The Law of the Covenant

By Lloyd Ellefson

Greetings! We often talk about the fact that Jesus Christ is Lord, but have we ever stopped to think who the Lord is? 2 Cor. 3:17 tells us that "the Lord is the Spirit." Since He is THE SPIRIT, He cannot be anything that is not spirit. That means He cannot be a law, a church, or a code of ethics that demands certain behavior patterns. Neither can the Bible be Christ the Lord! The Lord is the Spirit and God is spirit! (Jn. 4:24) Therefore His sons are also spirit. This is wonderful, yet how difficult to comprehend!

Today's discussion centers on the covenants. Both the old and new covenants are mentioned in the New Testament. God made various covenants in the Old Testament. He made covenants with Abraham and Israel. There was a covenant of salt, a covenant of circumcision, a covenant with death, etc. All these covenants were part of the Old Testament covenant, yet they were inadequate, for they could not bring about a change in humanity! If the old covenant had been faultless, there wouldn't have been any need for a new one. With the coming of the new, the old became obsolete. (Heb. 8:7-13) The new covenant displaces the old!

It is extremely important that we rightly divide the covenants. This is very difficult for most people, so they join or combine them. They marry their idea of God to the law. This is a ministration of death, for man is unable to produce a spiritual conception of God in his mind. All these wrong ideas come into being because of humanity's frailty. The old covenant failed because of man's limitations, weaknesses and shortcomings. God is not responsible for the failure of the old covenant because the fault was in humanity; it depended upon man to do his part! God said, "If you obey My commandments you will be blessed." God knew that man wouldn't be able to keep them, for He knew humanity's weaknesses all along! That is why He promised that a new covenant would come.

And a new covenant HAS come! The old one has passed away! Jesus Christ IS the new covenant! This covenant differs entirely from the old one! No longer does it depend upon man, for God is not demanding anything from him. God made an oath with Himself that He would perform it! He Himself is the surety for the covenant because there is no one else who can perform it. We now live in the time when God is performing His oath. Our security lies in the fact that God keeps and fulfills what He has promised. He only expects us to release ourselves to Him. We are to become like little children and enter into the presence of Him who performs everything!

"And just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you..." (Luke 22:29) A kingdom has to have a rule. Jesus Christ acknowledged that the rule which was in Him performed everything! He said, "I can do nothing of Myself...the Father in Me does the works." The signs and wonders were the result of the rule that operated through Him! They were a witness to the rule by which He was governed. This witness was more important than the signs and wonders. It gives us a true conception of who God is! "Only the Father knows the Son, and only the Son knows the Father and those to whom He will reveal Him." No one else knew the Son, and no one else knew the Father! Now we too can know the Son as the Father reveals Him to us!

In John 5 Jesus accused the Jews of not knowing God. They had never heard His word, nor was it abiding in them; they did not know the One God had sent, nor did they have the love of God within them! They sought the honor of men, and did not believe Moses! They did not know that Moses was their accuser! Jesus plainly told them that He Himself would not accuse them to the Father!

God is the source and the performance of the new covenant! The rule of this kingdom is purely spiritual; there is nothing natural about it! In obedience to this rule, Jesus lived under the law for thirty years, and in obedience to it, He went to the Jordan River. In obedience to it He was baptized in water. The Holy Spirit from on high came upon Him as a dove and He was baptized in the Holy Spirit! From then on He manifested the Christ! As prophesied, He was the Christ, and He was born the Christ, but He did not manifest the Christ until after His baptism.

"For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit." (Rom. 14:17) The kingdom of God is IN the Holy Spirit. Jesus was ruled by God's Spirit! And that is the rule that has been given to us! Jesus said, "And just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and you will sit on thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel." (Luke 22:29-30) We eat and drink spiritually at His table! That is true spiritual food. Jesus said, "I have meat to eat you don't know of...I live by the Father, and as I live by the Father he that eats of Me shall live by Me, for My blood is drink, and My flesh is meat indeed." This must not be interpreted to mean the physical flesh and blood. We partake of Him in His spiritual essence! His life is the fruit of the new covenant! The fruit of the old covenant was death. Jesus said, "Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died." (John 6:49) The food of the new covenant does not produce death; it brings life!

