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“Oh, the unspeakable greatness of that exchange,—the Sinless One is condemned, and he who is guilty goes free; the Blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is brought into blessing; the Life dies, and the dead live; the Glory is whelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory.” Trailady

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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Hebrews 9 revisited

This post has for its purpose to clarify its first posting written about a year ago and to help any misunderstandings of the falsehood that Jesus ascended to go immediately into the Most Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary. Such a misinterpretation has greatly undermined the declaration and fearful warning from Revelation 14:7, “Fear God and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come.”


Heb. 9:1 Then verily the first covenant had also ordinances of divine service, and a worldly sanctuary.
Heb. 9:2 For there was a tabernacle made; the first, wherein was the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread; which is called the sanctuary.
Heb. 9:3 And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all;
Heb. 9:4 Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant;
Heb. 9:5 And over it the cherubims of glory shadowing the mercyseat; of which we cannot now speak particularly.
Heb. 9:6 Now when these things were thus ordained, the priests went always into the first tabernacle, accomplishing the service of God.
Heb. 9:7 But into the second went the high priest alone once every year, not without blood, which he offered for himself, and for the errors of the people:
Heb. 9:8 The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing:
Heb. 9:9 Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience;
Heb. 9:10 Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation.
Heb. 9:11 But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building;
Heb. 9:12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.
Heb. 9:13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:
Heb. 9:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
Heb. 9:15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.
Heb. 9:16 For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.
Heb. 9:17 For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth.
Heb. 9:18 Whereupon neither the first testament was dedicated without blood.
Heb. 9:19 For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people,
Heb. 9:20 Saying, This is the blood of the testament which God hath enjoined unto you.
Heb. 9:21 Moreover he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle, and all the vessels of the ministry.
Heb. 9:22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.
Heb. 9:23 It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.
Heb. 9:24 For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:
Heb. 9:25 Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others;
Heb. 9:26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.
Heb. 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
Heb. 9:28 So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
The Writer of Hebrews (WoH), up to this point in his epistle, has proven in many ways that Jesus, the Messiah, the Prince of peace, fulfilled the promise which the Father swore with an oath,
The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit Thou at My right hand, until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool.
The LORD shall send the rod of Thy strength out of Zion: rule Thou in the midst of Thine enemies.
Thy people shall be willing in the day of Thy power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: Thou hast the dew of Thy youth.
The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek. (Ps. 110:1-4).
 
Run through a sieve and winnowed of all theological provings, the essence of the gospel message from Hebrews 9 is boiled down to a handful of promises. “Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, … having obtained eternal redemption for us…. The blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, [shall] purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God…. They which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance…. So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”
 
“Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an 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 [skēnē], which the Lord pitched, and not man.” (Heb. 8:1,2). “For every high priest is ordained to offer gifts and sacrifices: wherefore it is of necessity that this Man have somewhat also to offer.” (verse 3).
 
The epistle to the Hebrews is more than a letter, it is a treatise. But, it is not a treatise that concerns which compartment Jesus entered upon His ascension. The epistle of Hebrews is a treatise on the fact that Jesus became the High Priest to minister in the heavenly tabernacle in behalf of all who have been humbled and whose hearts are honest toward Him. The Father was satisfied and relieved to experience one of the human race to exemplify His will. And, for all who will pick up their cross, come to repentance, and follow the example of His Son, He gives all heaven in the gift of His Holy Spirit through His Son.
 
Jesus told His disciples, “I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” (Jn. 14:16,17). “This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven” (Acts 1:11) continued to speak to them and to minister to them the convictions that had so awakened their hearts and minds, and had brought comfort to their souls (see Luke 24:32).
 
Then and now Jesus, our High Priest, will help us as He had helped so many while He walked the earth. The book of Hebrews is for us as much as it was for the early Jewish Christians; and, it is full of precious promises with reassuring oaths until He can finish cleansing His heavenly sanctuary, cleansing not only Mt. Zion where His Father’s government dwells, but also cleansing the hearts and minds and consciences of His people, so that He can dwell in them also. The main message of the book of Hebrews is that God wants to swear to every individual on earth, and to never repent of it, “Thou art My son, this day have I begotten thee. And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to Me a son.” (Heb. 1:5).
 
“For both He that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying, I will declare Thy name unto My brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto Thee. And again, I will put My trust in Him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given Me.”(Heb. 2:11-13).
 
Heaven is the holiest of all earthly tabernacles
Christ’s ascension was for the purpose of anointing, with His perfect sacrifice, His Father’s work of reconciling man to Himself, and of restoring the divine nature in humanity. “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.” (Dan. 9:24). Keeping with Daniel’s prophecy, the WoH says that Jesus shed His blood to anoint (Heb. 9:18-23) the “holiest of all [τών άγίων ―ton hagion, the holy place]” (Heb. 9:8), “the throne of the Majesty in the heavens” (Heb. 8:1), “the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.” (Heb. 8:2).
 
Daniel 9:24 uses the phrase, “to anointH4886 [mâshach] the most Holy.H6944 H6944 [qodesh qodashim]” (possibly the verb “to anointH4886 [mâshach]” was inferring reference to“MessiahH4899” (vs. 25), [mâshîyach] as well as the sanctuary itself).
The SDA Bible Commentary, volume 4, page 852, has this to say on this point:
 
The most Holy. Heb. qodesh qodashim, “something most holy,” or, “someone most holy”. The Hebrew phrase is applied to the altar (Ex. 29:37; 40:10), other vessels and furniture pertaining to the tabernacle (Ex. 30:29), the holy perfume (Ex. 30:36), specified meat offerings (Lev. 2:3,10;6:17;10:12), trespass offerings (Lev. 7:1,6), the showbread (Lev. 24:5-9), devoted things (Lev. 27:28), the holy district (Num. 18:10; Eze.43:12), and the most holy place of the sanctuary (Ex. 26:33,34). The phrase is nowhere applied to persons unless, as some suggest, it is so applied to the text under consideration and in 1Chron. 23:13. The latter text may be translated, “Aaron was separated to anoint him a most holy one,” although it may also be rendered as in the KJV. Jewish expositors and many Christian commentators have held that the Messiah is referred to.
In view of the fact that the Hebrew phrase cannot elsewhere be shown to refer definitely to a person, and in view of the fact that the heavenly sanctuary is under discussion in the larger aspects of the vision, (see on Dan. 8:14), it is reasonable to conclude that Daniel is here speaking of the anointing of the heavenly sanctuary prior to the time of Christ’s inauguration as high priest.
 
