The New Covenant

Spiritual warfare

God has a New Covenant and you can be a part of it.  It’s really good news.

The New Covenant was prophesied about by Jeremiah. God was complaining that the Old Covenant between God and Israel, which required God to curse Israel if Israel didn’t live up to its end of the bargain, was flawed. God wanted a covenant to bless people only, not curse them.

He laid it out in Jeremiah 31: 31-34, quoted by the author of Hebrews in Hebrews 8:8-12.

Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the LORD.

But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.  And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”

Let’s break it down, using the passage in Hebrews, starting in chapter 8, verse 10. It’s really 4 points.

1. I will put my laws into their minds and write them on their hearts.

God will live inside each believer. They won’t follow laws written on stones, but will follow the laws that he has written on their hearts and into their minds.

2. And I will be their God and they shall be my people.

God will relate to humans individually, not through nations.

3. And they shall not teach, each one his neighbor and each one his brother saying “Know the Lord,” for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.”

All will have access to the Father. Access won’t be barred by priests or religious practices anymore. Genetics won’t matter either.

4. For I will be merciful toward their iniquities and I will remember their sin no more.

No longer will animal sacrifices be needed to atone for sins, because through the Cross, God will no longer remember people’s sins.

The author of the Hebrews goes on: In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obselete. And what is becoming obsolete and growling old is ready to vanish away. This vanishing happened in 70 AD when Rome destroyed the Temple and the Old Covenant system.

But, you say, you’re not in the House of Judah or the House of Israel, right? You can’t participate in this Covenant!

Well, thankfully, the Covenant is not made between you and the Father, but between the Father and the Son. Jesus is the House of Judah and the House of Israel prophecies, and the Covenant has been made between God the Father and God the Son. To enter the Covenant, you must enter the Son, and to enter the Son, which you do when you have faith in Jesus.

The Prophet Ezekiel, a contemporary of Jeremiah’s, adds some additional tantalizing details about this New Covenant.

He wrote,

“I will give you a new heart and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you and cause you to walk in my statues and be careful to obey my rules. Ez 36:26-27.

God fulfills the New Covenant by pouring out His Spirit in us. The Spirit takes up resident in us, giving us a new heart, and causing us to follow the statutes of God. We can start loving others not as ourselves, but as God loves them.

How do we enter into this covenant? Through faith. God’s Spirit was poured out on all flesh in Acts 2, and but His Spirit needs a landing strip to enter into your heart… and that landing strip is faith in Jesus Christ.

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