Jesus Christ was operating in the kingdom of God - a kingdom that is not of this world. Jesus came to bear witness to the truth! The other kingdom, the kingdom of darkness, is ruled by the god of this world. It has blinded the eyes of the unbelieving, so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ! Since Christ is the image of God, they cannot see Him. (2 Cor. 4:4) Sight is obtained through faith!

Paul said, "You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men; being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, cared for by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone, but on tablets of human hearts." (2 Cor. 3:2-3) The Corinthians had received the gospel of Christ that Paul preached to them. This message was written in their hearts - not on tablets of stone as the ten commandments were! We no longer need the ten commandments because the law is written in our hearts by the Spirit of the living God!

"Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God, who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter, but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life." (vv.5-6) A spiritual kingdom has a spiritual covenant, and we receive it in Christ. Natural man cannot enter in because he cannot receive the things of the Spirit of God. To enter in, he must first repent! It is not enough to repent of sin. We are to repent of who we are - of our old ideas and thinking! If we don't repent, we won't change! We'll be exactly like the Jews who rejected Jesus and crucified Him. We'll still expect the flesh to please God.

Jesus said that He could do nothing of Himself; He only did what He saw the Father doing! That is why He could say, "He that has seen Me has seen the Father." This kind of relationship was foreign to the Jews and they did not want to receive it. Christ's testimony of His relationship with God did not fit in with their idea of God! It made them so angry that they wanted to kill Him! No wonder Jesus said that repentance was necessary now that the kingdom of God had come! Without repentance they could not believe the gospel. Repentance involves repenting from having lived in the man of sin - our old identity which is entrenched in our old Adamic man, our old me, the "I" - the source of sins committed by the natural man. We have to recognize that our old identity is not a true identity, and therefore a delusion. By recognizing this we acknowledge that we really don't know truth. This brings us to repentance and prepares us to receive spiritual realities in a childlike manner! These are taught us by the Holy Spirit!

"But if the ministry of death, in letters engraved on stones, came with glory, so that the sons of Israel could not look intently at the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, fading as it was, how shall the ministry of the Spirit fail to be even more with glory?" (vv.7-8) Man is an Adamic, fleshly, materialistic man who walks in the darkness and futility of his own mind! He cannot hear God, nor can he obey Him! The law was a ministry of death to this man! It speaks to those who are under the law; it closes every mouth, for it stops everyone from saying that he is not accountable to God! (Rom. 3:19) When this is accomplished, it will stop man from testifying of his natural idea of God, because he recognizes that he does not know who God is, nor does he know God's nature! Therefore it is a release for him to come into the kingdom rule of God!

The ministry of death by letters engraved or chiseled in stone came with glory! When Moses came down from the mountain with the stone tablets, his face shone. The Israelites "could not look intently on the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, fading as it was....who used to put a veil over his face that the sons of Israel might not look intently at the end of what was fading away." (2 Cor. 3:7,13) The glory of the old covenant has faded away! The law, mediated by Moses, could not bring us to the Father! Jesus Christ is the Mediator of a new covenant! And He is more than that! He IS the new covenant, because He is mediating Himself!

"Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty." (v. 17) The Spirit does not bring us into a liberty to do our own thing, but it brings us liberty from the old covenant, liberty from the law of sin and death, liberty from the consciousness of sin, and liberty from the identification with our old humanity! When we allow the new covenant to take us out of the old, the old passes away! The old is no longer valid!

The law of Moses was a ministry of death. Israel was in agreement with that. In Isaiah 28:15a it says, "Because you have said, `We have made a covenant with death, and with Sheol' (the nether world or hell) `we have made a pact...'" How could they make a covenant with Sheol or hell? Isn't hell a place for the dead - where people fry in the lake of fire? I don't think so. Death is the realm they live in! Hell means unperception - it is a place where there is no perception of God!

"...the overwhelming scourge will not reach us when it passes by, for we have made falsehood our refuge and we have concealed ourselves with deception." (15b) This concealment with deception first happened when Adam believed the lie of satan and rejected the truth that is in God! Truth in God cannot lie! God does not lie! Whatever He says happens! Adam received the lie that he wouldn't die - but he DID die! Every man dies in Adam - it's an absolute, because Adam only has a consciousness of sin and death! He believes in death and lives in it. Since he thinks his life is in the flesh his life is going to die. This thinking produces more lies! He has made these lies his refuge! The lie consists of believing that life is in the flesh!