Notice, that “qodesh qodashim” referred to things, as well as to the Lord Himself, and that the most holy things were associated with the whole sanctuary ―the Most Holy place, the Holy Place, the Court, and all the holy items connected with them. The Holy Place —“In the most holy place shalt thou eat it; every male shall eat it: it shall be holy unto thee.” (Num. 18:10). Even the outer Court could be classed as most holy, as seen in Ezekiel 43:12. “This is the law of the house; Upon the top of the mountain [Moriah] the whole limit thereof round about shall be most holy. Behold, this is the law of the house.” (Eze. 43:12). Most holy compared to what? Compared to the common places completely outside the realm of the sanctuary. This teaches us the meaning of Daniel 9:24, that Christ’s anointing the Most Holy, “qodesh qodashim” was His anointing the heavenly sanctuary, which was much holier than anything on earth, even than the earthly Solomon’s temple, “a greater and more perfect tabernacle.” (Heb. 9:11).
 
Everything associated with the God of heaven is most holy, or, holiest of all. Particularly is this true of His house, the heavenly sanctuary. And this word, “anoint,” means, “set apart, sanctify, dedicate to a holy purpose”. In other words, Christ’s death, among other reasons, was for the inauguration or dedication of the heavenly temple for the work of ultimately ending the great controversy and overcoming Satan’s influence in the earth. It made provision for the plan of salvation, “having obtained eternal redemption for us” (Heb. 9:12), which the work of the Holy Spirit gave new power. When Jesus cried, “It is finished!” He wasn’t simply stating the accomplishment or the end of something, but also the beginning of something better. “Being come an high priest of good things to come” (Heb. 9:11), He was also forecasting and promising His people that He would begin to save them with a power heretofore unknown, threatening Satan’s kingdom in an unprecedented way. That power was Christ’s reuniting humanity with God and with all of His hosts, “of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,” making of twain, one new man (Eph. 3:15;2:15). By His crucifixion, He dedicated the heavenly sanctuary where His most holy Father was, and where He was about to start a larger ministry.
 
“Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter.” (Jn. 13:7). “Now is the Son of man glorified, and God is glorified in Him. If God be glorified in Him, God shall also glorify Him in Himself, and shall straightway glorify Him. Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek Me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you.…Simon Peter said unto him, Lord, whither goest Thou? Jesus answered him, Whither I go, thou canst not follow Me now; but thou shalt follow Me afterwards….I go to prepare a place for you.” (Jn. 13:3-33,36;14:2).
 
The fulfillment of Christ’s glorification and anointing of the sanctuary, and His war against Satan’s captivity of humanity, is seen in Revelation 12.
“And she brought forth a man Child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her Child was caught up unto God, and to His throne….
And there was war in heaven: Michael and His angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.” (Rev. 12:5,7-10).
 
The type of the Old Testament is essential to understand the anti-type
The WoH recognized the concept of type/antitype, and staunchly holds true to that regime. (See Heb. 8:1-5). The type, he said, was “of necessity” an “example and shadow” of eternal realities (Heb. 8:3,5). He stated that the earthly “tabernacle [skēnē]” (Heb. 9:2) was full of “patterns” (Heb. 9:23) of heavenly things, “the figures of the true” (Heb. 9:24).
 
Thus, when he launches into describing the articles of furniture of the two compartments of the earthly, he lays the foundation to explain their heavenly counterpart. He carefully details the things of Christ that provide for our salvation by faith in Him, the redemption of our hearts, minds, and characters, our transformation into Christ’s image. These holy things speak of eternal verities —“the promise of eternal inheritance” (Heb. 9:15), as Paul called it, “the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession” (Eph. 1: 14).
 
The WoH then delineates the items within the first veil; that is, as he calls it, “the first” (Heb. 9:2) compartment of the “worldly sanctuary” (Heb. 9:1), “which is called the sanctuary [hagion, holy]”(Heb. 9:2). Then, he passes through the “second veil” (Heb. 9:3), into “the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all” (Heb. 9:3) hagia hagion, “the holy of holies”, the Most Holy Place. Here he lists the articles associated with it. He attaches the “the golden censer” (Heb. 9:4) which was brought into the Holiest of all.
 
But, the WoH makes no mention of the altar of incense, neither is it listed in Hebrews 9:2. The altar of incense was a kind of laver into the Most Holy, since it made acceptable the High Priest leaving the Holy Place to enter the Most Holy, as the laver did for the priest leaving the court to enter the sanctuary.
 
Once “dedicated” (Heb. 9:18), or, “ordained” (Heb. 9:6), the “worldly sanctuary” (Heb. 9:1) functioned on a daily basis, the priest going in “always” (Heb. 9:6), bringing the blood-borne sins “into the first tabernacle” (Heb. 9:6), “accomplishing the service of God” (Heb. 9:6).
 
“But into the second” (Heb. 9:7) “tabernacle” (Heb. 9:3) “went the high priest alone once every year, not without blood, which he offered for himself, and for the errors of the people”, “to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s.” (Heb. 9:7; 7:27).
 
The WoH knowing the types and holding them up as essential in order to understand the anti-types, how can we think that he would immediately depart widely from them by saying that Christ must enter directly through the second veil upon ascension? “For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us.” (Heb. 9:24).
 
Christ entered the whole heavenly sanctuary
“The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all [ton hagion, the holy place] was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing.” (Heb. 9:8). “This signifying” (Heb. 9:8) is commentary on, not only the immediately preceding verse 7, but on the whole preceding seven verses that deal with the earthly the sanctuary as a whole, holy places —the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place, “this building”,a greater and more perfect tabernacle.” (Heb. 9:11). Repeatedly throughout Hebrews 9 we read that the whole sanctuary is the subject of this chapter; the whole sanctuary is “the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith He, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount.” (Heb. 8:5).
 
