Covenents 3

Covenants 3

NEW Covenant
The New Covenant is the fulfillment of all the covenants from the Adamic Covenant to the Davidic Covenant, which were all temporary covenants. The words of this covenant are found in the 4 Gospels, the Acts and all the Epistles from Romans to Jude and also Revelation. In other words, the New Testament. This covenant began with the nation of Israel. In Romans 1:16, Paul says that the gospel of Christ is the power of God unto salvation to all who believe: to the Jew first and also to the Greek. The covenant began with Israel but was not to stop there. The Adamic Covenant was made after the sin of Adam and redemption was needed for humanity. The Noahic Covenant was for the same reason. The Abrahamic Covenant to the Davidic Covenant had been made with the chosen nation Israel in mind. The New Covenant fulfills all of them and in this covenant we are brought face to face with redemption. The New Covenant was prophesied in Jeremiah 31:31-33. In the New Covenant, Jesus fulfills all of the Messianic promises that were given in the other covenants. Also, through the cross, Jesus abolished the temporary elements of the other covenants, such as the Aaronic priesthood and all of the animal sacrifices. Jesus is the seed of the woman in the Adamic Covenant and also the seed in the Abrahamic Covenant. Jesus abolished physical circumcision from the Abrahamic Covenant and made circumcision of the heart ‘spiritual’ in the New Covenant. In Romans 15:8, Paul tells us that Jesus was made a minister to the Jews to confirm the promises made to the patriarchs. In Galatians 3:8, Paul tells us that the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the gentiles by faith, preached the gospel in advance to Abraham. The chief blessing of the New Covenant is the salvation of the soul. Included in the meaning of the word salvation, is, “safety”, “security”, “preservation”, “deliverance”, and “wholeness”. Paul tells us in Ephesians 1:3 that salvation is a spiritual blessing that Jesus came to bring us from God. The following benefits are made possible spiritually by this great salvation:
(1 Pardon: Forgiveness and remission of the penalty of sin; [Acts 10:43 and 13:38-39]. The Old Covenant simply covered forgiven sin. The New Covenant provides cleansing for forgiven sin: [1 John 1:7-9].
(2 Justification: Declaring that we are righteous and in right standing before God; [Romans 3:24-26]. The Mosaic Covenant law could not make a person just: [Romans 3:19-20].
(3 Regeneration: By which one is born again into the family of God; [John 3:1-5 and 1 Peter 1:23].
(4 Assurance: Whereby one has the witness of the Spirit that he or she is secure; [Hebrews 6:10-12].
(5 Sanctification: Whereby one is set apart unto the Lord; [John 17:17, 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 and Ephesians 5:26-27].
(6Adoption: Whereby one is placed as a son in the family of God; [Romans 8:15,23 and Galatians 4:5].
(7 Glorification: This is the final work of redemption in the perfected saint; [Romans 8:17,30 and 2 Corinthians 3:18].
