Hebrews 9:7

7 But only the high priest entered the inner room, and that only once a year, and never without blood, which he offered for himself and for the sins the people had committed in ignorance.

Read Hebrews 9:7 Using Other Translations

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:
but into the second only the high priest goes, and he but once a year, and not without taking blood, which he offers for himself and for the unintentional sins of the people.
But only the high priest ever entered the Most Holy Place, and only once a year. And he always offered blood for his own sins and for the sins the people had committed in ignorance.

What does Hebrews 9:7 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Ver. 7 But into the second went the high priest alone, once every
year
Though this is not expressed in so many words in ( Leviticus 16:2 ) only it is said that "Aaron came not at all times into the holy place within the vail"; yet it is the constant and generally received sense of the Jewish writers, in agreement with the apostle here, that the high priest went into the holy of holies but once a year F17, on the day of atonement, which was on the tenth of the month Tisri, and answers to part of September; not but that he went in more than once on that day, for he went in no less than four times {r}; the first time he went in to offer incense; the second time with the blood of the bullock, to sprinkle it; the third time with the blood of the goat; and the fourth time to bring out the censer F19; and if he entered a fifth time, they say he was worthy of death; wherefore Philo the Jew F20 seems to be mistaken when he affirms that, if he went in three or four times on the same day, he suffered death, nor was there any pardon for him; and as it was but one day in a year he might enter, so when he did, no other man, either Israelite or priest, might go in along with him; he went in alone without any attendance: the Jews say F21, that a cord or thong was bound to the feet of the high priest when he went into the holy of holies, that if he died there, the rest might be able to draw him out; for it was not lawful for another priest to go in, no, not an high priest, none besides him on the day of atonement. Pausanias F23 makes mention of a temple of Minerva into which the priests entered once every year; which very likely was observed in imitation of this custom of the Jewish high priest; who in it was a type of Christ, and of his entrance into heaven, and of his constant and continued intercession there:

not without blood;
for he went in with the blood of the bullock and the blood of the goat; which was typical of the blood of Christ, by which he entered in once into the holy place, into heaven, when he had obtained eternal redemption by it, ( Hebrews 9:12 ) which he offered for himself and for the errors of the people; the bullock was offered by the high priest for himself and his family; and the goat for the sins of the people of Israel, even all their iniquities, transgressions, and sins, ( Leviticus 16:11 Leviticus 16:15 Leviticus 16:16 Leviticus 16:21 ) , but Christ the antitype having no sin, had no need to offer for himself, only for the sins of the people; (See Gill on Hebrews 7:27).


FOOTNOTES:

F17 T. Hieros. Yoma, fol. 42. 4. & 43. 1. Bab. Pesachim, fol. 86. 1.
F18 Bemidbar Rabba, sect 7. fol. 188. 4. Maimon. Biath Hamikdash, c. 2. sect. 3. Moses Kotsensis Mitzvot Tora, pr. neg. 303.
F19 Maimon. & Bartenora in Misna Celim, c. 1. sect. 9.
F20 De Legatione ad Caium, p. 1035.
F21 Zohar in Lev. fol. 43. 3. & Imre Binah in ib.
F23 Arcadica, sive l. 8. p. 531.
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