The Perfect One
by Pr. Dave Mann
A covenant is a sacred promise to establish a holy relationship. There were numerous covenants throughout the Bible, but the two most important ones were the first covenant, or the old covenant, established between God and his people with the Law. The second or new covenant was established by Jesus on the occasion of the Last Supper when Jesus spoke the words that we hear at each celebration of the Lord’s Supper.
The first covenant was conditional – promising God’s blessing contingent upon obedience to the Law. Of course, God’s people were never able to obey fully the Law. That covenant turned out to be a burden. Even from the start, there were hints that there would be another prophet and another covenant. Moses himself announced that there would be another prophet to come – Deuteronomy 18:15. Jeremiah prophesied there would be another covenant – Jeremiah 31:31 ff. Ezekiel spoke of a covenant of peace, an everlasting covenant – Ezekiel 37:26. So, even in the midst of the old covenant, that Law which none could fully obey was pointing the way toward Jesus, the Messiah.
Jesus came to announce and establish the new covenant, shedding not the blood of goats and calves, but rather his own blood. And that blood was not to pay for the redemption of past sins in the previous year, but rather to obtain eternal redemption. Jesus made this offering not by entering into an earthly tabernacle or temple but rather into the heavenly temple.
If the blood of goats and bulls was effective to point us to Christ, how much more, then, will the blood of Jesus, the perfect human, be able to cleanse us eternally from sin and make us acceptable to stand in the presence of our holy God?
Christ is the perfect offering, the perfect mediator, the perfect ransom. Verse 15 of Hebrews 9 is a clear echo of Jesus’ own words – compare with Mark 10:45.
For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.
Almighty God, thank you for pointing your people from the beginning to trust in the Coming One, the Prophet, the One to establish the new, everlasting covenant, the One to pay our ransom. From all eternity that was your perfect plan. By your grace, I will be eternally grateful. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
SPOKEN PRAYER: Out loud, pray for God to speak to you through your reading. Praise God for giving us His word. Ask the Spirit to help you read with faith, and to live out what you hear from God through the passage.