Author Topic: New Covenant experience  (Read 21559 times)

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Mimi

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #20 on: October 22, 2009, 02:57:09 PM »
Yes, I was reading Jeremiah 31 today. With a renewed interest in the covenants, my simple mind was reduced to linear thoughts and wondered about a chronology until it got complex. I appreciate your comments. 
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #21 on: October 22, 2009, 03:11:52 PM »
Hi Richard ,
You ask, is there a difference the Abraham and Sinai agreement?
Short answer, yes.
Briefly, the Abraham agreement was God's response, His unconditional commitment in response to Abraham's faithfulness. Gen 22:16.
The Sinai agreement was a promise of what could be if the people were faithful. I am reminded of a sign I used to see in the dockyard when I was in the navy. It read, 'Even the worst of us can serve as a horrible example'.
Gal 3:23-4:7 does not say that Christians are the inheritors of the Old Covenant promises, it says that if we belong to Christ we are Abrahams seed and heirs. Sons of God, not sons of Jacob.
Regards
Ian
Ian Rankin

Mimi

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #22 on: October 22, 2009, 04:38:55 PM »
Another compact--called in Scripture the "old" covenant--was formed between God and Israel at Sinai, and was then ratified by the blood of a sacrifice. The Abrahamic covenant was ratified by the blood of Christ, and it is called the "second," or "new," covenant, because the blood by which it was sealed was shed after the blood of the first covenant. That the new covenant was valid in the days of Abraham is evident from the fact that it was then confirmed both by the promise and by the oath of God--the "two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie." Hebrews 6:18.  {PP 371.1}

Notice Inspiration calls the old covenant formed between God and Israel at Sinai ratified by the blood of "A" sacrifice, not THE sacrifice. The time was not yet fulfilled for THE sacrifice. Hebrews 9:10 says "Which stood only in meats and drinks, and diverse washings and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of the reformation." Imposed as a tool to instruct what is to come. The next verse says what that is: Christ comes as a high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building ... then we come to the famous Hebrews 9:12 verse, "Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us."

In Hebrews Paul calls the old covenant faulty. He was speaking to Jews still practicing the old sacrificial system, explaining to them that the rites within that system were created to point them to Christ, the Lamb of God who would be slain. A huge part of me wants to say no part of a covenant God would make with anyone could be faulty - it would have a purpose, but never faulty; however, the sacrifices they were making could not save them but pointed to the ultimate sacrifice of One who could. Therein, I can see the old covenant faulty, yet highly instructional in every way, and therefore the need for the New Covenant - Christ's blood.

The Israelites could not keep the Law of God on their own, but by faith through the merits of Jesus' sacrifice, they could. Hebrews 7:19 confirms this - "For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God."  

I realize this is most simplistic. I am obviously wading my way through Hebrews and Paul, the inspired intellectual! Someone once said if Paul were to have a PhD dissertation, Hebrews would be it!

Is this your understanding, Ian or Richard or anyone with a solid knowledge of this subject, or am I headed in the wrong direction?

 
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Richard Myers

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #23 on: October 22, 2009, 10:00:37 PM »
Paul's writings are not easy. We are not dealing with milk, but rather meat.

It appears to me that you, dear sister, are moving in the right direction. The old covenant was not as good as the new covenant. And the new covenant was in force during the old covenant because the new covenant was the everlasting covenant. The new covenant did not begin at the ascension of Christ, as I understand it. The everlasting covenant was the better covenant, established upon better promises. And we know that the Abrahamic covenant was ratified by the blood of Christ and the old covenant was not.  Yes, I know it is difficult, but we can do it.  We will be learning for eternity by God's grace.  So, we are getting some practice.  :)

What were the better promises Paul speaks of in Hebrews? And why were the promises made in the old covenant not as good? And what necessitated the giving of the old covenant since the everlasting covenant was already in existence? And, for that matter why was the new covenant made when the everlasting covenant was already in existence? Paul was speaking to the Hebrews, did they not already have the promises under the everlasting covenant? They were the children of Abraham and the children of Adam. Was the everlasting covenant rescinded for them?

