I'm finishing up my draft of the study notes on Hebrews for the CEB Study Bible today. I am once again struck by the author's use of allegorical interpretation and dumbfounded by those interpreters who break out in a rash at the word. It starts in 7:2-3 with Melchizedek, but the real allegory central is in 9:8-9.
Two parts to the tent. The first part represents the old covenant and the present age that is waning (perhaps even the created realm), with its multiplicity of sacrifices. The second part represents the new covenant and the world that is coming, a heavenly age based on the one sacrifice of Christ.
I know why some evangelical scholars resist these sorts of interpretations and why "liberal" scholars used to make fun of them. For evangelicals, they make it clear that inerrancy cannot be formulated exclusively in terms of the literal or plain meaning of the text. For "liberals," it was their assumption that such interpretations were stupid that made them laugh at them. For revivalists and charismatics, it's business as usual ;-)
P.S. This is another indication that the fundamentalists and modernists of the early 1900's based their debate on the same assumptions, assumptions that we should question today.