The phrase
“within the vail”



The phrase “within the vail” is a phrase used by the critics to claim that Jesus entered directly into the second apartment of the Most Holy Place in the Heavenly Sanctuary as soon as he ascended to heaven, and not in 1844 as we teach. They claim he began his work there, and not in the Holy Place as the type demands. Here is the verse they use:

Hebrews 6:19-20
(19) Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;
(20) Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

How do they use this to prove Jesus automatically entered the Most Holy Place? Well they compare it with some verses from the Old Testament which show that this phrase “within the vail” is always referred to the apartment of the Most Holy Place. Take a look at a few of them:

Exodus 26:33
(33) And thou shalt hang up the vail under the taches, that thou mayest bring in thither within the vail the ark of the testimony: and the vail shall divide unto you between the holy place and the most holy.

Leviticus 16:2
(2) And the LORD said unto Moses, Speak unto Aaron thy brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the vail before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not: for I will appear in the cloud upon the mercy seat.

Leviticus 16:15
(15) Then shall he kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for the people, and bring his blood within the vail, and do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bullock, and sprinkle it upon the mercy seat, and before the mercy seat.


Apparently the phrase “within the vail” is in fact connected with the Most Holy Place. So let’s study into this text a bit more and see if it is in harmony with the Adventist understanding of the heavenly sanctuary. But before we tackle Hebrews 6:19 head on, there is something we should consider.

Clifford Goldstein, in his book “Graffiti in the Holy of Holies” shares how in Numbers 18:5 we read of two things that Aaron and his sons were to keep charge of:

-the Sanctuary
-the Alter

In verse 7, the Lord again repeats to Aaron and his sons about their duties, yet this time refers to the same things in this manner:

-the Alter
-Within the Vail

Here are the two verses paralleled:

Verse 5: And ye shall keep the charge of the sanctuary, and the charge of the altar: that there be no wrath any more upon the children of Israel.

Verse 7: Therefore thou and thy sons with thee shall keep your priest's office for every thing of the altar, and within the vail; and ye shall serve: I have given your priest's office unto you as a service of gift: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.

As can be seen from the above two texts, the words “the sanctuary” and the words “within the vail” parallel each other, the same way the words “the alter” in verse 5 parallel the words “the alter” in verse 7. Apparently, the phrase “within the vail” is used at least in this case to refer to the sanctuary as a whole.

This method of parallelism is frequent in scripture. Take for example the following verse:

Psalms 101:8
(8) I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the LORD.

The words "destroy" and "cut off" parallel each other as do the words “wicked” and “wicked doers,” and are thereby used to mean the same thing... that these wicked ones will be completely destroyed. The same is seen in the following two verses:

Exodus 31:14
(14) Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people.

Exodus 31:15
(15) Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.

Note that in both cases, the result for doing "any work in the sabbath day" is that he would be both "cut off" and "put to death." Cut off can therefore mean that the person caught violating this law will suffer death.

Yet another example of this is found in the book of Job:

Job 4:17
(17) Shall mortal man be more just than God? shall a man be more pure than his maker?

The words Just and Pure are being used in this case to mean the same thing.

Some have argued that there is a difference between verses 5 and 7 when it comes to "the alter." It’s said that verse 5 simply mentions the "alter" while verse 7 says "everything of the alter." They say that because of this, it can't be paralleled. But it wouldn't make much sense for God to instruct that the alter alone be taken care of without those things which pertain to the alter, like the ashes for example. These needed to be cleansed from off the alter on a daily basis. But when we note the parallelism with these verses, we see that in this way these scriptures actually make more sense because more information is provided, and thereby proves that this parallel is necessary.

So, what about "within the vail" in Hebrews 6:19? It clearly shows that Christ entered some part of the heavenly sanctuary when he ascended to heaven…. but which part? As we have seen from the above Old Testament texts, the phrase “within the vail” can also refer to the sanctuary as a whole. Therefore, in order to properly answer this question, we need to study more what Paul meant when he spoke of the “vail” in the book of Hebrews. Grab your Bible and your Greek concordance (if you don’t have one, download one for free here) and follow us:


What did Paul mean when
he spoke this phrase?


