The law is just a shadow of the good that was to come, and not the actual reality. So it can never through the repeated sacrifices offered year after year make right those who come to worship God. Otherwise wouldn't the sacrifices have stopped being offered? If the worshipers had been made clean once and for all, they wouldn't have had guilty consciences any longer. But in fact those sacrifices remind people of sins year after year, because it's impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to remove sins.
That's why when Christ* came into the world he said, “You didn't want sacrifices or offerings, but you did prepare a body for me. Burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin gave you no pleasure. Then I said, ‘God, see I've come to do what you want me to do, just as it says about me in the book.’ ” As mentioned above, “You didn't want sacrifices or offerings, and burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin gave you no pleasure,” (even though they are offered in accordance with the law's requirements). Then he said, “See, I've come to do what you want.” He gets rid of the first agreement so he can set up the second, 10 through which we all are made holy through Jesus Christ offering his body once and for all time.
11 Every priest officiates in the services day after day, again and again offering the same sacrifices that can never remove sins. 12 But this Priest, after he had offered for sins a single sacrifice that lasts forever, sat down at God's right hand. 13 Now he waits until all his enemies are conquered, becoming like a footstool for him. 14 For by a single sacrifice he has set right forever those who are being made holy. 15 As the Holy Spirit also tells us, for having said, 16 This is the agreement that I will make with them later on, says the Lord. I will put my laws inside them, and I will write them in their minds.” Then he adds, 17 I won't remember their sins and lawlessness anymore.” 18 Once free from such things, sin offerings are no longer needed.
19 Now we have the confidence, brothers and sisters, to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus. 20 Through his life and death,§ he opened up a brand-new, living way through the veil to God. 21 Since we have such a great priest placed in charge over the house of God, 22 let us come close to God with sincere minds, totally trusting in him. Our minds have been sprinkled to purify them from our evil way of thinking, and our bodies have been washed clean by pure water. 23 So let us hold onto the hope we're telling others about, never hesitating, for God who promised is trustworthy. 24 Let's think about how we can motivate one another to love and to do what is good. 25 We should not give up meeting together, as some have done. In fact we should be encouraging one another, especially as you see the End* approaching.
26 For if we deliberately go on sinning after we've understood the truth, there's no longer any sacrifice for sins. 27 All that's left is fear, expecting the impending judgment and the terrible fire that destroys those who are hostile to God. 28 Someone who rejects the law of Moses is put to death without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses. 29 How much worse do you think someone will deserve their punishment if they have trampled underfoot the Son of God, if they have disregarded the blood that sealed the agreement and makes us holy, treating it as ordinary and trivial, and have abused the Spirit of grace? 30 We know God, and he said, “I will make sure that justice is done; I will give people what they deserve.” He also said, “The Lord will judge his people.” 31 It's terrifying to come under the power of the living God.
32 Just remember the past when, after you understood the truth, you experienced a great deal of suffering. 33 Sometimes you were made a spectacle of, being insulted and attacked; at other times you stood in solidarity with those who were suffering. 34 You showed your sympathy for those in prison, and took it cheerfully when your possessions were confiscated, knowing that you have something better coming that will truly last.
35 So don't lose your confidence in Godit will be richly rewarded. 36 You need to be patient so that having done what God wants, you'll receive what he has promised. 37 In just a little while he will come, as he saidhe won't delay. 38 Those who do what is right will live by trusting in God, and if they draw back from their commitment, I won't be pleased with them.”§ 39 But we're not the kind of people who draw back and end up being lost. We are those who trust in God to save us.
* 10:5 The original simply says “he.” Christ is inferred from 9:24, 9:28. 10:7 Actually “the heading of a scroll,” meaning the Scriptures. The quoatation is from Psalms 40:6-8. 10:17 Quoting Jeremiah 31:33-34. § 10:20 “His life and death”: Literally, “his body.” * 10:25 Literally, “the Day.” 10:30 Quoting Deuteronomy 32:35-36; Psalms 135:14 10:32 Literally, “were enlightened.” § 10:38 This is a rather free reference to Isaiah 26:20 and Habakkuk 2:3-4. Clearly the one promising to return is viewed in this context as Jesus.