|Greek: Echontes (PAPMPN) oun, adelphoi, parresian eis ten eisodon ton agion en to aimati Iesou
Amplified: Therefore, brethren, since we have full freedom and confidence to enter into the [Holy of] Holies [by the power and virtue] in the blood of Jesus, (Amplified Bible - Lockman)
Barclay: Since then, brother, in virtue of what the blood of Jesus has done for us, we can confidently enter into the Holy Place (Westminster Press)
NLT: And so, dear friends, we can boldly enter heaven's Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus. (NLT - Tyndale House)
Phillips: So by virtue of the blood of Jesus, you and I, my brothers, may now have courage to enter the holy of holies (Phillips: Touchstone)
Wuest: Having therefore, brethren, confidence in the entering into the Holy of Holies by the blood of Jesus, which [entrance into] He inaugurated for us, (Eerdmans)
Young's Literal: Having, therefore, brethren, boldness for the entrance into the holy places, in the blood of Jesus,
THE FIVE WARNING PASSAGES
|Heb 2:1-4 (notes)|
|Heb 3:7-4:13 (notes)|
|Heb 5:11-6:12 (notes)|
|Heb 10:19-39 (notes)|
|Heb 12:14-29 (notes)|
SINCE THEREFORE, BRETHREN WE HAVE CONFIDENCE: echontes (PAPMPN) oun adelphoi echontes (PAPMPN)...parrhesia: (He 4:16; 12:28; Ro 8:15; Gal 4:6,7; Ep 3:12; 2Ti 1:7; 1Jn 3:19, 20, 21; 4:17) (He 7:25; 9:3,7,8,12,23, 24, 25; Ro 5:2; Ep 2:18; 1Jn 2:1,2)
Wuest - When a Gentile like the Philippian jailor is dealt with about his soul, the approach is “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:31). When a Jew is appealed to, the approach is in terms of First Testament typology as we have it in Heb 10:19-20. The exhortation to enter into the Holy of Holies of heaven by the blood of Jesus would bring to the Jewish reader’s mind the picture of the high priest in Israel on the Day of Atonement entering the tabernacle for him. He stood in the Holy of Holies, not actually, but in the person of the high priest. The high priest’s presence in the Holy of Holies meant his presence there too, for the high priest had offered sacrifice first for his own sins and was thus accepted with God, and then for the people’s sins (He was functioning as their mediator). The individual Israelite (IN THE OLD TESTAMENT) who trusted Jehovah for his salvation, that Jehovah who would some day offer a sacrifice which would pay for his sins, thus stood symbolically in his high priest for salvation, but actually in the coming Messiah who would some day be the real High Priest. (Hebrews Commentary online)
Note that this complex sentence continues for 7 verses (He 10:19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25).
Since therefore - Two reasons we can have confidence: (1). Blood of Jesus (2). Great Priest over the house of God.
The writer began this section on the superiority of Christ High Priesthood with almost identical invitation in Heb 4:16-note, and his desire is that this Truth might Transform our walk and cause a response.
He 10:19,20 speak of our Access and He 10:21 of our Advocate (cp 1Jn 2:1).
The author now gives a second (first Heb 8:1-6-note) résumé of the five arguments concerning the superior priestly work of Christ (Heb 10:19-25)
Brethren (Used also in He 7.5-note, cp Ro 9:3-note) - In context it probably refers to the entire group of Jews among whom are some who are truly regenerate, others who are interested seekers, and finally those who profess faith (intellectual assent to the truth of Messiah) but have yet entered into salvation rest (absence of genuine saving faith effecting circumcision of their heart).
So we come here to the great turning-point in Hebrews where the writer turns from the explanation of the superiority of the Person and work of Christ to the application of it in the lives of the storm-tossed church, from doctrine to duty, from creed to conduct, from precept to practice, from instruction to exhortation—the writer becomes very explicit regarding how Christians ought to live.
Confidence (boldness) (3954) (parrhesia [word study] from pas = all + rhesis = speech) is literally all speech or speaking all things and thereby conveys the idea of freedom to say all. The basic idea in the word is freedom of speech, when the word flowed freely. It is that attitude of openness that stems from freedom and lack of fear ("shaking" fear - godly, reverential fear is always appropriate) means in essence the freedom to say all. Greeks used parrhesia of those with the right to speak openly in the assembly. Speaking with plainness, openness and confidence (Ac 2:29). Speaking publicly or in the open (Jn 7:13, 11:54, 18:20) and then something done in public (Jn 7:26, Col 2:15-note)
Bold, confident speech is a dominant note all through the Epistle (He 3:6; 4:16; 10:19, 35). Some of the Hebrew readers were tempted to give up Christ. Here the writer calls them to boldness (courage) (Heb 3:6, 4:16, 10:35 Eph 3:12-note, 1Jn 3:19, 20, 21)
How is confidence possible? As a result of the guilt having been removed by the blood of Jesus. Whereas before the Jews could only have surrogate access through the high priest, who went behind the veil of the tabernacle or temple only once a year. Now they had permanent access through the blood and torn body of Christ. Can you imagine the High Priest on the Day of Atonement (see also Atonement, Day of) coming with boldness?
It would be difficult to overestimate the value of confidence in human motivation, for a confident spirit is essential to success.
Andrew Murray outlines this section...
TO ENTER THE HOLY PLACE BY THE BLOOD OF JESUS: eis ten eisodon ton hagion en to haimati iesou: (Isa 57:15, He 7:25, Eph 2:18)
The better sanctuary (Heb 9:1-12).
To enter the holy place (The Holy of holies) - To a Jew who took the Old Covenant seriously, the prospect of entering the holy place was inconceivable and impossible. The writer thus uses a persuasive argument to bring his wavering Jewish readers to a positive decision concerning the Messiah, not just in their head but in their heart!