The phrase, “This signifying”(Heb. 9:8), that is, the lesson from the “worldly [hagion, holy] sanctuary” (Heb. 9:1) for the heavenly, the “holiest of all” (Heb. 9:8), included both compartments of the earthly “tabernacle” under investigation by the WoH (Heb. 9:2,3). The phrase, “the holiest of all” (Heb. 9:8), gives the impression that only the heavenly Most Holy Place is the focus of Heb. 9:8 and of Hebrews 9 in general, when in reality the whole sanctuary is the subject matter of the verses preceding verse 8. The whole heavenly sanctuary, “the holiest of all [ton hagion, the holy place]” is the object referred to later all through chapter 9, in order to amplify the previous thought of the introductory verse 8. The rest of the chapter describes the workings in the Holy and Most Holy places and even the courtyard, when it speaks of “gifts and sacrifices” (Heb. 9:9), “meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances” (Heb. 9:10).
 
Clearly, the Most Holy Place is not the sole focus of verse eight, with regard to “the holiest of all [ton hagion, the holy place]” (Heb. 9:8). In Hebrews 9:8, the WoH’s decoding the anti-typical ministry under the labels of hagion and skēnē, terms that relate to both holy and most holy ministries of the whole sanctuary —rather than his total absence of using hagia hagion, which he would then could have meant to describe a ministry of Christ’s solely the “Holy of holies”. The exclusive uses of hagion and skēnē no doubt naturally keyed the original Greek reading Jews to comprehend a single heavenly sanctuary and a plural ministry and office for Christ to administer within that hagion or skēnē, upon His ascension. And it should key us into His plural ministry, as well. By consistently using —without exception— the general word, hagion (holy place, singular) or hagia (holy place, plural), or skēnē (tabernacle), and never once using the specific term hagia hagion (most holy place), the WoH expects the readers to naturally refer to the typical earthly sanctuary as a whole, with its two compartments for its daily and annual ministries, in order to understand the work of Christ in their day. Thus, the WoH relies on their knowledge of sanctuary information found in the Torah, their lack of which he mourned.
 
“Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. And this will we do, if God permit.” (Heb. 5:11-6:3).
 
It was the whole sanctuary, a two compartment heavenly sanctuary, which could not be made manifest while the earthly system was in place and an earthly system was getting all the attention (Heb. 9:8). After Christ was “parted from them, and carried up into heaven” (Lk. 24:51) and “sat on the right hand of God” (Mk. 16:19), the apostles “returned to Jerusalem with great joy: and were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God.” (Lk. 24:52,53, cf Ps. 23:6). It was “the sanctuary [hagion]”, “the true tabernacle [skēnē], which the Lord pitched, and not man” (Heb. 8:2), that could not dawn on any mind until the need for a temple arose at the loss of Herod’s temple, when Rome destroyed it. “When ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.” (Lk. 21:20).
 
But, “the time of reformation” (Heb. 9:10) having come at the full rejection of the Messiah by the Jewish nation, and the imminent dispersion of the Jews and the destruction of the temple (Dan. 9:27), now the heavenly sanctuary was unveiled to the church (circa A.D. 66), and the Hebrew Christians must walk and worship by faith and not by sight, more so than they previously had to do.
 
As “the holiest of all” (Heb. 9:8), heaven as seen in Ezekiel 1, outshone the earthly tabernacle, so the heavenly Minister in every respect outshines the earthly priests, throughout the whole sacrificial system. The first, earthly ceremonial and priestly systems were not “faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.” (Heb. 8:7). “For finding fault with them” (Heb. 8:8) the heavenly sanctuary and priesthood was anointed by a better sacrifice, the most holy Son of God.
 
“Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this [human construction]” (Heb. 9:11). “And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name.” (Phil. 2:8,9). “Therefore will I divide Him a portion with the great, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong; because He hath poured out His soul unto death: and He was numbered with the transgressors; and He bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.” (Isa. 53:12).
 
Hebrews 9:11 is saying that Jesus was the High Priest because He gave Himself for our redemption and then entered to officiate in the heavenly sanctuary, “a greater and more perfect tabernacle [skēnē], (Heb. 8:2)”, and not because He entered to officiate in the Most Holy Place, hagia hagion. The whole sanctuary in heaven was most holy because it was heavenly, made most holy by God. Jesus was the new spiritual High Priest, as heaven is higher than the earth. The newly comprehended heavenly sanctuary must necessitate a Priest that was higher than the highest human thought could reach.
 
The “once” references
He entered once into “the holy place,” (Heb. 9:12) (hagion, sanctuary). Therefore, this phrase, “by His own blood He entered in once into the holy place [hagion]” (Heb. 9:12) need not be compared or connected only to the previous use in verse 7, “Into the second went the high priest alone once every year, not without blood, which he offered for himself, and for the errors of the people” (Heb. 9:7). The “once” events do not perfectly parallel both the earthly Day of Atonement ceremony “once” a year in the earthly Most Holy Place and also Christ’s “once” entering into the Heavenly Holy Place. The Holy Place into which He entered was “heaven itself” (Heb. 9:24), the heavenly tabernacle, skēnē (Heb. 9:2); in which case, He entered into both ministries of the Holy Place and Most Holy Place. (There was no way to enter the Most Holy without entering the first veil into the sanctuary’s Holy Place.)
 
Mistakenly connecting the two “once” events may be why King James’ theologians incorrectly used the phrase “holiest of all” in Heb. 9:8 when translating hagion (“holy place”) in that verse. The WoH was obviously not speaking of the Most Holy place, “the Holiest of all” (Heb. 9:3), which is specifically and uniquely annotated as the Greek hagia hagion.
 
The whole sanctuary in heaven became apparent, as it was the whole heavenly Holy and Most Holy ministries that Christ had begun upon His ascension. When “set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens” (Heb. 8:1) He was first “to offer gifts and sacrifices” (Heb. 8:3) in the Holy Place of the sanctuary on Pentecost. “Wherefore He saith, When He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers.” (Eph. 4:8,11). This gift giving and offering was prefigured by the Exodus.

