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)
Marriage is a covenant. A man and woman enter into a commitment to love each other exclusively for life. God entered into a covenant relationship with Israel. He promised to bless them, if they would obey Him. They agreed. But, because of their sinful hearts, they proved unfaithful. God still reached out and promised a New Covenant. This covenant would be provided by His Son, Jesus Christ. It would be superior to the Old Covenant. Hebrews 8:1-13 tells us why.
There is a better ministry based on a superior priesthood (v.1-6). “He has obtained a more excellent ministry” (v.6a). In this section, we get to “the main point” (v.1). At the heart of this message is that Jesus is our Great High Priest. The writer is showing the folly of those who were tempted to turn back to Judaism.
Christ’s ministry is superior in His seat (v.1). The Levitical priests never sat down. They couldn’t sit down because their work was never finished. But, when Jesus did His redeeming work, He cried out from the cross, “It is finished!” Then, He arose from the grave and ascended to glory—and took a seat!
Christ’s ministry is superior in His sanctuary (v.2). The Old Testament tabernacle was a tent—manufactured, transported, and erected by men—temporary, and has ceased to exist long ago. Yet Christ ministers in the splendor of the New Jerusalem above—the eternal dwelling of God!
Christ’s ministry is superior in His sacrifice (v.3). Sacrifices were offered repeatedly by the Old Covenant priests because their virtue was only symbolic and temporary. But, Jesus offered Himself—the Lamb of God once and for all atoning for sin and it will never need repeating.
Christ’s ministry is superior in His sphere (v.4). The Levitical priests were men and ministered on earth. Jesus is God and ministers in eternity.
Christ’s ministry excels in His standard (v.5). The Hebrew sanctuary was patterned after the Heavenly sanctuary. It would be like having a replica of Michelangelo’s statue of Moses on your bookshelf. It could not compare in value and glory to the original.
All this points to His supremacy (v.6). Hebrews proclaims the supremacy of the Savior in His person—greater than angels, greater than Moses, greater than Joshua; in His priesthood—greater than Aaron; greater in His provision—the grace and mercy in the New Covenant!
There is better Mediator based on superior promises (v.7-13). “He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises” (v.6b).
The law could give requirements, but not the resources to meet them (v.7-9). It could reveal your error but couldn’t remove the evil. Scales can show you how much you weigh, but cannot make you lose pounds! The Old Covenant was an external code engraved on stone, while the New Covenant is an internal compulsion engraved on the heart (v.10-11)!
Jesus has supplied our greatest need (v.12). We are sinners who need a Savior. He removes those sins as far as east from west and buries them in the depths of the sea.
Music technology has changed much in my lifetime—from records to 8 tracks, cassettes to CDs, and now the cloud. Things become obsolete. Not the New Covenant—it promises eternal salvation (v.13)!
Are you in this covenant relationship with Jesus Christ? If you are, then rejoice and tell someone else. If not—trust in Jesus today!