Life-Study of Hebrewsby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
If we get into the depths of the book of Hebrews, we shall see that the whole book is covered by two things—entering within the veil and going outside the camp. We must enter within the veil and go outside the camp. Within the veil there is one unique place—the Holy of Holies. When we are within the veil, we are within the Holy of Holies. In the Holy of Holies, the unique place, there is one unique thing—the ark of testimony, which is the full symbol of Christ. Inside this unique item are three precious things: the hidden manna, the budding rod, and the law of the testimony, that is, the law of life which issues in God’s expression and testimony. This brief word, which opens a very wide field, tells us the meaning of the phrase “within the veil.” To be within the veil is to be in the Holy of Holies, in a realm where we partake of Christ and enjoy the hidden manna, the budding rod, and the law of life which issues in God’s corporate expression. This is the fulfillment of God’s eternal purpose.
Hebrews 13:13 says, “Let us therefore go forth unto Him outside the camp, bearing His reproach.” Both in this book and in typology the camp signifies the organization of religion, which is human and earthly. To go outside the camp means to go outside the human organization of religion. While the camp signifies the human organization, the city signifies the earthly realm. In the book of Hebrews, both the gate and the camp signify the Jewish religion with its two aspects, the earthly and the human. Judaism is both earthly and human. Every religion is both a human organization and an earthly realm which keeps people away from God’s economy.
On the one hand, God’s economy is being fulfilled within the veil. On the other hand, many religious things are taking place inside the camp. All we can see in the camp are just the religious things. Although many of the things in the camp may be related to the Bible, God is not there. Inside the camp, that is, in the organization of religion, there are no angels, church, Savior, saved ones, Christ, or sprinkled blood. Rather, there is a mountain set on fire producing a thick darkness and gloom, there is a whirlwind which moves without direction or peace, and there is the terrifying sound of a trumpet with the fearful words of warning. This is the picture of the Jewish religion as portrayed in this book. In all the foregoing messages we have seen a very vivid picture of what is within the veil on the one side and of the religious things in the camp on the other side. Now we all must choose where we shall be—within the veil or within the camp. We cannot be neutral.
The book of Hebrews instructs and charges us to come forward to the Holy of Holies and to enter within the veil. The way into the Holy of Holies, a new and living way, has been slain. Hence, this book firstly ushers us into the Holy of Holies and then directs us to go outside the camp. According to our mental figuration, we firstly go outside the camp and then enter within the veil. But this is our human mathematics. According to God’s mathematics, we firstly enter within the veil and only then can we go outside the camp. Everyone who has gone outside the camp has firstly experienced what is within the veil. Perhaps when you began to come to the meetings of the church, you were not yet outside the camp. You were simply coming within the veil to have a taste. But that taste attracted you, caught you, and supplied you with the energy to go outside the camp. No one has firstly gone outside the camp and then entered within the veil. Although the Lord Jesus firstly went outside the gate and then entered within the veil, it is exactly the opposite with us. In other words, firstly we enter into the Holy of Holies, where we are strengthened and encouraged to go outside the camp, and then we go out of the organization of religion. The more we enter within the veil, the more we go outside the camp.
The book of Hebrews firstly shows us the heavenly Christ who is within the veil, within the Holy of Holies (6:19-20). He is there as our High Priest (4:14; 7:26), as the heavenly Minister (8:2), and as the Mediator of the new covenant (8:6; 9:15; 12:24). As our High Priest, He is there interceding for us and ministering all the riches of God into us. As the heavenly Minister, He is carrying out His excellent ministry for us, and as the Mediator of the new covenant, He is executing all the contents of the new covenant for our enjoyment. All this is much better than what He did for us on earth while He was in the flesh.
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