Hebrews chapter 6 does not dive into the different parts of the sanctuary. Rather it focuses on hope through the promises of God (verses 13-18) and salvation through he who “entereth within the veil.” Paul does not go into explaining this veil, rather he immediately begins explaining who this “Melchisedec” is (chapter 7:1), showing Jesus as the true High Priest. Where Paul begins to explain the sanctuary and its different parts is in chapter 9. Therefore, in our quest to find out what veil Jesus entered, we begin our study in chapter 9 verse 1:

Hebrews 9:1-2
(1) Then verily the first covenant had also ordinances of divine service, and a worldly sanctuary.
(2) For there was a tabernacle made; the first, wherein was the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread; which is called the sanctuary.

As he begins to speak about the sanctuary, notice the Greek word he used for “sanctuary.” That word is “hagion” which simply means “sacred thing.” Strong’s number for this word is #39. Note the things mentioned here, the candlesticks and the table of Shewbread. Where in the sanctuary were these items located? Of course, the holy place. So the word “sanctuary” is the equivalent of the word “holy place,” at least in this verse. Paul is here speaking about the first apartment of the earthly sanctuary, the Holy Place. Don’t forget this important point… the word “hagion” in this verse refers to the “first” apartment. Let’s keep reading:

Hebrews 9:3-5
(3) And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all;
(4) Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant;
(5) And over it the cherubims of glory shadowing the mercyseat; of which we cannot now speak particularly.

Which part of the sanctuary is Paul now referring to? Is it the Holy Place again? No, because we now read of a set of different items which were only found in the “Most Holy Place,” –see Exodus 26:34 for example. This second apartment of the sanctuary… what Greek word did Paul use to describe it? Take a look for yourself, its “hagion hagion” translated “Holiest of all” with Strong’s number 39 repeated two times! Now notice this, the “hagion hagion” is referred to by Paul as the apartment after “the second vail.” Let me ask you, dear reader, if when Paul in chapter 6 mentioned the phrase “within the vail” meant that he was speaking about the Most Holy Place, why didn’t he again use the phrase here when specifically detailing the whole sanctuary? But now we have an interesting fact, instead of the Most Holy Place being referred to as “within the vail,” Paul rather refers to it as “the second vail.” We now know that when Paul speaks about the Most Holy Place it will be the Greek “hagion hagion” and it will be referred to as after “the second vail.”

Now when Paul speaks about where Christ entered… was it within the “hagion” (the Holy Place) or the “hagion hagion” (the Most Holy Place)? Let’s take a look:

Hebrews 9:12
(12) Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.

Here we read of where Christ actually entered. Some translation, like the International Standard Version, for example, translate this as “he went into the Holy of Holies.” Our critics use versions like this one. But if that is what Paul meant, then he would have here definitely used the identifier “hagion hagion.” But, he didn’t. The Greek word translated “holy place” is “hagion” which refers at times to the first apartment of the sanctuary, the Holy Place, or as in other verses to the sanctuary as a whole. This word “hagion” is never the word used to describe the second apartment of the sanctuary. It’s hard for our opponents to deal with this. Add to this that, as already mentioned; Paul speaks of the Most Holy Place as after “the second vail.” “Because of this identifier,” says William Shea, “we are able to locate every veil in the book of Hebrews. Therefore, ‘veil’ by itself, when it does not say ‘second veil,’ must refer to the veil in front of the first apartment.” O. R. L. Crosier, an Adventist pioneer, would agree, for it seems logical that since Hebrews 9:3 mentions a “second” vail, that “hence there are two veils, and that in Hebrews 6, being the first of which he speaks, must be the first veil, which hung before the Holy, and in Exodus was called a curtain.” -The Sanctuary by O. R. L. Crosier, appeared in The Day-Star Extra, Saturday, February 7, 1846.

Now notice these interesting texts:

Hebrews 8:1-2
(1) Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;
(2) A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.

