The New is Better Because… (Part Three)

“…None of them shall teach his neighbor, and none his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them. For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.’ In that He says, ‘A new covenant,’ He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away. (Hebrews 8:11-13).

Change for the sake of change is never a wise plan of operation. Not all change is good. Not all change is bad. As explained in Hebrews 8:8-13, God’s change from the first (or old) covenant to the second (or new and better) covenant is a huge blessing.

In this passage, nine proofs are given to demonstrate the “better-ness” of God’s new covenant. The first six (see the two previous posts) are: The new covenant is better because of its inherently superior quality; the new covenant is better because it fulfilled Old Testament prophecy; the new covenant is better because it is predicated upon greater redemption; The new covenant is better because Israel failed to keep the condition of obedience found in the first covenant; the new covenant is better because its focus is upon the inner, spiritual part of a human being; and The new covenant is better because it provides intimate fellowship with God.

The final three are:

The new covenant is better because it is individual and universal. There are no tribes or castes in the new covenant. Every Christian is a priest. Every Christian enjoys the same bounty of spiritual blessings—all of them (Ephesians 1:3). In Christ, from the least to the greatest has equal access to God via His revealed word and prayer. Everyone—regardless of nationality or spiritual heritage—has reserved in heaven an inheritance which is incorruptible, undefiled, and does not fade away (1 Peter 1:3).

The new covenant is better because it makes adequate provision for sin. In the old covenant there was a “reminder of sins every year” (Hebrews 10:3). Despite the vast amount of blood shed every year, the stubborn truth remained: “it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins” (Hebrews 10:4). The precious blood of the Lamb of God provided a permanent remedy to sin and its guilt. Because of Calvary, God can be merciful to human unrighteousness and remember our sins and lawless deeds no more.

The new covenant is better because it permanently replaced something that had become obsolete. If something designed to be a temporary fix remains in place past its functional capacity, it begins to break down. A temporary crown on a broken tooth is not—by definition and design—a permanent solution. The cavernous pothole of sin could never be permanently repaired by the old covenant. Not so, with the new covenant.

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Author: jchowning

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