Another thought provoking and God-inspired article by Vivi.
Why is it important to understand what the New Covenant means? – so that we can make a free-will, quality decision to enter into covenant with Jesus
God is a covenant-keeping God and it is good to understand exactly what His New Covenant means, because the New Covenant takes us – as someone jokingly put it: “out of the death column and into the birth column!”
We are all destined for the ‘death column’ – not only do we have physical, perishable bodies which don’t go on forever but the Bible tells us that the ‘wages of sin = death’ and if we continue to live a life of sin, we are all destined to die spiritually as well physically.
Sin separates us from God. He warned Adam that if he disobeyed, he would die. The devil has always tried to deceive us into believing that God’s word is not true!
God’s Word is true and as He loves us, His creation, so much He made the way for us to get back what we had lost. He made the way by ‘becoming flesh’ i.e. He came to earth by being born as a human, although without a human father, (like Adam) but unlike Adam, He did not deserve death because He did not sin!
He was the only human who had not sinned and therefore He did not have to pay ‘the wages of sin’ – He was the only human who did not have to die!
Remember, God told Adam not to eat the fruit from the tree of the ‘knowledge of good and evil’ – God wanted us to live forever without ‘knowing’ (often means ‘experiencing’) or tasting evil. Jesus, in His humanity was the only human who lived the way God intended us to live, without knowing evil.
Jesus certainly came across evil, all through His earthly life. He came against evil all the time. Scripture tells us: ‘He came to destroy the works of the devil’. He came up against sickness, disease, hunger and pain, fear and death and He destroyed them each time, bringing about healing instead of sickness and disease, provision instead of hunger and deliverance instead of pain and fear – life instead of death.
He was showing us all the time He walked on this earth that He had come to reveal God – the love and power of God was in everything He did and the wisdom of God was in everything He said! Do you remember Jesus telling us that the thief comes ’to rob, kill and destroy’ – and He, Jesus comes ‘to give LIFE – and that more abundantly’. Jesus was God in the form of a human so that He could shed His own blood to seal the New Covenant with us to give us what He had – eternal life!
The problem is most of us don’t even understand what a covenant is all about! We are brought up in a ‘civilized’ culture that knows nothing of blood sacrifice and even our theologians don’t like to mention blood.
However, God teaches us from His Word that ‘without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness for sin’. Jesus chose to go through death as part of the covenant. His words were: ’This is my blood of the new covenant which is shed for many for the forgiveness of sins’. Even in most of our churches, when we have communion, the word ‘covenant’ is left out and some churches don’t even have the blood – symbolically of course, Jesus had lifted the cup of wine, called the cup of redemption after the Passover meal and He said: ‘As oft as you drink it, do this in remembrance of Me’.
He broke down the barrier that separated us from Him, namely sin, by taking the punishment on Himself – and made it possible for us to be redeemed, i.e. delivered out of the bondage of sin. Some people say He ‘paid’ for us, but that is not a good explanation because it implies that we are just ‘bought merchandise’! The Lord made us much more precious than that! He gave us the freedom to choose whether or not we wanted to be redeemed and He does not force anyone into His Kingdom.
If we choose to confess and repent of the sin which has separated us from Him, He forgives us and we become His children. We can receive His love and we can love Him and receive our redemption and our freedom from the bondage of sin.
We are no longer on a one-way road to death but can believe and KNOW that there is life after death. Jesus said so! He said: ‘Whoever believes on me, though He dies, yet shall he live’.
When Jesus removed the barrier that separated us from God, He also made the way for us to live in harmony with each other. Now we can really love God and each other. We can follow His example of always talking to God before we make any decision – and then do it God’s way. We can live with the right attitude, i.e. not even wanting to sin. Jesus came to earth to make the way back to God because everyone had sinned and was destined for the death column! Now we can get into covenant with Him and be born again!
Born of the spirit, so that when we die physically, we go right on living in the spirit – not separated from God, but we will find that we will be with Him! His New Covenant was confirmed with His blood to forgive many – ALL those who enter into covenant with Him! The way we get into covenant with Him, is to receive what He gives us and to give Him what is ours! What an uneven swop! But He loves us so much, He doesn’t mind – He designed it that way!
Jesus ratified the New Covenant with His blood which means He sealed it because he really meant it and will not break it. We have an awesome Father God who revealed Himself to us in time and space in Jesus. The ceremonial law was the parable, or picture He painted to show us how strongly He felt about sin. Jesus told us that He did not come to change the law – but to fulfill it and He did. He became the sacrifice to redeem us or get us back from the evil one who robs, kills, and destroys.
Let’s get into covenant with Jesus, our covenant-keeping God, who loved us so much He shed His own blood, so that we would be able to get into covenant with Him and live with Him forever! Instead of being lost, lonely and afraid of the unknown, let’s climb onto His lap and ‘seek His face’ (like a child tugging at his father’s beard for His attention).
He waits for us to do that, He gently draws us by His Holy Spirit and when we understand what a covenant relationship is and respond, we give Him joy! He said even the angels in heaven rejoice over one sinner who repents. It’s awful to think of how He suffered, but it’s wonderful to know that He thinks we are worth it!
The A’s, B’s, and C’s (below) of understanding the New Covenant are relatively easy, but we need to also understand the danger of the D’s. The devil is the ‘father of lies’ and the ‘master of deception’ – lies are easier to detect than deception!
The devil can make bad things look good and inviting – remember how he deceived Eve? First he cast doubt on what God had actually said, then he told her that the fruit would make her like God! The deception of darkness, drunkenness and divorce have trapped very many people…and as a result many lives have been broken. Praise God that He is our Healer and nothing is too difficult for Him!
The A’s are: If we call Him Adonai (Lord) we must give Him our All
The B’s are: If we believe, it should be evident in our behavior
The C’s are: To get into Covenant means commitment
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