Then we hear the prophecy. "Therefore thus says the Lord God, `Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, a costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed. And I will make justice the measuring line, and righteousness the level; then hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the secret place.'" (vv.16-17) The stone laid in Zion is Jesus Christ; He is the truth! Jesus said that He came into the world to bear witness to the truth, and those who are of the truth will hear Him. Through hearing Christ we learn to know Him, and the truth makes us free! We will be freed from our refuge of lies and our covenant with death. "And your covenant with death shall be cancelled, and your pact with Sheol shall not stand; when the overwhelming scourge passes through, then you become its trampling place." (v.18) You will find out in that day.

"I am the Lord, I have called you in righteousness, I will also hold you by the hand and watch over you, and I will appoint you as a covenant to the people, as a light to the nations." (Isaiah 42:6) Here we see that God is giving us His Son for a covenant and He is to be a light to the nations! "To open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the dungeon, and those who dwell in darkness from the prison." (v.7) Blind eyes belong to those who can't see spiritually; therefore they need to be opened! Those who are imprisoned in the intellect and reasonings of their human minds and in their own conception of God, need to be freed, for their own thinking is in the death realm!

God said, "I am the Lord, that is My name; I will not give My glory to another, nor My praise to graven images." (v.8) A graven image or idol represents a mental image. The Jews had wrong mental concepts and ideas of God, so they worshiped the images conceived by their imagination! These are false gods! Knowledge of the true God can only be received by revelation. The fact that they rejected Jesus and crucified Him proved that! If you really want to know who God is, just read the New Testament and look at all the things Jesus Christ did. He was kind, meek and lowly in heart; He healed the sick, fed people, and raised the dead. He didn't condemn people nor did He punish them. He came to redeem us from that! He taught us not to take an eye for an eye, not to resist evil, and to give to him who asks more than is expected! We might call that a passive way of resisting evil.

Our faith in God's sovereignty is expressed in non-violence! By not fighting evil we are expressing our faith in God to take care of sin, evil, retribution and revenge. We do not see the complete fulfillment of this promise at the present time. We are now living between the promise and the complete fulfillment of the new covenant, so it is up to God to take care of everything that needs taking care of! Taking things into our own hands shows confidence in self and lack of trust in God's ability and timing. It's important to remember that no one can ever take away the spiritual realities God has given us! Since God Himself has given them to us, He certainly won't take them away from us.

The book of Hebrews carefully explains the difference between the TWO covenants. The Hebrew mentality zeroed in on the first covenant which they were loathe to leave. "So much the more also Jesus has become the guarantee" (surety or sponsor) "of a better covenant." (Heb. 7:22) Since the soul is in the blood, His soul - His consciousness, His sense of being, His understanding - is the guarantee of the new covenant. His Word demonstrates exactly who God is; He cannot be adulterated!

Our Lord came out of the tribe of Judah. This is important, because under the old covenant no priest ever came out of the tribe of Judah! (Heb. 7:14) This underlines the fact that we now have a new priesthood! Jesus Christ is the minister, the high priest of the new covenant; He is the high priest of a new order. Under Him the priesthood has become a kingdom of priests!

"For when the priesthood is changed, of neccessity there takes place a change of law also." (v.12) A new priesthood necessitates a new law, for it does not minister the law of the old covenant! "For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness (for the law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God. And inasmuch as it was not without an oath (for they indeed became priests without an oath, but He with an oath through the One who said to Him, `The Lord has sworn and will not change His mind, Thou art a priest forever')." (vv.18-21) Jesus Christ had to minister a new law because the old law could not make anything perfect!

This new order has a priesthood that never changes and it always ministers an endless life! In order to minister Christ, we have to minister the new covenant! We have to minister the Bible according to New Testament principles. This means we have to do it in the Spirit, in the realization of immortality - which is an endless life! Living by the new law means that we don't try to prove things by mental gymnastics, but we let the Holy Spirit of truth lead us into all truth!

