8:1 Now 1 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;
(1) He briefly repeats that to which all these
things are to be referred, that is, that we have another High Priest than
those Levitical high priests, even such a one as sits at the right hand of the
Most High God in heaven.
8:2 2 A
minister of the a sanctuary, 3
and of the b true tabernacle, which the
Lord pitched, and not man.
(2) They of Levi were high priests in an earthly
sanctuary, but Christ is in the heavenly.
(a) Of heaven. (3)
They of Levi exercised their priesthood in a frail tabernacle, but Christ
bears about with him another tabernacle, that is, his body, which God himself
made everlasting, as shall later be declared in (Hebrews
(b) Of his body.
8:3 4 For
every high priest is ordained to offer gifts and sacrifices: wherefore [it is]
of necessity that this man have somewhat also to offer.
(4) He brings a reason why it must be that Christ
should have a body (which he calls a tabernacle which the Lord built, and not
man) that is, that he might have that to offer: for otherwise he could not be
an High Priest. The body is both the tabernacle and the sacrifice.
8:4 5 For if
he were on earth, he should not be a priest, seeing that there are priests that
offer gifts according to the law:
(5) He gives a reason why he said that our High
Priest is in the heavenly sanctuary, and not in the earthly: because, says he,
if he were now on the earth, he could not minister in the earthly sanctuary,
seeing there are still Levitical priests who are appointed for him, that is to
say, to be patterns of that perfect example. To what purpose should the
patterns serve, when the true and original example is present?
But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the
mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.
(6) He enters into the comparison of the old and
transitory Testament or covenant, being but for a time, of which the Levitical
priests were mediators, with the new, the everlasting Mediator of which is
Christ, to show that this is not only better than that in all respects, but
also that that was made void by this.
8:7 7 For if
that first [covenant] had been faultless, then should no place have been sought
for the second.
(7) He proves by the testimony of Jeremiah that
there is a second Testament or covenant, and therefore that the first was not
8:8 For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold,
the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the c
house of Israel and with the house of Judah:
(c) He calls it a house, as it were one family of
the whole kingdom: for while the kingdom of David was divided into two
sections, the Prophet would have us understand that through the new Testament
they shall be joined together again in one.
8 In that he saith, A new [covenant], he
hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old [is] ready to
(8) The conclusion: Therefore by the later and
the new, the first and old is taken away, for it could not be called new, if
it did not differ from the old. Again, that same is at length taken away,
which is subject to corruption, and therefore imperfect.