Brothers and sisters, when Christ appeared as the High Priest of the good things to come, He entered once for all through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made by hands (that is, not as a part of the present creation), nor again by virtue of blood of goats and calves, but by virtue of His own blood, into the sanctuary, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and bulls and the sprinkled ashes of a heifer sanctify the unclean for the cleansing of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, Who through the Holy Spirit offered Himself unblemished to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God!
This Epistle reading talks about Christ's sacrifice being greater and more fulfilling than the sacrifices of, what we call today, the Old Testament. Prior to Christ's sacrificial death for us on the Cross, people had to offer animals for sacrifice, while obtaining a limited, temporary, redemption. Christ's sacrifice obtain for us the eternal redemption.
Sacrificial ceremonies of those days could purify a person externally only (meaning the body), but not internally (that is the heart). Christ's blood, on the other hand, purifies both body and soul, flesh and heart. We are cleansed from the dead works, which are the works of this world, namely sin. Christ purifies us for one thing only - to serve the living God.
Yours in Christ,
Father Aleksey - your friendly Singac priest