplished redemption: and because
of that work He is there before God.” Pp. 164–5.
And J. N. Darby: “Not, He got in by that
means, even as to us, but He went in in that way.”—XIII, p. 193.
And in his Synopsis: “He has gone into
the heavenly sanctuary by virtue of an eternal redemption, of blood, that
has everlasting validity. The work is completely done, and can never change
in value … The blood shed once for all is ever efficacious.”
“Here then are the three aspects of the
results of the work of Christ: immediate access to God: a purged conscience;
an eternal redemption.”—Pp. 288–9.
“The worshipper, under the former
tabernacle, did not come into the presence of God; he stayed outside the
unrent veil. He sinned—a sacrifice was offered: he sinned again—a sacrifice
was offered. Now the veil is rent. We are always in the presence of God
without a veil. Happen what may, He always sees us—sees us in His
presence—according to the efficacy of Christ’s perfect sacrifice. We are
there now, by virtue of a perfect sacrifice … He has opened an access for
us, even now, to God in the light, having cleaned our consciences once for
all—for He dwells on high continuously—that we may enter in, and that we may
serve God here below.
“God has established and revealed the
Mediator, Who has accomplished the work in an eternal way … The Mediator has
paid the ransom. Sin has no more right over us.”—Pp. 293–5.
Addendum #2 - It behooves us to
know in what attitude to God our Lord returned on high—in what old and new
respects He came there: for we enter with Him! He re-entered indeed as
Deity, that “glory He had with the Father before the world was.” Into that
place He alone could enter. To speak reverently, He could give to no
creature to be Deity! God is God; creatures, creatures—forever! But Christ
re-entered Heaven as Man, also. And do not be led into that source of
error—seeking to distinguish between “natures”: He was ONE PERSON. Let Jn
3:13 suffice: “The Son of Man Who is in Heaven.” Do not reason here, for
reason fails; but believe. Our Lord spoke so to Nicodemus—“the Son of Man
Who is in Heaven”—for He is ONE PERSON: and, “God was manifest in the
flesh,” and thus speaks, to the great comfort of faith, the element in which
the just live! (Hebrews
Commentary - Verse by Verse)
Having trusted Christ as our Savior, we
should never cease to glory in His sacrifice for us on the cross. The
reality of being identified with Christ in His death, burial, and
resurrection should fill us with gratitude in the morning, give us refuge
throughout the day, and be a pillow at night upon which to rest.
A small detachment of British troops, surprised by an overwhelming enemy
force, fell back under heavy fire. Their wounded lay in a perilous position,
facing certain death. They all realized they had to come immediately under
the protection of a Red Cross flag if they wanted to survive. All they had
was a piece of white cloth, but no red paint. So they used the blood from
their wounds to make a large cross on that white cloth. Their attackers
respected that grim flag as it was held aloft, and the British wounded were
brought to safety (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Great Boer War).
Our enemy not only must respect the blood of Christ shed on Calvary's cross,
he also is helpless against it. Christ's blood represents the sacrifice of
One whose death removed the guilt and condemnation of our sin and broke its
hold over us. It is absolute protection against the accusation of Satan, the
defeating remembrances of past sins, and the downpull of our Adamic nature.
No wonder we glory in the cross.—D. J. De Haan
Calvary stands for Satan's fall.
HE ENTERED THE HOLY PLACE ONCE FOR ALL: eiselthen (3SAAI) ephapax eis ta hagia aionian lutrosin heuramenos
9:7,24, 25, 26; 10:12,19) (He 9:26,28; 10:10; Zechariah 3:9)
He entered the Holy
Place once for all - Jesus entered the "better" Holy Place. In the Old
Covenant the Holy Place was on earth, while the believer's Holy Place is now
in heaven. The Old Covenant Holy Place was made with human hands, but the
believer's is a "more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to
say, not of this creation" (9:11b).