“The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place. Thou hast ascended on high, Thou hast led captivity captive: Thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them. Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.” (Ps. 68:17-19). Immediately upon arriving at Sinai, all that Israel had was a Holy Place, “And Moses took the tabernacle, and pitched it without the camp, afar off from the camp, and called it the Tabernacle of the congregation. And it came to pass, that every one which sought the LORD went out unto the tabernacle of the congregation, which was without the camp.” (Ex. 33:7). Until the sanctuary was made during the next nine months, there did not exist a Most Holy Place.
 
“And it came to pass on the day that Moses had fully set up the tabernacle, and had anointed it, and sanctified it, and all the instruments thereof, both the altar and all the vessels thereof, and had anointed them, and sanctified them; that the princes of Israel, heads of the house of their fathers, who were the princes of the tribes, and were over them that were numbered, offered” their wagons of gifts (Num. 7:1,2) , which the Lord had given them at the departure from their Egyptian slavery (Ex. 12:36). Yet, there is no evidence that the gifts were offered in the Most Holy Place.
 
In Hebrews 8 verses 3 and 4, mention is made of the blended priests/high priests performing gifts and sacrifices. The author of Hebrews does a lot of conglomerating of the titles of priest and high priest, using the titles of the two offices interchangeably; and here he lumps together both priest and high priest to explain the ministry of the earthly system. The WoH’s intentional interchanging of priest and High priest is as if to communicate that he knew Christ’s work in the whole heavenly sanctuary, “the holy place” (Heb. 9:12), “heaven itself” (Heb. 9:24), must encompass both priestly and high priestly services.
 
The animals mentioned for the heavenly ceremony reveal more than Day of Atonement sacrifices of “bulls and of goats” (Heb. 9:13), but also mentioning “the ashes of an heifer” (Heb. 9:13) for “sprinkling the unclean” (Heb. 9:13) leper, for his “purifying of the flesh” (Heb. 9:13), which, in the Mosaic system, was accomplished not in the Most Holy Place, within the second veil, or even by the High Priest; but, it was performed by an ordinary priest, in the court, and at random times whenever the case came before the priest (see Numbers 19). Again, this indicates that the WoH, in treating the heavenly “holiest of all” (Heb. 9:8), ton hagion, “holy place” was dealing with more than simply the heavenly “Holiest of all” (Heb. 9:2), hagia hagion.
 
Hebrews 9:14, continuing to develop that idea, the WoH speaks not to a Day of Atonement issue, but to us of our daily, living service through His purifying us from the leprosy of sin. “How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” (Heb. 9:14). This is for us a heavenly daily ministration issue because the writer is comparing to leprosy our dead service without the abiding Spirit of God, like the physical leprosy that needed the typical cleansing. This new special cleansing began at Early Rain of Pentecost; and it will be repeated in the Latter Rain. The WoH is comparing Christ’s redemptive work to an Old Testament Court and Holy Place issue. But, even though it is not a Most Holy Place issue, it is a heavenly Holiest of all issue because the Holy Spirit is involved, which Paul said was only a foretaste of and not the final, Most Holy Place redemption. “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of His glory.” (Eph. 1:13,14).
 
Christ’s death to cleanse Israel, part 1
Hebrews 9:15 does allude to a Most Holy Place mediation for the Old Testament peoples: “The redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament.” (Heb. 9:15). It was a type of the grand finale, as we see when comparing Dan. 9:24-27 with Rev. 11:18,19, and also with Matt. 24:15,21. Thus, the new covenant, the “new testament” (Heb. 9:15) was the atonement for the “first testament” (Heb. 9:15), the “dead works” (Heb. 9:14) of the whole “superstitious” (Acts 17:22) world under the old covenant overrun by the multitudinous brands of Baal and Ashtoreth worship.
 
“And for this cause He is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.” (Heb. 9:15). They were sealed in the Early Rain of the Holy Spirit because they trusted in Christ, the Mediator of the new covenant. The gospel was going to every nation under heaven. And, in spite of the expected counter effort by Satan (Dan. 7:25), the WoH presumed this to be a new world because the redemption of Christ would spread to “every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation.” (Rev. 5:9, cf 6:2-11).
 
This new “new testament”, “new covenant” (Heb. 8:13), “the atonement” (Rom. 5:11), is the true “redemption” (Heb. 9:15) and the “promise of eternal inheritance” (Heb. 9:15). Thus, Hebrews 9:15 gives a sense of the Most Holy Place cleansing of the sanctuary. We will come back to this later.
 
Where did Christ ascend to? More on the daily typical ministration
The “blood of goats and calves” (Heb. 9:12) is also not referring to the Day of Atonement, but the dedication of the earthly system. “For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people.” (Heb. 9:19).
 
By this, I’m not trying to confuse the arguments of Christ’s ascending into the Most Holy Place, but to show that we simply cannot assume that Hebrews chapter 9 is proving that Jesus went immediately to accomplish the final Day of Atonement cleansing. Neither must we assume that the “hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil” (Heb. 6:19) necessitates that Jesus entered within the “second veil” (Heb. 9:3) in order to accomplish “the atonement” (Rom. 5:11). The atonement to the individual, related above in Hebrews 9:19, was performed by the common priests (Lev. 1:4) and equated to a work that Jesus, who though our High Priest, would accomplish “within the veil” (Heb. 6:19) of the entire heavenly tabernacle, firstly within the first veil of “the holy places” (Heb. 9:24) into which He would enter at His ascension. Moses used that very phrase, “within the veil” with regard to the work of both the priests and High Priest within the whole sanctuary. “Therefore thou [Aaron] and thy sons with thee shall keep your priest’s office for every thing of the altar, and within the vail; and ye [plural] shall serve.” (Num. 18:7). In this instance, the “vail” must have referred to the first vail and the whole sanctuary because the context was the whole priesthood’s work.
 
