Title: Names of God: YHVH, part 5. The face of God to Moses and to the church; Heb 10.
God would not turn His face upon Moses until He could do so without judging him and that required the perfect atonement of Christ.
Yavah said that He would make all His goodness pass before Moses and that He would be gracious and compassionate. His grace and compassion withheld His face from Moses until the time when Moses could behold it without judgment - after the cross of Christ.
This truth has an astounding meaning for us who live during the age of the church. It means that we can behold the face of God. We do so through our union with Christ and from that position we can fellowship with Him. We have put on Christ and we can walk with Him. We have been made perfectly righteous and we can abide in Him. We are justified and sanctified perfectly and forever and therefore, we can commune with Him today, tomorrow, and forever. Our privileges to fellowship, abide, commune with Him are synonymous to beholding His face.
The book of Hebrews speaks of the contrast between the shadow of things viewed by Moses and the reality of things viewed by the church in the most striking, beautiful and motivating way.
HEB 10:1 For the Law, since it has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the very form of things, can never by the same sacrifices year by year, which they offer continually, make perfect [complete] those who draw near.
HEB 10:2 Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, because the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have had consciousness of sins?
HEB 10:3 But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins year by year.
Hence, the consciousness of the worshipper is not fully satisfied.
HEB 10:4 For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.
HEB 10:5 Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says [PSA 40:7-9],
"Sacrifice and offering Thou hast not desired,
But a body Thou hast prepared for Me;
HEB 10:6 In whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin Thou hast taken no pleasure.
HEB 10:7 "Then I said, 'Behold, I have come
(In the roll of the book (OT) it is written of Me)
To do Thy will, O God.'"
HEB 10:8 After saying above, "Sacrifices and offerings and whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin Thou hast not desired, nor hast Thou taken pleasure in them" (which are offered according to the Law),
HEB 10:9 then He said, "Behold, I have come to do Thy will." He takes away the first in order to establish the second.
HEB 10:10 By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
The words "we are sanctified" are in the Greek text a perfect participle and a finite verb, showing in the strongest way the permanent and continuous state of salvation into which the believer is brought and in which he lives.
HEB 10:11 And every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins;
Verse 11 reveals that the book was written before 70 AD since the priests were still ministering in the temple.
HEB 10:12 but He [the one High Priest], having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God,
HEB 10:13 waiting from that time onward until His enemies be made a footstool for His feet.
He is viewed as sitting in contrast to the priests in the temple who stands daily.
HEB 10:14 For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified.
Perfected - teleioo = completed. The believer is in a permanent state of completeness.
For in Him all the fulness of Deity dwells in bodily form, and in Him you have been made complete [pleroo = full], and He is the head over all rule and authority;
In verses 15-17 we encounter the New Covenant of JER 31:31.
The New Covenant quoted by the writer is in Jeremiah. The question to us is if there is any connection to the New Covenant of Jeremiah and the New Covenant in Jesus’ blood that we have been inducted into and which the cup of the Lord Supper represents. It is a wonderful study and one that we will fully dive into before we are through with this doctrine.
HEB 10:15 And the Holy Spirit also bears witness to us; for after saying,
To the Jewish listeners, the writer challenges them to accept the OT as divinely inspired and that the Holy Spirit used Jeremiah as a pen to prophesy something that would be given to the new way of the church which did not exist in the old way of the law.
HEB 10:16 "This is the covenant that I will make with them
After those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws upon their heart,
And upon their mind I will write them,"
He then says,
HEB 10:17 "And their sins and their lawless deeds
I will remember no more."
“Remember no more” - the animal sacrifices are over. There is no longer a consciousness of sins. We are fully cleansed. This is the good news and we can behold the face of God every day.
The point of confusion that arises here is that this quotation is from the New Covenant promised to Israel, and since the writer of this epistle is addressing Jews, he is informing them that this covenant has been fulfilled in their hearing. It is definitely fulfilled by the blood of Christ.
I am looking forward to an in depth study of this and I plan it for one of our communion messages in the future. It is of vital importance and should not be rushed. For now, we can understand that the covenants given to Israel have both spiritual and physical blessings. The church is never a beneficiary of the physical blessings promised, but of the spiritual blessings we are partakers. The covenant theologian wants to take that fact and make us the replacement of Israel as a spiritual Israel only to remove the complete fulfillment of the covenants to Israel both spiritually and physically, but that is a falsehood. The church is the church and Israel is Israel, but now in this age, we are the beneficiaries of the spiritual blessings that were promised by the Lord through the prophet Jeremiah in what He called the New Covenant. Because of the error of the covenant theologian, the dispensationalist can sometimes err by having only the purpose of refuting them. We pursue the scriptures not to prove others wrong, but to simply find the truths that they hold.
HEB 10:18 Now where there is forgiveness of these things, there is no longer any offering for sin.
All sacrifices are over. There is no penance, only complete forgiveness. We do not have to perform any ritual in accordance with our personal sins. We recognize sin and lay it aside in grace.
One can see what the prophets of old longed to see our day.
The error of continuing in sin so that grace may increase, or because I am under grace, is dealt with in the NT. The error of not knowing what sin is and what righteousness is and so living, conducting ourselves, and pursuing any way we happen to choose by our own will is also dealt with. This guidance is in the word of God and we are to know the word of God intimately. However, many Christians ignore the word and live according to what feels right in the moment. Both of these are errors concerning the grace of God. We are to know what sin is and recognize it so that we don’t walk in it or practice it.
Vv. 19-20: the gospel given to the Jew. Behold His face.