INSIDE THE VEIL IN HEAVEN
GC420-421: [Ellen G. White] “The ministration of the priests throughout the year in the first apartment of the sanctuary, ‘within the veil,’ which formed the door and separated the holy place from the outer court, represents the work of ministration upon which Christ entered at his ascension. It was the work of the priest in the daily ministration to present before God the blood of the sin offering, also the incense which ascended with the prayers of Israel. So did Christ plead his blood before the Father in behalf of sinners, and present before Him also, with the precious fragrance of His own righteousness, the prayers of penitent believers. Such was the work of ministration in the first apartment of the sanctuary in heaven.”
GC421: “Thither [only the first apartment] the faith of Christ=s disciples followed Him as He ascended from their sight. Here [only the first apartment] their hopes centered, ‘which hope we have,= said Paul, >as an anchor to the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters into that within the veil; whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made a high priest forever.’ ‘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.’ Hebrews 6:19, 20; 9:12.”
Inseparable from the discussion of rooms in the sanctuary is the discussion about the veil. SDAs teach that, at his ascension, Jesus only entered inside the first, or outer veil, that separated the Holy Place room from the courtyard containing the water laver and altar of burnt offering. This means that, at his ascension, Jesus did not enter the inner veil which separated the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place. Thus he did not enter into the room which contained the Ten Commandments, the cherubs and the glory and presence of God. This is because (SDAs teach), in fulfilling the Day of Atonement prophecy of Daniel 8:14, he did not enter the inner veil until October 22, 1844.
Heb. 6:19 “Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters into that within the veil;
Heb. 6:20 Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.”
Heb. 10:19 “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,
Heb. 10:20 By a new and living way, which he has consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh.”
The purpose of the book of Hebrews is to convince Jewish Christians to stop worshiping at the Jerusalem Temple and accept the high priesthood of Jesus. The highlight of Hebrews is that, because Jesus had abolished the old pattern, He is now a high priest in heaven serving after the order of Melchizedek, an Old Testament “Gentile” priest-king from Genesis 14.
When Hebrews 6:19-20 says that Christ is (after his ascension to the right hand of the Father) “within the veil,” it means “within the inner veil as high priest” like that of Melchizedek. And when Hebrews 10:19 says that we also (in the first century) already have “boldness (or confidence) to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,” it is also referring to believers having the same authority as the Old Covenant high priest to enter the Most Holy Place on the Day of Atonement. With the exception of SDAs, these are universally accepted interpretations of Hebrews 6:19-20 and 10:19.
This should not be difficult to understand. First, since Christ’s “flesh” was the “veil” of the Old Covenant sanctuary, then that divider-flesh was in both compartments at the same time. Second, since only one “veil” is mentioned, it is certainly the most important “veil” which separated the two compartments. Third, since that “veil” (Christ) is now seared at the right hand of the Father, then there is no longer a separating “veil.” Fourth, without a separating veil the old idea of “two” compartments (since Calvary) is now only “one” compartment (if we must speak of God=s dwelling place as compartments). Fifth, “Within the veil” clearly refers to the Day of Atonement in Leviticus 16:2, 12 and 15. The quotations by Ellen White twist the obvious truth into the lie that Jesus only ministered as an ordinary priest in the heavenly sanctuary=s outer compartment and separated from the Father until 1844.
With one exception (Heb. 9:3), five of six references to “veil” in the New Testament refer to the veil between the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place B not to the curtain separating the Holy Place from the courtyard. Matthew 27:51, Mark 15:38 and Luke 23:45 all clearly refer to the veil to the Most Holy Place that was ripped in two when Christ died. The ripped veil exposed the Most Holy Place to all onlookers. Not only the high priest, but ordinary priests, ordinary Levites, ordinary Jewish men, and ordinary Jewish women inside the Temple could “boldly” look inside the Most Holy Place because the new priesthood of believers was being inaugurated. There was no longer any necessity for a two-roomed ministry either on earth or in heaven.
“Veil” (KJV: vail) in the Old Testament is the Hebrew paa-ro-ket (Strong’s 6532) and refers to the veil between the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place. Paaroket is translated “veil” 25 of 25 times in the KJV. See Exodus 26:31-35; 27:21; 30:6; 35:12; 36:35; 38:27; 39:34; 40:30; 40:21, 22, 26; Lev. 4:6, 17; 16:2, 12, 15; 21:23; 24:3; Numb. 4:5; 18:7; 2 Chron. 31:14;
The phrase, “within the veil (inside the vail)” occurs six (6) in the Old Testament and always refers to the Most Holy Place, particularly on the Day of Atonement in Leviticus 16. See Ex. 26:33; Lev. 16:2, 12, 15; Numb. 18:7. The phrase, “without the veil (outside the vail)” occurs four (4) times in the Old Testament and always refers to the Most Holy Place. See Ex. 26:35; 27:21; 40:22; Lev. 24:3.
This is important! B even though they are made of the same material, both the “veil” between the Holy Place and outer court and the “veil” at the entrance of the outer court are a different Hebrew word, maa-saak (Strong=s 4539). This word is never translated as “veil” in the King James Version used by early Adventists or in any other version! Instead, these two veils are called the “hangings” or “coverings” (KJV), “screens” (NKJ, NAS, RSV) and “curtains” (NIV). Maasaak is called “hanging” or “covering” 25 of 25 times in the KJV. See Exodus 26:36, 37; 27:16; 35: 15, 17, 36, 18; 39:38, 40; 40:5, 8, 28, 33; Numb. 3:25,31; 4:25, 26. It is the “hanging for the door of the tent” in Exodus 26:36; 35:15; 36:37; 39:38; 40:5; 40:28 and Numbers 3:25; 4:25. It is the “hanging for the gate of the court” in Exodus 27:16; 35:17; 38:18; 39:40; 40:8; 40:33 and Numbers 3:26; 4:26. It is the “veil of the covering” for the mercy seat in Exodus 35:12; 39:34; 40:21 and Numbers 3:31; 4:5. Again, whenever maasaak is associated with the Most Holy Place, the wording is “veil of the covering” – “paaroket of the maacaak.” See Ex. 39:34.
This tedious listing would be totally unnecessary for any Bible study group other than the Seventh-day Adventists. Yet, in the light of overwhelming evidence, SDAs cannot change what Ellen G. White has written that “within the veil” in Hebrews 6:19 refers to the hanging at the entrance of the tabernacle. “The ministration of the priests throughout the year in the first apartment of the sanctuary, ‘within the veil,’ which formed the door and separated the holy place from the outer court, represents the work of ministration upon which Christ entered at his ascension” (GC420).