Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith He, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount (Hebrews 8:5).
The writer of Hebrews reveals the character and nature of Jesus priesthood in chapter 7. Then, in chapter 8, he goes on to explain that this high priestly function is served by Christ in heaven where the true tabernacle is pitched. The earthly model is a man-made shadow or imperfect version of the heavenly structure. It was meant to be a visible object lesson for the people through which they could know about God and see the relationship of the parts by the practice of their worship.
Tabernacle worship was sufficient for the time, but God had a better plan. It took the form of a new covenant in which the promises were better, too. When the people did not continue in the first agreement to obey God, He promised to put His laws in their mind and write them in their hearts. Thus, the people could choose to accept God without all the visual aids. They could accept Christs once-for-all-time sacrifice by faith to cover their sin and hide Gods word in their minds. Christs blood then purged their conscience from dead works to serve the living God (9:14). Why was this better? Because the one sacrifice was sufficient for all time and all sin. Further, Jesus serves continually as our High Priest in heaven before the Father.
Notice that this second kind of agreement is not based on what we see but what we believe. Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen (11:1). Thus, you and I, the tabernacle, and the incarnate Christ are all shadows of things in the heavenly tabernacle where completeness is expressed. KBC