One needs to try to understand how the concept of coming to God was simply unthinkable to the Jewish hearers. When Adam sinned, God put him out of the Garden and placed angels and a flaming sword to guard the entrance (Ge 3:24), in effect shutting him out from close fellowship he had experienced with God (cp Ge 3:8) before sin entered the world (Ro 5:12-note). In a similar way the Jews were forbidden, on pain of death, from entering the Holy of holies and the presence of God. But now, the writer says that Jesus’ blood has torn the veil that has separated sinful man from a holy God.
Wuest - The writer makes it plain that he does not have reference to the earthly Holy of Holies. In the first place, it is by means of the blood of Jehoshua, his Jehovah-Saviour that he is to enter, not by means of the blood of animals. In the second place, he calls the road into the Holy of Holies, “a new and living way.” (Heb 10:20) The Greek word translated “way” is hodos, “a road.” The order in the Greek text is, “Having therefore, brethren, boldness for the entering of the holiest by means of the blood of Jesus, which He inaugurated for us, a road, a freshly-slain one, a living one.” The order of the words in the Authorized Version, makes the word “which” in verse 20 refer back to the word “way,” but as the above shows, it goes back to the words “to enter,” namely, “the entering.” It was the entrance into the Holy of Holies of heaven which Messiah consecrated for us. (Hebrews Commentary online)
Spurgeon - There was under the (Old Testament) Law this ordinance—that no man should ever go into the holiest of all, with the one exception of the high priest, and he but once in the year, and not without blood. If any man had attempted to enter there he must have died, as guilty of great presumption and of profane intrusion into the secret place of the Most High. Who could stand in the presence of Him who is a consuming fire? This ordinance of distance runs all through the law; for even the holy place, which was the vestibule of the holy of holies, was for the priests alone. Those who refuse Jesus refuse the only way of access to God. God is not approachable except through the rending of the veil by the death of Jesus. There was one typical way to the mercy seat of old, and that was through the turning aside of the veil; there was no other. And there is now no other way for any of you to come into fellowship with God except through the rent veil, even the death of Jesus Christ, whom God has set forth to be the propitiation for sin. Come this way, and you may come freely. Refuse to come this way, and there hangs between you and God an impassable veil. Without Christ you are without God, and without hope.
The blood of Jesus - This is the better sacrifice just discussed (Heb 9:13-10:18) and is the basis on which we can now draw near to God in faith.
Jesus - Used 13x in Hebrews - Heb 2:9; 3:1, 4:14, 6:20, 7:22, 10:10, 10:19, 12:2, 12:24, 13:8, 13:12, 13:20, 13:21- The name "Jesus" emphasizes the humanity of Christ, and the validity of his redemptive sacrifice on behalf of the human family. It is striking that whenever the writer makes his most emphatic assertions concerning the saving work of Christ, he makes an explicit reference to the blood of Jesus (Heb 9:12, 14; 10:19, 29; 12:24; 13:12, 20).
Blood - 21x in Hebrews - Heb 2:14; 9:7, 12 (2x), He 9:13, 14, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 (2x), He 9:25; 10:4, 19, 29; 11:28; 12:4, 24; 13:11, 12, 20
The blood of the sacrificial animals could effect only a temporary atonement, but the blood of animal sacrifices could not take away sin or pay for the debt (which required forgiveness), redeem from slavery (which called for redemption), or reversal of alienation (which demanded reconciliation).
The idea of coming into the presence through the veil of Christ's flesh has been alluded to several times in Hebrews...
Look at these other NT verses now with the understanding that we can enter with confidence into the Throne room of Heaven because Messiah's torn flesh made the Way accessible and He sits enthroned at God's right hand as our Great High Priest our Mediator or "Middle Man"...
Octavius Winslow in his devotion Morning Thoughts...
J C Philpot devotional thoughts on Hebrews 10:19...
Vicarious Intercession - Beware of thinking that intercession means bringing our own personal sympathies and concerns into the presence of God, and then demanding that He do whatever we ask. Our ability to approach God is due entirely to the vicarious, or substitutionary, identification of our Lord with sin. We have "boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus."
Spiritual stubbornness is the most effective hindrance to intercession, because it is based on a sympathetic "understanding" of things we see in ourselves and others that we think needs no atonement. We have the idea that there are certain good and virtuous things in each of us that do not need to be based on the atonement by the Cross of Christ. Just the sluggishness and lack of interest produced by this kind of thinking makes us unable to intercede. We do not identify ourselves with God’s interests and concerns for others, and we get irritated with Him. Yet we are always ready with our own ideas, and our intercession becomes only the glorification of our own natural sympathies. We have to realize that the identification of Jesus with sin means a radical change of all of our sympathies and interests. Vicarious intercession means that we deliberately substitute God’s interests in others for our natural sympathy with them. Am I stubborn or substituted? Am I spoiled or complete in my relationship to God? Am I irritable or spiritual? Am I determined to have my own way or determined to be identified with Him? (O Chambers)
Horatius Bonar on the Blood of the Covenant...
Amplified: By this fresh (new) and living way which He initiated and dedicated and opened for us through the separating curtain (veil of the Holy of Holies), that is, through His flesh, (Amplified Bible - Lockman)
Barclay: by the new and living way which Jesus inaugurated for us through the veil—that is, through his flesh— (Westminster Press)
NLT: This is the new, life-giving way that Christ has opened up for us through the sacred curtain, by means of his death for us. (NLT - Tyndale House)
Phillips: by way of the one who died and is yet alive, who has made for us a holy means of entry by himself passing through the curtain, that is, his own human nature. (Phillips: Touchstone)
Wuest: a road freshly slain and living, through the veil, namely, His flesh, (Eerdmans)
Young's Literal: which way he did initiate for us -- new and living, through the vail, that is, his flesh--
BY A NEW AND LIVING WAY: hodon prosphaton kai zosan (PAPFSA): (John 10:7,9; 14:6)
Contrast Heb 9:8.