"But now has He obtained a more excellent ministry, by as much as He is also the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted on better promises. For if the first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion sought for a second. For finding fault with them, He says, `Behold, days are coming, says the Lord, when I will effect a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah; not like the covenant which I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt...'" (Heb. 8:6-9) The old covenant God contained instructions about the feasts they were to observe. The first feast, the passover, was to be observed in Egypt. The Red Sea lay between Egypt and Canaan; in it Pharaoh and his army were drowned, so it was called the water of separation. Through it they were delivered from their Egyptian bondage, their old place in the world. After they were freed from their bondage, they came into the desert.

Fifty days later they came to Mount Sinai. Here they received the law. This was the second feast and was called Pentecost (which means 50). Here God revealed Himself by the name of Yahwe, which means the law-giver. "And Moses went up to God, and the Lord (Yahwe) called him from the mountain, saying, `Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob and tell the sons of Israel: "You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles' wings, and brought you to Myself. Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine; and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation...'" (Exod. 19:3-6)

"...for on the third day the Lord (Yahwe) will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people...So it came about on the third day, when it was morning, that there were thunder and lightning flashes and a thick cloud upon the mountain and a very loud trumpet sound, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. And Moses brought the people out of the cammp to meet God (Elohim), and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Now Mount Sinai was all in smoke because the Lord (Yahwe) descended upon it in fire; and its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked violently." (vv.11,16-18) Notice how the Lord (Yahwe) is identified with judgment.

Moses received the law, the ten commandments God had engraved on two tablets of stone. He had been on the mountain for forty days, and the Israelites had become impatient. They made their own god and ascribed to it the work of God. Both Aaron and the congregation were involved in this. When Moses came down, he saw the children of Israel dancing around the golden calf and worshiping it. At this sight, Moses lost his temper, threw the tablets down and broke them. This is a picture of the first law - it will always be broken by humanity - both by leaders and by the common people. Then God told Moses to cut two stone tablets like the former ones and He would write the same words on the new tablets. The second set was not broken; it was retained and put in the ark - unbroken! However, as the years went by, everything in the ark disappeared. By the time Jesus came, the house was empty; it was desolate!

Moses received the law on the mountain 50 days after the Israelites celebrated the Passover. Fifty days after Jesus was crucified (His Passover) the Holy Spirit came and brought us the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus! This is the new law - Pentecost being fulfilled. Can you see the connection? A new order was being established - a new law and a new priesthood according to the order of Melchizedek! Melchizedek had no father, no mother, no pre-existence! We are born of God - we have no earthly pre-existence!

No longer do we minister the law of sin and death! God has now given us a new law - the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus! There is no condemnation in Christ Jesus, so there is no penalty for disobeying that law. The penalty comes from obeying another law - the law of sin and death. God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them! God is not counting our trespasses (sins) against us! How hard it is for us to really believe this! Remember, Jesus said, "...I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world...he who does not believe has been judged already..." (Jn. 12:47; 3:18) Christ's ministry brings us out of condemnation! "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." (Rom. 8:1) That is the key! Being in Christ means being in that Spirit, in that covenant and under that new law!

Have you ever thought of the fact that in Christ it's against the law to die? Christ is life and He ministers His life! There is no death in Him! Everything is fulfilled in Christ! If we have Him, we have everything - even the feast of tabernacles! We don't need to look to a future fulfillment of this feast. It is fulfilled in Christ! It is Christ who IS the new covenant. Christ is given to us to be the new covenant. He is the surety of the new covenant; His blood of the new covenant edifies and instructs us through the Spirit.

Moses carried with him the pattern of the temple when he came down from the mountain. The temple is the dwelling place with God - and this is the feast of tabernacles! Jesus said, "...I go to prepare a place for you...that where I am, there you may be also." Why? Because in the Father's house are many places to live. So He HAS come back. In John 15:4a,5b Jesus said, "Abide in Me, and I in you...he who abides in Me, and I in him, he bears much fruit." Who is this "I"? The "I" is Christ; He is the I AM! Jesus said, "I AM the way...I AM the truth...I AM the life...I AM the resurrection...before Abraham was, I AM." This is the "I" that says, "If you abide in Me and I abide in you." So Jesus Christ is the abiding surety of the new covenant! He is the Word of God who brings us a new consciousness!

