New Covenant Ways – BT5a
The old covenant failed to stop sin so it was replaced by a superior New Covenant
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The OT prophecy about the completely-different-in-kind New Covenant in Jeremiah 31:31-34 we explored in New Covenant Ways – BT2a is cited extensively in the NT (a), exactly because the New Covenant is the distinguishing point of the NT (b). That’s because “a kreitton more-useful-serviceable-helpful-better hope [than the old covenant] is introduced through which we now proserchomai draw near (i) to God” (c) through “a kreitton more-useful-serviceable-helpful-better Covenant” (d) than the old covenant, precisely because “a former commandment is set aside (e) because of its asthenes beggarly-poor-weakness-feebleness-impotence and anopheles unprofitable-uselessness, for the Law made nothing perfect-complete” (f), being that it is “memphomai faulted-blameworthy-rejectable-condemnable” (g), “for since the Law has but a shadow (h) of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, . . . make perfect those who routinely proserchomai draw near (i) (j), exactly because the “Law is powerless to perform in that it was asthenes beggarly-poor-weak-feeble-impotent thru-the-realizing-channel-of the flesh” (k). <Notes> a) Hebrews 8:8-13, 10:16-17, Romans 11:27, b) Matthew 26:28; Mark 14:24; Luke 22:20; 1 Corinthians 11:25; 2 Corinthians 3:6; Hebrews 9:15, 12:24, c) Hebrews 7:19, d) v. 7:22, e) athetesis: abolished, disannulled, put away, f) v. 7:18-19, g) v. 8:7, h) skia: shade cast backward from an object, cf. Hebrews 8:5, Colossians 2:8, i) proserchomai: a Hebraism for “seeking an audience with, approaching, inquiring of, calling on to visit, or be heard by” God, thus closely akin in spelling and meaning to proseuche conversational-prayer and proskuneo worship, j) Hebrews 10:1, k) Romans 8:3.
It gets much worse: “Our sinful passions are aroused by the Law . . . to bear fruit for death” (a), such that “sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment [not to covet], produced in me all kinds of covetousness . . . when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died” (b), thus “the dunamis enabling-power of sin is the Law” (c). It’s called “the Law of sin and death” (d) for a reason! The “New Covenant [is] absolutely not of/belonging to the gramma writing but of/belonging to the Spirit, for the gramma writing kills, but the Spirit gives zoe genuine-life” (e). <Notes> a) Romans 7:5, b) Romans 7:8-9, c) 1 Corinthians 15:56, d) Romans 8:2, e) 2 Corinthians 3:6.
God didn’t give us the “Law of commandments for righteousness” (a) to stop us from sinning! “The Law is powerless to perform in that it was asthenes beggarly-poor-weak-feeble-impotent thru-the-realizing-channel-of the flesh” (b), because Jesus said “the flesh is inherently asthenes beggarly-poor-weak-feeble-impotent (c). Paul says: “through the Law comes the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of sin” (d), for “I would not have eido mentally ‘seen’ to perceive/know what it means to covet something if the Law had not said ‘Do not covet’” (e), so now “the Law counts sin” against us (f), and worse: “the Law came in to increase sin” (g), by “arousing our sinful passions” (h), and “Through the commandment [sin] might be shown to be sin. Because sin produces death in me from the ‘good’ Law, and thus sin has become sinful beyond measure or exceedingly sinful” (i). Why in the world are Christians eager to read OT Laws of obedience, which is not only the first 5 books of Moses, but throughout 97.4% of the OT – see Logos Word of God – BT5a? For more negative aspects of the Law, see Logos Word of God – BT8. <Notes> a) Romans 10:4-5, b) Romans 8:3, c) Matthew 26:41, d) Romans 3:20, e) Romans 7:7, f) Romans 5:3, g) Romans 5:20, h) Romans 7:5, i) Roman 7:13.
“Sin shall absolutely not have dominion (a) over you, because you are ongoingly absolutely in fact not under the Law but under unconditional-favor-of-grace” (b). “The scripture (c) imprisoned everyone (d) under sin . . . held captive under the Law, imprisoned UNTIL the coming of trusting-relying-faith would be revealed” (e).” And “even the Gentiles, who do not have the Law, by nature do what the Law requires, they are then a Law to themselves . . . They show that the work of the Law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, that is, their conflicting thoughts either accusing or excusing them” (f), so “we have charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin” (g). <Notes> a) rule, lordship, authoritative power over, b) Romans 6:14, c) whole/entirety of scripture may be in mind, but at least 97.4% of it that is Law-based, cf. singular “scripture” with definite article: John 10:35, 19:28-30; Romans 11:2, d) Jew and Gentile, e) Galatians 3:22-23, f) Romans 2:14-15, g) Romans 3:9.