While He was on the earth, Jesus, in His ministry, went about preaching and teaching in their synagogues, the gospel of the kingdom of God. Healing was also a part of His ministry: [Matthew 4:23-24]. The church is to be the instrument that Jesus uses today to bring the gospel of the kingdom to all nations: [Matthew 28:18-20]. There are many verses in the book of Acts that say that the church was fulfilling this command. With the preaching and teaching of the gospel by the disciples, many persons were born into the kingdom of God and were added to His church: [Acts 2:41-47, 5:14 and 11:24]. We have been delivered from the power of darkness unto the kingdom of God: [Colossians 1:13-14]. A big problem in the church today is tradition versus the word of God: [Matthew 15:1-9 and Mark 7:1-13]. I know a lot of people are going to say that, “that had to do with the Pharisees”, but it is the same in all the Christian churches today. We have more pharisaical type people in our churches now than what they had in all of Judaism in the time of Jesus. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit is prophesied in Ezekiel 36:25-27 and confirmed in Hebrews 10:22. Jesus promised us the Holy Spirit in John 7:37-39, 14: 16-17, 15:26 and 16:7-15. The fulfillment of this promise began in Acts chapters 2,10 and11, where both Jew and gentile were baptized in the Holy Spirit. The healing ministry of the Messiah, (Christ), was prophesied in Isaiah 53:4-5 and confirmed in Matthew 8:16-17 and 1 Peter 2:24. There are many acts of healing by Jesus in the 4 gospels. Healing is a blessing from God in the New Covenant that began with Jesus and the apostles and the disciples and on down to us. Miracles are also a blessing of the New Covenant and we find that in 1 Corinthians 12:10. As we read in 1 Corinthians 12:1-13, there are many more gifts listed. The New Covenant also has a blessing of deliverance. In all my studies I have come to the conclusion that a born again believer in Jesus Christ cannot be possessed by a demon or the devil. We have the Holy Spirit living in us and there is no way that the Holy Spirit and a demon can abide in the same place. We cannot mix Israel with the church. They just don’t mix. Israelites could be possessed by demons because the Holy Spirit did not indwell them. But, He does the born again believer. So, what is the deliverance? It is from the power of any sin like pornography, adultery, coveting, lust and all the rest. We have the power to cast out demons from any unbeliever: [Acts 16:16-18]. The New Covenant gives us the blessing of resurrection. Daniel prophesied of it in Daniel 12:13 and Hosea in Hosea 13:14 and Job in Job 19:25-27 and Jesus taught and demonstrated that He was the resurrection and the life in John 5:28-29 and 11: 25-26 and 43-44. Another blessing is of eternal life: [1 John 5:11-12]. Some of the curses in the other covenants are still in affect and some others have been done away with. In the New Covenant there are 3 main curses: The curse of the Jewish nation; Jesus ministered to them in the power of God, showing many signs and wonders, but they rejected Him and had Him crucified. Matthew 27:24-25 tells us that Pilate washed his hands and claimed that he was innocent of the shedding of the innocent blood of Jesus. The Jewish nation answered that His blood would be on their heads and the heads of their children. The curse of the Jewish nation cannot be lifted from “each individual” until “they” accept the blood of Jesus for cleansing. The curse of the wicked nations; all nations have rejected Jesus as savior. Romans 1:18-32 explains all of the reasons for this curse on the nations. The last is the eternal curse. This curse of curses is executed at the Great White Throne Judgment when all who have rejected Jesus will be cast into the lake of fire: [Matthew 25:41 and Revelation 20:11-15]. The New Covenant is a covenant of ‘grace’ rather than ‘works’ and it depends on ‘faith’ above ‘works’. The terms of this covenant are repentance and obedience. Repentance is the first step in coming to God: [Matthew 3:1-2, 6-12 and 4:17 and Acts 17:30 and 26:20]. Genuine repentance is changing direction and turning to God. Faith is the channel through which we receive the blessings: [Ephesians 2:8, Hebrews 11:6, John 3:16 and Ephesians 1:1-3]. The second step is Obedience. In all of the teachings of Jesus in the gospels, He laid down many conditions and obedience is the key: [Hebrews 5:8-9 and John 14:15 and 15:10]. The Mosaic Covenant required ‘legal’ obedience, The New Covenant requires ‘loving’ obedience: [1 John 3:22-24]. Jesus left us many commandments, but in Matthew 22:37-40, He breaks it down into 2. Love God and love your neighbor. All the commandments are