Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Even the Tabernacle Rubrics Pointed to and Are Fulfilled in Christ

Therefore not even the first covenant was inaugurated without blood.  For when every commandment of the law had been declared by Moses to all the people, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water and scarlet wool and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people, saying, “This is the blood of the covenant that God commanded for you.”  And in the same way he sprinkled with the blood both the tent and all the vessels used in worship.  Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.  (Heb 9:18-22)

He showed the old to be without question the type of the new.  So if even in the type the lawgiver took blood, mixed it with water, and sprinkled the covenant itself, the people and the tabernacle, and those defiled actually received purification from being sprinkled, what grounds for surprise are there if we find this happening also in the realization of the type? Now he was obliged also to cite the Mosaic testimony indicating this clearly,
This is the blood of the covenant that God commanded for you.
Since the divine nature is immortal, through the blood of the victims he realized the type of death and confirmed the covenant.  Since God the Word became man and took a mortal body, there was no longer need of brute beasts as offerings.  Instead he confirmed the new covenant with his own blood, the type corresponding to the shadow, and the reality to the body.  The water was a type of baptism, the blood of brute beasts the saving blood, the heat of hyssop the grace of the divine Spirit, the scarlet wool the new garment, the piece of cedar (being a wood that does not rot) the impassible divinity, the ashes of a heifer the suffering of humanity.

Theodoret of Cyrus, “The Epistle to the Hebrews”

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