Thus Paul asks why Jewish-Christians, after “coming to experientially, relationally ginosko know God,” would want to “turn back again to the asthenes beggarly-poor-weak-feeble-impotent and/coupled ptochos beggarly-helpless-destitute stoicheion rudimentary ‘abc’ fundamentals of the world (a) to be slaves once more?” (b), “submitting again to an [Law instructional] yoke of slavery” (c)? Paul would ask Gentile-Christians, “Why would you want to read, study, memorize, or try to do the Jewish Law in the first place? Isn’t your ‘accusing or excusing conscience’ (d) enough of a ‘prison’ for you?” <Notes> a) the building blocks, basis, rudiments, postulates, axioms, sounds, etc. for language, art, music, sciences, etc., but the context is the Law’s rules, b) Galatians 4:9, c) Galatians 5:1, d) Romans 2:15.
Jews under the Law were “once slaves to sin” before they became “obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, having already been set free from sin, having become slaves of righteousness . . . having already been set free from sin and becoming slaves of God” (a), but Paul then explains that is absolutely not slavery to OT righteousness, since “now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the Law” (b). Thus “if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin [in its members], the Spirit (Christ within you) is zoe genuine-life because of righteousness” (c) – not our own, but “a righteousness that is by/through trusting-relying-faith in Jesus Christ” (d). <Notes> a) Romans 6:17-18, 6:22, b) Romans 3:21, 4:13, c) Romans 8:10, d) Romans 1:17, 3:22, 9:30.
That’s because “by the means of Christ everyone who has trusting-relying-faith is freed from everything from which you could not be freed by the Law [of 613 commandments] of Moses” (a), because “we know that our old self was crucified with Christ (b) in order that the body of sin might be definitively/wholly made inactive (c), so that we might no longer be enslaved to sin, for the person who has died has been set free from sin” (d). <Notes> a) Acts 13:39, b) context: in water-baptism, c) katargeo: ‘thrown down to be inactive and useless,’ thus terminated, destroyed, voided, annulled, and finally released from, e.g., ‘of the Law’ in Ephesians 2:15 and our ‘release from it’ in Romans 7:6, d) Romans 6:6-7.
Therefore, there’s only one way to get free: “For the Law of the Spirit of zoe genuine-life has set you free in/by Christ Jesus from the Law of sin and death” (a), “for where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (b), and “for freedom Christ has set us free” (c), and so “live as people who are free, . . . living as servants of God” (d). The completely-different-in-kind “Law of Christ” (e) that is “outside the [OT] Law of God” (f) is none other than the “Law of the Spirit of zoe genuine-life” (g) and only this is “the perfect Law, the Law of freedom” (h) where “mercy triumphs over judgement” (i). <Notes> a) Romans 8:2, b) 2 Corinthians 3:17, c) Galatians 5:1, d) 1 Peter 2:16, e) Galatians 6:2, f) 1 Corinthians 9:21, g) Romans 8:2, h) James 1:25, 2:12, i) James 2:13.
Christians were to “have died to the Law through the Body-of-Christ so that we can belong to another, Christ” – no longer Moses, the Prophets, or the scripture they created (a), but released from the Law since we died to that which held us captive (b), because Christ bore our sins in His body so we might die to sin (c) and thus Christians have already died to sin (d) by dying with Christ (e) through water-baptism (f). Therefore, Paul can confidently say: “thru-the-realizing-channel-of the Law I died by the means of (g) the Law so that I might live by the means of (g) God, having been crucified with Christ . . . I now live by trusting-relying-faith in the Son of God” (h). <Notes> a) Romans 7:4, b) Romans 7:6, c) 1 Peter 2:24, d) Romans 6:2, e) Colossians 3:3, f) Roman 6:3-10, g) or as indirect object: to/for, h) Galatians 2:19-20.
