Take a breath and put your big-boy pants on. Hebrews 9 calls it like it is and says in order for a testimony to be pure, the testator must experience death. As we discussed in previous posts, the audience for Hebrews was most likely the Jewish nation. Since they lived by the Law of God, they understood this as a natural concept.
Under the Law, Jews were required to sacrifice animals to God in order for their purification of sins. However, with the new covenant, they are being told that they are no longer required to sacrifice animals. This concept was not easily received. The prevailing thought was that God changed the rules.
Rules weren’t changed, Death was still required
The author of Hebrews draws attention to this part of the Law to demonstrate that God didn’t actually change the rules, he gave them a better way out. What I mean is that the sacrifice that Jesus made was so great that it was sufficient for all of their, and our, sins.
No longer was it required to sacrifice animals to testify, but the sacrifice was fulfilled by Jesus’ death. The author states that by definition, a testimony requires sacrifice. He states that a testimony has no strength unless death to the testator is achieved. For Christians, we are not the testator, Christ is our testator and we are messengers of his Word.
Real life application
Animal sacrifice is far removed from the Western world we live in, so a concept like this is hard to imagine. So let me put this in practical terms. When we go to the store, we are required to pay a price for an item off the shelf. If we don’t pay the price, we are subject to the law of the land. However, if a giving person came into the store before you and paid for your bounty, you can walk out the store free from prosecution. The price for your goods still exists, you simply don’t have to pay for them. They have already been paid for.
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