Jesus’ work within the “holy place[s]” (Heb. 9:12) [ta hagia, “the heavenlies”, “holy places”, the holiest of all, or simply “heaven” (Heb. 9:24)] entailed more than Aaron’s work within the earthly second veil. Christ’s death also “purified” (Heb. 9:23) or ordained “the heavens” (Heb. 9:23) and “the heavenly things” (Heb. 9:23) with the “better” (Heb. 9:23), “a greater and more perfect” (Heb. 9:11) self-sacrifice of His divine body and soul. He kept His body and spirit as a constant living sacrifice, ready at His Father’s word to lay them down, along with His spotless union with His Father, a close connection never once broken, except for that last day from the supper to Gethsemane and on to Calvary. Many things did Christ’s death ordain to accomplish for His heavenly work of our salvation—our justification and daily sanctification, and ultimately our preparation for His return in power and glory, the great cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary, when the saints will all say, “the great day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” (Rev. 6:17).
 
Nor must the following passage relate to only a most holy place experience, since the words, “the holiest” (Heb. 10:19), are again the Greek ta hagia, “holy places”, and not “Holiest of all” (Heb. 9:2), hagia hagion. “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest [“a greater and more perfect tabernacle” (Heb. 9:11) hagion] by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which He hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, His flesh.” (Heb. 10:19,20). That veil was the first veil into the whole sanctuary. We have boldness to follow Jesus by faith into the door of the heavenly sanctuary because He has sent His Spirit to promise us that He will forgive our iniquities and remember our sins no more. Did He not say, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep[fold]” (Jn. 10:7)?
 
This boldness comes from a “hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast,… which entereth into that within the veil” (Heb. 6:19). Yet, that hope and boldness to approach our God, who has proven His love and willingness to accept us, does not yet take us into the Most Holy Place; we go by faith with Him into the first veil of the “holiest of all” (Heb. 9:8) [G39 ton hagion, “the holy place”], “heaven itself” (Heb. 9:24).
 
I speak in present tense of Christ still in the Holy Place; for, even though the cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary began in 1844, the cleansing is not yet completed, as it should have already been. There has been a delay of the final cleansing, as seen in Revelation 7:3, “Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.” And, soon that delay will end, as seen in Revelation 10:6. “And sware by Him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be [delay] no longer.”
 
Not until we begin this Revelation 10 final phase of the investigative judgment, that is, the shaking and the Loud Cry of the Latter Rain of the Holy Spirit (Revelation 11:7-11), will we fully enter into the second veil with Jesus with a most holy boldness to receive of His most holy justification and cleansing; we will follow Him “whithersoever He goeth” (Rev. 14:4) to make the great atonement of the heavenly sanctuary. We will then, by faith, “[ascend] up to heaven in a cloud” (Rev. 11:12), and, again, “sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.” (Eph. 2:6). By faith, at that time will we “be with [Jesus] in paradise.” (Lk. 23:43). Then Christ will prepare us for the great time of trouble, Jacob’s trouble, and the day of His appearing. Our soul temples will be without spot or wrinkle or any such thing. The church, 144,000 strong, and the great multitude which no man can number, will be fully cleansed when the heavenly sanctuary is fully cleansed.
 
Until that final cleansing, the cleansing of the Father’s heavenly sanctuary is yet a work in progress. But, if we will faithfully follow the work of Jesus within the first veil, coming under His power of the gospel from the Early Rain of the Holy Spirit, yet seeking to be sealed, to enter into the second veil and to receive the Latter Rain of the Holy Spirit, then we will receive those great Rains from above and be preparing for the great time of trouble that is just about to surprise the world.
“They that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.” (Rev. 17:8). We will have held fast the salvation we had gained at the first; and our names will be retained in the book of life, so that we will not be surprised. “The sinners in Zion are afraid; fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites. Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?”(Isa. 33:14).
 
Christ’s death to cleanse Israel, part 2
As we said earlier, Hebrews 9:15 is interesting. It seems to refer to Jesus ascending to commence a cleansing of the sanctuary. “And for this cause He is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.” (Heb. 9:15). “The redemption of the transgressions….” This is significant. This does sound like a first cleansing of the sanctuary and issuance of the Holy Spirit by the Messiah for the redemption of Israel’s loathsome past. It sounds like the warning to Israel through Daniel; it sounds like the 70 week Messianic prophecy.
 
“Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.” (Dan. 9:24). “To finish the transgression…to make reconciliation for iniquity” sounds very much like “the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament” (Heb. 9:15).
 
“To bring in everlasting righteousness” sounds like “they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance”; and “to anoint the most Holy” sounds like, “Almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission. It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.” (Heb. 9:22,23). It also sounds like, “And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon Him: and lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” (Matt. 3:16,17).
 
Yet, Jesus had a second baptism, one of fire on the cross. “I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled? But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!” (Lk. 12:49,50). Before He could send consumption upon the sinners in Zion, He must first take that consumption upon Himself outside of Jerusalem. And likewise, in a much larger picture, before He could cleanse the heavenly sanctuary and His church at the end, His death on the cross needed also to be so sufficient as to cover for that much greater atonement.
 
When Jesus said, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” (Lk. 23:34), and, “It is finished” (Jn. 19:30), the perfect “sacrifice of Himself” (Heb. 9:26) made provision for the “reconciliation for iniquity” (Dan. 9:24) that was “determined upon [Daniel’s] people” (Dan. 9:24), the Jews. The WoH writes of the “redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament” (Heb. 9:15), or, under the old covenant given to ancient Israel. This does sound like a first cleansing of the sanctuary and issuance of the Holy Spirit by the Messiah for the redemption of Israel’s loathsome past.
 
Thus, the appeals to the Jews by the apostles prior to the stoning of Stephen. “Those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all His prophets, that Christ should suffer, He hath so fulfilled. Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; and He shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began.” (Acts 3:18-21).
 
And, thus, the appeals to the Gentiles. “[God] hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; that they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after Him, and find Him, though He be not far from every one of us:… because He hath appointed a day, in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man whom He hath ordained; whereof He hath given assurance unto all men, in that He hath raised Him from the dead.” (Acts 17:26-31). Paul’s great desire was to “speak to the Gentiles that they might be saved.” (1Thess. 2:16). Thus, both Jews and Gentiles were guilty and in need of the death of the Messiah. And, thus, both were personally involved in His crucifixion, as the sacrificing participant laid his hand heavily upon the head of the animal to be offered.
 