So many questions.  :)

Thank you, Brother Ian. Such an important topic you have begun!
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #24 on: October 24, 2009, 12:45:18 AM »
Hi Richard,
You ask about a difference between the covenant at Sinai and the covenant with Abraham.
I believe there is a difference, perhaps it could be said that the difference was more in results than in promises.
The covenant at Sinai was an invitation which the people accepted, but which they hopelessly failed to honour. It was an invitation to become a part of God's means of extending an understanding of the everlasting covenant and an invitation to recieve its blessings. Their failure did not affect the everlasting covenant, but it affected their experience. The Jew still lives in hope of enjoying the promises made to their ancestors.
The covenant with Abraham was God's response to Abraham's faithfulness. Gen 22:12-18 is God's unconditional, covenant commitment in response to Abraham's faithfulness. 'Now I know that I can trust you'.
Gal 3:23 -4:7. Note 3:29 we, as new covenant believers are sons and daughters of Abraham, not Israel.
The new covenant does not replace either the Sinai covenant or the Abrahamic covenant, it fulfills them.
There is only one way of salvation, the everlasting covenant, but as Heb 1:1-2 says, God has spoken in many portions and ways, but now has spoken fully and completely in the Son.
Regards,
Ian Rankin
Ian Rankin

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #25 on: October 25, 2009, 10:12:12 PM »
Hi,
I think there are some fundamental points to any discussion of salvation and Bible covenants.
1. There is and ever has been, only one way of salvation and that is through faith in Jesus, the Lamb of God. Gen:3:15  John 1:29 Eph 2:8. Gal 3:20
2. The plan of salvation is a process implemented by God, through seven acts by which He steps into human history and finally completely removes sin from the universe.
The seven annual feasts of the sanctuary(Leviticus 16 and 23) were a promise and object lesson of the plan of salvation
The prophesies of Daniel give an unconditional time-line from the first act of God, Calvary, to the fifth, the commencement of the Day of Atonement, but no man knows the day and hour of the second coming of Jesus.

God invites mankind to be involved.
The Old Covenant and New Covenant result from the progressive fulfilment of the plan of salvation. They are invitations to serve God. They are not ways of salvation; they are invitations to become involved as God progressively  reveals His power and character.

In the Old Testament times the issue was who is the most powerful god? Ex 5: 2 Pharaoh’s challenge was, ‘Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice?’ 
God’s plan for Israel, His people, was that they would become the chief nation of earth and through their witness prepare the world for the coming of Jesus.

Because of the unfaithfulness of the nation, only a faithful remnant entered into the increased privileges and responsibilities of the promised New Covenant.

The New Covenant is God’s invitation to become a witness to the revelation of His character. Ephesians 4:11-16 states that God’s plan is for us to grow up into the fullness of the stature of Christ. Each individual, as gifted by the Holy Spirit, contributing to the building up of the body (the church) in love and by their witness, to leave no person unwarned at the second coming of Jesus.

 God bless,
Ian Rankin



Ian Rankin

Richard Myers

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #26 on: October 26, 2009, 12:21:49 PM »
Again, dear brother, you present much. Enough to feed upon for many days!  I look forward to seeing the feast days associated with the plan of salvation. Very interesting.

Can you share with us what the agreement was that God made in the old covenant and what the agreement was in the new covenant.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #27 on: October 26, 2009, 01:31:14 PM »
Hi Richard
You comment 'I look forward to seeing the feast days associated with the plan of salvation. Very interesting'.
There were seven annual feasts as outlined in Lev 23 and an expansion of the Day of Atonement in lev 16

The feasts are, very briefly started:-

Passover - first month -fulfilled in the death of Jesus- 1 Cor 5:7 - foundation of the plan of salvation - 490 year prophecy of Dan 9

Unleavenbed bread - sinlessness of Christ

First fruits - resurrection of Jesus -1Cor 15:20, 23

Pentecost - the gift of the fulness of the Holy Spirit - confirmation of Jesus' acceptance and glorification. Acts 2:33, 38 Inauguration of the New Covenant

The first four feasts took place at the begiining of the year, then there was a long gap before the last three feasts. The seed is sown at the early rain, the church is established and then there is a long growing period till the latter rain and harvest.

Trumpets - the seventh month -the warning to get ready for the Day of Atonement - the revival of late seventeen hunmdreds and early eighteen hundreds- expectation of second coming -1260 prophecy of Dan 7

Day of Atonement -1844

Tabernacles - annual holiday period after the harvest - second coming

God bless,
Ian
Ian Rankin

Richard Myers

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #28 on: October 29, 2009, 08:16:48 AM »
Very nice!    Thank you.   Yes, the sanctuary and its services all were to teach the plan of salvation.