With so many negative things said about the Law, why would Christians want to have anything to do with it, especially since “Christ’s ministry is as much more excellent than the old as the Covenant He mediates is kreitton more-useful-serviceable-helpful-better . . . for if that first [old] covenant had been not memphomai faulted-blameworthy-rejectable-condemnable (a), there would have been no need to look for a second, for He does find memphomai fault-blame-rejectable-condemnable . . . in speaking of a completely-different-in-kind New Covenant, He makes the first one obsolete . . . and it is ready-at-hand to vanish away (b). . [to Jesus,] the mediator of a completely-different-in-kind New Covenant, to the sprinkled blood [of Christ] that speaks a kreitton more-useful-serviceable-helpful-better thing (c) than that of the blood of Abel (d) . . . [to] our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of The Eternal Covenant” (e). <Notes> a) implying it’s flawed, b) aphanismos: be destroyed, figuratively abolished, c) i.e., redemption and forgiveness, d) i.e., justice and judgment, e) Hebrews 8:6-7, 13, 12:24, 13:20.
This was all predicted 590 years earlier: “And I will give you a completely-different-in-kind New (a) heart, and a completely-different-in-kind New (a) Spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh (b) and give you a heart of [soft, pliable] flesh. And I will put My Spirit within you, and cause (c) you to [imperfect: progressively] walk in My statutes (d) and [imperfect: progressively] be tereo careful-to-watch/guard-to-maintain My judgments (e). . . . I will make a [New] Covenant of peace with them. It shall be an Everlasting Covenant with them” (f). <Notes> a) chadash, kainos: fresh, completely-different-in-kind, unprecedented, sharing nothing with its predecessors, unique, and superior, b) natural man, c) make to do, d) ordinances, decrees, prescribed limits, e) formal decisions and decrees, f) Ezekiel 36:26-27; 37:26, cf. 11:20.
The NT is clear that just as “a former commandment is set aside (a) because of its asthenes beggarly-poor-weak-feeble-impotence and/coupled anopheles unprofitable-uselessness, for the Law made nothing perfect” (b), the entire “Law of entole commandments expressed in ordinances (c) has been abolished (d) in Christ’s flesh” (e), “for Christ is the end (f) of the Law for righteousness to everyone who has trusting-relying-faith” (g), “having wiped out (h) the grapho handwriting of [authoritative, universally-binding] dogma doctrines-propositions-decrees-laws-ordinances that was against us. He has already taken, with ongoing results, it out of the way (or our midst), having definitively/wholly nailed it to the cross” (i). <Notes> a) athetesis: abolished, disannulled, put away, b) Hebrews 7:18- 19, c) dogma: authoritative, universally binding doctrines or decrees, d) katargeo: ‘thrown down to be inactive and useless,’ terminated, destroyed, voided, annulled, and thus released from – see Romans 7:6, e) Ephesians 2:14-15, f) telos: termination, conclusion, g) Romans 10:4, h) obliterated, blotted or washed out, i) Colossians 2:14-15.
Why are Christians still trying to read, study, and memorize these? They have been bloodied with Christ’s blood! Shouldn’t “we have died to the Law through the Body-of-Christ so that we can belong to another, Christ” – no longer Moses, the Prophets, or the scripture they created per Romans 7:4? Shouldn’t “we be released from the Law, having died to that which held us captive, so that now we now ongoingly serve-minister-obey by the means of the completely-different-in-kind New Way of the Spirit and absolutely in fact not in the palios “old in time, antiquated, worn-out, weak, worthless” way of the gramma writing” per Romans 7:6?
But John 19:28-30 records: “Knowing that ALL (pas as ‘every of a portion’) was already now finished [with ongoing results] (a), Jesus said to definitively/wholly finish the [entirety of] scripture (b), “It is teleo finished,” and then He died. Jesus did indeed “fulfill (c) the Law before heaven and earth passed away,” just as He promised (d). Jesus told His disciples, “Everything written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms (e) must be pleroo definitively/wholly fulfilled” (f). <Notes> a) perfect tense of teleo: once-for-all completed/concluded/ended, b) singular with article: the whole of the OT, or at least those pertaining to Him and His mission to end the Law: cf. [singular] “scripture” with definite article: John 10:35; Romans 11:2; Galatians 3:22-23, c) pleroo: to completion and terminated, d) Matthew 5:17-18, e) the 3 divisions of the OT, f) Luke 24:44.
Lord, thank You that you didn’t leave 1 commandment or requirement of the Law unfinished and also fulfilled all the prophetic ‘portions’ of scripture. Your life finished the purpose of the entire OT, to prepare the Jewish people for You. Thank You that Christians have died to 97.4% of the OT which is Law-based. Now we belong to You instead of a book, and we learn now directly by the Holy Spirit, no longer through gramma writings.