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Bible Commentaries

Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

Hebrews 8

Verse 2

Of the sanctuary , and of the true tabernacle ; of the true heavenly sanctuary and tabernacle, of which the earthly is only a type, verse Hebrews 8:5 . As Jesus Christ is a High-priest and Mediator in all respects such as we need, it is wrong to trust in or acknowledge any other.

Verse 3

That this man ; Christ, if he would perform the office of a priest.

Verse 4

Not be a priest ; he could not on earth officiate as a priest according to the Jewish law, because he did not belong to the tribe from which alone priests could be taken. He therefore, after having offered himself a sacrifice, ascended for the further discharge of his priestly office to heaven, of which the holy of holies was a type. Chap Hebrews 9:12 .

Verse 5

Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things ; that is, who minister to the earthly tabernacle, which is but a type and shadow of the true tabernacle above where Christ ministers.

As Moses was admonished ; Exodus 25:40 .

According to the pattern showed to thee in the mount ; apparently a representation made to Moses in vision of a glorious structure after which he was to model the earthly sanctuary with its furniture, the tabernacle seen in vision being itself a type of the true spiritual realities of heaven. Compare Ezekiel’s vision of a city and temple, chapters Ezekiel 40:1-26.40.49 ; Ezekiel 41:1-26.41.26 ; Ezekiel 42:1-26.42.20 ; Ezekiel 43:1-26.43.27 ; Ezekiel 44:1-26.44.31 ; Ezekiel 45:1-26.45.25 ; Ezekiel 46:1-26.46.24 ; Ezekiel 47:1-26.47.23 ; Ezekiel 48:1-26.48.35 , and John’s vision of the new Jerusalem, in Revelation 21:1-66.21.27 ; Revelation 22:1-66.22.21 .

Verse 6

He ; Christ.

A more excellent ministry ; than the Jewish priests.

Better covenant ; than that formed with Israel at Sinai.

Better promises ; securing greater blessings. As the gospel dispensation is the last that God will ever grant to men, those who live under it and yet are not by it led to repentance and salvation, will perish with an everlasting destruction.

Verse 7

First covenant ; that at Sinai.

The second ; that of the gospel.

Verse 8

With them ; according to some, with the provisions of the covenant at Sinai, as not adapted to give perfection, chap Hebrews 7:11 ; Hebrews 7:18-58.7.19 . But we may more naturally refer the words to those who lived under the covenant. It was in connection with severe rebukes that this promise was given of a new covenant which should accomplish what the old had failed to do.

He saith ; Jeremiah 31:31-24.31.34 .

New covenant ; the gospel dispensation, which is spiritual in its nature.

Verse 10

Put my laws into their mind , and-their hearts ; deeply and permanently impress them on their minds, and incline their hearts to obey them.

And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. In the gospel covenant, God not only makes known to his people his will, but secures their obedience to it. To his grace they are indebted for their disposition to choose him as their portion, and for all the blessings which come from his being their God and their being his people.

Verse 11

All shall know me ; he would by his word and Spirit impart to them such knowledge of himself as should incline them to walk in his ways.

Verse 12

Merciful to their unrighteousness ; pardon their sins, and not so remember as to punish them.

Verse 13

Made the first old ; declared it to be old, and as such approaching its end, as the writer immediately proceeds to show. Momentous truth is often conveyed in the Bible by a single word, a change of which would greatly alter the sense, and give a different meaning to what is revealed. Hence the Holy Ghost directed the writers of the Bible not only what to write, but how to write it in order to convey exactly his meaning; and they spoke and wrote not in words which man’s wisdom taught them, but which the Holy Ghost taught them. 1 Corinthians 2:13 .

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Bibliographical Information
Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Hebrews 8". "Edwards' Family Bible New Testament". American Tract Society. 1851.