I do have another question. You mention the inauguration of the New Covenant.  This is a new concept to me. It has come up in another discussion about the covenants.  While I can understand that Paul makes a distinction between the old and new covenants, there were always the provisions of the new covenant from the first promise of a Saviour made to Adam. All have been saved under its provisions. So, why the importance of an inauguration for the new covenant?  King David claimed the promises under the everlasting covenant. The blood of Jesus ratified that agreement, did it not? A proper understanding of the covenants would lead us to believe that the everlasting covenant contained the same provisions as the new covenant. This is to say that the new covenant was not a "better covenant, established upon better promises." It was only a re-stating of the everlasting covenant which contains the very same promises.

Help me to understand why the new covenant needed an inauguration.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #29 on: October 30, 2009, 01:04:02 AM »
Hi Richard,
I sympathise with your question, as it is a continuing part of  my experience as I have wondered about the relationship between the various covenants.
In my attempts answer your questions I am seeing new relationships.

Your question is 'A proper understanding of the covenants would lead us to believe that the everlasting covenant contained the same provisions as the new covenant. This is to say that the new covenant was not a "better covenant, established upon better promises. It was only a re-stating of the everlasting covenant which contains the very same promises. “
“Help me to understand why the new covenant needed an inauguration'

As a starting point of discussion, I emphatically contend that the Old Covenant and New Covenant are not different ways of salvation.
They are different experiences brought about by the progressive stages of the re-establishment of the relationship between God and mankind. See Galatians 3:23—4:7.

You can compare the Old and New covenants, but trying to compare them with the Everlasting covenant is like comparing apples and oranges.
The Everlasting covenant and the seven feasts of the sanctuary go together. They are unconditional declarations of God.

A simple, bordering on simplistic way to express this would be:-

Old Covenant – from Sinai to Pentecost. At Sinai God explicitly sets forth the privileges and responsibilities of being God’s chosen people. It is a part fulfilment of the Abrahamic covenant whereby Abraham’s descendants as a nation are given explicit privileges and responsibilities, while still ‘children’, ‘under-age heirs’.
God dwell with them

New Covenant – from Pentecost to the new earth.(see Heb 8:11). A new relationship – adult sons and daughters of God – joint heirs with Christ.. (See Galatians 3:23 – 4:7)
It is a covenant with Israel. Not a replacement of the Old Covenant, but the fulfilment of it. The faithful remnant of Israel became the first Christians.
God dwells in them

You ask, ‘Help me to understand why the new covenant needed an inauguration'
John 14:16-17. 26 ‘The Spirit was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified’
Acts 2:33 ‘ having been exalted’  ‘having received’ ‘He has poured forth’
The inauguration of the New Covenant was confirmation that Jesus has triumphed over Satan.
I hope these thoughts help????
God bless,
Ian
Ian Rankin

Richard Myers

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #30 on: October 30, 2009, 11:09:01 AM »
Brother Ian, thank you for your explanation. Where I am having difficulty is with the need to "inaugurate" the new covenant when the everlasting covenant was already in operation. I guess I do not see a difference between the everlasting agreement made with Adam and the agreement that Paul calls the New Covenant.

"Thus will be realized the complete fulfillment of the new-covenant promise, “I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” “In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found.” [Jeremiah 31:34; 50:20.] “In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel. And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem.” [Isaiah 4:2,3.] GC88 485


Is this not the everlasting covenant. I do not see a better covenant or better promises when comparing the everlasting covenant with the new covenant. When Paul spoke of a "better covenant established upon better promises" he was comparing the Old covenant to the New Covenant, not the New Covenant to the Everlasting Covenant.  This is where I am having difficulty understaning the need to inaugurate the New Covenant. The promises made to King David and the agreement under which he was saved, was as I understand it, the Everlasting Covenant which I understand to the be the agreement that I may claim to be under also. Is this correct?
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #31 on: October 31, 2009, 02:11:21 PM »
Brother Richard,
Good questions, thanks for them, I have to stop and think about this, but never fear I will be back soon.
Regards,
Ian
Ian Rankin

Richard Myers

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #32 on: November 01, 2009, 01:42:37 AM »
Thank you for taking the time to consider this. It is important that we fully grasp what Paul is teaching about the new and old covenants. So much of his message in the New Testament is bound up with the law and grace. He was speaking to a church that was very legalistic. I believe it had a lot to do with his choice of words and examples.

