Saturday, 26 January 2019
…then He said, “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.” He takes away the first that He may establish the second. Hebrews 10:9
Hebrews 10:9 is another key verse to remember when confronting Judaizers, those of the Hebrew Roots movement, or any others who cling to the Law of Moses. Two others to remember are –
“For on the one hand there is an annulling of the former commandment because of its weakness and unprofitableness, 19 for the law made nothing perfect; on the other hand, there is the bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.” Hebrews 7:18, 19
“In that He says, ‘A new covenant,’ He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.” Hebrews 8:13
Now, in Hebrew 10:9, the author once again, and in another way, says the same basic thing. He starts with a continuation of his quote of the psalm given in verses 5-7 of this chapter. The words, “then He said,” show that this is so. In the previous verse, he cited parts of verses 5 & 6. Now, he will cite select words from verse 7.
Before looking at that, and in order to follow the line of thought properly, what was cited by the author in verse 10:8 should be remembered –
“‘Sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings, and offerings for sin You did not desire, nor had pleasure in them’ (which are offered according to the law).”
The Old Testament sacrifices weren’t pleasing to God, despite the fact that they were mandated by the law. They were ineffectual in restoring a right-relationship between God and man. This precipitated the need for something greater. A call was made and a voice responded, “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.” As it says in Isaiah 59:16 –
“He saw that there was no man,
And wondered that there was no intercessor;
Therefore His own arm brought salvation for Him;
And His own righteousness, it sustained Him.”
God Himself, in the person of Jesus Christ, provided the salvation which the law couldn’t. In providing this work, the Old Covenant law was set aside. As the author explicitly says, “He takes away the first that He may establish the second.” The “first” is the Mosaic Law; the “second” is the New Covenant in Christ’s blood. The first was “taken away,” meaning it is annulled and obsolete (as stated in Hebrews 7:18 & 8:13).
It is to be remembered concerning what it says in Hebrews 7:12 –
“For the priesthood being changed, of necessity there is also a change of the law.”
And again in Hebrews 8:4 –
“For if He were on earth, He would not be a priest, since there are priests who offer the gifts according to the law;”
As can be seen, 1) there were “gifts” or sacrifices already prescribed by the law. These were superseded by the ultimate Gift of Jesus. 2) There was a change in priesthood, from Aaron to Jesus. Therefore, 3) there was a change in the law; the first was taken away in order to establish the second.
Life application: What part of annulled, obsolete, and taken away do you not understand?
Lord, help us to never fall back on that which couldn’t satisfy. Keep us from getting trapped in the legalism of the law such as dietary, tithing, or other restrictions. Instead, may we fix our eyes on Jesus – our Foundation, High Priest, Savior, and the One from whom all blessings truly flow! Amen.