The idea that Hebrews 9:15’s Day of Atonement has apparent reference to the crucifixion may not cause problems with the investigative judgment that we are presently in. It is true that Christ’s sacrifice was not for ancient Israel alone. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son.” (Jn. 3:16). “Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” (Rev. 22:17). We know that the Jews’ judgment was a foretaste of the final judgment.
 
When He leaves the sanctuary, darkness covers the inhabitants of the earth. In that fearful time the righteous must live in the sight of a holy God without an intercessor. The restraint which has been upon the wicked is removed, and Satan has entire control of the finally impenitent. God’s long-suffering has ended. The world has rejected His mercy, despised His love, and trampled upon His law. The wicked have passed the boundary of their probation; the Spirit of God, persistently resisted, has been at last withdrawn. Unsheltered by divine grace, they have no protection from the wicked one. Satan will then plunge the inhabitants of the earth into one great, final trouble. As the angels of God cease to hold in check the fierce winds of human passion, all the elements of strife will be let loose. The whole world will be involved in ruin more terrible than that which came upon Jerusalem of old. Great Controversy, p. 614.
 
Judgment on the Gentiles came soon after the Jews’. Without any restraint by the holy Hebrew religion which had been secreted away, the Gentiles’ demise came because of idolatry over many centuries. “Behold, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea. And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another…. Thus he said, The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.” (Dan. 7:2,3,23). “…to fill up their sins alway: for the wrath is come upon them to the uttermost.” (1Thess. 2:16).
 
With regard to the investigative judgment, since the Jews’ judgment is likened to the letting loose of Satan at the end of this world (as quoted above from Great Controversy), may we not say that it was Christ’s death and a pre-apocalyptic cleansing of the sanctuary (as stated by Hebrews 9:15), that weeded out the sheep from the goats among the Jews and Gentiles in the apostle’s day? Then, with that history before us the actual apocalyptic cleansing would come and His people would know what to expect and to warn others about. Thus, the similarity of the former and latter manifestations of judgment. We are left without any excuse for not knowing what is coming.
 
Also, did not His death fulfill one prophecy and seal a later one? Did not His death seal the longer vision, “to seal up the vision and prophecy” (Dan. 9:24) “until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:18-21)? That longer prophecy from Daniel 8:14 (“unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed”) will fully end “in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God…finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets” (Rev. 10:7), “until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in” (Rom. 11:25) and “until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled” (Lk. 21:24)?
 
Wouldn’t Christ’s 70 week prophecy and His judgment upon Jerusalem then preview and warn of a much larger and more determined prophecy (the 2300 year prophecy of Daniel 8:14) that would apply to the whole world “at the time of the end” (Dan. 8:17)? The fulfilled prophecy of Daniel 8:14 would commence a cleansing work that would continue during the span of the seven trumpets of Revelation which came after Christ’s first atonement and would include a 150 year 5th trumpet time prophecy. Wouldn’t the “consumption” “for the overspreading of abominations” in the Jews’ day (John 12:31) foretell also the atonement at the close of the investigative judgment, as Azazel, the scapegoat, had been designated for such a purpose (Leviticus 16:10; Daniel 8:19; 11:45; Revelation 13:6,7; 19:20; 20:2,3)?
 
The first glorious atonement lays over the second greater atonement; but, like the corona of the sun shining out behind the eclipsing moon, the first cannot superimpose the latter’s greatness and greater glory. At the end of that time, “in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished” (Rev. 10:7) and Michael will stand up (Dan. 12:1). Through His offering on the cross and His work as Mediator of the new testament after His ascension, Christ the Master Teacher, never wanting of providentially orchestrated object lessons on earth, used ancient Israel’s cleansing in the heavenly sanctuary, “the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament” (Heb. 9:15), to prefigure His temple cleansing at the close of time. Then to atone for the sins of all humanity, beyond the “time, and times, and half a time (Rev. 12:14; cf Dan. 12:7), at the end of the investigative judgment, the saints’ shortcomings finally and fully will be blotted out of the halls of heaven’s memory. When the Spirit of God will be poured out the second time to seal His people, then will the confirmed wicked who would not afflict their souls also be handed over to Satan for the mark of the beast, as was compared to the inhabitants of besieged Jerusalem in the above Spirit of Prophecy quotation.
 
Christ was “slain from the foundation of the world.” (Rev. 13:8). Christ had put in place “the first testament”, the sacrificial system, in the Garden of Eden (see Gen. 3:21). Then, after the flood, Noah and the whole world perpetuated the animal sacrifices (Gen. 8:20), which would continue throughout the world until the true Lamb of God was slain on Calvary.
 
“Neither let the son of the stranger, that hath joined himself to the LORD, speak, saying, The LORD hath utterly separated me from His people: neither let the eunuch say, Behold, I am a dry tree.
For thus saith the LORD unto the eunuchs that keep My sabbaths, and choose the things that please Me, and take hold of My covenant;
Even unto them will I give in Mine house and within My walls a place and a name better than of sons and of daughters: I will give them an everlasting name, that shall not be cut off.
Also the sons of the stranger, that join themselves to the LORD, to serve Him, and to love the name of the LORD, to be His servants, every one that keepeth the sabbath from polluting it, and taketh hold of My covenant;
Even them will I bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for Mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people.
The Lord GOD which gathereth the outcasts of Israel saith, Yet will I gather others to him, beside those that are gathered unto him.” (Isa. 56:3-8).
 
Thus, the first testament must have initially included the whole world, even though Gentiles and later Israel perverted it by false religion. So, not alone for Israel was to come cleansing and restoration. When the one true religion was rescued and restored by Messiah when He came the first time, it was for all who were ready for Him, “they which are called” (Heb. 9:15), “both Jews and Greeks” (1Cor. 1:24). “Even us, whom He hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles” (Rom. 9:24), “to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8:28).
 
“[The gospel of Christ] is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” (Rom. 1:16). “Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” (Rev. 22:17). “But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For He is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; having abolished in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in Himself of twain one new man, so making peace; and that He might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby.” (Eph. 2:13-16). This wonderful work we will see again in the Latter Rain.
 
