Listen to I Believe In The New Covenant, the second in the series of messages entitled "What I Wished I Had Known Forty Years Ago," preached by Paul Burleson, on Sunday night, January 7, 2007. The outline is presented below to follow along as you listen.
WHAT I WISH I’D KNOWN FORTY YEARS AGO
“I Believe in the New Covenant”
Texts:“And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.” Hebrews 9:15
“For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” Romans 6:14
I. The Covenant of “the Law”
Exodus 34:27-28 - “And the LORD said unto Moses, Write thou these words: for after the tenor of these words I have made a covenant with thee and with Israel. And he was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights; he did neither eat bread, nor drink water. And he wrote upon the tables the words of the covenant, the ten commandments.”
The Covenant of “the Law” . . . 1. Was made with Israel specifically, and 2. It was based on law or performance
What does the Covenant of 'the Law' say?
“If you” keep the Law, “then I, the Lord, will bless you.”
“If you don’t” keep the Law, “then I, the Lord, won’t or can’t bless you.”
Israel failed to keep the law. The sacrificial system was established, including the Temple and the sacrifices and the priesthood to point Israel, in picture form, to a coming Messiah/Redeemer.
This first covenant, or Covenant of 'the Law' has been viewed
1. By Dispensationalists: As set aside for the church age, but there is coming in the future a new land, and a new Temple, and a new peace for the nation of Israel.
2. By Reformed Covenant Theologians: As part of the one Covenant of Grace -- the only eternal covenant. The covenant of 'law,' and all other covenants, are simply different administrations of this one, eternal Covenant of Grace.
I disagree with both Dispensationists and Reformed Covenant Theologians.
II. The New Covenant
2 Corinthians 3:6 - “Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.”
2 Corinthians 3:14-16 - “But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away.”
Hebrews 10:9 - “Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.”
The Old Covenant had a Mediator - Moses.
The New Covenant has a Mediator - Christ.
The Old Covenant had a High Priest -Aaron.
The New Covenent has a High Priest - Christ
The Old Covenant had a sacrifice of goats & calves.
The New Covenant has a sacrifice - Christ
The Old Covenant had a Temple - in Jerusalem.
The New Covenant has a Temple - Christ in me.
The Old Covenant had a Law Giver - Moses.
The New Covenant has a Law Giver - Christ: “Hear ye Him”
The New Covenant is Christocentric:
“Love”- “as I have loved you” and “Forgive”- “as you have been forgiven”
1 Corinthians 9:20-21 -“And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.”
I do not hold to a Reformed Covental Theology because: 1. There is no mention of a covenant as pre-existing; covenants relate to time only, and 2. Covenants are also plural in Scripture, not singular.
Romans 9:4 - “Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the COVENANTS, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises.”
Ephesians 2:12 - “That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the COVENANTS of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world.”
"Why is this so important that I wish I had known it 40 years ago?
1. It completely changes my view of the cross
The cross did…redeem me
The cross did…sanctify me
The cross did…glorify me
There are no lists needed to perform in order to get His blessings
2. It completely changes my view of the law
Ten Commandments – are “school teacher” to bring Israel to the need of a Messiah.
We, the church, have a new Law-giver -- Christ Himself. Hear ye Him.
3. It completely changes my view of living
All of life is … now a gift … and is sacred … and is to be lived ... as a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving … because of His grace given in Christ Jesus our Lord.