Hebrews 9:24
(24) For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:

Notice Christ entered “the heavens” yet there he is the "minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord pitched" (the heavenly one). We have two Greek words here, the sanctuary translated from the Greek “hagion” and the tabernacle translated from the Greek “skene”. In other words, Christ is in Heaven ministering in the “hagion,” the Holy Place of the “skene,” the heavenly Sanctuary! If “hagion” here meant the sanctuary as a whole as it does in some other verses, was he therefore saying Christ is ministering in the sanctuary of the sanctuary? Rather then using the word “hagion hagion” which specifically refers to the Most Holy Place, Paul tells us without a doubt that he is in the Holy Place in the Heavenly Sanctuary. And we know from the type that at one point (on the Day of Atonement) the priest was to enter the second apartment. This is why we as Adventists consider the “time frame” in which these verses were written. When Paul wrote these words, at that point, Christ was in the heavens and ministering in the Holy Place, as we just read above. But the type shows that the Priest had to one day enter the Most Holy Place. According to the type, this couldn’t happen first.

Now we know he had to at one point move from the first apartment to the second, for Paul says:

Hebrews 9:23
(23) It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.

And how can he work the work of purification in the heavenly sanctuary if not in the Most Holy Place, which is where in the type the purging and cleansing of the sanctuary and the people took place (Leviticus 16)?


Going back to Hebrew 6:19-20



Now that we have some context regarding the phrase “within the vail,” lets go back to Hebrew 6:19-20 and consider some points.

We have seen how it makes much more sense to view “within the vail” in Hebrews 6:19-20 as referring primarily to the Holy Place. Yet when this text is examined a bit closer in light of some Old Testament passages regarding the sanctuary service, one will quickly notice that Jesus did indeed enter into the “Holy Place” and continued on into the “Most Holy Place.” No, not to begin his ministerial work as High Priest in the Most Holy Place and thereby contradict the type, but rather to “consecrate” all of the Heavenly Sanctuary. This way the way will be paved for the believer to be both sanctified (Holy Place) and soon after to have his record of sins symbolically removed from off the Heavenly Sanctuary (Most Holy Place). The following scriptures will explain this further:

Leviticus 8:10
(10) And Moses took the anointing oil, and anointed the tabernacle and all that was therein, and sanctified them.

If you study Leviticus 8 and 9, along with Exodus 29, you will notice that all three are describing the same events. They deal with the consecration of the tabernacle, its furniture’s and the priests. It was after everything was consecrated that the daily sacrifice was instituted (Exodus 29:38-39, Leviticus 9:15-17) and the priestly service began (click here to see these chapters paralleled). Although the various sacrifices are described in the first few chapters of Leviticus, the service itself did not begin until all was consecrated. Now notice that the above text says that all needed to be consecrated, or anointed/sanctified. All means all, including the inner-most part of the sanctuary, the Most Holy Place. In order for Moses to consecrate the Most Holy Place, he needed to enter therein. Once this was done, along with the placing of coats upon Aaron, certain sacrifices, etc, Aaron and his sons were commanded to stay within the tabernacle for seven days “until the days of your consecration be at an end…” –Leviticus 8:33. Within these seven days, Aaron was to sacrifice bullocks for sin offerings, thereby consecrating the entire structure that it may be ready for service. Note these texts:

Exodus 29:35-37
(35) And thus shalt thou do unto Aaron, and to his sons, according to all things which I have commanded thee: seven days shalt thou consecrate them.
(36) And thou shalt offer every day a bullock for a sin offering for atonement: and thou shalt cleanse the altar, when thou hast made an atonement for it, and thou shalt anoint it, to sanctify it.
(37) Seven days thou shalt make an atonement for the altar, and sanctify it; and it shall be an altar most holy: whatsoever toucheth the altar shall be holy.

Both Aaron and his sons, and the alter of the sanctuary were to be sanctified by them. You will find it interesting that the Hebrew word translated “consecrate” here and in Leviticus 8 is male yad. The word “yad” literally means “open hand.” This will become significant in a bit.