Once for all unlike the sacrifice of
the high priest, who repeatedly entered the Most Holy Place with blood once
a year, Jesus' sacrifice was complete and did not need to be repeated. The
work of atonement is done and therefore praise the Lord, it cannot be
Albert Barnes notes that
as the Jewish high priest bore the blood
of the animal into the Holy of Holies, and sprinkled it there as the means
of expiation, so the offering which Christ has to make in heaven, or the
consideration on which he pleads for the pardon of his people, is the blood
which he shed on Calvary. Having made the atonement, he now pleads the merit
of it as a “reason” why sinners should be saved. It is not of course meant
that he literally bore his own blood into heaven - as the high priest did
the blood of the bullock and the goat into the sanctuary; or that he
literally “sprinkled” it on the mercy-seat there, but that that blood,
having been shed for sin, is now the ground of his pleading and intercession
for the pardon of sin - as the sprinkled blood of the Jewish sacrifice was
the ground of the pleading of the Jewish high priest for the pardon of
himself and the people.
SAVED BY THE BLOOD
by S J Henderson
Saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
Now ransomed from sin and a new work begun,
Sing praise to the Father and praise to the Son,
Saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
Glory, I’m saved! Glory, I’m saved!
My sins are all pardoned, my guilt is all gone!
Glory, I’m saved! Glory, I’m saved!
I am saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
Saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
The angels rejoicing because it is done;
A child of the Father, joint heir with the Son,
Saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
Saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
The Father He spake, and His will it was done;
Great price of my pardon, His own precious Son;
Saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
Saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
All hail to the Father, all hail to the Son,
All hail to the Spirit, the great Three in One!
Saved by the blood of the Crucified One!
HAVING OBTAINED ETERNAL REDEMPTION: lutrosin heuramenos (AMPMSN): (He
5:9; Daniel 9:24; Mark 3:29; Galatians 3:13,14; 1Th 1:10)
Hebrews 5:9 (note)
And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source
of eternal salvation,
Hebrews 9:15 (note)
And for this reason He is
the mediator of a new covenant, in order that since a
death has taken place for the
redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first
covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal
Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse
for us—for it is written, "CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO HANGS ON A TREE"— in order
that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so
that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Having obtained (2147)
(heurisko gives us our English eureka from the exclamation
attributed to Archimedes on discovering a method for determining the
purity of gold) means that they attained a state previously not known.
Eureka expresses triumph on a discovery and what a "discovery" --
eternal redemption!!! Why would we ever want to live for the passing
pleasures of sin and the lusts of this world which are passing away,
when we have the sure promise an eternal possession - redemption
Vincent explains that this
phrase can be paraphrased...
Having found and won by his
act of entrance into the heavenly sanctuary. This is better than to
explain “entered the sanctuary after having obtained redemption by his
life, death, and resurrection“;
for the work of redemption is crowned and completed by Christ’s
ascension to glory and his ministry in heaven (see Romans 6). Even in
the old sanctuary the rite of the Day of Atonement was not complete
until the blood had been offered in the sanctuary.
A T Robertson
The value of Christ’s offering
consists in the fact that he is the Son of God as well as the Son of
man, that he is sinless and so a perfect sacrifice with no need of an
offering for himself, and that it is voluntary on his part (John
NET Bible renders this
and He entered once for all
into the most holy place not by the blood of goats and calves but by
His own blood, and so He Himself secured eternal
NET Bible Note says that
having obtained ...
occurs in the Greek
which here intensifies the role of the subject, Christ, in
accomplishing the action: “He alone secured”; “He and no other
Vine comments that having
obtained is in...
indicating His personal interest in us, and His unutterable love for
us. It was a love that overcame all difficulties, that overpowered all
opposition, refusing to be turned aside, that underwent all the
judgment, suffering and agony of the Cross in order to secure eternal
redemption for us. This recalls the effects of His death as mentioned
Hebrews 2:13 (note);
namely, that He has delivered those who were in bondage. Redemption,
as spoken of here, includes both the price paid down and the
liberation of the captives.
W. Collected writings of W. E. Vine. Nashville: Thomas Nelson
means perpetual eternal, everlasting, without beginning or end (as of God),
that which is always. Eternal is a key word
Hebrews: blood of eternal covenant (He 13:20-note).
