Hebrews 9:19

19 When Moses had proclaimed every command of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people.

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Hebrews 9:19 in Other Translations

KJV
19 For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people,
ESV
19 For when every commandment of the law had been declared by Moses to all the people, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water and scarlet wool and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people,
NLT
19 For after Moses had read each of God’s commandments to all the people, he took the blood of calves and goats, along with water, and sprinkled both the book of God’s law and all the people, using hyssop branches and scarlet wool.
MSG
19 After Moses had read out all the terms of the plan of the law - God's "will" - he took the blood of sacrificed animals and, in a solemn ritual, sprinkled the document and the people who were its beneficiaries.
CSB
19 For when every commandment had been proclaimed by Moses to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and goats, along with water, scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll itself and all the people,

Hebrews 9:19 Meaning and Commentary

Hebrews 9:19

For when Moses had spoken every precept
Contained in the decalogue, in the book of the covenant, everyone of the precepts in ( Exodus 22:1-23:33 ) for this is to be understood of the written law, and not of the oral law the Jews talk of, which they say Moses first delivered by word of mouth to Aaron, then to his two sons, Eleazar and Ithamar, then to the seventy elders of Israel, and then to the whole congregation; so that Aaron heard it four times, his sons thrice, the seventy elders twice, and all Israel once F7: but this is the written law which he spoke audibly, and in a known language,

to all the people according to the law;
which God gave him on the Mount: this may instruct persons concerned in the public ministry, to speak out plainly and clearly the whole counsel of God, to all to whom they are sent, according to the word of God, which is the rule of faith and practice:

he took the blood of calves, and of goats;
in the relation of this affair in ( Exodus 24:5 ) which is referred to, only mention is made of oxen, bullocks, or heifers, here called calves, which were sacrificed for peace offerings, and not of goats; though perhaps they may be intended by the burnt offerings there spoken of, since they were sometimes used for burnt offerings, ( Leviticus 1:10 ) . The Syriac version only reads, "he took the blood of an heifer"; and the Arabic version, "he took the blood of calves"; but all the copies, and other versions, read both. "With water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop"; neither of these are mentioned in ( Exodus 24:1-18 ) , but since sprinkling is there said to be used, and blood and water mixed together, and scarlet and hyssop were used in sprinkling, as in sprinkling the leper, and the unclean house, ( Leviticus 14:5-7 Leviticus 14:49-51 ) the apostle justly concludes the use of them here; the blood, with water, was typical of the blood and water which sprung from the side of Christ pierced on the cross, the one signifying justification by him, the other sanctification; the scarlet wool, which is originally white, but becomes scarlet by being dyed, may denote the native purity of Christ, and his bloody sufferings and death; the hyssop may signify his humility, and the purging virtue of his blood, and the sweet smelling savour of his person, righteousness, and sacrifice. The apostle calls scarlet, scarlet wool; though whenever the word is used in the Jewish laws of the Old Testament, wool is not expressed, but it is always intended; for it is a rule with the Jews F8, that

``the blue, which is spoken of in every place, is wool dyed of a sky colour; purple is wool dyed red, and scarlet is wool dyed in scarlet.''

And sprinkled both the book, and all the people.
In ( Exodus 24:8 ) no mention is made of the sprinkling of the former, only of the latter, which the apostle either concludes from the sprinkling of the blood upon the altar, upon which the book might lie, or from tradition, or from divine revelation: some think it does not necessarily follow from the text, that the book was sprinkled; and repeating the word (labwn) , "he took", read the words, "and he took the book and sprinkled all the people"; but this seems not natural, but forced; and besides, all the Oriental versions are express for the sprinkling of the book: the book of the law was sprinkled, not because of any impurity in it, but to show the imperfection of it, and its insufficiency to justify men; or rather the imperfection of man's obedience to it, and to point out what the law requires in case of disobedience, even the blood and life of men; and what it would be, was it not sprinkled with blood, or satisfied by the blood of Christ, namely, an accusing, cursing, and condemning law: the people, all of them, being sprinkled with the blood, were typical of God's peculiar people, even all the elect of God, being sprinkled with the blood of Christ, called the blood of sprinkling, by which they are redeemed, and which speaks peace and pardon to them. Some have thought only the seventy elders were sprinkled, as representing the whole congregation; and others, that the twelve pillars were only sprinkled, as representing the twelve tribes of Israel; but Moses and the apostle agree, that they were the people that were sprinkled.


FOOTNOTES:

F7 Maimon. Praefat. ad Yad Chazaka.
F8 lb. Hilchot Cele Hamikdash, c. 8. sect. 13.

Hebrews 9:19 In-Context

17 because a will is in force only when somebody has died; it never takes effect while the one who made it is living.
18 This is why even the first covenant was not put into effect without blood.
19 When Moses had proclaimed every command of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people.
20 He said, “This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep.”
21 In the same way, he sprinkled with the blood both the tabernacle and everything used in its ceremonies.

Cross References 3

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