Are you in the new covenant?

13 November 2020

Series: Shabbat sermons

Are you in the new covenant?

Do you believe we are in the new covenant from Jeremiah 31? What is a covenant? What are the requirements for a covenant, and what love language got to do with it?

The definition of a covenant is an agreement between two parties to do something specific for each other. One such example would be a marriage covenant, a contract between a man and a woman to be faithful to each other, to support one another no matter what happens, until death does them part. The foundation for a marriage covenant is an agreement on how the two spouses show their love for each other. It is, therefore, essential for a marriage that both spouses understand each other’s love language. They can then communicate their love for their spouse, so they feel loved and fulfill their part of the contract. In return, he or she will do the same. If one spouse refuses to learn the others’ love language, then the marriage covenant will eventually fail.

Do you know the love language of your husband or wife? What about the love language of Yehovah?

Another example of a covenant that is also a marriage covenant would be our relationship with Yehovah, the God of the Bible. Throughout the Bible, we see how our relationship with Yehovah is likened to a marriage with metaphors such as the wedding feast of the lamb and how Yehovah sees Himself as a husband to Israel. If we want to understand how to relate to our God, we must understand the marriage covenant. If our relationship with Yehovah is likened to a marriage, we need to know His love language to make the marriage work. If we know Yehovahs love language, we can communicate our love for Him and fulfill our part of the contract. He will then feel loved and perform His part of the contract, which we find in Deut 28:1-4, Matt 6:25-34.

What is Yehovah’s love language? In the Gospel of John, John 14, Yeshua tells us how to speak Yehovahs love language. He says, if we obey the written law of Moses, then Yehovah feels loved by us. This is no different from what Yehovah says to Israel in the book of Exodus. We see the consistency and how Yehovah is the same yesterday, today, and always. (Mal, 3:6).

So let me ask you, are you married to Yehovah? Do you speak His love language?

If you are a mainstream Christian, you would say yes and yes. You believe we are now in the new covenant of Jeremiah 31. But there is a good chance you believe Yehovahs love language has changed. You think He now feels loved if we confess to having faith in the cross of Christ, not by being obedient to Moses. And for some reason, you believe this, even though the Bible says our God never changes. (Mal 3.) If you think He changes His love language that quickly, how can you can know for sure He will not sometime in the future come up with a new idea and make the cross obsolete?

Imagine the following scenario. You are deeply in love with someone of the opposite sex, and you want to marry them. They claim to love you, but they cannot communicate their love for you for some reason. You keep telling them, time and time again, what makes you feel loved, but they ignore it, claiming they know best how to love you. As time goes by, they disrespect you; your relatives make a mockery of what you see as holy and sacred all the time, claiming to love you, claiming the proof of their love is the wedding ring on their finger. Nobody would want to stay married to such a person, and nobody would even want to marry them in the first place.

So why then should Yehovah desire to marry you and stay engaged to you when you claim to love Him, but you disrespect Him, make a mockery of what He sees as sacred, and all the time claiming to love Him because they have faith in the cross?

Yehovah’s love language did not change when Yeshua died; it is still obedience to Moses that makes our God feel loved by us. (John 14)

So how are we then to understand the covenant in Jeremiah 31?

The root word used for new in Jeremiah means renewed as something that has happened before happening again under different circumstances. So let us first look at what has not changed in Jeremiah 31.

The sign of the renewed covenant is our decision to keep the law of Moses (the Torah) at the forefront of our minds at all times. This is no different from the old covenant because, in the old, it also says we are to keep the law at the forefront of our minds. (Joshua 1)

In Joshua 1 and the previous covenant, we were alone responsible for keeping the Torah at the forefront of our minds. In the renewed covenant, Yehovah sends His Holy Spirit to help us keep the Torah at the forefront of our minds. He is making it much easier for us to obey Moses than it used to be, but it also comes with greater responsibility. Because now we have no excuse for not doing it.

So the difference between the “old” covenant and the renewed covenant is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is given to us to teach us how to obey Moses, to inspire us to learn Torah. We still need to choose to follow Moses, we still need to decide to learn Torah, but the Holy Spirit, will do the rest.

How do we receive the Holy Spirit?

When the Torah confronts us with our sins, we receive the Holy Spirit, showing us our need for repentance, so we decide to repent back to Moses. (John 16:8)

When we are confronted with our sinful state, we choose to repent and atone by faith in the cross; then, we receive the Holy Spirit. When we receive the Holy Spirit, He circumcises our hearts so we can now learn and obey the Torah. When we follow the Torah, we live in the renewed covenant reaping all the benefits of Deut 28:1-14, Matt 6:25-34. Then Yehovah becomes our husband, and we become His spouse, and He, as our husband, pledges to care for us, provide for us, and fight for us. The sign of our marriage to Yehovah is our obedience to His Torah. (John, 14).

This is how we live in the renewed covenant of Jeremiah 31; we obey Moses because we love Yehovah.

Now you might be wondering, where does the cross fit into all of this?

When He sees our obedience to Moses as a sign of love, He will, of course, see our disobedience as a sign of being unfaithful to Him. Every human being on this earth has been willfully disobedient to the law of Moses at one time in their lives. When Yehovah saw your unfaithfulness, He did what any spouse would do; He divorced Himself from you.

It is easy for us to repent; we have to make up our minds to go from being lawless to obey Moses. But because Yehovah’s marriage laws govern our relationship to Him, He can not accept us back as His spouse only because of our repentance. So under the old covenant, people had no hope if they committed acts of willful sin.

In the book of Romans, Paul says that if the husband of an unfaithful spouse dies a physical death, his unfaithful wife is now no longer an adulterer. She is now legally free to marry whoever she wants.

When Yeshua died on the cross, He was 100% God and 100% man, even though He is not Yehovah the Father. Because He is 100% God, He died as the representative for our husband, Yehovah. According to Paul’s teaching in the book of Romans, this shows us that when Yeshua died, we who believe in His death are now no longer an adulterer. We are now legally free to marry whoever we want.

And because Yeshua arose from the dead, we can remarry our first husband Yehovah by faith in the cross and repentance back to Moses.

So there are two new things about the renewed covenant, the cross, and the Holy Spirit. There is one thing that has not changed, and that is the law of Moses. Both the old and the renewed covenant says we are obligated to have the law of Moses on the forefront of our minds. But now, because of the cross, we who have willfully disobeyed and been unfaithful to Yehovah can return and be filled with His Holy Spirit. We will still have our free will, so we are obligated to do our part and learn how to love our spouse Yehovah by learning how to obey Moses. And we will still have to make a choice every day to follow Moses. But if we enter into the renewed covenant through the cross and repentance, the Holy Spirit in us will give us what we need to be able to make that choice.

So what happens if you are a mainstream Christian who believes Yehovah no longer requires you to obey Moses?

The easy and straightforward but scary answer is that you are not in the renewed covenant of Jeremiah 31. Yehovah, your spouse, does not know that you love Him because you do not speak His love language. And if you die like this, you will hear, “depart from Me fro I never knew you, you who are without Torah. (Matt 7:21-23)

So do the right thing today and repent back to Moses while it is still time.

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