He offered Himself through His eternal spirit (He 9:14-note)
and has become the Author/Source of eternal salvation (He 5:9-note).
He has obtained eternal redemption (see note
and enables men to receive of the eternal inheritance (He 9:15-note;
comments that eternal here is...
not mere duration is contemplated, but
quality; a redemption answering in its quality to that age when all the
conditions of time shall be no more: a redemption not ritual, but profoundly
ethical and spiritual.
lutroo = to release on receipt of a
ransom <> Lutroo is derived from the root verb luo
= to loosen that which is bound, freeing those in prison, release from
prison, opening of what is closed, destroying of foundations, putting
off of fetters) describes a ransoming, a liberation, or a deliverance
(in the NT, especially from the penalty and power of sin).
See other words related to redemption:
The related noun lutron is
the ransom price paid for loosing captives from their bonds and
setting them at liberty. The verb
refers to the releasing of someone held captive (e.g., a prisoner or a
slave) on receipt of the ransom payment.
It is estimated that the Roman
Empire had as many 6 million slaves and thus the buying and selling of
slaves was a major business. If a person wanted to free a loved one or
friend who was enslaved, he would pay the redemption price, purchasing
or redeeming that slave for himself and then granting him freedom,
testifying to the deliverance by a written certificate.
redemption believers were held captive by Satan to do his will and
were enslaved to our old sin nature inherited from Adam. In Christ we
have been bought with a price (1Cor 6:20-note) of His Own blood (Re
Re 5:9-note), are no longer under the curse of the law (Gal
3:13; 4:5) and have been released from the bondage of sin into the
freedom of grace (Ro 6:14-note).
BDAG writes that lutrosis describes
experience of being liberated from an oppressive situation, (and in a)
transferred sense of commercial usage ‘redemption of something for a
Lutrosis is used only 3 times in the NT...
"Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for
He has visited us and accomplished redemption for His
people (Zacharias spoke prophetically of the redemption Christ would
accomplish by His death as if it were already an accomplished fact!)
Luke 2:38 And at that very moment she
(Anna the prophetess, Luke 2:36-38) came up and
began giving thanks to God, and continued to speak of Him (the newborn
Messiah) to all those
who were looking for (see word study
prosdechomai) the redemption of Jerusalem.
Comment: "Those who were looking for the redemption of Israel" is
a beautiful description of those Jews who had believed in the Messiah
(even before He came) and were part of the Jewish
remnant. Are you
looking for your glorious redemption (see note
Romans 8:23)? Are
you loving His appearing (see note
2 Timothy 4:8)?
Hebrews 9:12 and not through the blood of goats and
calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for
all, having obtained eternal redemption.
Lutrosis is used 8 times in the
Septuagint (LXX)...and here
are some representative uses...
Leviticus 25:48 then he shall have redemption right
(Hebrew = geullah = right of redemption; Lxx = lutrosis) after he has
been sold. One of his brothers may redeem (Ga'al -
click word study;
Comment: This passage illustrates the beautiful Old Testament
principle of the
Kinsman-Redeemer, in which a near relative could pay the
redemption price to redeem an Israelite relative who was enslaved and then
could set them free.
pattern was beautifully fulfilled by Christ
Who became our Kinsman-Redeemer Who paid the only possible
ransom price (His "precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and
spotless" see note
1 Peter 1:19) to
set sinners free from bondage to the right and might of sin and Satan. For more discussion on
the kinsman redeemer click the following studies
Part 1 or
Part 2). (See notes on the
Kinsman-Redeemer Boaz -
49:8 (Context = Ps 48:7 No man can by any means redeem his
brother, Or give to God a ransom for him--) For the redemption
(Lxx = lutrosis; Hebrew = pidyon = ransom payment, pidyon is from
padah used in Dt 7:8 "Jehovah brought you out by a mighty hand and
redeemed you from the house of slavery") of his soul is costly,
and he should cease trying forever--
Spurgeon writes regarding this redemption that...
is the price, the purchase is hopeless. For ever must the attempt to
redeem a soul with money remain a failure. Death comes and wealth
cannot bribe him. Hell follows and no golden key can unlock its
dungeon. Vain, then, are your threatenings, ye possessors of the
yellow clay (~gold); your childish toys are despised by men who
estimate the value of possessions by the shekel of the sanctuary.