There is an important point you must see before we continue. When you read down Leviticus chapter 8 and Exodus chapter 29, you will find that everything is happening consecutively, one thing after the other. Leviticus 8:10 says that “everything” was consecrated with the anointing oil; everything includes the Most Holy Place. Keep reading down this chapter, you will find that out of the three offerings (one bullock and two rams) the second ram’s flesh (called the ram of consecration) was preserved to be eaten by Aaron and his sons the same day which commenced the seven-day consecration of verses 31 through 35, which would be day number one. In other words, the consecration by Moses of everything (verse 10) took place on the same day Aaron was to begin his seven-day consecration:

Leviticus 8:10, 31-33
(10) And Moses took the anointing oil, and anointed the tabernacle and all that was therein, and sanctified them…
(31) And Moses said unto Aaron and to his sons, Boil the flesh at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation: and there eat it with the bread that is in the basket of consecrations, as I commanded, saying, Aaron and his sons shall eat it.
(32) And that which remaineth of the flesh and of the bread shall ye burn with fire.
(33) And ye shall not go out of the door of the tabernacle of the congregation in seven days, until the days of your consecration be at an end: for seven days shall he consecrate you.

Exodus 29:31-35
(31) And thou shalt take the ram of the consecration, and seethe his flesh in the holy place.
(32) And Aaron and his sons shall eat the flesh of the ram, and the bread that is in the basket, by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
(33) And they shall eat those things wherewith the atonement was made, to consecrate and to sanctify them: but a stranger shall not eat thereof, because they are holy.
(34) And if ought of the flesh of the consecrations, or of the bread, remain unto the morning, then thou shalt burn the remainder with fire: it shall not be eaten, because it is holy.
(35) And thus shalt thou do unto Aaron, and to his sons, according to all things which I have commanded thee: seven days shalt thou consecrate them.

So all the things commanded in Leviticus chapter 8 beginning in verse 1 took place in one day, the first day of the seven-day consecration.

Now after those seven days of consecration, on the eight day, Aaron was called by Moses out of the tabernacle (Leviticus 9:1) and told that on that same day, soon after he and the children of Israel offered their offerings, God’s glory would appear unto them:

Leviticus 9:4
(4) Also a bullock and a ram for peace offerings, to sacrifice before the LORD; and a meat offering mingled with oil: for to day the LORD will appear unto you.

On this eight day, God himself would sanctify all of the tabernacle, which would include its furniture’s (along with the ark which was in the Most Holy Place) by his appearing:

Exodus 29:43-44
(43) And there I will meet with the children of Israel, and the tabernacle shall be sanctified by my glory.
(44) And I will sanctify the tabernacle of the congregation, and the altar: I will sanctify also both Aaron and his sons, to minister to me in the priest's office.

It’s as if God is confirming all the consecration which took place during the previous seven days. Note also that all this was done so that the work of the tabernacle would begin… “to minister to me in the priest’s office.” It was only after all this consecrating that the service began, as is also evidenced in the rebuilding of the third temple:

Ezekiel 43:26-27
(26) Seven days shall they purge the altar and purify it; and they shall consecrate themselves.
(27) And when these days are expired, it shall be, that upon the eighth day, and so forward, the priests shall make your burnt offerings upon the altar, and your peace offerings; and I will accept you, saith the Lord GOD.

All who were present saw the glory of God (Exodus 29:43, Leviticus 9:23.

Now Aaron and Moses represent Jesus Christ, as most bible students would agree. It is significant that at the consecration of everything pertaining to the tabernacle by Moses, Aaron and the glory of God, that which was “within the vail,” the Most Holy Place, also needed consecration. This means that before the service of the sanctuary would begin, those representing Jesus Christ (the true priest of God) had to have entered into that “within the vail” on the day beginning the seven-day consecration in order that everything may be consecrated. This consecration is not the ministering of those things within the sanctuary, but simply an anointing of everything that the service may begin there after. Now let us see if Jesus fulfilled this type:

John 20:16-17
(16) Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.
(17) Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

