December 5th, 2022
“They serve in a system of worship that is only a copy, a shadow of the real one in heaven. For when Moses was getting ready to build the Tabernacle, God gave him this warning: “Be sure that you make everything according to the pattern I have shown you here on the mountain.”—Hebrews 8:5
Hebrews 8: Christ Is Our High Priest
Written by Paul to Jewish Christians who were enduring persecution and were tempted to revert back to their former Jewish faith. It was probably written before AD 64.
“Here is the main point: We have a High Priest who sat down in the place of honor beside the throne of the majestic God in heaven. There he ministers in the heavenly Tabernacle, the true place of worship that was built by the Lord and not by human hands. And since every high priest is required to offer gifts and sacrifices, our High Priest must make an offering, too. If he were here on earth, he would not even be a priest, since there already are priests who offer the gifts required by the law. They serve in a system of worship that is only a copy, a shadow of the real one in heaven. For when Moses was getting ready to build the Tabernacle, God gave him this warning: “Be sure that you make everything according to the pattern I have shown you here on the mountain.” But now Jesus, our High Priest, has been given a ministry that is far superior to the old priesthood, for he is the one who mediates for us a far better covenant with God, based on better promises. If the first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no need for a second covenant to replace it. But when God found fault with the people, he said:“The day is coming, says the Lord,when I will make a new covenantwith the people of Israel and Judah. This covenant will not be like the oneI made with their ancestorswhen I took them by the handand led them out of the land of Egypt.They did not remain faithful to my covenant,so I turned my back on them, says the Lord. But this is the new covenant I will makewith the people of Israel on that day, says the Lord:I will put my laws in their minds,and I will write them on their hearts.I will be their God,and they will be my people. And they will not need to teach their neighbors,nor will they need to teach their relatives,saying, ‘You should know the Lord.’For everyone, from the least to the greatest,will know me already. And I will forgive their wickedness,and I will never again remember their sins.” When God speaks of a “new” covenant, it means he has made the first one obsolete. It is now out of date and will soon disappear.”
I am borrowing the title “Patterns” from my daily readings from Jan Richardson’s book “Night Visions.” I was intrigued by the word and was interested in learning more about how “patterns” relate to the Bible and more specifically to advent.
My initial thoughts of patterns went directly to clothing items. I say this because just yesterday I texted a friend to admit that I was committing a cardinal clothing sin, I was wearing brooks shoes with adidas pants! Oh, the shame of it all!! (Hahahah). We both had a laugh. I’m not trying to say I’m a “fashionista” which I’m not, I’m just weird. I try not to mix and match athletic brands together such as Nike with Adidas, Reebok with ASICS….silly I know but I did warn you I’m weird that way. I’m also weird about color matching clothing and socks, not to mention brands. I have digressed too much….
Once I began to research patterns I discovered several examples in the Bible that I forgot I even knew, you probably know them too.
- 1 Chronicles 28:11-12; 18-19. David instructs Solomon on building the temple and the pattern to be followed.
- 2 Kings 16:10. King Ahaz sent to Urijah the priest the fashion of the altar, and its pattern, according to all its workmanship.
- Exodus 25:9; 40. Plans for the Ark of the Covenant; Plans for the Table; Plans for the Lampstand.
For the research geek in me, I found the below definitions fascinating.
This season of advent has been anything but a “pattern” for me and honestly I am enjoying some of the benefits of less boundaries. The story of Jesus’ birth should never just be about tracing the “pattern” set before us, merely for the sake of it. This is the story of God becoming flesh, to be born , to live as one of us and to save us. This season is life giving and life saving! Advent and how we choose to celebrate it can be open to slight diversions to enhance the experience. Even as I write this post, my thoughts are traveling with Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem with excitement for the birth of Jesus. I am just traveling a different path to get there and I’m so overjoyed that you have decided to journey with me.
Forgive us, God,
when we live our lives
within the lines,
when we say
this is the shape of our
this is the boundary of our
these are the limits to our
these are the lines of our
these, are none other.
Draw us beyond our patterns
and welcoming home.
— Jan Richardson©️
~Charlotte, Seeker of unexpected Comfort, Happiness, Joy and Patience.