“A New Covenant”
Pastor David Moore
New Testament reading: II Corinthians 3:6-18
He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!
Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to prevent the Israelites from seeing the end of what was passing away. But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
You may not see it at the time, but God knows what He is doing. It’s not random. It is part of His Plan. – Toby Mac
Today’s sermon theme: Jeremiah is the prophet of hope because he is setting the stage for a new covenant. A new relationship with God and the humans He created.
Old Testament reading: Jeremiah 31:31-34
“The days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant
with the people of Israel and with the people of Judah. It will not be like the covenant I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they broke my covenant, though I was a husband to them,” declares the Lord.
“This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel after that time,” declares the Lord. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.
No longer will they teach their neighbor, or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest,” declares the Lord. “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.”
“Beware that you do not forget the LORD your God by not keeping His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I command you today.”
Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day.
What is a covenant?
Answer: An agreement that God makes with us, in which He guarantees to keep His promise.
Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done. Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced, you his servants, the descendants of Abraham, his chosen ones, the children of Jacob. He is the Lord our God; his judgments are in all the earth. He remembers his covenant forever, the promise he made, for a thousand generations.
God begins a covenant with Abraham and then ratifies it with Moses and the people in the desert. Bible scholars call this the Mosaic Covenant. A covenant is a mixture of laws and love, command and promise. This means God is working on several levels in our lives and others at the same time and place. – D. Moore
Love or Laws?
Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession.
“The days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and with the people of Judah.
This is the covenant I will establish with the people of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.
The new covenant has law, but it is written on our hearts, and it has love, just like the old covenant. God says he will not just forgive our wickedness, but remember their sins no more. Instead of choosing between law and love or legalism and relativism, there becomes a dynamic tension that is at work daily in Christian lives as they grow in faith.
– D. Moore
A right understanding of the covenant changes us.
It is a mind reset
It critiques our culture
We think about our loyalty
Helps us get over our mistrust of God.
This week as you contemplate the new covenant with Christ, think about the dynamic tension of obeying the law and the love of Christ. How will you respond to Christ’s Call in being part of God’s great plan for you and the world?
God bless you and have a good week!