summarized in the word love: [1 John 5:3, 2 John 6 and Romans 13:8-10]. Jesus, by His death on the cross, fulfills all the requirements of the Levitical law in the Mosaic Covenant. God was very particular about the body and blood of those animal victims. Their bodies had to be without blemish and without spot and they had to be disposed of in a certain manner. After the blood was used, it had to be disposed of in a certain manner also. Jesus fulfilled all of these requirements. The blood of this covenant is the blood of Jesus. From His blood we receive spiritual words: (1 Atonement: [Romans 5:11]. This means that we receive the blessings of the recovered favor of God. (2 Propitiation: [Romans 3:25 and 1 John 2:2 and 4:10. One of the meanings is “Mercy Seat”. According to the Mosaic Covenant, once a year the High Priest sprinkled blood on it and the blood became a covering for sin. In the New Covenant the blood of Jesus is not sprinkled on the Mercy Seat, but becomes a fountain of blood and all who come to Jesus are washed in that blood. His blood is an expiation of sin. In other words, the sin expires. It dies. Another meaning for propitiation is mercy. “For God so loved the world”: [John 3:16]. That is the whole world and that is a provision that no one is, by Divine pre-determination, excluded from the blood of Jesus. (3 Substitution: There is no word ‘substitute’ or ‘substitution’ in the bible. Romans 5:8 and 1 Peter 3:18 show us that God sent Jesus to the cross to die for our sins so that we would not have to die. If that is not substitution, I don’t know what is. Jesus died so that we could live. (4 Redemption: Colossians 1:14 tells us that we have been set free. Redeem means to buy back and that is what Jesus did for us. We had the penalty of death on our heads because of sin and Jesus took that penalty on Himself to redeem us. Read verse 13. It tells us that we are translated to the kingdom of Jesus. We are transferred or carried away from the kingdom of this world to the kingdom of God. (5 Ransom: In Exodus 21:30, a sum of money is laid upon the owner of an ox that had gored someone. If the owner is not stoned, he has to pay a ransom of a sum of money laid on him for his life. In the New Testament: Matthew 20:28, Mark 10:45 and 1 Timothy 2:5-6, God has put a price on the head of men and women because of sin and that price is death. No one is exempt because all have sinned. There is no money involved in the ransom of humanity. In order to save humanity, a human sacrifice had to be made. Jesus is the Lamb of God who gave His life for the ransom of all. There is one stipulation. We have to accept His blood and be washed by it to cleanse us from our sin. Jesus paid the ransom price that God set for our salvation. (6 Reconciliation: 2 Corinthians 5:18-21 and Hebrews 2:17 tell us, that by the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, we who believe upon Him, are, by God’s own act, delivered from justly deserved death and made friends with God and children of God, whereby we can call Him Father. All of these words give us a bigger picture of what the blood of Jesus accomplished. In Matthew 26:26-28, Mark 14:22-24 and Luke 22:19-20, at the Last Supper, Jesus establishes an ordinance for the church, that we call “Communion” or “The Lord’s Table”. To be able to understand communion we have to look at the ordinance of Passover which was established by God for the Jewish nation in Exodus 12:43. There was also a time and a date set aside for keeping it: [Leviticus 23:5 and Numbers 9:2-3]. In Exodus 12:7-13, the Israelites had to take the blood of the sacrificial lamb and put it on the lintel and the doorposts of their houses so that the death angel would pass over them. The death angel passed over them, but slew all of the first born of Egypt, because there was no blood on their doors. All of the Israelites had blood on their doors, because there is no record of any of them dying. In verses 9-10, they were also told to eat all of the sacrificial lamb. Even though this took place before the Mosaic Covenant was given, it is considered part of it, part of the law. From the Old Testament Passover we go to the New Testament Passover. At the Last Supper, Jesus and His apostles were celebrating the Jewish feast of Passover. They were eating the lamb that had been slain and all the other ingredients that were required in that Passover meal. While they were still eating of that meal, Jesus took bread and blessed it and broke it and gave it to the apostles and said, “Take, eat, this is my body”. He then took the cup of wine and gave thanks and gave it to the apostles saying, “Drink ye all of it, for this is my blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins”. From this, we