I love Charles Wesley's hymn Arise, My Soul, Arise...
“My God is reconciled,
New (4372) (prosphatos from prós = near and in context nearness of time + phéno = to kill or phatos from pephamai, the perfect tense of phenein = to kill) is an adjective which literally describes that which is newly slain, freshly slaughtered or newly killed (See Ex 26:31, 32, 33; 35:12;40:3, Mt 27:50, 51) By extension (as used here in Heb 10:20 and in the Lxx uses below), prosphatos means newly made or new and different (recent). It describes some thing (in this case some WAY) not previously available. The idea of new in the context of Heb 10:20 is not only in the sense that it is a way which was before unknown but also one that retains its freshness and never grows old. Compare the related adverb prosphatōs, lately, recently, Acts 18:2 ("recently come")
Vincent - “The original sense would be, ‘newly slain.’ … Later the word was weakened into ‘new.’ ”
Maurer on prosphatos - The NT uses the adjective only in Heb. 10:20 to describe the new way that Christ has opened up through the veil. By Christ’s self-offering the community has the right of access to God. This is new compared to the old way into the holy of holies. It is also fresh in quality as compared to dead rites and ceremonies. The way leads via the event of redemption in Christ’s life and death. Hence it is by his flesh, which is the very opposite of an obstacle on the way to God. The adverb occurs in Acts 18:2 in the sense of “shortly before.”‘ (Theological Dictionary of the New Testament)
Wuest - The word “new” in the Greek text is very interesting. It is prosphaton, made up of pros meaning “near to,” and phatos from pephamai the perfect of phenein “to kill.” The original meaning of the total word is “newly-slain.” Here the contrast is between the “old-slain road” of the earthly tabernacle where the high priest would sprinkle the blood of the sacrificial animal seven times on the ground as he approached the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies (Lev. 16:14), and the freshly-slain road into the Holy of Holies of heaven, sprinkled with the blood of the Lamb of God. Over this latter road is the Jewish recipient of this letter urged to come. The old road to the mercy seat of the tabernacle in Israel was a dead road. There was no life there. It was all symbolism, an index-finger pointing to the reality with which this first-century Jew was then faced. In the new road was life. (Hebrews Commentary online)
NKJV Study Bible Note - Because Christ shed His blood to prepare the way for us to enter the Most Holy Place, this way is “a freshly slain way,” a way ever fresh because of the eternal efficacy of Jesus’ blood. At the same time, this is the living way, for this way leads to our source of spiritual life, namely God Himself. Therefore, this way, prepared by Jesus’ death, leads to eternal life.
Phosphatos - only here in NT and 4x in the Septuagint (below)
When Jesus yielded His spirit, the Way (Jn 14:6) to God was opened up and the veil of the temple was torn in two. This veil was the curtain (some sources describe as 8" thick) that divided the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies, into which only the high priest might enter once per year on the Day of Atonement (Ex 26:31,Lev 16:1-30). In short, Jesus' death on the Cross brought about the tearing of the veil that separated man (sinner, unholy) from the presence of God (holy, the Ark of the Covenant in the Holy of holies).
The tearing of the veil was a picture of the tearing of the body of Christ (Heb 10:20) and signified a "freshly slaughtered" way or a "new and living way" available for all who would enter by faith into the narrow way Christ provided (Jn14:6). The "reward"? Entree into the throne room of God (Heb 8:1, Heb 4:16) and into the presence of the Holy God (cp Ro 5:2).
New contrasts with the old way (Heb 8:7, 13, 10:9). Under the new way no other sacrifice was necessary and no other High Priest except Christ's (Heb 9:1- 8; 10:19, 20, 21, 22).
Note the seeming irony of a "freshly slaughtered" way that was also the living way. (see related study of Covenant A Walk Into Death). Jesus’ death conquered death and opened the door to eternal life for those who receive take the "walk of death", enter His New Covenant thus receiving His propitiatory (sufficient and satisfactory to the holiness of the Father) sacrifice and His life (cp Jn 20:31, Col 3:4). His death is the only way to enter into eternal life.
As Bob Roe once said "Christ died that I might live. I must die that Christ might live in me." (Bob Roe, Peninsula Bible Church)
Contrast Heb 9:18,15 purification ("Purifier") (He 1:3), Author (Captain, Pioneer, Champion, Leader) (He 2:10), propitiation ("Propitiator") (He 2:17), Source (He 5:9), Anchor (He 6:19), Forerunner (He 6:20), Torn Veil (He 10:20), Great Shepherd (He 13:20)
Today in the Word - Foreign leaders who come to Washington, D.C. for state visits are often stunned to learn that ordinary American citizens are allowed inside the White House. When George Bush was president, he would often introduce his foreign guests to the people who came for daily tours of the presidential mansion's first floor. One writer says, ""The White House's accessibility continues to stagger visiting heads of state."" For many of the world's kings and rulers, these times are too dangerous to allow access to their palaces, much less to their presence. But there is no such difficulty in heaven. We who have put our faith in Christ have free, unlimited access into God's presence. Today's verse and Scripture reading teach the truth of our freedom to come before God confidently in prayer. (MBI - Today in the Word)
WHICH HE INAUGURATED FOR US THROUGH THE VEIL THAT IS, HIS FLESH: en enekainisen (3SAAI) hemin dia tou katapetasmatos, tout estin (3SPAI) tes sarkos autou: (He 6:19; 9:3; Ex 26:31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37; 36:35, 36, 37, 38; Lev 16:2,15; 21:23; Mt 27:51; Mark 15:38; Luke 23:45) (John 6:51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56; Ephesians 2:15; 1Timothy 3:16; 1Peter 3:18; 1John 4:2; 2John 1:7)
He inaugurated - Means to make new, bring about the beginning of something, in context a new "way" ("the way" Jn 14:6). The aorist tense indicates this was a past completed action. The indicative mood indicates that this was a reality or an actual event (alluding to the Crucifixion of Christ)
Inaugurated (1457)(egkainizo from en = in or at + kainizo = to make new from kainos = that which is new kind unprecedented, novel, uncommon, unheard of, not previously present) means to renew, to make new, to cause to go into effect, with the root word kainos giving the implication of something being newly established or not previously present. Egkainizo is used in the Septuagint to mean renew (the kingdom - 1Sa 11:14) and dedicate (the house of the Lord - 1Ki 8:63) To consecrate, to innovate, to initiate, to dedicate. To bring in as new. The idea of egkainizo is to introduce something new with the concepts of inauguration and dedication closely related. To renew qualitatively or make qualitatively new or initiate its qualitatively different effect or to innovate or begin its operation. In other words now "under the new (kainos) covenant the blood of Christ dedicates, or consecrates, all things for the believer, and renders them acceptable to God." (Vine)
Wuest - The word “inaugurated” is the translation of egkainizo which means “to dedicate, to innovate, to initiate.” The word is used in the LXX of the inauguration of a house, kingdom, temple, altar. (Hebrews Commentary online)
Through (dia) indicates by means of; by the agency of; noting instrumentality. The Cross (and His torn flesh) was the means of "opening the veil" providing access to God.