I think this is why he does not bring into account the everlasting covenant. The Jews were set on what God had given them at Sinai. They held the "law" in great esteem and then killed the author of that law. Jesus came into this world to correct their error in regards to the law. They thought He was doing away with it, but not so. He was only sweeping away the mess they had piled on top of it. Human laws that brought reproach upon His holy law and made the keeping of the law burdensome.

Elsewhere Paul tells us that the law is holy, just, and good. And that it was glorious. But, it is only the "schoolmaster" that leads to Christ. Christ, is the Glorious One whose character is seen in the law. It appears to me that Paul contrasts the old and new covenants in this light. The law given at Sinai was glorious, but rather than have the law written on tables of stone, the new covenant promised to write it on the fleshly tables of the heart.  A much better covenant established upon better promises.

It is true that the old covenant shadowed forth Christ, but after the cross, there was no more human priest standing between man and God. Now man could bring his sacrifice directly to God through our living High Priest who was mediating in the heavenly sanctuary. In the everlasting covenant, the very same promises existed as in the new covenant, that God would write His law in the heart, He would give us enmity towards sin we did not possess without Jesus in the heart. The old covenant was a bridge to the everlasting covenant. Through the sanctuary and its services, a people who were little more than brute beasts coming out of Egypt were to learn of the plan of salvation and their need of a Saviour. They had lost sight of it all and they needed to learn of their great need. They thought they could keep the law on their own. The old covenant was to teach them they needed a Saviour. The law, both moral and ceremonial was to do its work as a schoolmaster. This was the "ministration of death". Then the Israelite as well as the gentile could claim the promises of the everlasting covenant which is the "ministration of life", life in Christ Jesus.

Why is this important today? Well, reading the writings of Paul is hard. But, when understood, we receive a great blessing. He wrote much of the New Testament. Besides, think on poor Peter. He loved Jesus, but did not know his own heart. He did not know of his dependence upon Christ to do any good thing. Self assured he was. Then I come down to our day. Do we see a similar situation in the church, in God's church? We do. It is in a Laodicean condition where most believe they are rich and increased with goods, but know not that they are miserable, wretched, poor, blind, and naked. The very same self assuredness that plagued poor Peter.  We all need to come to the point in life where we proclaim with Saul, "O wretched man that I am, WHO will deliver me from the body of this death?" When the law has done its work, then we are ready to ask the all important question "WHO" will help me?

The law has not been done away with. It was the ministration of death that was done away with. The old covenant was no longer needed since Christ has come and suffered and died. Away with the whole system of priests and laws that shadowed forth the Saviour. He had come and had left not just a teaching and an example, but He has given His Spirit to live in man. The Spirit had always been there and all who were saved before the cross were saved in the very same manner we are today, by the everlasting covenant, by the blood of Christ, by dying to self and living to God through the abiding presence of Jesus Christ in the heart. Ezekiel made it perfectly clear, A new heart will I give you, a new Spirit will I put within you! I will cause you walk in my statutes. This is the better covenant established upon better promises than those made at Sinai, obey and live.

We have much to learn and I am only scratching at the surface of the righteousness of Christ and all that He means to us. It is present truth! It is the third angels message in verity! The loveliness of Jesus!! The law is glorious, but Christ is much more glorious!! He is the reality!
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #33 on: November 05, 2009, 01:10:33 PM »
Hi Richard,
Thanks for your thought-provoking comments.
I have been thinking about the term 'everlasting covenant'. My immediate response when I read that term is to think of Christ, the Lamb slain  from the foundation of the world, but my second response has been to find out how the Bible writers use the term
This is what I discovered when I checked Scripture.
The term 'everlasting covenant occurs in 14 verses (NASB) in the Old Testament and doesn't occur in those words in the New Testament.
None of these references is a reference to salvation
The first Biblical reference is often very significant and the first reference in this case is Gen 9:11-17.
Amost all of the other references are related to Abraham and his seed inhabiting the land of Israel forever.
I think it is worth noting that the Seed of Abraham is Christ.

I have been trying to clarify my thinking of the Old and New Covenants. What do you think of this thought?
The Old Covenant and the New Covenant are not ways of salvation; salvation is a gift. The covenants are each an invitation to a relationship. That relationship is dynamic, not static. It changes as the plan of salvation is implemented. Gal 3:23-4:7.  It is intimately connected to salvation, in that salvation is a relationship which which is developed and protected through the experience of service.
I value your comments .