get our “Communion Service” or whatever various churches call it. Everything that Jesus had done in His 3 year ministry was to prepare His disciples for the transition from the Old Covenant (Law), to the New Covenant (Grace), from the old Passover to the new Passover. In 1 Corinthians 5:7, Paul tells us that Jesus is our Passover. In John 1:29 and 36, John the Baptist calls Jesus “the Lamb of God”. Also in verse 29, John says, “Which taketh away the sin of the world”. What John is saying, is that Jesus was God’s sacrificial lamb. The Communion Service should be a powerful service, but it is not. Why is that? Because we are conducting that service in man’s way and not in God’s way. The problem is that theologians and scholars have robbed us of the way that Communion should be held. Jesus has said “take, eat, this is my body” and, “drink, this is my blood”. They say you can’t do that, because it is cannibalism. But that is not what God says. In the middle of eating the Jewish Passover, Jesus instituted the Christian Passover. As in the Jewish Passover, where they ate the sacrificial lamb, the Christian Passover calls for us to eat the sacrificial lamb and that lamb is Jesus. In a Communion Service, what are the people thinking of when they eat the cracker or the bread? Probably, they are thinking of how small or how stale it is or their sins or the cross or so many other things. In 1 Corinthians 11:23-25, Paul tells us in verse 24 that Jesus took bread and gave thanks and broke it and said, “Take, eat, this is my body, which is broken for you. This do in remembrance of Me”. Then Paul tells us in verse 25 that after the same manner Jesus took the cup saying, “This cup is the New Testament in My blood. This do ye, as often as ye drink it, in remembrance of Me”. Jesus told them this at the Jewish Passover, which was a physical feast. He sat before them and they did not eat of His body or drink of His blood because He was pointing them to a time after the cross. Jesus was showing them physically what they would have to do spiritually to remember Him after His death. When Jesus died on the cross, it was the Christian Day of Atonement where the blood of Jesus was brought to heaven to the Holy of Holies, God’s throne, by the High Priest Melchisedek and presented to God. Jesus died for the sins of the world, but in order to receive that atonement and Passover, an individual must receive Jesus as his or her personal savior. We have gone from the physical in the Old Testament to the spiritual in the New Testament. So, what is the Communion Service about? It is remembering the broken body and shed blood of Jesus, and we do that by eating His body and drinking His blood. Spiritually I can eat the body of Jesus and drink His blood because that is what He has told us to do. So, if we listen to Jesus we can and will, but if we listen to man we won’t. If any individual goes into a Communion Service with what Jesus said in mind, it will become a powerful service for that person. The service in the church will not be powerful until the congregation gets involved in it. The only thing that makes a person worthy of taking Communion is, that he or she has to know Jesus as their personal savior. The Last Supper contains 2 feasts, the old Passover where an animal was sacrificed and eaten, and the new Passover where the Lord Jesus is sacrificed and eaten. In the old, the lamb that was eaten disappeared. In the new, the Lamb of God, Jesus, remains intact forever. He never disappears. We have to remember that the blood of Jesus is the most important element in the bible and we can’t let anyone take it away from us. Without the blood of Jesus there is nothing, we are nothing. There are events in the Mosaic Covenant that prefigure events in the New Covenant. One of them is the Day of Atonement, physical in the Old and spiritual in the New. In the Old, a new animal had to be sacrificed each year, but in the New, Jesus was sacrificed once and that was forever. The bible tells us in Matthew 27:51, Mark 15:38 and Luke 23:45, that when Jesus died on the cross, the veil separating the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies was torn in two. In Hebrews 10:19-20, the bible says that the flesh of Jesus is now the veil. In the Old, when the veil was torn, all priest could enter the Holy of Holies and in the New, all born again believers in Jesus Christ can enter the Holy of Holies, which is the throne of God, because we have been made priest. As such, we can pass through the veil, JESUS, and enter into the throne of God. Physical sacrifices are out, but God requires in us, spiritual sacrifices: Righteousness, in Psalm 4:5. Joy, in Psalm 27:6. A broken and contrite spirit: in Psalm 51:17. Thanksgiving, in