Hebrews 10:11 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Hebrews 10:11, NIV: Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins.

Hebrews 10:11, ESV: And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins.

Hebrews 10:11, KJV: And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:

Hebrews 10:11, NASB: Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins;

Hebrews 10:11, NLT: Under the old covenant, the priest stands and ministers before the altar day after day, offering the same sacrifices again and again, which can never take away sins.

Hebrews 10:11, CSB: Every priest stands day after day ministering and offering the same sacrifices time after time, which can never take away sins.

What does Hebrews 10:11 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

This continues the same theme begun several verses earlier: the very nature of the Old Testament sacrifices proves they were not meant to be our ultimate salvation. The priests of the old covenant had to constantly offer sacrifices. They had to pass the priesthood along when they died (Hebrews 7:23), and to repeatedly bring the same atonement to God, both for their own sin and for those of the people (Hebrews 7:27). If it was possible for those sacrifices to permanently cleanse us from sin, there would have been no need to offer them over and over (Hebrews 10:1–2). They simply could not "take away sins." All they could do was temporarily cover them.

This means that a large part of God's intent in arranging the old covenant was to prepare us for Jesus. The purpose of the tabernacle, and the old covenant, was to explain our own weakness, and foreshadow the coming of One who would offer a single, perfect, permanent payment for human sin (Hebrews 9:7–12). Part of this symbolism is in the fact that the priests are said to be "standing," a contrast to Christ as described in the next verse.