God bless,
Ian
Ian Rankin

Richard Myers

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #34 on: November 06, 2009, 12:07:26 AM »
Thank you for your thoughts, dear brother. It is a blessing to study with you and all who seek to better understand God's truth. The Holy Spirit will reveal to us just what we need to know each day.

I guess I began with what I thought was the definition of a covenant. And then I looked to see what were the promises in these covenants. Generally in such matters there are two or more parties and they agree to "perform" some specified action(s).

It seems to me that salvation in part of the agreement although it may not be spelled out as "salvation". But, the promises from God in the everlasting and the new covenants seem to be saying that God will do something for man that will lead to eternal life. And, in the old covenant, God said that if man would obey, he would live. I take this to mean eternal life since man already possessed temporal life.

Does this make sense? Or did I miss something?  Looking forward to your response, dear brother.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #35 on: November 06, 2009, 09:14:38 PM »
Hi Richard,
Thank you Richard for your response.
In response I again emphasise that salvation is a free gift, not a component of a covenant.
I see ‘Covenant and ‘salvation’ are separate and independent entities. Salvation is a promise, it is never a covenant, never something that can be demanded on the basis of human performance.

On this basis I see it as incorrect if we propose that the Old Covenant was an agreement between God and the Israelites which promised them salvation is they obeyed.
The Old Covenant did not require obedience for salvation, but it did offer rewards for obedience (Notice that Jesus’ parables do this too) and that obedience would be a wall of protection for the Israelites.

A covenant is an agreement between two parties and is dependant on each performing their part. If either party fails then they can be taken to court and performance enforced, or the result can be that the other party can be released from their commitment.
God doesn’t force obedience, but He withdrew from the Old Covenant. That is He did not fulfil His promises of blessings because the Israelites were unfaithful.

Salvation is not a covenant. From the time of Genesis 3:15, it is and always has been an unconditional promise. In the Old Covenant it was presented in object lesson form in the sanctuary and its services. It was confirmed as reality at Calvary.

God bless,
Ian



Ian Rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #36 on: November 22, 2009, 07:55:55 AM »
Thank you for your thoughts, Dear Brother Ian. Sorry I took so long to reply.

On this basis I see it as incorrect if we propose that the Old Covenant was an agreement between God and the Israelites which promised them salvation is they obeyed.
The Old Covenant did not require obedience for salvation, but it did offer rewards for obedience (Notice that Jesus’ parables do this too) and that obedience would be a wall of protection for the Israelites.

A covenant is an agreement between two parties and is dependant on each performing their part. If either party fails then they can be taken to court and performance enforced, or the result can be that the other party can be released from their commitment.
God doesn’t force obedience, but He withdrew from the Old Covenant. That is He did not fulfil His promises of blessings because the Israelites were unfaithful.

Can we agree that the terms of the "old covenant" were, Obey and live: "If a man do, he shall even live in them;" but "cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them"? The "new covenant" was established upon "better promises"--the promise of forgiveness of sins, and of the grace of God to renew the heart, and bring it into harmony with the principles of God's law.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #37 on: November 22, 2009, 09:18:44 AM »
Amen!!  To all who cry out "O wretched man that I am", I cannot obey in my own strenth, a "better promise" would be "a new heart will I give you" and "I will cause you to keep my laws" and walk in my statutes and judgements.  Jesus then "works in us to will and to do of His good pleasure."  We are then in agreement (sumphemi greek -- or in harmony) with the law.

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #38 on: November 27, 2009, 09:20:36 PM »
Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.  And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.  2 Peter 3:14-16.

But, through the aid of the Holy Spirit we can understand what Paul was inspired to write. We must better understand the context of his Words, to whom he was speaking. The "law" to Paul has a somewhat different meaning than to most of us today. It is why he does not mention the everlasting covenant and only speaks of the "Old" and the "New" Covenants. He is speaking to a people who only knew the Old Covenant, the agreement they had made with God at Sinai.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

ian rankin

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Re: New Covenant experience
« Reply #39 on: December 01, 2009, 12:01:18 PM »
Hi Richard,
You write,"Can we agree that the terms of the "old covenant" were, Obey and live: "If a man do, he shall even live in them;" but "cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them"? The "new covenant" was established upon "better promises"--the promise of forgiveness of sins, and of the grace of God to renew the heart, and bring it into harmony with the principles of God's law". 

I agree and disagree. I am not trying to be intentionally difficult. My problem is that I understand that that there is and only ever has been one way of salvation and that is by grace through faith.
Do you agree?
God bless,
Ian

 
 
 
Ian Rankin