Article - A Better Covenant
“But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises” (Hebrews 8:6). One of the main points of the book of Hebrews and the New Testament is the Superiority of Christ and the New Covenant. Notice a couple of ways the Book of Hebrews illustrates the Superiority of Christianity.
A Better Offering
Under the Old Testament system, the priests were commanded to take offerings of animals and grain (Leviticus 1-5). Yet, with these bloody sacrifices, there was the ever-present reminder that they could never take away sin. Of this the Hebrew writer says, “But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year. For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins” (Hebrews 10:3-4). The great thing about the priesthood of Christ is His offering is once for all. Of Jesus it is said, “But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God” (Hebrews 10:12). Imagine what it would have been like to live under the Levitical sacrifice system. If a man sinned (and all did!—Rom. 3:23), he would go out to the field and get a spotless bull from the flock take it to the door of the tabernacle and kill it before the Lord. Then, the priest would slaughter the animal placing its blood on the altar and it’s entrails as a burnt offering for sin (Leviticus 4:1ff). And, if he sinned the next day, the whole process started all over again. How thankful to God we ought to be that Jesus is our once for all sacrifice for sins! Why would anyone want to go back to an inferior system of sacrifice that could never really save?
A Better Priestly Order
It is impossible for Jesus Christ to be a priest on earth today (Hebrews 8:3-4). He does not fit the divine pattern for the Levitical priest. He came from the wrong tribe (Hebrews 7:14). His parents were not of the proper genealogy. His priestly service would have began and ended at a certain age (Hebrews 7:3). Thank God Jesus is High Priest according to a better order. As God Himself said, “You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek” (Psalm 110:4). This order far exceeds the priestly order of Aaron because it is not dependent upon genealogy (7:3), has no beginning or ending point (7:3) and is superior to Levi from its inception (7:1-10). And, since Jesus is of a “new” priestly order the Hebrew writer says, “For the priesthood being changed, of necessity there is also a change of the law” (Hebrews 7:12). This idea of a change in the priesthood necessitating a change in the law naturally turns the Hebrew writer’s attention to the “better” covenant.
How wonderful it is to live in the New Testament Age! Friend, have you taken advantage of the great salvation that can only be found in Jesus? If not, you can do so today. You can do so very simply by believing in Jesus as God’s son (John 8:24), repenting of your past sins (Luke 13:1-5), confessing him as Lord (Romans 10:10; Matthew 10:32-33), and being baptized in water for the remission of your sins (Acts 2:38; Acts 22:16).
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