41. The New Covenant

A new year is already here, and I am reminded of the New Covenant that God has established based on the death of His beloved Son.

Here are a few thoughts from Mr. Bruce Rodgers that I have enjoyed, taken from his notes on 2 Corinthians 3:7-18.

Contrasting features of the
Old and New Covenants

Old Covenant New Covenant
1) ‘of the letter’; on tables of stone 1) of the Spirit, on fleshy tables of the heart.
2) a ministration of death – the letter killeth 2) a ministration of the Spirit – giving life
3) a ministration of condemnation 3) ministration of righteousness (imputed righteousness)
4)  Transitory – ‘abolished’ 4) Permanent – ‘remains’
5) Face of Moses – a passing glory 5) Face of Jesus Christ – eternal glory of God
6) A veil – upon the face and the heart.
The glory was not transmitted to people
6) A mirror – both face and heart – to receive and reflect glory (3:18; 4:6)
7) Minds blinded or hardened; unchanged… 7) ‘We…are changed into the same image…’

The Old came in glory, yet could only bring death and condemnation;
The New began with a death, which results in justification, life, and eternal glory.

From notes on Hebrews 8:8
…The LORD takes upon Himself the initiative and responsibility for the new covenant.  It is to be dependent only upon Himself for its terms and fulfillment.  Not the repeated, ‘I will…’  As Rom.9-11 unfolds, there is hope for Israel only in the sovereign mercy of God, for they have forfeited every promise of blessing under the terms of the first covenant.  Note that the word ‘new’(kainos) here means new in character, different in principle, than the first covenant.  In other places the word ‘new’(neos) means young, fresh, not old and decaying (ch.12:24; 2 Cor.3:6)

Is the church included in the New Covenant, or does it only have to do with Israel? Mr. Rodgers believes the church is included, and I agree (though some do not); there is general agreement that believers in this age at least enter into the blessings of the New Covenant. For an in-depth discussion on this topic, just send us an email.

May the Lord encourage us to remember His gracious ways with us and may we seek to love and honor Him in the year to come, as we await our Lord’s eminent return.

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