The old covenant involved broken promises from the physical nation of Israel.
Under the old covenant, the people focused on the external, stone, letter of the law.
The people made the old covenant a superficial covenant of works.
The new covenant has always been the only way for people to be saved.
Under the new covenant, people focus on the internal, heart, spirit of the law.
Under the new covenant, people have a personal relationship with Jesus.
Under the new covenant, people obey the Ten Commandments because of their love for God.
The new covenant was ratified by the blood of Jesus long after the old covenant was ratified.
The new covenant involves kept promises for the spiritual nation of Israel.
Some key verses:
Heb 8:6-9, 2Co 3:6, Ex 19:7,8, Ro 9:30-32, Ac 4:10-12, Heb 8:10, Heb 10:16, Jn 17:3, Jn 14:15,21, Mt 26:28, Jn 19:28-30
It is false to think that the old covenant is the Ten Commandments.
It is false to think that the Ten Commandments are obsolete.
It is false to think that the new covenant was introduced after the old covenant.
It is false to think that there have been two different ways to be saved.
Some key verses:
Ro 3:30,31, 2Ti 1:9, Rev 14:6, Eph 2:8-10
A Covenant is a Mutually Agreed upon Relationship
Covenant - "Literally, a coming together; a meeting or agreement of minds. A mutual consent or agreement of two or more persons, to do or to forbear some act or thing; a contract; stipulation." (Webster's Dictionary 1828)
Effective covenants are formulated in an orderly and formal manner, with unambiguous definitions of the following:
The parties - the persons entering into the agreement.
The terms - the agreement conditions, responsibilities, and consequences.
The benefits - the positive consequences of compliance.
The penalties - the negative consequences of violation.
The ratification process - the formal process that finalizes the agreement (e.g., signatures).
The essence of any covenant is a special relationship between its parties.
Examples: Adoption, business, citizenship, marriage
God is a god of order and offers well-defined covenants with His creation. (
God's Universal Relationship with all People
God has a rightful relationship to all people because of Who He IS. (
He is the Creator. (
Ge 1:26, Col 1:16)
He is the Sustainer. (
Mt 5:44,45, Jas 1:17)
He is the Judge. (
2Co 5:10, Rev 20:11,12,15)
God's Special Relationship with His People
God engages in a special relationship with all who believe in His Son. (
Jn 3:16, Jn 14:6)
Jesus is our Saviour. (
Ac 4:12, 1Jn 5:12, Tit 2:13)
Jesus is our Lord. (
Jn 14:15,21, Rev 17:14)
We are His people. (
Jn 10:14, 1Pe 2:9,10, Rev 21:3)
We are His children. (
Jn 1:12,13, Ro 8:15, Gal 4:6)
We are His friend. (
We are His bride (a spiritual relationship akin to marriage). (
Mt 22:1-14, Mt 25:1-12, Rev 19:7-9)
God's Covenant with Adam and Eve
God made a covenant with Adam and Eve after the fall. (
Note that this covenant was focused on Jesus (the woman's Seed).
This was a revelation of what is called the new covenant.
God's Covenant with Abraham
God made a covenant with Abraham. (
Ge 15:5,6,18, Ge 17:5-11,19-21, Ex 2:23-25, Ps 105:7-11)
Note that this covenant was focused on Jesus (the Seed). (
This was another revelation of the new covenant.
The Old Covenant (God's Covenant with Physical Israel)
God magnified His moral law (the Ten Commandments) to point out sin. (
Isa 42:21, Ro 5:13,20)
God magnified His system of ceremonial types that pointed to Christ. (
Ex 25:8,9,40, Ex 25-31, Heb 8:2,5)
God magnified His health laws to promote health. (
God formalized a system of civil laws necessary to maintain law and order. (Ex 21-23)
The people made the old covenant a superficial covenant of works. ("We will do.") (
Ex 19:7,8, Ex 24:3,7, Dt 5:27, Ro 9:30-32)
The people believed they could obey the commands in their own power, without help from God.
God allowed the absense of provisions for divine assistance so the people would come to realize their need for Christ. (
The people made a superficial commitment, rather than one from the heart. (
Ex 32:1-4, Dt 5:28,29) (compare 1Sa 16:7 and Eze 36:26)
Hagar is identified as symbolic of the old covenant. (
Abraham relied on his own works when he attempted to receive the promised son through Hagar, rather than keeping faith in God.
Attributes of the old covenant
God found fault with the people because they did not keep their promises. (
Heb 8:6-9, Jer 11:6-8)
Included the ceremonial law ("blood of"
Ex 24:8, "ark of" Heb 9:1-12)
Focused on the letter of the law (externalized, mechanical ritual) (
Ratified with the blood of an animal sacrifice (
Mediator - Moses, chosen by the people because of their fear of God after hearing Him speak the Ten Commandments. (
The moral law (the Ten Commandments) is not obsolete.
Not faulty (
Ne 9:13, Ps 19:7, Ro 7:7,12, Ro 8:4, Jas 1:25 compare Jas 2:11,12)
Written by God's own finger (
Ex 31:18, Ex 32:16, Dt 5:22, Ex 34:1)
Spoken by God directly to the people (
Ex 20:1-17, Dt 5:22, Dt 10:4)
God expects obedience to His law. (
Pr 28:4,9, Jer 7:8-10, Mt 28:19,20, Ro 7:21-25, Ro 8:7,8, 1Jn 3:4-10)
The moral law played a role in the old covenant, yet was distinct from the agreement itself.
"words of" (
"tablets of" (
Dt 9:15, Heb 9:4)
"made with the children of Israel" (
The health laws are not obsolete because our bodies have not changed.
The essence of the civil laws are not obsolete because civil order is still a fundamental necessity.
The ceremonial laws are obsolete because their types have all been realized by Christ. (
The New Covenant (God's Covenant with Spiritual Israel)
The new covenant is God's eternal plan of grace through faith in Jesus. (
Gal 3:14-18, Eph 2:8-10)
The new covenant has always been the only way for people to be saved. (
The people obey the Ten Commandments because of their love for God. (
The people obey the Ten Commandments because of their faith in God. (
Divine assistance is provided through a personal relationship with the Spirit of Christ. (
Ro 8:3,4,9,10, 1Co 6:19,20, 2Co 3:18, Gal 5:18, Php 3:7-9)
Attributes of the new covenant
Better promises (
Heb 8:6, Jn 19:28-30)
God puts His laws in our mind and heart. (
Eze 11:19,20, Heb 8:10 compare 2Co 3:3, Heb 10:16)
We have a personal relationship with Jesus. (
Jn 17:3, Heb 10:19-22, Heb 8:11)
Our sins are forgiven and forgotten. (
Focused on the spirit of the law (internalized, loving commitment) (
Ratified with the blood of Jesus at His death on the cross (
Mt 26:28, Heb 9:11-26)
Mediator - Jesus, chosen by God the Father. (
Heb 8:6, Heb 9:15, Heb 12:24)
Gal 3:8, 2Ti 1:9, Rev 13:8, Rev 14:6)
It is called "new" because it was ratified long after the old covenant was ratified. (
The works of the moral law are a fruit of the new covenant, a natural consequence of spiritual transformation. (
2Co 5:17, Jas 2:14,20-22,26, Heb 13:20,21)