Psalm 107:22 and 116:17. Our bodies a living sacrifice, in Romans 12:1-2. Praise: in Hebrews 13:15. To do good and fellowship: in Hebrews 13:16. The fatherly and Aaronic and Levitical priesthood of the Old Testament was fulfilled in the New Covenant order of Melchisedek. All of the Old Testament priest died but in the New Covenant order, Jesus and Melchisedek never die. We are also priest in that order: [Hebrews, chapters 5,6,7]. In contrast to Moses and Aaron and all Old Testament priest who were sinful and needed redemption, Jesus is a sinless priest who does not need redemption. He is the redeemer: [2 Corinthians 5:21]. Jesus is a divine human priest as shown in John 1:1-3 and Hebrews 2:17. As a divine human priest, Jesus is the perfect mediator of this covenant. A true mediator has to understand perfectly, the parties that need reconciliation. Moses and all of the Old Testament priest could understand man’s part but could not fully understand God’s part. Jesus as a divine priest could fully understand God’s part, and as a human priest, He can fully understand man’s part also, to bring reconciliation between a Holy God and a sinful man. There is a sanctuary in the New Covenant. If we look in all of the other covenants, from Adam to Jesus, they all had physical sanctuaries. When any of the Old Testament patriarchs built an altar for sacrifice to God, it was considered a sanctuary. It was physical because man built it. The sanctuary in the New Covenant is spiritual. Heaven is where God dwells and it is the Most Holy of all places. Most pictures that we see of heaven are of what is called the Pearly Gates. Usually, someone is there checking people in. That’s false. There are no Pearly Gates, but there is a ‘door’. The Old Testament gives us a picture of the veil that separated the 2 chambers in the Tabernacle. This was a physical veil. In the New Covenant, that physical veil becomes a spiritual veil. The flesh of Jesus has become that veil. In heaven, there is a ‘door’ to enter in, and Jesus, as the veil, has also become that ‘door’. There is no other entrance into heaven. All born again believers in Jesus Christ have become priest and are able to pass through that veil. We are spiritual priest after the order of Melchisedek, just like Jesus. Again, that is spiritual. We read in Matthew 7:21-23 and Luke 13:25-27, of people knocking on the door and saying, ‘Lord let us in’, and Jesus replying, ‘Depart, I never knew you’. Jesus is the veil to the believer and the door to the unbeliever. There is a gate and a door. The gate is found in Matthew 7:13-14 and Luke 13:24. These verses in Matthew and Luke give us a picture of what happens at the door. There is a difference between gate and door. An easy way to picture it would be to picture a house with a fence around it. The opening to that enclosure would be called a ‘gate’ and the opening into the house would be called a ‘door’. Anyone wanting to see someone in the house can enter the gate without knocking, but they have to knock on the door to be allowed in the house. There is a broad way and a narrow way. Most people understand that the unsaved enter the broad way, but they do not understand the narrow way. Most people believe that the only ones who enter the strait gate and walk that way are Christians. That is not the case. In all of the Christian churches, there are people who look like Christians, talk like Christians and act like Christians, but they are not Christians. Those people have entered the narrow way and are walking on their journey side by side with the Christians. When the journey is over (death) for both parties, they come to the door of heaven. Jesus is that door. For the born again believer, Jesus is the veil, and as priest we can go through the veil into heaven. The unbeliever is met by Jesus, the door. When they knock on that door, Jesus tells them that He never knew them and that they cannot enter in. It is too late for them. The seal of this covenant is the Holy Spirit. We can find that in Ephesians 1:13-14 and 2 Corinthians 1:22. In Hebrews 13:20, the bible tells us that this covenant is everlasting, [in the King James version], and eternal, [in the NIV]. So, when we talk about the blood of Jesus in this covenant, the blood never goes away. It is forever. The fountain of blood never runs dry. I want to say one more thing about the blood of Jesus. A Christian belief is that we have been washed in the blood of Jesus. In other words, we have taken a bath in His blood, and that bath has washed away all our sins. This is spiritual. If we can believe that, then why can’t we believe that we can drink His blood at a Communion Service, spiritually?

Bill Gauthier

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