Church Still WorksHebrews 10:25 is one of the most quoted Scriptures about ‘church’ – yet it is probably one of the most short-changed verses as well.  Few know how beautifully the context (v19-39) sets it up as a diamond among rubies.  In the next few articles, we will unpack the treasures, unfold the tapestry, unveil the plan of God for His church.  This series will be one of the most exciting trips we will take together (100% money-back guarantee)…  Church Still Works!

The Two Great Truths

1. We are recipients of a new covenant (Hebrews 10:19-22). God made a promise with us because He is good.  His nature is good, His purposes are everlasting – these are absolutely reflected in a new, unconditional covenant with believers.
2. We are members of a new community (Hebrews 10:23-25).  The natural fruit of sharing God’s covenant is that we bond in unity with each other.  We would not have a connecting common-ground if it were not for God’s covenant of promise to His people.

Old vs. New

In order to understand how awesome the new covenant really is, we’ll have to take a quick trip back to Israel, 3,500 years ago… Exodus 19 records God’s simple and strict instructions on how He would come down and meet with His people (Ex. 19:4-5,10-13,16-18). Stay back!  If anyone gets too close, they will die!  The message created fear.  The people trembled – and rightly so.  All of it led up to God giving the Law: the 10 Commandments (Ex. 20).  But that was just the beginning…

God desired to meet with His people on a more regular basis, and not from a mountain, so He commissioned Moses and Aaron to build a meeting place (tabernacle / temple).  God told them exactly how to build it (Exodus 25:8-9,22); and later, He would tell them how to use it (Leviticus 16:1-4,16-19,33-34).  On one special day of the year, the Day of Atonement, the High Priest would make a very hurried trip into the Holy of Hollies. This was the only man and the only day.  He would take blood from a spotless animal sacrifice and sprinkle it between two golden angels, covering the law (in the Ark).  This blood was to be an atonement (meaning ‘at one’) for the sin of the people.  The priest would have to do this every year on that special day.  It was a continual reminder of their sin – their need for a Savior (Hebrews 10:1-3).

What a change was coming… the new covenant (Hebrews 12:18-24).  God’s new covenant invited the commoner into the Holy place… we are all invited in by faith (Hebrews 10:19).  The veil between us and God was torn from top to bottom when Jesus Christ died for sins – because of the cross!  Our heavenly Priest, Jesus, entered into a heavenly sanctuary (Heb. 9:1,11,24) and offered His own blood (in contrast with an animals blood – Heb. 9:12-14).  The old covenant necessitated this procedure annually – but when Christ did it, it was done.  He sat down (Heb. 10:11-14).  He removed our sin, all of it (Isa. 43:25).  We are cleansed by His blood.  No more guilt, no more condemnation, no more fear!

What We Have because of the New Covenant:

– We have access to God (Hebrews 4:14-16). To think that a Holy God allows flesh and blood to come all the way into His throne room!  We are not just allowed – we are beckoned to have confidence and to come boldly.  This isn’t just a backstage pass, it’s a sealed invitation.  At this point, some might object: “Well God doesn’t want all my baggage… all my sin.”  That’s why the following is so important…
– We have an advocate before God (Hebrews 7:25).  Jesus is still doing what He did the day after the cross… He is still alive, interceding for you and for me!  When God looks at me, He doesn’t see the sins of my past, He sees the righteousness of Christ.  If that doesn’t move me to respond toward Him, what will?

CHART: Biblical Covenants
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