New Covenant: The Definition
The New Covenant refers to the new promise made by God to His people. The word in the New Testament of the Bible is translated from the Greek word diathēkē, meaning “a contract or testament.” A very basic explanation of God’s New Covenant with man is the act of His giving grace to reconcile man to Himself. It is by a sacrificial action that atonement for rebellion and sin is made in payment for iniquity.
New Covenant: Old Covenant
In order to better understand the New Covenant, it helps to know the Old Covenant. In the Old Testament, God said (paraphrased) “This is my law, keep it and be my people.” It was to be through His people that the world would come to know God. But they didn’t keep their part; they couldn’t keep it. Man cannot even keep man’s own laws.
The Old Covenant showed that although God is perfect, man is not. None of mankind can fulfill the law, but God could and did, bringing about the New Covenant. God’s promises are never broken (Psalm 105:8; 145:13; 2 Corinthians 1:20). He cannot lie, nor can He break His word.
Many of God’s promises have already been fulfilled as we can see in the following examples of Old Covenant Scriptures:
- With Noah: Genesis 9:8-13 (promise through the 1st rainbow)
- With Abram [Abraham]: Genesis 15:18; 17:4-8
- With Moses: Exodus 19:1-9 (called Mosaic Covenant or Law)
- With David: 2 Samuel 7:5-16
Those are only a few. There are Scriptures throughout the Bible that tell of various covenants God made with His people, including some that were fulfilled later by the New Covenant. While many of the old covenants continued to be broken by man due to his weaknesses, the New Covenant would prove to be a new promise for eternity.
New Covenant: The Promissory Word
God’s New Covenant was foretold in the Old Testament in the book of Jeremiah 31:31-33:
“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.”
In Hebrews 8, the word in Jeremiah is repeated (vs. 8-9) and compares the old with the new. The new and better way
is the Covenant of Grace—the promise of redemption from the power of guilt and sin through Christ’s sacrifice bringing us to God. Jesus paid our debt in full. Verse 6 says “But in fact the ministry Jesus has received is as superior to theirs as the covenant of which he is mediator is superior to the old one, since the new covenant is established on better promises.” God’s law will become inner principles (written in our hearts) that enable His people to delight in doing God’s will. Through Christ and the Holy Spirit, people can now have intimate relationship with God.
Since we are now under the New Covenant, we no longer have the penalty from breaking the old Mosaic Law. We have the grace of God to forgive us of our sins. It is God’s free gift to us (Ephesians 2:8). John 3:17 says “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” To remind us, Hebrews 9:15 declares, “For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant.”Learn More!
We have all sinned
and deserve God’s judgment. God
, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus
, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died
for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried
, and rose from the dead
according to the Bible
. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord
," you will be saved from judgment
and spend eternity with God in heaven.What is your response?
Yes, I want to follow Jesus
I am a follower of Jesus
I still have questions