Veil (2665)(katapetasma [word study] from [Source = W E Vine] kata = before + petannumi = that which is spread out) hence a veil. It describes that which is spread out downward and thus a curtain, clothe drape or veil. One purpose of a veil is to conceal, to hide or to obscure, in the case of the Tabernacle and Temple, to conceal the presence of God manifest by the Ark of the Covenant from man.
Katapetasma - 6x in 6v in NAS:
Katapetasma - 35x in 33v in the non-apocryphal Septuagint (LXX) - Ex 26:31, 33 (3x), Ex 26:34, 35, 37; 27:21; 30:6; 35:12; 37:3, 5, 16; 38:18; 39:4, 19; 40:3, 5, 21f, 26; Lev 4:6, 17; 16:2, 12, 15; 21:23; 24:3; Nu 3:10, 26; 4:5, 32; 18:7; 1Ki 6:36; 2Chr 3:14
ISBE entry...VEIL (2) - (1) (parokheth; katapetasma; the King James Version vail): In Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, the veil that hung between the two holy chambers of the tabernacle is mentioned 23 times (Ex 26:31, etc.). In several places it is termed "the veil of the screen" and it is distinguished from "the screen for the door of the tabernacle" (Ex 35:12,15; 39:34,38). By the latter is meant the curtain that hung outside the holy place, i.e. at the tabernacle entrance. Ex 26:31 informs us that the veil was made of fine-twined linen, and that its colors were blue and purple and scarlet. It was embroidered with cherubim. At each removal of the tabernacle the veil was used to enwrap the ark of the testimony (Nu 4:5). From its proximity to this central object of the Hebrew ceremonial system, the veil is termed "the veil of the testimony" (Lev 24:3), "the veil which is before the testimony" (Ex 27:21), etc. In Solomon's Temple the veil is mentioned but once (2Chr 3:14). It was protected by doors of olive wood (1Ki 6:31). In the later temple it is alluded to in 1 Macc 1:22. Its presence in Herod's temple is attested by the statement in each of the Synoptists that at the time of Christ's death the veil of the temple was rent from top to bottom, or in the midst (Mt 27:51; Mk 15:38; Lk 23:45; compare in Mishna, Mid. ii. 1; iv.7). This fact is the basis of the profound truth expressed by the writer to the Hebrews that Jesus, by His sacrificial death, opened for all believers a way into the holiest "through the veil, that is to say, his flesh" (Heb 10:20).
The veil = Christ's flesh - At the same time this is both a beautiful and a heart-rending metaphor, for even as the veil of the Temple was torn in two, Christ flesh was literally rent as part of the punishment leading to the Crucifixion, terminating in the piercing of His chest wall (Jn 19:34, 37, Ps 22:16, Zech 12:10, Rev 1:7).
Wuest - This entering into the Holy of Holies which the Messiah inaugurated for sinners was by way of a freshly-slain and living road, and this road went “through the veil, that is to say, His flesh.” The inner veil of the tabernacle separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies. It barred man’s access to God. When the high priest in Israel went into the Holy of Holies, he brushed aside that veil. The writer speaks of Messiah’s humanity, as the veil through which the entrance into the heavenly Holy of Holies was made. As the veil in the tabernacle of Israel while it was not rent, barred man’s access to God, so Messiah’s humanity, before it was rent on the Cross, barred man’s access to God. An uncrucified Saviour is no Saviour. When the Messiah died on the Cross, the veil of the temple was rent by the unseen hand of God, showing Israel two things, that the Messiah had now provided the actual entrance for the sinner into the presence of God, and that the symbolic sacrifices were to be discontinued, for the Reality to whom they pointed had come (Heb 9:7–10). The unsaved Jew of the first century who had made a profession of Messiah but had not placed a heart faith in Him for salvation, is now exhorted to do the latter, the writer using Jewish terminology and typology in his exhortation. (Hebrews Commentary online)
Flesh (4561)(sarx) has a variety of meanings but in context refers to the physical body of Jesus. Flesh in the book of Hebrews refers to the incarnation of Jesus (Heb 2:14-note; He 5:7-note). His flesh was the state through which He had to pass before He might enter heaven on our behalf (as our Great High Priest) (He 2:9-18; 5:7, 8, 9; 10:5). Believers have the glorious privilege of approaching God directly (cp Ro 5:1, 2-note). Jesus Himself explained the efficacy of His flesh (and the sacrifice thereof) declaring that "the life of the world is My flesh." (Jn 6:51)
And so flesh speaks of Jesus' humanity, and is symbolic of the veil through which the entrance into the heavenly Holy of Holies was procured. Under the Old Covenant, the veil in the tabernacle of Israel was not rent, but served as a clear barrier, which prevented man’s access to God.
