Wednesday, December 14, 2011

We Have A High Priest

In the words of one of my professors while attending Pepperdine University, Dr. Tyler, "Allegory sucks."  I couldn't help but remember him telling us that while I waded through Hebrews this morning.  Hebrews chapters seven, eight, nine, and ten are one giant midrash where the author of Hebrews takes the character of Melchizedek, the tabernacle and temple, and the Levitical priests and uses them to make points about Jesus.

Here are the points:

1) Jesus stands before God on our behalf.
2) Since our advocate (Jesus) gave himself as a perfect sacrifice, further sacrifices are unnecessary.
3) As long as we persevere in our relationship with Jesus, we also can be in the presence of God, our sins having been washed away.

Granted, I'm skimming over a lot of sub-points, but those seem to be the major ones.  However, you have to work your way through a lot of details and Old Testament references to get there.  Out of all the New Testament writings, Hebrews seems to be the one most blatantly written for a Jewish audience, at least in my opinion.  The problem is, I'm not Jewish, so this book is a rough one for me to read through.

That having been said, the Hebrews author has quite a bit to say that we need to hear, so putting up with allegory is a pretty small price to pay for the importance of Hebrews' message.

Stopping point: Hebrews 10

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