Monday is a day for questions.
Our text for Sunday is Hebrews 9.1-10:
1Now the first covenant had regulations for worship and also an earthly sanctuary. 2A tabernacle was set up. In its first room were the lampstand, the table and the consecrated bread; this was called the Holy Place. 3Behind the second curtain was a room called the Most Holy Place, 4which had the golden altar of incense and the gold-covered ark of the covenant. This ark contained the gold jar of manna, Aaron’s staff that had budded, and the stone tablets of the covenant. 5Above the ark were the cherubim of the Glory, overshadowing the atonement cover. But we cannot discuss these things in detail now.
6When everything had been arranged like this, the priests entered regularly into the outer room to carry on their ministry. 7But only the high priest entered the inner room, and that only once a year, and never without blood, which he offered for himself and for the sins the people had committed in ignorance. 8The Holy Spirit was showing by this that the way into the Most Holy Place had not yet been disclosed as long as the first tabernacle was still standing. 9This is an illustration for the present time, indicating that the gifts and sacrifices being offered were not able to clear the conscience of the worshiper. 10They are only a matter of food and drink and various ceremonial washings—external regulations applying until the time of the new order.
Why did the author of Hebrews describe the Tabernacle in detail instead of the Temple? Does this mean that the Temple had already been destroyed (70 AD) when the author wrote this? Or, did the author choose the Tabernacle over the Temple for theological reasons?
The purpose of the Tabernacle was to demonstrate that the way in the Most Holy Place had not yet been revealed. What does this say about the old covenant and the new covenant in terms of “the way into the Most Holy Place”?
We have all heard of a “guilty conscience”? What is the relationship between the “conscience” and the conviction of the Spirit? Romans 8.1 tells us that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. One of the short comings of the old covenant is that the sacrifices and offerings were not able to take away sin (see Hebrews 10.4). I wonder how that relates to forgiveness and the cleansing of the conscience?
What other questions do you think of as you read the text?