To Israel and to the Gentiles, “the saints and faithful brethren in Christ” (Col. 1:2), the Messiah’s coming had been their Day of Atonement, their Day of Judgment (see Malachi 3:1-3). It would confirm His relationship with all who would afflict their souls and then receive “the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven” (1Pet. 1:12, cf Mal. 3:4). It would also pass judgment against all who would continue to rebel against His Spirit (Mal. 3:5); they would receive “dimness of anguish” and “be driven to darkness” (Isa. 8:22), “suffering the vengeance of eternal fire” (Jude 7). “For though thy people Israel be as the sand of the sea, yet a remnant of them shall return: the consumption decreed shall overflow with righteousness. For the Lord GOD of hosts shall make a consumption, even determined, in the midst of all the land.” (Isa. 10:22,23).“Now therefore be ye not mockers, lest your bands be made strong: for I have heard from the Lord GOD of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth.” (Isa. 28:22). “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people…. for the overspreading of abominations He shall make it desolate, even until the consummationH3617, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” (Dan. 9:24,27). H3617, kâlâh, meaning “consummation”, “consumption”, “riddance”, “end”, all speak of Jesus’ cry, “It is finished” (Jn. 19:30). And they prefigure the final word from God to a world failing the second and greatest Day of Atonement, when He will say, “It is done.” (Rev. 16:17).
 
The veil of the temple was rent in two (Matthew 27:51, nothing in that verse indicating it to be the first veil for the sanctuary or the second veil for the Most Holy). That event signified not the beginning of the Most Holy ministry in the heavens, but the end of the earthly sacrifice system. Of Christ’s crucifixion prophecy says, “He shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease.” (Dan. 9:27).
 
Also, Messiah sealed “up the vision and prophecy,” and anointed “the most Holy.” (Dan. 9:24). That is to say, that the vision of Daniel 8 and its longest biblical prophecy of 2300 years, until the sanctuary would be cleansed (Dan. 8:14), was sealed or confirmed, established, inaugurated, by Christ offering up to His Father the demonstration and example of infinite self-sacrificing love, perfect obedience. The last days cleansing of the sanctuary during this investigative judgment was inaugurated and established by the sacrifice of Jesus. His death authorized the eventual closing of probation and the punishment of sin. Because He suffered the judgment of the whole world, God “hath given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of man.” (Jn. 5:27).
 
His blood would also anoint the Most Holy, qodesh qodashim, which we previously showed means where Jesus entered upon ascension. His blood would anoint “heaven itself” (Heb. 9:24), the “greater and more perfect tabernacle” (Heb. 9:11), and “the heavenly things” (Heb. 9:23) of the heavenly sanctuary. It was Daniel 9:24’s “anoint the Most holy” to which the WoH must have referred when he wrote of Christ’s death “ordaining” (Heb. 9:6) or dedicating the holy places in heaven. “Whereupon neither the first testament was dedicated without blood.” (Heb. 9:18). But, Jesus did not, by His self-sacrifice, anoint or cleanse only the Most Holy Place of the heavenly tabernacle; rather, the offering up of His soul was only a ratification of Daniel’s 2,300 year vision to ultimately cleanse the heavenly tabernacle after the lapse of the remaining 1,810 years of the prophecy.
 
As would be seen later in Revelation referring to October 22, 1844,
“And another Angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto Him much incense, that He should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.
And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the Angel’s hand.
And the Angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake.
And the seven angels which had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound.
The first angel sounded, and there followed hail and fire mingled with blood, and they were cast upon the earth.” (Rev. 8:3-7).
 
This shows that the blood of Christ, with which He set the gospel movement afoot, would also cover the work of the final cleansing of the sanctuary, when in 1844 He is seen having His blood at the heavenly altar of incense, ready to enter the heavenly Most Holy Place to cleanse the heavenly sanctuary.
 
“It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these [animal burnt offerings]; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these” (Heb. 9:23) —Jesus’ expiring “soul and body in hell.”(Matt. 10:28). “The wrath of God abideth on Him.” (Jn. 3:36). Jesus, the great burnt offering, bore our eternal death in judgment; and “the chastisement of our peace was upon Him.” (Isa. 53:5). “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (Jn. 3:16).
 
“Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God” (Heb. 9:14), took your place and mine in judgment day. “That by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament,” He can give us true service to Jehovah in our lives. He entered in once with victory over the tempter and death to “purge [our] conscience from dead works to serve the living God” that “they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.” (Heb. 9:15).
 
“For this cause he is the Mediator of the new testament.” (Heb. 9:15). Christ has been interceding in our behalf for the redemption of our lack of sealing during this church age, just like He did for the lack of sealing by the world during the Old Testament age, causing the dead works and transgressions that were under the first testament.
 
“Once” at the end of the world
“Now once in the endG4930of the worldG165 [aiōn, age] hath He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: so Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”(Heb. 9:26-28). Strong’s G4930 “consummation”, “end”; Strong’s G165 “age”.
 
Paul, writing to the Christians at Colosse, wrote, “Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to His saints.” (Col. 1:26). This triumph rang out after Christ ascended and fought Satan. “Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.” (Rev. 12:12). “Now once in the end of the world….” The WoH was not saying that his day was the very end of the world. His day was the “consummation of the age,” or, the end of the pre-Mâshîyach age. Nevertheless, he did not define how much time until the very end of the next age, the Christian era, when Christ will “appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” (Heb. 9:27,28). And one thing is sure, it has continued a long time.
 
The Spirit of the Lord made known the 1,260 year apostasy yet future to the writers of the New Testament, and warned His people about it.
“Thus he said, The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces. And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.” (Dan. 7:23-25).
 
“And the [vile] king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done.… And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over.… And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.” (Dan. 11:36,40,45).
 
“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.… who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.… And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders.”(2Thess. 2:3,4,8,9).
 
“And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared. And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.” (Rev. 16:12-14).
 
“And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.”(Rev. 13:14).
 
“And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.” (Rev. 19:20).
 
We see from Revelation that the time would take longer than was wanted by many who lived in the Dark Ages. “And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost Thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?” (Rev. 6:10).
 
