A Better Covenant
Book of Hebrews Chapter 8
By understanding the Old Covenant compared to the New Covenant we can better understand the work that the Lord Jesus Christ has done for our salvation, so we have no work to do, but to believe in the work that Jesus has done for us.
Our faith must be based upon the Lord Jesus Christ!
We should understand that the Old Testament speaks of a Covenant of Works where humans had to do all the work, whereas the New Testament speaks of the Covenant of Grace where the Lord Jesus Christ has already completed all the work necessary for our salvation.
God did make a covenant of works with Adam.
Adam was told to obey God and he was promised eternal life for obedience, and eternal death for disobedience.
Adam failed because of disobedience and death entered the human race! Race meaning all humanity lumped into one group.
The Bible does not speak of any differences in the color of the skin as having any benefit or loss of benefits in the Word of God.
A works doctrine has no chance of pleasing God!
We cannot ever be good enough to enter into Heaven’s Gates!
We cannot ever do enough “good” work to please God!
There is no such thing as “our good” having to outweigh “our bad” before God will allow us in Heaven!
We have no goodness within us to begin with!
Rom 3:12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; “there is none that doeth good, no, not one”.
Rom 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) “dwelleth no good thing”: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
There is no amount of goodness that can reconcile us our Heavenly Father!
God solved this problem with His Covenant of Grace through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ!
The entire world has been under the Covenant of Works which is actually a Covenant of Death since the time of Adam!
Gen 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
Gen 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof “thou shalt surely die”.
As a result of Adam’s failure, God entered into a Covenant of Grace through which the problem of sin and death would be overcome forever!
God knew there would never be a perfect human!
Only God could provide the solution to this problem because it was God who made that covenant with Adam.
God made this solution because of His promises such as the one He made with Abraham.
Gal 3:17 And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, “the law”, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, “that it should make the promise of none effect”.
Gal 3:18 For if the inheritance be of the law, “it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise”.
Abraham came before the Law that was given to Moses which was a works covenant.
There is no life at all that can come by a works covenant because a works covenant becomes a covenant of death!
It is only by the “Gospel of Jesus Christ”, that the substance of God’s “Grace” is revealed!
The “Covenant of Works” could only be a “Covenant of Life,” “when obedience is perfect” which is impossible for the human being!
You See, God entered into a covenant with Adam as the head of the human race and it was up to Adam to fulfill his side of the covenant, but Adam failed.
Gen 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
Gen 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
The Apostle Paul once a devout Jew realized the truth of this covenant with Adam.
Rom 7:8 But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead.
Rom 7:9 For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.
Rom 7:10 And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.
Rom 7:11 “For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me”.
You see, without that law being given to Adam, then there would be no death!
Gal 3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, “Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them”.
Gal 3:11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, “The just shall live by faith”.
Gal 3:12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.
Gal 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, “being made a curse for us”: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
Gal 3:14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; “that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith”.
The penalty for disobedience to that covenant of works is stated in the term “die”!
Does God still demand perfect obedience of humans just as He did Adam?
Lev 18:5 Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: “which if a man do, he shall live in them”: I am the LORD.
Repeated in the New Testament.
Rom 10:5 For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, “That the man which doeth those things shall live by them”.
The thing that so many get confused about, is the fact that this obligation of mankind has been fulfilled in the Lord Jesus Christ!
God made this covenant with His Son before the human race existed!
2Th 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, “because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth”:
2Th 2:14 Whereunto he called you by our gospel, “to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ”.
2Ti 1:9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, “which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began”,
2Ti 1:10 “But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ”, “who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel”:
1Pe 1:2 Elect “according to the foreknowledge of God the Father”, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.
Our all-knowing God the Father planned our “redemption” before He created the human race.
God the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ would provide this “redemption” through His own “atoning” death, through the regenerating and the sealing of each believer which makes salvation according to our own faith and not by works!
Eph 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
Eph 1:4 “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world”, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
Eph 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
Eph 1:6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
Eph 1:7 In whom “we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace”;
Eph 1:8 Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;
Eph 1:9 “Having made known unto us the mystery of his will”, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:
Eph 1:10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:
Eph 1:11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, “being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will”:
Eph 1:12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
Eph 1:13 “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth”, “the gospel of your salvation”: in whom also “after that ye believed”, “ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise”,
These things are not so hard to understand if we would just read the Word of God that He has given to us!
God says we must diligently study the Word of God!
Our lesson states:
*Heb 8:1 Now of the things which we have spoken “this is the sum”: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;
Heb 8:2 A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.
Heb 8:3 For every high priest is ordained to offer gifts and sacrifices: wherefore it is of necessity that this man have somewhat also to offer.
