Happy New Year! I’m not sure how this past year has flown by so quickly. But I’m sure having two teens and a preteen has something to do with it!
Thank you for your visit(s) and encouragement; I appreciate you! 🙂 I love how God opens our eyes to His truths and rich blessings through Bible Study.
Although I’m a fan of New Year resolutions, I’m trying to stay within Scripture and use the “newness” theme. But instead of picking up with Genesis 20, I’m jumping forward—backwards for us—with an overview of God’s plans and timing through His old and new covenants.
You may read Hebrews 8 here: Bible Gateway.
Why did God initiate these covenants in the first place?
Scripture declares that “the whole world is a prisoner of sin” (Galatians 3:22). So God set into motion a means to provide forgiveness of our sins.
Fast forward about 450 years from when God gave Abraham His promise (Genesis 17:7, 8). God temporarily remedied our sin problem through His Old Covenant.
Under the old Jewish sacrificial system sacrifices were offered daily for forgiveness of sins (Hebrews 7:12-14).
The law God introduced to the Israelites through Moses included three categories: Ceremonial, Civil, and Moral laws. Although the moral laws still apply to us today (Ten Commandments – Exodus 20:1-17), the ceremonial laws primarily pointed forward to Jesus Christ.
And although the old laws revealed God’s character and will, they also pointed out our sin. For no one could please God by completely obeying every law. Hebrews 8-9 shows that the old covenant was a shadow of the real Christ. So the old covenant—a covenant of law between God and Israel—are no longer necessary.
Although thousands of years have passed since God gave Abraham His promise (Genesis 17:7, 8), He has never revoked it. He saved Abraham through his faith, and blessed the world through his descendant: Jesus, the Messiah.
His new covenant reaches beyond Israel and Judah to include everyone. Christ offers a new way to forgiveness through faith. And instead of being bound to a temporal, external set of rules He writes His laws on our hearts and minds, reminding us of His words through the Holy Spirit.
Jesus’ death was the perfect sacrifice ending all need for further priests and sacrifices. “He sacrificed for their sins once and for all when He offered himself,” (Hebrews 7:27).
“Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because the righteous will live by faith,” (Galatians 3:11).
Even though time marches on and circumstances change, I love that God remains the same. He doesn’t break His promises. We can be sure of His promise to forgive our sins through Jesus Christ.
Have you entered into this new covenant and enjoyed the better way with free forgiveness and unlimited access to God?
As you reflect on 2015, I hope you’ve evidenced God’s blessings through both the good and difficult times. Next week I will pick up with Genesis 20.