111:9 He has sent redemption (Hebrew = peduth; Lxx =
Lutrosis) to His people; He has ordained His
covenant forever; Holy and awesome is His name.
sent redemption unto his people. When they were in Egypt he sent
not only a deliverer, but an actual deliverance; not only a redeemer,
but complete redemption. He has done the like spiritually for all his
people, having first by blood purchased them out of the hand of the
enemy, and then by power rescued them from the bondage of their sins.
Redemption we can sing of as an accomplished act: it has been wrought
for us, sent to us, and enjoyed by us, and we are in very deed the
He hath commanded his covenant for ever. His divine decree has
made the covenant of His grace a settled and eternal institution:
redemption by blood proves that the covenant cannot be altered, for it
ratifies and establishes it beyond all recall. This, too, is reason
for the loudest praise. Redemption is a fit theme for the heartiest
music, and when it is seen to be connected with gracious engagements
from which the Lord's truth cannot swerve, it becomes a subject fitted
to arouse the soul to an ecstasy of gratitude. Redemption and the
covenant are enough to make the tongue of the dumb sing. (Ed note: The
covenant referred to is the Abrahamic Covenant which was an
everlasting covenant. This is not a specific reference to the New
Covenant, but keep in mind that the Abrahamic and New Covenants
although having distinct promises, are both conditional, both based on
grace, both entered into by faith, and thus are clearly related. The
New Covenant is in a sense an expansion of the Abrahamic Covenant.
130:7 O Israel, hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is
lovingkindness, and with Him is abundant redemption.
(Lxx = lutrosis) (See
63:4 For the day of vengeance was in My heart, and My year of redemption
(Lxx = Lutrosis) has come.
Comment: In the OT the "day of redemption" was a picture of the
25:13) when all Jewish slaves were to be set free by their
fellow Jews. This passage in context however carries a more far
reaching meaning as it clearly refers to the return of Messiah [from
the context "day of vengeance"] to defeat
His enemies and set up His 1000 year kingdom. See Isaiah 61:2 which
Christ read in the synagogue [see Luke 4:16-21] stopping in mid
sentence of that verse [stopped before the
"day of vengeance"] because that day was not fulfilled at His first
coming but will be fulfilled at His Second Coming
Revelation 19:11ff). The
"redemption" of Israel which He is referring to in context is
Jubilee but is a far greater day when "all
Israel will be saved" when the "Deliverer" returns for
then He "will
remove ungodliness from Jacob" - see notes regarding this great
day for believing Israel, a day in which we see also see the final
fulfillment of the Abrahamic Covenant promises regarding the land of
that the redemption provided by the Messiah
is eternal in its merit and
Barnes adds that
the effects of Messiah's redemption...
will continue forever. It is not a temporary
deliverance leaving the redeemed in danger of falling into sin and ruin,
but it makes salvation secure, and in its effects extends through
eternity. Who can estimate the extent of that love which purchased for
us “such” a redemption? Who can be sufficiently grateful that he is thus
redeemed? The doctrine in this verse is, that the blood of Christ is the
means of redemption, or atones for sin...the following verses (show) that it
not only makes atonement for sin, but that it is the means of sanctifying or
purifying the soul.
with Barnes exclaiming...
I love that expression, eternal
redemption-a redemption which really does redeem, and redeems
forever and ever. If you are redeemed by it, you cannot be lost; if
this redemption be yours, it is not for a time, or for a season, but
it is “eternal redemption.” Oh, how you ought to rejoice in the one
entrance within the veil by our great High Priest who has obtained
eternal redemption for us!
provided by the Messiah provides not only internal purity but also outward, eternal deliverance.
Remember that at least some of the Jewish readers were being tempted to
apostatize (renounce their previous loyalty to Yeshua, the Messiah) so that this truth about a
secure, everlasting redemption would encourage them to hold fast to the end.