Note carefully that he was not to be touched, because he was about to ascend to the Father who is in heaven. Then on the same day he appeared unto his disciples, but there is no indication that they touched him here either. Rather, the text says he “showed” them his wounds (John 20:20). But eight days later, he appeared to them once more, quieting Thomas’ doubts by telling him to touch his hands and side (verses 26, 27). This means that between the day he told Mary not to touch him, and the day he told Thomas to touch him, he must have ascended into heaven, for he at first forbade being touched for this very reason. And the time between these two events was eight literal days. On the first day, after appearing to his disciples, Jesus ascends in his untouched, clean condition to the presence of the Father, spends seven days in heaven where the Heavenly Sanctuary is located, then “appears” to his disciples once more. This parallels the type, where Moses made Aaron and his sons (who represent Jesus) clean by the washing of water (Leviticus 8:6) entered into the sanctuary including the Most Holy Place (which represents the Father, who is Most Holy) on the first day of the seven-day consecration to anoint everything (Leviticus 8:10), in which afterwards on the eight day “appears” in the presence of the children of Israel. Did you just see what happened? Jesus is not only the fulfillment of the various priestly services, but also the fulfillment of the consecration of those things!

Just as Moses entered into that “within the vail” on the first day of the seven-day consecration to consecrate it along with everything else, so Jesus entered into that “within the vail” on the first day of the anti-type seven-day consecration to make ready his work as our High Priest in John 20:17-29. The question is not where did Jesus enter, the question is when did Jesus begin his work as High Priest. This work did not begin when he ascended the first time in John 20:17-29, for these same texts say he returned to earth to appear once more to his disciples. Hebrews 8:4 says that if he were on earth he could not be a priest, and the type demands that he who was going to officiate as priest (Aaron and his sons) was to remain in the tabernacle for seven days without leaving (Leviticus 8:33). The work of intercession, therefore, began at his second ascension, of which we read of in Acts 1:9. His first ascension was simply for the consecration of the heavenly Sanctuary just like the type needed consecration before the intercessory work of the Priests began. Therefore when Paul in Hebrews 6:19-20 speaks of Jesus entering into that “within the vail,” he is here alluding to the consecration of the Most Holy Place which took place in the type and was fulfilled by Jesus in the anti-type. The hope we have with this is that as Jesus entered into all of the heavenly Sanctuary for consecration including the Most Holy Place, we too will ultimately be lead by him through consecration and sanctification into that “within the vail,” the presence of God in the Most Holy Place.

Since Jesus, represented by Moses and Aaron, entered into all the sanctuary first to consecrate it, when then did Jesus begin his intercessory work as Priest? Let’s go back to the type one last time:

Exodus 29:43-44
(43) And there I will meet with the children of Israel, and the tabernacle shall be sanctified by my glory.
(44) And I will sanctify the tabernacle of the congregation, and the altar: I will sanctify also both Aaron and his sons, to minister to me in the priest's office.

The words “minister to me in the priest’s office” is translated from just one Hebrew word which means to “mediate.” Everything was confirmed by the glory of God so that the mediation of the priests in the sanctuary may begin. Compare with Ezekiel 43:26 once more, which also shows that the work begins after the consecration. In other words, the intercessory work began after the seven-day consecration “upon the eight day,” and continued on after this “so forward.”

Now the ministerial work of the Priest began in the Holy Place of the sanctuary and continued therein on a daily basis, because according to the type, the Priests ministered in the Most Holy Place only once a year on the Day of Atonement (see Leviticus 16). So also Christ, a “faithful” high priest, entered into all of the sanctuary to consecrate it for the work in John 20:17-29, but ministered first in the Holy Place when he began his ministerial work at his ascension in Acts 1:9.

