July 18 - Worship on Earth

Saturday, July 18, 2009

July 18 - Hebrews 9:1-10 - Worship on Earth

We live in a time when personal access to God is simple. All we have to do is talk to Him and scriptures assure us that He is listening. We don't have to continually bring sacrifices before Him in specific manners and we don't have to worry about unconfessed sin, which is the purpose of the high priest's entry into the Most Holy Place once a year.

All of that was changed when the temple was destroyed in 70 AD. The sacrificial system didn't work without a temple.

Notice the importance of the structure in Hebrews 9:1-6. Because we are simple humans, God set forth a pattern for the Israelites to follow to deal with their sin as they approached the Holy of Holies. When everything had been done correctly, the priests (not the people) could finally enter the outer room to continue their ministry before God and only the high priest, once a year could enter the Most Holy Place.

The first covenant required the earthly tabernacle and then the specific requirements for worship spoken of in Hebrews 9:6-10. Because these things ARE earthly, they actually limit access to God. There is only so much that can be done to cleanse the hearts and souls (conscience - Hebrews 9:9) of the people.

The reality is that the sacrifices were simply a matter of food and drink and various ceremonial washings. Hebrews 9:10 says that these are external regulations which would only apply until the time of the new order.