Dear reader, do you
"wrestle" with your eternal security experiencing fiery missiles like..."Am
I saved forever?"..."Can I lose my salvation?" If you are attacked by such
thoughts, you would do well to meditate on the eternality of the
Messiah's redemption -- May your mind be continually renewed by the Spirit
"as you learn more and more about Christ, Who created this new nature within
you." Amen (see note Col 3:10NLT-note)
F B Meyer comments that...
THE BLOOD OF ANIMALS IS CONTRASTED WITH THE BLOOD OF CHRIST. Hecatombs
of victims are not of equal value with one man; how much less with the
Son of God! Rivers of the blood of beasts are not equivalent to one
drop of his. They offer no standard by which to apprise his precious
blood. This is too obvious to need further comment here, and we shall
need to defer to another chapter our estimate, however inadequate, of
the value of that blood.
But in the meanwhile, let us notice that it was through the Eternal
Spirit that Christ offered himself without spot to God. It was not, as
some falsely affirm, that the Father forced an innocent man to suffer
for sins he had never done, or that our Saviour suffered to appease
the Father's wrath; but that the eternal nature of God came out in the
sacrifice of Calvary. "God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto
himself." When God determined to save men, he did not delegate the
work to angels, nor did he permit a sinless man to sink beneath the
intolerable burden of a world's sin; but in the person of his Son, he
took home to himself the agony and curse and cost of sin, and by
bearing them, wiped them out forever. It is, therefore, eternal
redemption (He 9:12).
The death of the cross was a voluntary act; "he offered himself; "
Priest and victim both. And it was an act in which the Eternal Trinity
participated; the manifestation in time of an eternal fact of the
And how can we ever show our gratitude, except by serving the living
God (He 9:14). We are redeemed to serve; bought to be owned
Who can refuse a service so reasonable, fraught with
blessedness so transcendent?
Head! think for him whose brow was
thorn-girt. Hands! toil for him whose hands were nailed to the cross.
Feet! speed to do his behests whose feet were pierced. Body of mine!
be his temple whose body was wrung with pains unspeakable. To serve
him-this is the Only true attitude and behavior, as those who are not
their own, but his.
Alexander Maclaren's sermon
on Hebrews 9:11-14, 24-28 entitled The Priest in the Holy
Place writes that
SPACE forbids attempting full
treatment of these pregnant verses. We can only sum up generally their
teaching on the priesthood of Jesus.
I. Christ, as the high priest of the world, offers Himself.
Obviously Hebrews 9:14 refers to Christ’s sacrificial death, and in
Hebrews 9:26 His ‘sacrifice of Himself’ is equivalent to His ‘having
that the priestly office of Jesus begins with His entrance into the
presence of God is set aside by the plain teaching of this passage,
which regards His death as the beginning of His priestly work. What,
then, are the characteristics of that offering, according to this
Writer? The point dwelt on most emphatically is that He is both priest
and sacrifice. That great thought opens a wide field of meditation,
for adoring thankfulness and love. It implies the voluntariness of His
death. No necessity bound Him to the Cross. Not the nails, but His,
love; fastened Him there. Himself He would not save, because others He
would save. The offering was ‘through the Eternal Spirit,’ the divine
personality in Himself, which as it were, took the knife and slew the
human life. That sacrifice was ‘without blemish,’ fulfilling in
perfect moral purity the prescriptions of the ceremonial law, which
but clothe in outward form the universal consciousness that nothing
stained or faulty is worthy to be given to God. What are the blessings
brought to us by that wondrous self-sacrifice? They are stated most
generally in Hebrews 9:26 as the putting away of sin, and again in
Hebrews 9:28 as being the bearing of the sins of many, and again in
verse 14 as cleansing conscience from dead works to serve the living
God. Now the first of these expressions includes the other two, and
expresses the blessed truth that, by His death, Jesus has made an end
of sin, in all its shapes and powers, whether it is regarded as guilt
or burden, or taint and tendency paralysing and disabling. Sin is
guilt, and Christ’s death deals with our past, taking away the burden
of condemnation. Thus Hebrews 9:28 presents Him as bearing the sins of
many, as the scapegoat bore the sins of the congregation into a land
not inhabited, as ‘the Lord made to meet’ on the head of the Servant
‘the iniquities of us all.’ The best commentary on the words here is,
‘He bare our sins in His own body on the tree.’ But sin has an effect
in the future as in the past, and the death of Christ deals with that,
So Hebrews 9:14 parallels it not only with the sacrifice which made
access to God possible, but with the ceremonial of the red heifer (see
Red Heifer),’ by
which pollution from touching a corpse was removed. A conscience which
has been in contact with ‘dead works’ (and all works which are not
done from ‘the life’ are so) is unfit to serve God, as well as lacking
in wish to serve; and the only way to set it free from the nightmare
which fetters it is to touch it with ‘the blood,’ and then it will
spring up to a waking life of glad service. ‘The blood’ is shed to
take away guilt; ‘the blood’ is the life, and, being shed in the
death, it can be transfused into our veins, and so will. cleanse us
from all sin. Thus, in regard both to past and future, sin is put away
by the sacrifice of Himself. The completeness of His priestly work is
further attested by the fact, triumphantly dwelt on in the lesson,
that it is done once for all, and needs no repetition, and is
incapable of repetition, while the world lasts.