Jesus body was the temple (Jn 2:19), and in His suffering on the Cross, He was the torn veil procuring entry into the most holy place in the Temple (in fact not a place on earth but God's Throne in heaven).
F B Meyer on the veil...
Spurgeon - The precept to keep back is abrogated, and the invitation is, “Come to me, all of you who labor and are burdened” (Mt 11:28-note). “Let us draw near” is now the filial spirit of the gospel. How thankful I am for this! What a joy it is to my soul! Some of God’s people have not yet realized this gracious fact, for still they worship afar off. Much prayer is to be highly commended for its reverence but it has in it a lack of childlike confidence. I can admire the solemn and stately language of worship that recognizes the greatness of God, but it will not warm my heart nor express my soul until it has also blended with the joyful nearness of that perfect love that drives out fear (1John 4:18) and ventures to speak with our Father in heaven as a child speaks with its father on earth. In the East, men express their sorrow by rending their garments. The temple, when it beheld its Master die, seemed struck with horror and rent its veil. Shocked at the sin of man, indignant at the murder of its Lord, in its sympathy with Him who is the true temple of God the outward symbol tore its holy vestment from the top to the bottom. Did not the miracle also mean that from that hour the whole system of types and shadows and ceremonies had come to an end? The ordinances of an earthly priesthood were rent with that veil. The veil has not been merely lifted up for a while, and then dropped down again; it is not rolled up ready for future use; it is rent in twain, destroyed. Since Jesus has died, there is no separation now between the believer and his God except by means of such a veil as our base unbelief may please to hang up. The crimson way of Christ’s shed blood lies open to all believers; therefore, “let us approach with a true heart in the full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water” (Heb 10:22). Whoever beneath the wide heavens is conscious of the plague of his own heart, or has anything that plagues him or anything that troubles him, may turn his eyes towards Christ, the true temple, with a certainty that God will hear his prayer and answer his request and send to him deliverance. “We have an altar” (Heb 13:10-note), and that altar is our Lord’s own blessed person; we have but one, and we tremble for those who set up another, but to that one we look with confident hope, being assured that the sacrifice once offered there has made our peace with God, and procured acceptance for our supplications. Let us never try to pray without Christ; never try to sing without Christ; never try to preach without Christ. Let us perform no holy function, nor attempt to have fellowship with God in any shape or way, except through the rent that He has made in the veil by His flesh, sanctified for us, and offered upon the cross on our behalf.
Judson W. VanDeVenter had erected a veil. But while singing in a choir during a revival campaign in Sharon, Pennsylvania, he responded to the invitation and committed his life to the Lord’s service. He forsook all and became an evangelist, ministering in America, England, and Scotland. Years later he wrote about his commitment:
All to Jesus I surrender,
Horatius Bonar has an interesting article on the...
BOLDNESS IN THE BLOOD OF JESUS
Enter into the Holiest. This word brought us the message of the Epistle. Christ has in very deed opened the Holiest of All for us to enter in and to dwell there. The Father would have His children with Him in His holy home of love and fellowship, abiding continually all the time. The Epistle seeks to gather all in. Having boldness to enter, let us draw near!
It may be that some, as in the study of the Epistle the wondrous mystery of the way into the Holiest now opened was revealed to them, have entered in; they have said, in faith: Lord, my God; I come. Henceforth I would live in Thy secret place, in the Holiest of All. And yet they fear. They are not sure whether the great High Priest has indeed taken them in. They know not for certain whether they will be faithful, always abiding within the veil. They have not yet grasped what it means--having boldness to enter in.
And there may be others, who have with longing, wistful hearts, heard the call to enter in. and yet have not the courage to do so. The thought that a sinful worm can every day and all the day dwell in the Holiest of All is altogether too high. The consciousness of feebleness and failure is so strong, the sense of personal unfaithfulness so keen, the experience of the power of the world and circumstances, of the weakness of the flesh and its efforts, so fresh, that for them there is no hope of such a life. Others may rejoice in it, they must even be content without it. And yet the heart is not content.
To both such, those who have entered but still are full of fears, and those who in fear do not enter, the Holy Spirit speaks--To-day, if you shall hear His voice, harden not your hearts; Having boldness in the blood of Jesus to enter into the Holiest, let us draw nigh. The boldness with which we are to enter is not, first of all, a conscious feeling of confidence; it is the objective God-given right and liberty of entrance of which the blood assures us. The measure of our boldness is the worth God attaches to the blood of Jesus. As our heart reposes its confidence on that in simple faith, the feeling of confidence and joy on our part will come too, and our entrance will be amid songs of praise and gladness.
Boldness in the blood of Jesus. Everything depends upon our apprehension of what that means. If the blood be to us what it is to God, the boldness which God means it to give, will fill our hearts. As we saw in Hebrews 9, what the blood has effected in rending the veil and cleansing the heavens, and giving Jesus; the Son of Man, access to God, will be the measure of what it will effect within us, making our heart God's sanctuary, and fitting us for perfect fellowship with the Holy One. The more we honour the blood in its infinite worth, the more will it prove its mighty energy and efficacy, opening heaven to us and in us, giving us, in divine power, the real living experience of what the entrance into the Holiest is.
The blood of Jesus. The life is the blood. As the value of this life, so the value of the blood. In Christ there was the life of God; infinite as God is the worth and the power of that blood. In Christ there was the life of man in its perfection; in His humility, and obedience to the Father, and self-sacrifice, that which made Him unspeakably well-pleasing to the Father. That blood of Jesus, God and man, poured out in a death, that was a perfect fulfilment of God's will, and a perfect victory over all the temptations of sin and self, effected an everlasting atonement for sin, and put it for ever out of the way, destroying death and him that had the power of it. Therefore it was, that in the blood of the everlasting covenant Jesus was raised from the dead; that in His own blood, as our Head and Surety, He entered heaven; and that that blood is now for ever in heaven, in the same place of honour as God the Judge of all, and Jesus the Mediator (Hebrews 12:24). It is this blood, now in heaven before God for us, that is our boldness to enter in, even into the very Holiest of All.
