12 Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
Verse 12 speaks of Christ’s means of entry into the eternal Most Holy Place. The blood of atonement was the difference between life and death when entering God’s presence.
Not with the blood of goats and calves,
Sacrifice on the Day of Atonement involved a bull and two goats. One goat was kept alive as the scapegoat.
but with [through, Greek dia, not “with”] His own [unique] blood
The word “with” marks the means whereby Jesus paid for our sins. Blood was not the mode of His entrance into Heaven. The earthly high priest of Israel took blood into the Holy of Holies; Christ, however, entered the Presence of God “through His own blood” (dia) but not with His material blood. Christ’s sacrifice was one of blood (He 9:7). He shed that blood at Calvary. He did not take His blood to Heaven. Jesus shed His blood to the point of death. By this blood we have the right to enter Heaven (He 9:14; 10:19, 29; 13:20).
Our Lord presented Himself, not His blood, upon entering the presence of God (He 9:24). The word “own” means unique. It goes beyond the idea of ownership and implies personal, private or unique ownership. The Father was the Son’s “unique” Father (Jn 5:18); that is, He claimed unique Sonship to the Father. That is why they wanted to kill Him. The efficacy of the Lord’s blood was not simply that it was human blood but that it came from a sinless person. That is the only blood that could pay for the sin of the world. He did not take that blood to heaven but, when He went, He represented One who sacrificed Himself for sin; He personally took the penalty of sin on the cross.
He entered the Most Holy Place once for all,
Christ entered Heaven or the presence of God “once for all.” The high priest in the Old Testament went into the Holy of Holies annually, but Our Lord went into God’s presence once and never needed to gain that access again. His single sacrifice was enough, so there was no need for any further sacrifice. It was His own blood that made the difference.
The emphasis here is on the words “once for all.” The writer uses the word “once” in chapters 9 and 10 to show the finality of Christ’s work on the cross. The contrast is between the ongoing, recurring, and symbolic sacrifices of Israel and that of the one final sacrifice of Christ on the cross.
having obtained eternal redemption.
Shed blood was necessary before one could enter the Most Holy Place of the Old Testament. Christ obtained “eternal redemption” for the believer, since His sacrifice was once for all. “Eternal redemption” stands in stark contrast to sacrifices of the Old Testament, whether annually on the Day of Atonement or the daily sacrifices. His redemption was “eternal,” not temporary like in the Old Testament.
The word “obtained” means to find, come upon, discover. Jesus procured our redemption in fact. He did this by taking our guilt and penalty for sin. God’s justice was satisfied by His shed blood.
“Redemption” is the price paid for sin; the word means ransom. It carries the idea of liberation of a captive. The word “redemption” means to deliver a person from the bondage of the penalty of sin. Jesus paid a price for permanently liberating Christians from their sins. This word was used of ransom money paid to free a slave. Jesus freed the believer from the penalty of sin. He liberated us by a price, by His blood sacrifice. He did this in an “eternal” sense. He paid it once for all, for eternity.
Christians possess eternal liberation from their sin.
Christians are free from the eternal penalty for their sin. Christ’s sacrifice for our sin is immeasurable. No animal sacrifice can compare to the sacrifice of Christ for our sin. Jesus paid a perfect ransom price because it was a once-for-all sacrifice. His sacrifice was complete and unrepeatable because it was “eternal.” No one needs to pay for sins again (He 7:27; 10:10). He offers eternal redemption for our souls.
Our great High Priest takes us right into the Holy of Holies; that is, God’s very presence. We are seated with Christ in the heavenlies (Eph 2:4-6). Our citizenship is in heaven (Php 3:20).
The Seventh Day Adventists claim that Jesus entered Heaven with literal blood. Such a theory has two problems: (1) the silence of Scripture and (2) the attempt to pour language that conveys figurative truth into a literal mold.