“Now of the things which we have spoken, this is the sum: We have such a High Priest, Who is set on the right Hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens—a Minister of the Sanctuary and of the true Tabernacle, which the Lord pitched and not man.”
Even now, as we read these words, He’s accomplished and still fulfilling His Heavenly role.
A foretaste (or “shadow”) of things to come.
That’s what the Tabernacle in the wilderness, the three Temples and Aaronic priesthood were in light of today’s Manna (Heb. 8:5; 10:1). And, although God designed them to serve useful purposes in the times intended, none could compare to God’s true/ultimate Minister, Sanctuary and Tabernacle.
As Israel journeyed away from Egyptian slavery, God (to them) seemed far-off, but quite powerful. Mt. Sinai, the Mount of God, was a foreboding and forbidden place—covered with smoke and fire, thunders and lightning and earthquakes (Ex. 19:9-18; Heb. 12:18-21). That’s why the people trembled with fear and said “Moses, you go talk to God for us” (v.15c).
Yet, later on the Lord God led Moses and the people to construct the “Tent in the Wilderness” and instructed them on how to build it (Ex. 25:1-27:21; 30:1-31:11). And, some years later He would lay the need for a more permanent House of Worship on David’s heart, which resulted in the construction of the first Temple under Solomon (I Chron. 22; I Kings 6). Later on, it would be destroyed and two other Temples would be erected, only to be destroyed as well—the final one in A.D. 70.
Likewise, God led Moses to set his brother, Aaron, aside as Israel’s first high priest (Ex. 28-29; Lev. 8:1-9:24). And, all priests were to come from the tribe of Levi (Num. 3:2-3). But, all of that came to an end when Jesus—God’s last “Prophet, Priest and King” (Heb. 1:1-3)—came on the scene.
Even though He was from the tribe of Judah, He was of “the order of Melchizedek,” the priest-king of Salem to whom Abraham paid tithes (Heb. 6:20-7:10). Thus, His Priesthood was superior, as was His service and sacrifice (Heb. 7:11-28). That’s why the anonymous author of Hebrews said “The sum total of what we’ve been talking about is this” and further fleshed things out in today’s Manna.
The earthly Tabernacle and Temple are no more; but the Heavenly One. . . “not made with hands” (Heb. 9:11). . . “which the Lord pitched and not man”. . .is an enduring and eternal one. Likewise, earthly priests come and go; but our High Priest is also an enduring and eternal One and even now “sits at the right Hand of the Majesty on High, making intercession for us” (Heb. 7:24-25; 12:2c). Hallelujah!
Solomon’s Temple was truly a sight to behold, with its abundance of gold, bronze, wood, carvings of cherubim, etc. But even it pales in comparison to the Heavenly Temple where Jesus, God’s High Priest/Sacrifice both reigns and intercedes. Why not stop right now and give thanks for this wondrous Reality and Truth? Then live today for Christ’s Glory and others’ good.
By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated February 18, 2011