Paul so beautifully demonstrates the necessity of having the heavenly sanctuary consecrated when he penned the following:

Hebrews 9:6-7
(6) Now when these things were thus ordained, the priests went always into the first tabernacle, accomplishing the service of God.
(7) But into the second went the high priest alone once every year, not without blood, which he offered for himself, and for the errors of the people:

After detailing the various parts of the sanctuary, including the furniture’s of the Holy and the Most Holy Place (verses 1-5), Paul then says that all these things were “thus ordained” that the work of the Priests could begin first in the Holy Place (verse 6) and then in the Most Holy Place (verse 7). This work could not have begun until all that was described in verses 1-5, which includes that which is “within the vail,” the Ark of the Covenant, were “thus ordained,” or consecrated. He describes this once more in the next chapter:

Hebrews 10:19-20
(19) Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,
(20) By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;

Although the KJV says “holiest” in verse 19, the Greek word here is “hagion” which we have learned means either Holy Place or Sanctuary. It’s more likely that “sanctuary” is meant here, for the next verse speaks once more of the consecration. Notice that he, Jesus, “hath consecrated for us” a new and living way through his flesh. When Jesus returned from his first ascension, he showed his disciples how he was still flesh and bone (John 20:27, Luke 24:39). This means that when he appeared unto his Father before this in the heavenly sanctuary, he appeared in his flesh, consecrating everything and presenting himself with his wounded, open hands (the meaning of the word “consecration” in the Hebrew). Through this he provided a more living way for us to reach the Father through the work of, not Aaron or Moses, but of Jesus Christ.


More Proof that Jesus
Ministered in the Holy Place first


Please notice carefully the following texts:

Psalms 68:17-18
(17) The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place.
(18) Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them.

Now note how Paul interpreted verse 18:

Ephesians 4:8-12
(8) Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
(9) (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
(10) He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
(11) And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
(12) For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.

Now we know that the context is in regards to the gifts of the Spirit which the Lord, after ascending to heaven, imparted unto his church "for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ." But notice that Paul in verse 8 quotes from Psalm 68:18, showing that this ancient text is a prophecy foretelling the ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ into “far above the heavens.” This Psalm not only tells us about his ascension, it also tells us where he ascended too. Take another look:

Psalms 68:17-18
(17) The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place.
(18) Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them.

Verse 18 says that the Lord "hast ascended..." Where "hast," or "did" he ascend to? Verse 17 already had that answer, it reads: "the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place." Remember, Paul applies this verse as meaning that the Lord ascended from earth to heaven (compare Acts 1:9-11). If verse 17 meant that he was already in the Holy Place, but ascended higher then that, it would contradict Paul's inspired words, who is giving us the idea that Jesus ascended from the earth to heaven...

Ephesians 4:8-12
(8) Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
(9) (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
(10) He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)

We here have irrefutable proof that when Jesus ascended to heaven, he went straight into the Holy Place first to begin his work as priest there, just like the type demands.


Why the Evangelical
interpretation is an impossibility


Besides the overwhelming evidence just presented in support of the Adventist interpretation, there is but one more fact that our opponents have a very hard time dealing with, which can rightly be called the Achilles heel of the evangelical interpretation.

Note carefully that the priests and High Priest of the earthly Sanctuary were to serve first, on a daily and weekly basis, in the Holy Place of the tabernacle. Here’s one example:

Leviticus 24:1-9
(1) And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
(2) Command the children of Israel, that they bring unto thee pure oil olive beaten for the light, to cause the lamps to burn continually.
(3) Without the vail of the testimony, in the tabernacle of the congregation, shall Aaron (the High Priest) order it from the evening unto the morning before the LORD continually: it shall be a statute for ever in your generations.

But one of their daily duties which they were to perform was the slaying of the sin offerings. When these offerings were slain over the alter of burnt sacrifice, the blood from the animal was taken into the Holy Place, and sprinkled upon the furniture’s therein:

Leviticus 4:5-7
(5) And the priest that is anointed shall take of the bullock's blood, and bring it to the tabernacle of the congregation:
(6) And the priest shall dip his finger in the blood, and sprinkle of the blood seven times before the LORD, before the vail of the sanctuary.
(7) And the priest shall put some of the blood upon the horns of the altar of sweet incense before the LORD, which is in the tabernacle of the congregation; and shall pour all the blood of the bullock at the bottom of the altar of the burnt offering, which is at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.