Much later still, we see the end of this final age put off yet a little more just before the seventh trumpet. “And sware by Him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time [delay] no longer: but in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as He hath declared to His servants the prophets.” (Rev. 10:6,7).
 
Is this world of sin and sorrow our “eternal inheritance”? It is wonderful to be able to enter by faith within the veil for the victory over sin, for which Christ’s death has made provision. But, the blessed hope looks for more than the work of Christ to put away sin in us by His sacrifice. It yearns for the permanent separation from sin by its eternal extermination, for which “the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.” (Rom. 8:22). The cross and its atonement was not the end of Christ’s work, but the beginning.
 
In His parables this work would be a long period,
“He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return. And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come.” (Lk. 19:12,13).
“Then began He to speak to the people this parable; A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time.” (Lk. 20:9).
 
He intimated to His disciples a long work to be done by mediating for them through His blood, when He said, “For this is My blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.” (Matt. 26:28,29).
 
A world without sin is the true eternal inheritance. And that only comes through the work of Jesus in the Most Holy Place in preparation for judgment day, the epitome of His salvation.
 
The great controversy over the restoration of humanity into God’s kingdom may seem extremely long by the human’s short comprehension of time, but the completion of the end of all ages will come. “Beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night….” (2Pet. 3:8-10).
 
Our Father has His reasons for taking a long time; the extended period is for our benefit and for His honor. “He will make an utter end: affliction shall not rise up the second time.” (Nah. 1:9). In His wisdom, He takes His good time to accomplish the perfect solution.
 
We are at the end of the investigative judgment and deceptions abound
“And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: so Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” (Heb. 9:27,28). The ministry of Jesus in the better and more perfect tabernacle of His heavenly home was to encompass both ministrations of the daily, Holy Place mediation during the church age, and the final Most Holy intercession at the end of this final age.
 
That Most Holy cleansing of the sanctuary and church should inspire in us a holy excitement in anticipation of great light and power, and sweet love, joy, and peace. But, it will require of us affliction of soul, not the celebration we see happening in all of the fallen churches, as if we already have the cleansing.
“For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of My people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace.” (Jer. 6:13,14).
 
“Thus saith the LORD concerning the prophets that make My people err, that bite with their teeth, and cry, Peace; and He that putteth not into their mouths, they even prepare war against Him. Therefore night shall be unto you, that ye shall not have a vision; and it shall be dark unto you, that ye shall not divine; and the sun shall go down over the prophets, and the day shall be dark over them.” (Mic. 3:5,6).
 
Dr. Ford’s big miscalculation of theology in saying that the investigative judgment foundation of the Advent movement was in error has led many Adventists to flock to the evangelical’s methods. We are seeing the anti-type of Baal-Peor here at the borders of the heavenly Canaan; we are seeing the Omega of apostasy. But, the 144,000 will not be defiled with these false worship, emotion-only, sensational services being doled out. There is nothing redemptive about them. “Ye shall know them by their fruits.” (Matt. 7:16).
 
“For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and His glory shall be seen upon thee. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.” (Isa. 60:2,3).
 
The Most Holy Place work is a work of judgment. It is time to fear before God. “Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into His rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.” (Heb. 4:1). Are the followers of Dr. Ford truly surrendered to the Law of God in the Spirit of Prophecy books? Have they finished wrestling with God’s guilt and shame and all-powerful authority to command and rebuke and correct us? Have they come to the deathly need of a Savior from sin, and Friend? Is the Spirit of Christ the constant, “eternal” Spirit of truth, and wonderful counselor to them? Have they entered into His rest, or come short of it?
 
This is a pertinent question because it involves the greatest issue of all time, the counterfeit peace that Satan has offered through the one false religion —the religion that avoids the hard language of God’s Law, so that the conscience doesn’t have to strive with infinite righteousness. Lawlessness is the essence of spiritualism and of service to Satan. Are Dr. Ford’s followers truly at peace with God through surrender to the Law and justification via their schoolmaster and Law-giver? Have they bailed out of the Advent movement and the high standard of the Spirit of Prophecy; or, have they wrestled with the condemnation of God’s Law through Ellen White until they have been humbled and have collapsed on the Stone, exhausted and undone and truly sorry for their sin? Have we? Do we know the experience of the promise of eternal redemption Jesus has given, “the promise of the Spirit through faith” (Gal. 3:14)? Are we sealed like the apostolic church was “sealed with that holy Spirit of promise” (Eph. 1:13)? They shall know us all by our fruits.
 
“Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned: from which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling; desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.” (1Tim. 1:5-7).
 
To reiterate:
Run through a sieve and winnowed of all the theological provings, the essence of the gospel message from Hebrews 9 is boiled down to a handful of promises.
“Christ being come an High Priest of good things to come,…
having obtained eternal redemption for us….
The blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, [shall] purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God….
They which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance….
So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”
 
“Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression [their apostasy], and to make an end of sins [give them the spirit of repentance], and to make reconciliation for iniquity [give them justification], and to bring in everlasting righteousness [cause their sanctification], and to seal up the vision and prophecy [make certain the future destruction of Azazel (Satan)], and to anoint the most Holy [present Messiah and offer Him after 3 ½ years for the dedication of the heavenly sanctuary, to ultimately blot out sin, cleanse the heavenly sanctuary of sin, and seal God’s people].” (Dan. 9:24).
 
Let us remember that every reference by the WoH is of Christ entering the whole heavenly sanctuary, skēnē or hagion. Never once does the WoH say that Jesus went directly into the Most Holy Place of that heavenly temple, hagia hagion. As the heavenly was the “pattern” of the earthly, the WoH infers that the work of Christ had begun the Holy Place ministry, but would include both Holy Place and Most Holy Place ministries by our great Priest/High Priest who died for our sins and was raised for our justification and our ultimate glorification in His character.
 
Therefore, all biblical allusions to an immediate cleansing of the sanctuary at “the end of the [pre-Mâshîyach] age” must, as an earnest of the actual, mean a preempting of the real cleansing at the end of the Christian age which is revealed in Revelation just before Judgment day, when Jesus appears the second time without sin unto salvation.

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