Heb 8:4 For if he were on earth, he should not be a priest, seeing that there are priests that offer gifts according to the law:
Heb 8:5 Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount.
We should clearly understand that there are qualifications for any priest, pastor, bishop, Pope or anyone else who stands before God for humanity!
God had certain conditions that had to be met if there were to be the Perfect High Priest!
1) Heb 3:1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;
Heb 3:2 Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.
2) Heb 2:17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
Heb 2:18 For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.
3) Heb 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
Heb 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
4) Heb 7:26 For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;
Heb 7:27 Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.
5) Heb 2:18 For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.
6) Heb 5:5 So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee.
Heb 5:6 As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
7) Heb 5:9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;
Heb 5:10 Called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisedec.
8) Heb 6:20 Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
9) Heb 7:16 Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life.
10) Heb 7:25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.
11) Heb 8:1 Now of the things which we have spoken “this is the sum”: “We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;
Heb 8:2 A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man”.
No one, but the Lord Jesus Christ was able to meet all these qualifications!
You see this is the sum of the Book of Hebrews and the sum of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!
This is the chief point of the Book of Hebrews and in fact of all the Word of God!
Jesus Christ is the Sovereign Majesty of this universe!
Jesus Christ is the High Priest of the only proper place to worship in this universe!
Jesus Christ is the High Priest of Heaven!
Jesus Christ is the One in Heaven who can also reach each saint of God here upon this earth!
Jesus Christ is not in Heaven selfishly enjoying the great wonders of His creation.
Jesus Christ is not in Heaven soaking up all His glory.
Jesus Christ is in Heaven listening to and hearing the cries of His people and ministering to their needs, just as He always has!
It is the Lord Jesus Christ who is putting to end the murder of innocent babies answering prayers of the many who have prayed for this end.
It is a shame and disgrace that our own government insist on the continuation of the murder of the unborn child.
The EU is even worst in every category of sin and proud of it!
Jesus Christ is actively looking after the true sanctuary in Heaven!
This is the same place where God sits upon His throne!
Isa 41:9 Thou whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called thee from the chief men thereof, and said unto thee, Thou art my servant; I have chosen thee, and not cast thee away.
Isa 41:10 Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.
Isa 41:11 Behold, all they that were incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish.
It is the Lord Jesus Christ who offered the ultimate sacrifice, Himself, for our sins!
Tit 2:11 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
Tit 2:12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
Tit 2:13 “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ”;
Tit 2:14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
Tit 2:15 These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.
Jesus Christ was not born to be the High Priest of this world!
He will be King of kings when He returns!
Jesus Christ is the High Priest of Heaven!
Our job is to lead people to Heaven to the true High Priest for only He can save!
No one upon this earth has the power to pronounce you saved, it is a God thing that only Christ Jesus can accomplish!
Heb 11:10 For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
If we are just looking for a sanctuary upon this earth, then we are not committed to the High Priest of Heaven!
Rev 22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
It is the Lord Jesus Christ who is the Minister of the New Covenant which is a Superior Covenant!
*Heb 8:6 But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises. (The theme of our lesson today)
We see that this is a covenant God was made with His Son and humanity’s one part is to believe! (faith)
It is the Lord Jesus Christ who stands between humanity and the Almighty God, with the Lord Jesus Christ “the express image of God”, our Mediator.
This is why it is called “Grace”!
Jesus the Messiah has negotiated this covenant with His Father without the interference of mankind and it will remain this way!
It is the Almighty God who chose His Son for this role, and it was the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ who fulfilled His role, and is continuing to fulfill His role, as our Mediator and our High Priest.
It is easy to see that this covenant is founded upon better promises!
The Old Covenant (The Law) was a covenant of death because no one could keep all those old laws!
Those old laws could not bring about reconciliation!
The Law cannot make us holy!
The Law cannot make us acceptable to God!
The Law cannot provide a personal experience with the Almighty God!
The Law cannot teach us the love and the mercy of God!
Heb 7:19 For the law “made nothing perfect”, “but the bringing in of a better hope did”; by the which we draw nigh unto God.
Only Jesus Christ can make us perfect in the eyes of a Loving God!
The first covenant, the covenant of Law, was full of faults because it was a covenant of works!
*Heb 8:7 For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.
Heb 8:8 For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:
Heb 8:9 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.
The New Covenant eliminates the weaknesses of the Old Covenant!
If we look closely, we can see where God the Holy Spirit begins speaking. (Look for the word “I”).
It is God Himself who points out the weakness of that Old Covenant!
If we cannot believe God, then how can we expect His “Mercy” or His “Grace”!
