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Hebrews 9:15 Therefore [Jesus Christ] is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant.
I got an iPod touch for my birthday. I don’t need a bulky cassette walkman, an awkward portable CD player, a huge portable DVD player, or any holders to carry around all my music. All of that has been combined and is able to fit into my pocket with my all-in-one device – the iPod touch. We appreciate these new technologies more as we understand everything they are designed to take the place of. The same is true with the New Covenant. We love Christ and His work of salvation so much more as we understand how He fulfills the Old Covenant in His death.
A biblical “covenant” is an eternal promise made by God to His representative at that time in history about His Kingdom for Christ. How are we supposed to think about the Old Covenant as it was promised to so many different OT people? Some say the Old Covenants are now completely meaningless to us. Others say that the Old Covenants will be used again in a time like the millennium. I don’t think either of those views are true. We must understand the Old Covenants and how they were fulfilled in Christ to better understand Him and His Gospel!
What are these Old Covenants I speak of? First, the Covenant of Creation is God creating a kingdom and giving it to Adam and Eve. God is telling them to look around the garden. What they see is theirs! Now they are to be fruitful in the garden but multiplying themselves through childbirth, have everything submitting to them since they are the king and queen created in the image of God, and to practice dominion over all the creation (Gen 1:28). Adam fails to keep the covenant by not exercising dominion but being dominated by the serpent.
Second, in the Covenant of Noah we see God destroying and renewing the earth with Noah as the pioneer. God gives Noah similar commands of being fruitful and multiplying over the earth. Then, with a covenant-rainbow, He promises Noah to never destroy the earth again with water (Gen 9:8-17). God keeps His covenant, but Noah proves he is a drunken sinner.
Third, the Covenant of Abraham is the second most important covenant in all the Bible. God promises to Abraham that He will make His name great in all the earth, that He will make Him the father of the greatest nation on earth, and that He will give him land for his kingdom to dwell (Gen 12:1-3). Abraham struggles with sin and proves not to be the eternal covenant focus.
Fourth, the Covenant of Moses is when God establishes His promises through Moses and to His nation of Israelites. He commands sacrifices to be made, His law to be kept, and explains the curses and blessings for obedience and disobedience (Exodus). The Israelites continually sin.
Fifth, with the Covenant of David God is promising that this famous king’s throne and kingdom will last forever. And to go even further, God says that He will make David’s offspring a Son to Him and He will be His Father (2 Sam 7:12-17). Solomon’s sin proves he’s not the son.
Jesus said that He didn’t come to abolish the Old Covenant. In other words, God is not saying “Oops, sorry about the Old Covenant. It didn’t work. Here, try Jesus.” Instead, Jesus came to fulfill each broken Old Covenant in order to make a New Covenant that is eternally written in His blood (Matt 5:17, Heb 9:15). Jesus proves to be fruitful as He calls sinners to Himself, He will judge the earth and bring in the New Creation, He inherits all the promises of God, He obeys the law of God perfectly and becomes the sacrifices by taking on the curses of Israel and inheriting the blessings, and His Kingdom is everlasting as His throne endures forever!
When we look at the covenants of Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and David, we are able to even more clearly understand who Jesus is, what He has done, and what He receives by becoming the New Covenant for us. Far better than any iPod, are you glorying in the Gospel of Jesus Christ as you understand what Christ has received by fulfilling the Covenants of the OT?