The honest bible student will notice that there is an order of services here. Blood was administered into the Holy Place of the earthly Sanctuary first, and then second, once a year, blood was administered into the Most Holy Place on the Day of Atonement according to Leviticus chapter 16 (see also how Paul placed the order in Hebrews 1:6-7). Now in light of this most obvious fact, consider what the author of Hebrews said in regards to Jesus' work in the heavenly temple:

Hebrews 9:12
(12) Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.

Since Jesus Christ is now the High Priest (Hebrews 9:11), the question our opponents must now answer is, when did Jesus serve in the Holy Place? For according to the type, the Priest must minister blood in the Holy Place first.

The only answer our opponents can provide is that Jesus must have ministered blood in the heavenly Holy Place sometime before he came to earth. But, with what blood was that? Surely not with the blood of goats! See Hebrews 10:4. Take a second look at our earlier text:

Hebrews 9:12
(12) Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.

It says that he entered in by his own blood. But, he shed his blood when he came to earth, not anytime before that. So no matter how much our critics complain, this simple fact remains. Jesus must have ministered in the Holy Place first, if he was to be the fulfillment of the anti-type.



Conclusion

(1) We agree this phrase can refer to the second apartment in the sanctuary according to various Old Testament text. However, we find that it can also refer to the Holy Place and the sanctuary as a whole.

(2) When Paul actually mentioned this phrase, he did not give detail as to whether he was referring to the whole sanctuary, the first or the second apartment of the sanctuary.

(3) We learned Paul refers to the second apartment as “after the second vail” not “within the vail” as our critics assert. This proves that since Paul did not speak of the veil in Hebrews 6:19 as the “second veil” he must have therefore been speaking about the vail behind the first apartment, the Holy Place.

(4) The Greek word “hagion hagion” specifically refers to the second apartment of the heavenly sanctuary, the Most Holy Place. This word is never used to refer to where Christ was at the time this epistle was written. It is also never referred to as the first apartment, nor does the bible ever say Christ entered into, or began his ministerial work in the “hagion hagion.”

(5) Only the word “hagion” is used to refer to the first apartment, and also at times to the whole sanctuary. The Greek “skene” is also used to refer to the sanctuary as a whole.

(6) Hebrews 9:6-7 and Hebrews 9:12, 13-14 undoubtedly proves that Jesus as high priest entered into the first apartment as soon as he ascended to heaven, beginning his work there and not in the Most Holy Place as our critics claim.

(7) Psalm 68:17-18 and Ephesians 4:8-12 without a shadow of a doubt proves that when Jesus ascended to heaven, he entered the Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary first.

(8) Jesus must have entered into the Holy Place "with his own blood" and begin his work as Priest there first, or else he violated the type of the earthly Sanctuary.

(9) It makes more sense, per the context of the book of Hebrews (specifically from chapters 6 through 9) to interpret “within the vail” in Hebrews 6:19-20 to mean the Holy Place, since the vail of chapter 9 is designated as the “second” vail. But nevertheless, Jesus did enter into that “within the vail,” not to begin his work as priest, but to “consecrate” it, because it was part of the same heavenly structure which he was then consecrating and preparing for the ministry which he was to soon begin thereafter.


Your Thought Questions Answered


Question #1: Couldn't Jesus have ministered in the Holy Place while on earth instead of before he came to the earth, that way when he went to heaven he can enter the Most Holy Place?

Answer: No. The bible is clear when it says:

Hebrews 8:4
For if he (Jesus) were on earth, he should not be a priest, seeing that there are priests that offer gifts according to the law.

How could Christ, while upon the earth, perform also the work of a priest in the first apartment of the heavenly sanctuary, when the bible teaches that while he was upon the earth he was “not” yet a priest? He had to go to heaven to begin his work as High Priest, because it is in heaven where "the sanctuary" is located... "the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man" -Hebrews 8:2.


Question #2: Is it not true that it was only the regular priests that ministered in the Holy Place, and not the High Priest? How then did Jesus, who is called High priest, minister in the Holy Place as well?

Answer: We have already seen above that the High Priest (Aaron -Leviticus 24:1-9) also ministered in the Holy Place of the earthly sanctuary. But note also that Jesus Christ is both Priest and High Priest:

-Hebrews 5:6
(6) As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

-Hebrews 7:17
(17) For he testifieth, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

-Hebrews 4:14
(14) Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession.

