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God’s Covenant with his people

In the book of Jeremiah we read that the covenant God made with his people during the time of the Exodus was not the Law of Sinai.  He did not establish the decrees and the Ten Commandments as the covenant with his redeemed people until after the Exodus.  The Law was added later by Moses and confirmed through angels, the Bible says.  This is the covenant that God established with his people at the beginning. ” Listen to my voice, and do all that I command you.” “So shall you be my people, and I will be your God, that I may confirm the oath that I swore to your fathers, to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, as at this day.”  This is also the covenant that God established with Abraham.  The Bible says ‘Abraham believed God, and it was  counted to him as righteousness’.  In Hebrews we are told that it was Abraham’s obedience in his willingness to sacrifice Isaac that typifies God’s sacrifice of his own son Jesus on the Cross.

Obedience is better than sacrifice, the Bible says.  “If you love me”, Jesus says, “you will obey my commandments”. ” If I am in you and you are in me you will not sin”, Jesus says. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your mind and all your strength.  It is the overcomer who inherits the kingdom of God the scriptures say.  “Be faithful unto death and I will give you a crown of life”.  These are not the sayings of someone who has already done it all for us.  We have a part to play in our salvation.  We have a covenant to keep with God.  We have a cross to bear.  The word of the Lord to us today is “my yoke is easy and my burden is light”.

God is a covenant keeping God, we need to be a covenant keeping people.  It is becoming more treacherous for the believer in the world and we need to be able to run to God and to the everlasting arms and protection that only he can provide.  Nothing else will protect you in the coming days.

 


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Legalism

Legalism, in my view, is relying on the Mosaic Law for our righteousness. The Bible says that the law was good as it was originally given. The issue was that the hearts of men could not be changed by the law. If righteousness could have come through the law the scripture says it would have been done that way by God. Man needed to be reborn into righteousness after the fall of Adam and Eve. This was accomplished through Christ, a righteous man, dying on the cross and being raised again to new life. The Law was instituted as a tutor of righteousness until the appointed time of the birth of Jesus Christ. God’s requirements have not changed in Scripture. Beginning in the OT and then into the NT God teaches us about his requirements for right living, right thinking, and right hearts. What Jesus did was to make our transformation in these areas possible. We can now do through Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit what we could not do under the Law. We can become a new creation in Christ. The scriptures teach us how we are to make these changes.

Today’s modern teaching on legalism has made it about overlooking God’s requirements for righteous living. That we have no choice but to continue to sin. This teaching denies the new birth in Christ. It puts believers in the camp of the unrighteous, with no real power, and at the control of sin. This is false teaching according to the Bible.


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Two Covenants meaning Hagar and Sarah

Galatians 4:21 begins a teaching about the two sons of Abraham. The story in the OT of the two sons named Ishmael and Isaac tells of how Ishmael and his mother Hagar were sent away by Abraham. In Galatians the apostle Paul says that we can look figuratively at the mothers of Abraham’s sons as representing two covenants, one of the natural, and one of the promise through the power of the Spirit. Paul clearly teaches that the present Jerusalem is of Hagar. She will not share in the inheritance of God. Paul declares that there is a Jerusalem that is above and that she is the mother of those who are in Christ.
Today we have many teachers and preachers who make errors in dividing the word of truth. They teach one part of the Bible as full and complete truth, but when other parts of the Bible are read their teaching is contradicted by other Scriptures. This means there is error in what they are teaching.
The present church system that we know of in North America does not have checks and balances. There is alot of control implemented in the majority of churches. We can be certain that this type of control of people and of what we are being taught is not of God. We seem to have a mishmash of teachings related to both Hagar and Sarah. On the one hand we have freedom in Christ, on the other hand we are subjects and children to these church systems. The Hagars of our day.


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A New Covenant

In the book of Hebrews  chapter 7 and 8 the Apostle Paul speaks about a new and better covenant.  This new covenant, or second covenant,  has made obsolete the first covenant of the Law given to Moses, for his people.   As with a second Will that a person makes to distribute an inheritance, so also this second covenant with his people that God made through Jesus, supersedes the Law of Moses. Because it was made after the first one, just like someone updating their Will, the updated Will is the one legally in effect when that person dies.  Hebrews chp. 8:13 says “In speaking of a new covenant,” he has made the first one obsolete.’

Hebrews 8:9 says that this new covenant is not like the first covenant.  Paul explains in these chapters of Hebrews that the Law was not able to deal with the consciousness of sin.  The Law revealed and exposed sin.  The Law dealt with sin through the outward rituals of the flesh.  Laws about drink, food, and washing of the body.  Atonement for sin was dealt with by the shedding of animal blood.  These rituals had to be performed continually to try to alleviate sin.

The sacrifice of Jesus in the death of his own body on the cross for the atonement of sin, was done once for all eternity.  Jesus will remain the High priest of God forever.  Jesus the Son, is the new covenant that God has established with his people.  God has made Jesus the way to himself.  Jesus states ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life’.  No one comes to God except through me. ‘