II. Christ, as the high priest of the world, passes into heaven for
office of old culminated in his entrance into the Holy of Holies, to
present the blood of sacrifice. Christ’s priesthood is completed by
His ascension and heavenly intercession. We necessarily attach local
ideas to this, but the reality is deeper than all notions of place.
The passage speaks of Jesus as ‘entering into the holy place,’ and
again as entering ‘heaven itself for us.’ It also speaks of His having
entered ‘through the greater and more perfect tabernacle,’ the meaning
of which phrase depends on the force attached to ‘through.’ If it is
taken locally, the meaning is as in Hebrews 4:14, that He has passed
through the [lower] heavens to ‘heaven itself’; if it is taken
instrumentally (as in following clause), the meaning is that Jesus
used the ‘greater tabernacle’ in the discharge of His office of
priest. The great truth underlying both the ascension and the
representations of this context is, as Hebrews 9:24 puts it, that He
appears ‘before the face of God,’ and there carries on His work,
preparing a place for us. Further. we note that Jesus, as priest
representing humanity, end being Himself man, can stand before the
face of God, by virtue of His sacrifice, in which man is reconciled to
God. His sinless manhood needed no such sacrifice, but, as our
representative, He could not appear there without the blood of
sacrifice. That blood, as shed on earth, avails to ‘put away sin’; as
presented in heaven, it avails ‘for us,’ being ever present before the
divine eye, and influencing the divine dealings. That entrance is the
climax of the process by which He obtained ‘eternal redemption’ for
us. Initial redemption is obtained through His death, but the full,
perfect unending deliverance from all sin and evil is obtained,
indeed, by His passing into the Holy Place above, but possessed in
fact only when we follow Him thither. We need Him who ‘became dead’
for pardon and cleansing; we need Him who is ‘alive for evermore’ for
present participation in His life and present sitting with Him in the
heavenly places, and for the ultimate and eternal entrance there,
whence we shall go no more out.
III. Christ, as the high priest of the world, will come forth from
the holy place.
cannot end His connection with the world. It carries in itself the
prophecy of a return. ‘If I go,... I will come again.’ The high priest
came forth to the people waiting for him, so our High Priest will
come. Men have to die, and ‘after death,’ not merely as following in
time, but as necessarily following in idea and fact, a judgment in
which each man’s work shall be infallibly estimated and manifested.
Jesus has died ‘to bear the sins of many.’ There must follow for Him,
too, an estimate and manifestation of His work. What for others is a
judgment,’ for Him is manifestation of His sinlessness and saving
power. He shall be seen, no longer stooping under the weight of a
world’s sins, but ‘apart from sir,’ He shall be seen ‘unto salvation,’
for the vision will bring with it assimilation to His sinless
likeness. He shall be thus seen by those that wait for Him, looking
through the shows of time to the far-off shining of His coming, and
meanwhile having their loins girt and their lamps burning.