Note: If the Old Covenant can reveal sin, but does not offer a way remove sin, then that covenant is useless!
Any Covenant that fails to meet the needs of the sinner is a Covenant of Death!
If the Old Covenant could provide a way for forgiveness, then there would have been no need for the Lord Jesus to die!
It is God who decided all these things!
These things make the Word of God gathered together in what we call the Bible the greatest book that could exist!
The New Covenant now becomes the “Good News” to the sinner because the Gospel makes a way for forgiveness because we have a “merciful” and “loving” God who wants each sinner to know this truth!
This is God’s plan of salvation not man’s plan!
The New Covenant is vastly different from the Old Covenant because our death is now just the doorway to eternal life!
Joh 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
Joh 3:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Joh 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
Joh 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
We should know that God does not regard anyone who rejects His Covenants!
God’s New Covenant is in effect for the Church but not for Israel at this time though it will be after they see the wrath of God.
Remember Israel is right now blind to the Gospel!
Rom 11:7 What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded
Rom 11:8 (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.
That “unto this day” would mean the day the Apostle Paul had authored the Book of Romans, and it is still in the future, when they too will believe the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ.
*Heb 8:10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:
Heb 8:11 And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.
Heb 8:12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.
After those days would be after the Church Age and the seven years of Tribulation which Israel will go through, but not the Church.
We must understand that the New Covenant of God is an inward power that did not exist until the Holy Spirit moved into our heart!
The heart that belongs to the Lord will then, sow righteousness into the mind of the believer!
When the blinders have been removed from Israel, they too can be “Born Again” into the family of God!
This of course is speaking of Israel as a nation and not the individual.
Every individual that hears the Gospel and the Holy Spirit cause conviction can be saved.
Salvation is a work brought about by the work of the Holy Spirit on earth!
Joh 14:17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
Joh 14:18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.
Joh 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:
That New Covenant of course is the Lord Jesus Christ.
Joh 1:10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.
Joh 1:11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.
Joh 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
Joh 1:13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
None can be acceptable to God without a new heart and a new mind and again we see the importance of repentance!
Repentance may not be preached in the Church anymore, but it is still a requirement even in this time of “Grace”!
With a new heart and mind comes a desire to follow and obey God!
We will be stirred to show God the same love He has shown to us!
Rom 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
God Himself says He will God to each believer!
We that believe are God’s children which means:
1) We can have fellowship with God.
2) We can pray and know our prayer will be heard.
3) We can call on God because we know of His “Mercy” and His “Grace”.
4) We will have God’s provision and protection.
5) We can have the power of the Holy Spirit to battle temptation and trials and have victory over them.
There is so much more that comes from a personal relationship with our Savior!
Rom 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
Rom 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
Rom 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
Rom 8:17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
Rom 8:18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
There is power in having a personal relationship with God!
There is no need for a human priest to make contact with Heaven!
As the Scripture says: We can boldly go into the throne room of God, we simply better be humble when we get there!
When we get to Heaven, we can know God face to face and live forever!
We can now approach God through His Son Jesus!
We can know, it is not just the nation of Israel, who still wear the blinders, that God will accept us, as He accepts all nations, all races, and all peoples, rich or poor.
As believers we can know the power of “forgiveness”!
The forgiveness of sins is the basis for all the promises of God!
God also directs each of us to be just as forgiving as He is forgiving!
The forgiveness of God is based upon the “mercy” of God!
We are not forgiven because of some law, but we are forgiven by the “Grace” of God, through the Lord Jesus Christ!
We can be saved if we believe the Lord Jesus Christ died in payment for our sins!
Jer 31:34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.
When God says He will remember our sins no more He means it!
God has removed our sin as far as the distance from the east to the west which is infinite!
Psa 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.
When God says forgiveness, then it is a perfect forgiveness, because He is perfect in all His ways!
When God replaces one covenant with another covenant, then that Old Covenant is ready to vanish away!
*Heb 8:13 In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away.
God would not have made a New Covenant if He intended to keep the Old Covenant!
Does this mean we can tear out the Old Testament from the Bible?
No, all Scripture is for our learning!
2Ti_3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
It is Scripture of the Old Covenant that teaches us what is sin and that we are all guilty of sin.
It is Scripture that teaches us about faith!
Gal 3:22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
The Lord Jesus Christ did not come to destroy the Old Covenant, but He did come to fulfill all of the Old Covenant therefore making it useless.
Mat 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
Mat 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
In fact all the Word of God will be fulfilled just as it is written!
Col 2:13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;
Col 2:14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
Col 2:15 And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.
Praise God for making a way for us to be near to Him throughout eternity!