The house is a family or lineage. When we say, ”I am going to the house of such and such” we mean the whole family. The house of David was the kingdom of Israel. Joseph, the husband of Mary, was of the family of David and of the house of David, that is, the kingdom of Israel (Luke 2:4). The house of David is the same house of Jacob, because they are of the same lineage. “Hear the word of Jehovah, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel” (Jer.2:4). “Come, house of Jacob, and let us walk in the light of Jehovah” (Is.2:5). The name of Jacob was changed to Israel, and for this reason the house of Jacob is the same house of Israel, or the kingdom of Israel (Gen.32:28). A thousand years after the death of Jacob, Jehovah still called the people of Israel by the name of Jacob. “‘Do not fear, you worm Jacob, you men of Israel; I will help you,’ declares Jehovah, ‘and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel’” (Is.41:14).
The letter to the Hebrews speaks of two different houses, revealing that the spiritual house of the Old Testament is not the same spiritual house of the New Testament. They are, therefore, two different houses in essence and in purposes. Let us read the text: “Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the Apostle and High Priest of our confession. He was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Mosses also was in all His house” (Heb.3:1-2).
This is interesting. Moses edified the house of Israel, and for this reason the house of Israel was called “house of Moses” (Heb.3:5). Moses was, therefore, the basis of the faith of the Jews (John 5:45). Any person who wishes to put his faith in the Old Testament must have Moses as their head and not Christ, for they are part of the house of Moses.
Continuing with the analyses of the letter to the Hebrews: “For He has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses, by just so much as the builder of the house has more honor than the house” (Heb.3:3). This text speaks of two glories: one greater, that is of Christ, and another lesser, of Moses. The glory of the house of Moses was the glory of the ministry of death and the glory of the law of Jehovah, engraved in stone. It was also the glory of the ministry of condemnation (2 Cor.3:7-9). The glory of Moses existed for the house that it edified. The glory of Jesus, much greater, exists for the house that it edifies. The foundation of the house of Moses is the law and the prophets, and the foundation of the house of Jesus is love, for love outshines Law, and so Paul says, “Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law” (Rom.13:8). The greater law, which is the law of love, wrecks the lesser law, which is the law of vengeance. “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another” (John 13:34). With this single commandment, Jesus destroyed the Law and the Prophets, and so Paul tells us that the Old Testament was abolished, that is, the house of Moses collapsed under the power of the rain, by the flood of the rivers, and by the violence of the strong winds (Matt.7:26-27).
When Moses descended from the mount, he had a veil over his face so that the children of Israel did not look at what was passing; that is, the house of Moses was not permanent. Jesus went up to a high mountain and was transfigured there before his disciples. His face shone as the sun, and his clothes became white as the light, and Moses and Elijah showed up, and were speaking with him (Matt.17:1-3). The glory of death and condemnation was hidden under a veil, but the glory of grace, of the Father’s love, and of the eternal life does not need a veil, for they are to be seen by everyone.
The apostles heard a voice from heaven saying, “This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well-pleased; hear Him!” (Matt.17:5; Luke 9:35). The God and Father of Our Lord Jesus Christ declared with these words that those that belong to the house of Christ do not have to listen to the Law and the Prophets, but to the Gospel of Jesus. So Luke said, “The Law and the Prophets were proclaimed until John; since then the gospel of the kingdom of God is preached” (Luke 16:16). It is not necessary to study theology to understand that the kingdom of God is outside of the Old Testament.
In Heb.3:4, we read that every house is edified by someone, nevertheless, the one who edified all things is God. Since God is the edifier, the house is of God, and so Jehovah god declares that the house of Israel is his house, and not Moses’ house. “My servant Moses, he is faithful in all My household” (Num.12:7). “‘For as the waistband clings to the waist of a man, so I made the whole household of Israel and the whole household of Judah cling to Me’, declares Jehovah, ‘that they might be for Me a people, for renown, for praise, and for glory; but they did not listen’” (Jer.13:11).
But the truth is that the house of Jesus is his own, and it was not edified by God (Heb.3:6); therefore, Jesus is the author and perfecter of salvation and of faith (Heb.12:2); so we have two houses: one of Jehovah, edified by Moses as a servant, and the house of Jesus Christ, edified by his own hands (Heb.3:5-6).
The house of Moses, that is, of Jehovah, is symbolized in the Jerusalem of the earth; and the house of Jesus is symbolized in the heavenly Jerusalem, for the kingdom of Jehovah is an earthly kingdom, and the kingdom of Jesus is a celestial kingdom (2 Tim.4:18).
The context of the chapter three of the letter to the Hebrews talks about two houses: the one of Moses, and the other of Jesus. Continuing with the reading, we read that the house of Jehovah fell in the desert at the time when Jehovah said, “As I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest’” (Heb.3:11). And the house fell in the desert (Heb.3:17). It did not last one thousand years, as it ended in 600 BC.
The house of Jesus, that is, the Church, is still standing after two thousand years. The house of Moses collapsed because it was edified upon the Law, and Paul says, “…because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin” (Rom.3:20). “For while we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were aroused by the Law, were at work in the members of our body to bear fruit for death” (Rom.7:5). “The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the Law” (1 Cor.15:56).
With the Law as its foundation the house of Jehovah was predestined to ruin, and that was what happened. Whoever wishes to return to fables and establish themselves on the foundation of death and condemnation begin from an already fallen state.
By Pastor Olavo Silveira Pereira