Beloved Christian! The blood of Jesus! The blood of the Lamb! Oh think what it means. God gave it for your redemption. God accepted it when His Son entered heaven and presented it on your behalf. God has it for ever in His sight as the fruit, the infinitely well-pleasing proof, of His Son's obedience unto death. God points you to it and asks you to believe in the divine satisfaction it gives to Him, in its omnipotent energy, in its everlasting sufficiency. Oh, will you not this day believe that that blood gives you, sinful and feeble as you are, liberty, confidence, boldness to draw nigh, to enter the very Holiest? Yes, believe it, that the blood and the blood alone, brings you into the very presence, into the living and abiding fellowship of the everlasting God. And let your response to God's message concerning the blood, and the boldness it gives you be nothing less than this, that this very moment you go with the utmost confidence, and take your place in the most intimate fellowship with God. And if your heart condemn you, if coldness or unbelief appear to make a real entrance impossible, rest not till you believe and prove to the full the power of the blood indeed to bring you nigh. Having boldness by the blood of Jesus,--what then--let us draw nigh!
1. Which is now greater in your sight: your sin or the blood of Jesus? There can be but one answer, Then draw nigh, and enter in, into the Holiest of All. As your sin has hitherto kept you back, let the blood now bring you nigh. And the blood will give you the boldness and the power to abide.
2. "One drop of that blood, coming out of the Holiest on the soul, perfects the conscience, makes that there is no more conscience of sin, and enables us to live in the fellowship of God and His Son. Such a soul, sprinkled with the blood, is able to enjoy the heavenly treasures, and to accomplish the heavenly service of the living God."
3. And that blood, such is its heavenly cleansing power, can keep the soul clean. "If we walk in the light, as He is in the light," if me live in the Holiest, in the light of His countenance, "we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, His Son, cleanseth us from all sin," so that no sin touch us, whereby we lose the fellowship with the Father.
4. Understand how the Father's heart longs that His children draw near to Him boldly. He gave the blood of His Son to secure It. Let us honour God, and honour the blood, by entering the Holiest with great boldness.
Andrew Murray. The Holiest of All
Amplified: And since we have [such] a great and wonderful and noble Priest [Who rules] over the house of God, (Amplified Bible - Lockman)
Barclay: and since we have a great High Priest who is over the house of God, (Westminster Press)
NLT: And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God's people, (NLT - Tyndale House)
Phillips: Further, since we have a great High Priest set over the household of God, (Phillips: Touchstone)
Wuest: and having a Priest, a Great One, over the house of God, (Eerdmans)
Young's Literal: and a high priest over the house of God,
AND SINCE WE HAVE A GREAT PRIEST: kai hierea megan: (He 2:17; 3:1; 4:14, 15, 16; 6:20; 7:26; 8:1)
Since we have - These words are added by the translators and are implied. Literally the Greek reads - and a high priest over the house of God. This truth was meant to (Great Priest) was meant to inspire confidence (Heb 10:22, 23).
Great Priest - A High Priest. Hierea megan is the alternative designation for the HIGH PRIEST (cf. Lv 21:10; Nu 35:25, 28 where Lxx the phrase "ho hiereus ho megas" = the priest, the great).
Wuest - Not only is Messiah now a high priest, but He is a great one, and His greatness is shown by the fact that He is the priest over the actual house of God, the One who by His death on the Cross saves all those who belong to the house of God in all dispensations. (Hebrews Commentary online)
Spurgeon - The Israelite could not pass through the veil that hid from public gaze the glory of the Shekinah, and Jesus Christ’s humanity was a veil that somewhat concealed the glory of His Deity. But the flesh of Christ having been crucified, the veil has been rent, and now we may come right up to the throne of God without trembling. We may come even with holy boldness and familiarity, and speak to God without alarm. Having such a privilege as this, let us not neglect it. It was denied to prophets and kings in the olden time; but now that it is given to us, let us avail ourselves of it.
Our Great/High Priest as has been masterfully presented explained by our writer in his argument in Hebrews 4:14-note through Hebrews 7:28-note. But even earlier the writer had begun to introduce the truths about Jesus as the "new style" of High Priest...
Jesus not only is our Access and but our Advocate, confidence, both the Veil (our Access) and the Priest (our Advocate). His torn body and shed blood provides our access to the presence of the Father. And in our access He is our eternal priestly Advocate. Hallelujah! Thank You Father.
To show why we need to be very careful reading commentaries (yes, even the one you are now reading!) here is a quote from an Early Church Father, Justin Martyr (ca AD 130-50) who cites Heb 6:19, 20, 10:19,20 and comments that by virtue of the sacrificial death of the crucified High Priest, Jesus Christ, Christians have become "the true high priestly people of God". Now in one sense he may be correct (eg, 1Pe 2:9)...but I don't see us called "high" anywhere...I think personally there is and will always be ONLY ONE Great High Priest, even as there was only ONE in ancient Israel in the OT, although there were many other priests.
When Chrysostom was brought before the Roman emperor, the emperor threatened him with banishment if he remained a Christian. Chrysostorn replied:
OVER THE HOUSE OF GOD: epi ton oikon tou theou: (Heb 3:3, 4, 5, 6; Matthew 16:18; 1Corinthians 3:9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17; 2Corinthians 6:16,17; Ephesians 2:19, 20, 21, 22; 1Timothy 3:15)
House of God - This phrase occurs 73 times in the OT so it would have been familiar terminology to the Jewish recipients of this epistle. In the OT it referred to a place, but as discussed below, in the book of Hebrews it refers to a people, not a place.
