07 Nov 2018
God’s New Promise
The early Church took to calling the Jewish scriptures ‘the Old Covenant’. Later they used the Greek form of the word, ‘Testament’. The Old Covenant was made between God and the Jewish nation, with Moses as the mediator between the two.
Unlike us sinful, fallible people, God kept all His promises. The covenant failed on the part of the Jewish nation. The people became ungrateful and disobedient, turning away from the Lord and toward false gods. They took on the ways of other peoples, which God had told them not to do. They were called to be a people set apart.
In Hebrews 8:8 (NLT), the writer quotes from Jeremiah 31:31: “‘The day is coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and Judah.’” Hebrews 8:10-12 says: “‘I will be their God… and I will never again remember their sins.’”
A covenant is a binding agreement, and God will never break or withdraw it. Sinful man, on the other hand, has constantly broken his side. The only way it could be renewed was through a reapplication of God’s grace and love.
Hebrews 8:13 (NLT) says: “When God speaks of a ‘new’ covenant, it means he has made the first one obsolete. It is now out of date and will soon disappear.” The old covenant was written in stone and administered by the priests. The new one was completely different. Hebrews 8:10 says: “I will put my laws in their minds, and I will write them on their hearts.”
Pause and reflect: The old covenant was a legalistic affair that had to be learned, while the new one was based on personal relationship. Thank Jesus that, through His death on the cross, He set in place this new covenant between God and anyone who will respond.