April 30th, 2007
There was a time at my work when our core computer system was a Wang minicomputer. It ran a custom-designed database package written in COBOL that never really possessed all of the features which the vendors claimed it would. The hardware and software originally cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, and word processing and data entry was done on monochrome terminals located throughout the office. The system was horrible in just so many different ways, but it had one redeeming feature. By some extraordinary lack of foresight, the software did not cater correctly for dates after the year 2000…
The Letter to the Hebrews — Chapter 8
8:1 To summarise the things being said: We have a high priest, who sat down on the right hand side of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, 8:2 a servant in the sanctuary, the true tabernacle, set up by the Lord, not by people. 8:3 High priests are appointed to offer gifts and sacrifices, so it was necessary for this high priest to have something to offer. 8:4 If he was on earth he would not be a priest, because there are other priests who offer the gifts required by the law. 8:5 What they do is a copy and shadow of the heavenly things. Moses was warned by God when he was about to make the tabernacle, “Be careful to make everything according to the pattern that was shown to you on the mountain.” 8:6 But now Jesus has received a superior ministry, and he is the mediator of a superior covenant, which has been established on superior promises.
8:7 If there had been no problems with that first covenant, there would have been no reason to look for a second. 8:8 But God found fault with them, saying, “The time is coming,” says the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, 8:9 not like the covenant that I made with their ancestors, when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt. They did not carry through with my covenant, so I let them go,” says the Lord. 8:10 “After that time I will make this covenant with the house of Israel,” says the Lord. “I will put my laws into their minds, and I will write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. 8:11 They will not have to teach their neighbours and relatives, ‘Know the Lord,’ because everyone will know me, from their least to their greatest. 8:12 I will forgive their unrighteousness, and remember their sins no more.”
8:13 When he talks about a new covenant, he means that he has superseded the first. The things which are superseded and out-of-date will soon disappear.