House of God - 5x in NT: Mt 12:4, Mk 2:26, Lk 6:4, 11:51, Heb 10:21 In the Gospels House of God clearly refers to the Temple of God in Jerusalem.
One possibility that has been suggested for house of God is that it refers to God's "house" in heaven. This interpretation is unlikely for the writer nowhere else refers to the heavenly sanctuary under the metaphor of the house of God. The other possibility (which I favor) is that it is a metaphor for the family of God. Hebrews 3:6 would support the latter interpretation for there we read...but Christ was faithful as a Son over His house—whose house we are (referring to believers), if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end. (Heb 3:6)
Adam Clarke (Wiersbe, Calvin, et al agree)...The house or family of God is the Christian Church, or all true believers in the Lord Jesus. Over this Church, house, or family, Christ is the High Priest-in their behalf he offers his own blood, and their prayers and praises; and as the high priest had the ordering of all things that appertained to the house and worship of God, so has Christ in the government of his Church.
Today the temple of God is the believer's body! (1Co 3:16, 6:19, 2Co 6:16) Think about this! Is God able to "rest" in His Temple, your body?
ENTRANCE INTO THE HOLIEST
Enter into the Holiest. With these words the second half of the Epistle begins. Hitherto the teaching has been mainly doctrinal. The glory of Christ's person and priesthood, of the heavenly sanctuary which He, through His own blood, has opened and cleansed and taken possession of for us, of the way of obedience and self-sacrifice which led Him even to the throne, has been unfolded. Now comes the practical part, and our duty to appropriate the great salvation that has been provided is summed up in the one thought: Having boldness to enter into the Holiest; let us draw nigh. Access to God's presence and fellowship, the right and the power to make that our abiding dwelling-place, to live our life there, has been provided in Christ: let us draw nigh, here let us abide.
Enter into the Holiest. It is a call to the Hebrews to come out of that life of unbelief and sloth, that leads to a departing from the living God, and to enter into the promised land, the rest of God, a life in His fellowship and favour. It is a call to all lukewarm, half-hearted Christians, no longer to remain in the outer court of the tabernacle, content with the hope that their sins are pardoned. Nor even to be satisfied with having entered the Holy Place, and there doing the service of the tabernacle, while the veil still hinders the full fellowship with the living God and His love. It calls to enter in through the rent veil, into the place into which the blood has been brought, and where the High Priest lives, there to live and walk and work always in the presence of the Father. It is a call to all doubting, thirsting believers, who long for a better life than they have yet known, to cast aside their doubts, and to believe that this is what Christ has indeed done and brought within the reach of each one of us: He has opened the way into the Holiest! This is the salvation which He has accomplished, and which He lives to apply in each of us, so that we shall indeed dwell in the full light of God's countenance.
Enter into the Holiest. This is, in one short word, the fruit of Christ's work, the chief lesson of the Epistle, the one great need of our Christian life, the complete and perfect salvation God in Christ gives us to enjoy.
Enter into the Holiest. What Holiest? To the reader who has gone with us through the Epistle thus far, it is hardly needful to say, No other than that very same into which Christ, when He had rent the veil in His death, entered through His own blood, to appear before the face of God for us. That Holiest of All is the heavenly place. But not heaven, as it is ordinarily understood, as a locality, distinct and separate from this earth. The heaven of God is not limited in space in the same way as a place on earth. There is a heaven above us, the place of God's special manifestation. But there is also a spiritual heaven, as omnipresent as God Himself. Where God is, is heaven; the heaven of His presence includes this earth too. The Holiest into which Christ entered, and into which He opened the way for us, is the, to nature, inaccessible light of God's holy presence and love, full union and communion with Him. Into that Holiest the soul can enter by the faith that makes us one with Christ. The Holy Spirit, who first signified that the way of the Holiest was not yet open; through whom Jesus "shed the blood that opened the way; who, on the day of Pentecost, witnessed in the heart of the disciples, that it was now indeed open; waits to testify to us what it means to enter in and to bring us in. He lifts the soul up into the Holiest; He brings the Holiest down into the soul.
Enter into the Holiest. Oh, the glory of the message. For fifteen centuries Israel had a sanctuary with a Holiest of All into which, under pain of death, no one might enter. Its one witness was: man cannot dwell in God's presence, cannot abide in His fellowship. And now, how changed is all I As then the warning sounded: Enter not so now the call goes forth: Enter in the veil is rent; the Holiest is open; God waits to welcome you to His bosom. Henceforth you are to live with Him. This is the message of the Epistle: Child thy Father longs for thee to enter, to dwell, and to go out no more for ever.
Oh the blessedness of a life in the Holiest! Here the Father's face is seen and His love tasted. Here His holiness is revealed and the soul made partaker of it. Here the sacrifice of love and worship and adoration, the incense of prayer and supplication, is offered in power. Here the outpouring of the Spirit is known as an ever-streaming, overflowing river, from under the throne of God and the Lamb. Here the soul, in God's presence, grows into more complete oneness with Christ, and more entire conformity to His likeness. Here, in union with Christ, in His unceasing intercession, we are emboldened to take our place as intercessors, who can have power with God and prevail. Here the soul mounts up as on eagle's wings, the strength is renewed, and the blessing and the power and the love are imparted with which God's priests can go out to bless a dying world. Here each day we may experience the fresh anointing, in virtue of which we can go out to be the bearers, and witnesses, and channels of God's salvation to men, the living instruments through whom our blessed King works out His full and final triumph.
O Jesus! our great High Priest, let this be our life!
1. "One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell In the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in His temple." Here the prayer is fulfilled.
2. " Did not Jesus say, 'I am the door of the sheepfold'? What to us is the sheepfold, dear children? It is the heart of the Father, whereunto Christ is the gate that is called Beautiful. O children, how sweetly and how gladly has He opened that door into the Father's heart, into the treasure-chamber of God! And there within He unfolds to us the hidden riches, the nearness and the sweetness of companionship with Himself.'--TAULER.
