TODAY’S SCRIPTURE Hebrews 8:6-13
The covenant God made with Moses was a parenthesis (Galatians 3:17). It was a “babysitter” to keep the unruly Jews from completely self-destructing (Galatians 3:24). It was a restrictive bridge to take them from the promise all the way to Jesus, the seed of the promise (Galatians 3:16, 23-25).
We now, however, have come to the New Covenant. It is foretold by Jeremiah in specific language (Jeremiah 31:28-34). Today’s Scripture, Hebrews 8:6-13, preserves this revelation in the longest Old Covenant quote found in the New Covenant. We are walking here among majestic landscapes as we breathe rarefied spiritual air.
Note especially what the Hebrews’ writer shares with us. From the moment Jeremiah writes the words “New Covenant,” the “Old” starts to become “obsolete.” It begins “growing old” and is “ready to vanish away” (Hebrews 8:13). There is much history here often lost on a casual reader.
Jeremiah writes at the time of the Babylonian captivity, the time when Jerusalem and the temple are destroyed. During this time Ezekiel reveals both the priesthood and the practice of having a king would be irrevocably changed. The two offices would await the coming of the one “to whom judgment belongs” and He would assume their roles (Ezekiel 21:25-27; see Zechariah 6:9-13; Genesis 49:10). Additionally, Ezekiel records the presence of the Lord would depart the temple prior to its destruction (Ezekiel 10–11). It did not return.
This is more than just of small interest. Jesus while on earth could not have served as either a priest or a king (Hebrews 7:14; Jeremiah 22:28-30). Nevertheless, under the New Covenant Jesus would be both a High Priest and the King (Psalm110:1-4, 29-33; Hebrews 5:1-6). Clearly, the Old Covenant did grow old and vanish away as was necessary for Jesus to be the great High Priest who is also King.
What a remarkable plan God sets in motion as He moves to the time of the New Covenant! God’s Spirit returns, dwelling in the tabernacle of His Son’s flesh (John 1:14) to reign over the Israel of God (Galatians 6:16) as our perfect sacrifice (Hebrews 9:11-15).
Today, I will…stand in awe of the manifold wisdom of God (Ephesians 3:10) as I consider His ways throughout the ages in demonstrating that He is God and there is no other!