Jesus is the anti-type of the Priest, the High Priest... and even the sacrifices of these priests! So when he went to heaven after his resurrection, in Acts 1:9-11, he was ready to perform his duty as Priest and High Priest in their proper order.

Question #3: Couldn't Jesus have gone into the Most Holy Place first, and then into the Holy Place? Or couldn't he just have gone into the Most Holy Place without ever ministering in the Holy Place?

Answer: No! Because this would make Jesus unfaithful to the Old Testament type. Believers who studied the earthly Sanctuary expected the messiah to fulfill it just as they read it in the ancient scriptures. If Jesus didn't fulfill these types in the order described in Leviticus and Exodus, doubt would grow in people's minds if whether he was really the Priest and lamb prophesied therein. Note carefully that the bible teaches us that God is a God of order, when it says:

1 Corinthians 14:33
(33) For God is not the author of confusion (greek: disorder), but of peace...

If Jesus, who is God, fulfilled the anti-type in a disordered fashion, the above verse would remain untrue.


Question #4: If you believe Jesus began his ministerial work as Priest in the Holy Place when he ascended, wouldn’t that mean that there was no atonement made for his people until 1844 when he began his work in the Most Holy Place? Doesn’t Romans 5:11 speak about people receiving the atonement even during the time of the apostles?

Answer: One must understand the atonement of the type in order to understand that of the antitype. Notice these typical texts:

Leviticus 4:20
(20) And he shall do with the bullock as he did with the bullock for a sin offering, so shall he do with this: and the priest shall make an atonement for them, and it shall be forgiven them.

Leviticus 4:26
(26) And he shall burn all his fat upon the altar, as the fat of the sacrifice of peace offerings: and the priest shall make an atonement for him as concerning his sin, and it shall be forgiven him.

Leviticus 4:31
(31) And he shall take away all the fat thereof, as the fat is taken away from off the sacrifice of peace offerings; and the priest shall burn it upon the altar for a sweet savour unto the LORD; and the priest shall make an atonement for him, and it shall be forgiven him.

You will find that atonements like these were performed upon a daily basis as part of the evening and morning sacrifice. An atonement was made whenever a person brought his offering for his sins, and this you will note was so that he may be “forgiven.”

The atonement of the Day of Atonement, however, was not just for the forgiving of sins, but also for the “blotting out” of sins both from the people and the sanctuary. So there is a difference. Don’t forget that the sins of the people were transferred symbolically to the earthly sanctuary. This is why it too needed cleansing (Leviticus 16:33-34). This cleansing took place at the “end” of the year, thus representing the final cleansing of all sin and sinners at the “end” of the world, when God will finally restore all things as was before sin.

Question #5: You mention that everything was anointed by Moses in Leviticus 8:10 which included the things of the Most Holy Place, but Moses was not a Priest as was aaron. Why then would this represent Jesus as our High Priest?

Answer:

Moses is typical of Jesus Christ:

1 Corinthian 10:1-2
Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea;
(2) And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea

The whole Exodus Journey typifies the work of Christ and the Journey of the believer. As they were taken out of Egypt, so God through Jesus takes us from the world and unites us unto his kingdom of believers. He frees us from sin, as he freed them from sin (Egypt). Like as they were baptised when they walked through the red sea unto Moses as the text says, so we are baptised unto Jesus Christ.

Notice these texts:

Hebrews 3:1-2
(1) Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus
(2) Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.

Once again we see Moses being used as one who represented Jesus Christ. As Moses was faithful, so Christ is faithful "in all his house." It dousn't matter if Moses was not a priest, for Christ did not spring up as priest after the order of either Moses or Aaron anyway (Hebrews 7:14). Nevertheless, Moses was as a priest unto the people, for he "interceeded" between the children of Israel and God when they sinned (Exodus 32:30) as Christ does for us when we sin.

Both Aaron and Moses, therefore, typify Jesus Christ. I hope this helps.



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