3. We have read of a man's father or friends purchasing and furnishing a house for a birthday or a wedding gift. They bring him there, and, handing the keys, say to him: "This is now your house." Child of God! the Father opens unto thee the Holiest of All, and says now be thy home." What shall our answer be?
Andrew Murray. The Holiest of All
A GREAT PRIEST
WE said before that in the symbols of the Mosaic worship there were specially four things that, as types of the mystery of the coming redemption, demand attention. These are--the Sanctuary, the Blood, the Way into the Holiest, the Priest. The first three, all heavenly things, we have had; we now come to the fourth, the chief and the best of all--a living Person, Jesus, a great High Priest over the house of God. The knowledge of what He has won for me, the entrance into the Holiest; of the work He did to win it, the shedding of His blood; of the way in which I am to enter into the enjoyment of it all--all this is very precious. But there is something better still: it is this, that the living, loving, Son of God is there, personally to receive me and make me partaker of all the blessedness that God has for me. This is the chief point: we have such a High Priest, who sat down on the right hand of the majesty in the heavens. Wherefore, brethren, having a great Priest over the house of God, let us draw near.
And what is now the work we need Jesus to do for us? Has it not all been done? The Holiest is opened. Boldness through the blood has been secured. The living way has been dedicated to carry us in. What more is there that Jesus has to do for us? Nothing more; it has all been finished, once and for ever. And why is it then we are pointed to Him as the great Priest over the house of God? And what is it we may expect of Him? What we need, and what we must look to Him for is this, so to work in us that the work He has done for us may be made real within us, as a personal experience of the power of an endless life in which He was constituted Priest. Because He liveth ever, we read, He is able to save completely. Salvation is a subjective, experimental thing, manifest in the peace and holiness of heart He gives. We, our life, our inner man, our heart, our will and affections, are to be delivered from the power of sin, and to taste and enjoy the putting away of sin as a blessed experience. In our very heart we are to find and feel the power of His redemption. As deep and strong as sin proved itself in its actual power and its mastery within us, is Jesus to prove the triumph of redeeming grace.
His one work as Priest over the house of God is to bring us into it, and enable us to live there. He does this by bringing God and the soul into actual harmony, sympathy, and fellowship with each other. As Minister of the sanctuary He does all that is to be done in heaven with God; as Mediator of the new covenant He does all that is to be done here on earth, in our heart--the one as effectually as the other. The two offices are united in the one great Priest; in each act of His He unites both functions, to the soul that knows what to expect, and trusts Him. Every movement in the presence of God can have its corresponding movement in the heart of man.
And how is this effected a--In virtue of His union with us, and our union with Him. Jesus is the Second Adam; the new Head of the race. He is it in virtue of His real humanity, having in it the power of true divinity that filleth all Just as Adam was our forerunner into death, and we have all the power of his sin and death working in us and drawing us on, so we have Jesus as our Forerunner into God's presence, with all the power of His death and His resurrection-life working in us, and drawing and lifting us with divine energy into the Father's presence. Yes, Jesus with His divine, His heavenly life, in the power of the throne on which He is seated, has entered into the deepest ground of our being, where Adam, where sin, do their work, and is there unceasingly carrying out His work of lifting us heavenward into God's presence, and of making God's heavenly presence here on earth our portion.
And why is it we enjoy this so little? And what is needed that we come to its full enjoyment? And how can Jesus truly be to us a great High Priest, giving us our actual life in the Holiest of All? One great reason of failure is what the Epistle so insists on: our ignorance of the spiritual perfection-truth it seeks to teach, and specially of what the Holy Spirit witnesseth of the way into the Holiest. And what we need is just this, that the Holy Spirit Himself, that Jesus in the Holy Spirit, be waited on, and accepted, and trusted to do the work in power Do keep a firm hold of this truth, that when our great High Priest once for all entered the Holiest, and sat down on the throne, it was the Holy Ghost sent down in power into the hearts of His disciples, through whom the heavenly High Priest became a present and an indwelling Saviour, bringing down with Him into their hearts the presence and the love of God, That Pentecostal gift, in the power of the glorified Christ, is the one indispensable channel of the power of Jesus' priesthood. Nothing but the fulness of the Spirit in daily life, making Jesus present within us, abiding continually, can keep us in the presence of God as full experience. Jesus is no outward High Priest, who can save us as from a distance. No, as the Second Adam, He is nowhere if He is not in us. The one reason why the truth of His heavenly priesthood is so often powerless, is because we look upon it as an external distant thing, a work going on in heaven above us. The one cure for this evil is to know that our great Priest over the house of God is the glorified Jesus, who in the Holy Spirit is present in us, and makes all that is done in heaven above for us to be done within us too by the Holy Spirit.
He is Priest over the house of God, the place where God dwells; we are His house too. And as surely as Jesus ministers in the sanctuary above, He moment by moment ministers in the sanctuary within. Wherefore, brethren, having,--not only in gift, not only in the possession of right and thought, but in our hearts,--having a great Priest over the house of God, let us draw near.
1. Having a great Priest! You know a great deal of Jesus, but do you know this that His Chief, His all-comprehensive work, is to bring you near, oh so near, to God? Has He done this for you? If not, ask Him, trust Him for It.
2. It is Jesus Himself I want. Himself alone can satisfy me. It is in the holy faith of Jesus, the compassionate sympathiser, in the holy love of Jesus who calls us brethren that we can draw near to God. It is in a heart given up, with its trust and love and devotion to Jesus, that the presence of God will be felt.
3. We have such a High Priest! Yes say I have Him; In all His power and Love he is mine; and yield to Him to do His work.
Andrew Murray. The Holiest of All
OUR GREAT HIGH PRIEST
B. His Sympathy and Compassion
His heart is touched with tenderness.
C. Blessing the People