Hebrews 7:15 And it is yet far more evident: for that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another priest,
16 Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life.
17 For he testifieth, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
18 For there is verily a disannulling of the commandment going before for the weakness and unprofitableness thereof.
19 For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.
In Hebrews 7 God is giving us some very important truths regarding Jesus Christ. He is spending time dealing with the “mysterious” person of Melchisedec. Melchisedec was not the Christ. As we see in verse 15 Jesus Christ was after the similitude of Melchisedec. Jesus Christ has no father and no mother. He has no beginning and he had no end.
In verse 16 we see that Jesus Christ was not made after the law of a carnal commandment. The word “carnal” simply means “after the flesh”. Aaron was a brother to Moses. Moses’ parents were obviously God-fearing people. They were still after the flesh. They died as do all of Adam’s descendants.
By contrast, Jesus Christ was declared to be an eternal priest. He will never die. He is the eternal mediator of the new covenant. Verse 17 makes that clear. God referred back to Psalm 110:4:
Psalms 110:4 The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.
The Old Testament priest was to be the mediator between God and men. The people would bring their sacrifice to the priest and they would confess their sin to the priest. The priest would take that offering and offer it up before the Lord to make an atonement for the sinner. As we will see further in this book, the priest needed to bring an offering for his own sins. Jesus Christ did not need to bring an offering for His own sins. He had no sins.
In verse 18 we see further that the old commandment was cancelled. This is not speaking of the Mosaic law. This is speaking of the Levitical commandment. That is the context of God’s teaching here. Someone stated recently that Israel has not offered a blood sacrifice for some 2,000 years. Israel has rejected Jesus Christ as their Messiah. He shed His blood for mankind. Israel does not need to offer an animal sacrifice. They need to repent and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ as their sacrifice.
As we will see further, the Levitical system of sacrifices was necessary, but it was temporary in nature. They were never designed to take away sin. They were a picture of the Jesus Christ, Who would come and take away sin. Most of those who participated in the Levitical sacrifices did so as a form of ritual. It never carried any real meaning for most. Even within the priesthood, there was corruption. Eli’s sons were wicked men who defiled the sacrificial system. The people abhorred the offering of the LORD due to the sins of Eli’s sons.
In verse 19 we see that God never intended for the Levitical law to make anyone perfect. It was necessary for those participating in that law to believe the purpose of that law. They needed to look past that animal sacrifice to the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.
Galatians 4:6 And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
That necessary and right relationship with God the Father is only possible through knowing the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord. It is through Him that we have access to the throne of grace. God has blessed mankind with the opportunity to draw nigh to Him through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.
As we have noted in a previous study of I John, we can enjoy fellowship with God the Father and with God the Son through the forgiveness of sin. God created Adam to enjoy a sweet fellowship with Him and for a short time Adam did enjoy that. However, it did not take long for Adam to lose sight of the blessing that God had granted him and he chose to disobey God and became a sinner. He lost that place of intimacy with God. He tried to get it back, but his efforts were a failure. God showed the way to restore that fellowship in killing a lamb and taking the skin of the lamb to make coats for Adam and Eve. Blood had to be shed to deal with man’s sin. That first sacrifice was the first of many that would be required by man to be atoned for his sin. God had already revealed that the eventual “fix” for man’s sin would be through the seed of the woman, not through an animal sacrifice.
God is using the book of Hebrews to show again how important and in fact how necessary it is for man to trust in the Lord Jesus Christ alone for salvation. God addressed the false teaching of the Judaizers, who were related to the Pharisees who wanted to insist on law keeping as the means of salvation. Law keeping was never part of God’s salvation. The Temple in Jerusalem was soon to be destroyed and that would remove a point of stumbling for the people of that time. The false teachers could use that place as part of their demand in law keeping for “salvation”. Soon that building would be destroyed. The true saints needed to be reminded that their faith was a spiritual faith in the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ. They could have complete confidence in God’s truth.
There are still false religions today that teach that spiritual “success” is based on a type of balances and the more “good” that a person does, will outweigh the “bad” that they do. Salvation is not based on the good we can do. It is based on the good that Jesus Christ did. He provides salvation through His sacrificial death (including the shedding of His blood), burial and resurrection and ascension. The book of Hebrews shows the sufficiency of Jesus Christ. Those who trust in Him will never be ashamed.