Wednesday, August 12, 2009

This Covenant Is Faultless!

For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion to look for a second.
Hebrews 8:7
The first (old) covenant:
Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD and all the rules. And all the people answered with one voice and said, "All the words that the LORD has spoken we will do."...Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it in the hearing of the people. And they said, "All that the LORD has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient." And Moses took the blood and threw it on the people and said, "Behold the blood of the covenant that the LORD has made with you in accordance with all these words."
Exodus:24:3, 7-8 (emphasis added)
The new (second) covenant:
Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will establish a new covenant with the house of Israel and with 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. For they did not continue in my covenant, and so I showed no concern for them, declares the Lord. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws into their minds, and [I will] write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall not teach, each one his neighbor and each one his brother, saying, 'Know the Lord,' for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more."
Hebrews 8:8b-12 quoting Jeremiah 31:31-34 (emphasis added)
Do you see the difference? What was the problem with the first covenant? Where was the fault in it? Answer: The Israelites (Hebrews 8:8a)! It involved the vows of sinful man. There isn't one vow a sinful man can keep. That's why we need the gospel.

The reason that there will never be a third covenant isn't because we are any better than the Israelites. We're not. The reason that there will never be a third covenant is because the new covenant doesn't involve the vows we make. It doesn't involve the vows of sinful man. It only involves the vows of God. And there isn't one vow that the infinitely holy and righteous God won't keep. Therefore--unlike the first covenant--this covenant is faultless, there is no occasion to look for a third, and Paul can say without the least bit of presumption:
Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:23, 24 (emphasis added)
Glorious indeed. And to which I say:


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