In Heb. 10:20 it says that His flesh was a veil. When Jesus was on earth, His flesh hid His true identity. Today the veil is over people's hearts. This veil keeps them from seeing Christ spiritually, so they still want to see Him physically and think of Him as sitting somewhere in the sky removed from us. That which the old covenant, with its tabernacle, curtains and veils symbolized, was fulfilled when Jesus Christ came. He said, "If you have seen Me you have seen the Father." Before the Spirit came, the veil that was over our hearts hid Him from us. But now that He has sent His Spirit, the veil is removed. Now we can see! We may only see in part, but we do see! We know that the "I", the Christ, dwells in us! We are seated with Him in heavenly places! He is not sitting up there removed from us!

That's why Jesus said, "When you pray, say, `Our Father'". When the Spirit comes, we cry "Abba! Father!" because that shows our relationship with God. Christ abides in us in His essence! He didn't become a fleshly man first and then a spiritual man; nor did He become the Son of God just before He went back to heaven. Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever! He took on forms and manifested Himself in various ways. He came to bring us a true impression and a true realization of God that we might know who we are in Him! He was obviously rejected in the natural for He was judged according to the law of the old covenant. This showed the necessity of a new covenant with a new law. This is the law of life! That is why Jesus Christ brought it to us!

The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has delivered us from the law of sin and death. (Rom. 8:2) We have been translated into the law of spirit and life in Christ Jesus! This law is IN Christ Jesus! It's in that "I" that abides in us! This cannot be received in the natural; it has to be received through a submission to the Spirit! The religious denominational system continues to preach the law with its condemnation and sin consciousness, for it does not have the ability to conceive this nor to understand it. We need to be delivered from the law of sin and death in order to bear fruit. Unless we abide in the new law, we won't get rid of our sin consciousness! Since Christ comes as the innocent, guiltless Lamb of God and abides in us, we can't have a guilt consciousness! A guilt consciousness puts Him to death again - it crucifies Him afresh. Jesus said, "For unless you believe that I am He, you shall die in your sins." (Jn. 8:24b)

"But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper shall not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you." (John 16:7) It is to our advantage that this earthy image of Jesus Christ is gone! If we retain it, the Helper cannot come to us. But we want the Comforter to come to us, so we have to relinquish our physical image of Him! This is very important!

The coming of the Holy Spirit is the basis for the new covenant (the New Testament) and the mission of Christ! "But if I go I will send Him to you. And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin, and righteousness, and judgment; concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me." (John 16:7c-9) The Holy Spirit is not reproving the world because of the sins they have committed, but because they do not believe in Christ! Those who are NOT in Christ are living in condemnation. But there is no condemnation for those who are IN Christ Jesus! He has dealt with sin; He has made one offering and it takes care of sin forever! He is NOT imputing sin to us and there is no condemnation in Him. For all of us who are in Christ Jesus there is now no condemnation!

"But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come." (Jn. 16:13) Man was enmeshed in error; he was the priesthood of the lie. The Adamic man is always led by satan. The god of this world has blinded the eyes of those who don't believe. We may think that we are not included, but we are! We are either in Christ or we are not in Him. If we are not in Christ, we are in Adam - living in the lie.

The Holy Spirit will guide us into all truth! Without Him and His teaching, we don't have truth! Does the Bible lead us into all truth? No, it is a witness of the truth, but it is not the Spirit of truth! It is the Spirit of truth that leads us into truth! Since Jesus is the truth, it is His Spirit that comes to us and leads us into truth!

"He shall glorify Me; for He shall take of Mine, and shall disclose it to you...But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you." Then you also will bear witness of the truth. "And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever." (John 16:14;15:26;14:16) The Holy Spirit does not leave you every time you commit a sin. "That is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not behold Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you, and will be in you." (Jn. 14:17) Truth is the bottom line; truth is it! Truth is God. Truth is what things really are. Nothing can take away from truth, nor is there anything lasting beyond truth.

"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son..." Then in 1 John 2:15 it says that we are not to love the world, nor the things in the world. Friendship with the world is hostility toward God! If we wish to be friends of the world, we make ourselves an enemy of God. (James 4:4) How is it then, that God can love the world, but we can't? Which world does God love? Does He love the world (system) of unrighteousness? In 2 Peter 3 we learn that there are three worlds and one of them is a world of righteousness! God so loves this world of righteousness that He was willing to give His Son in order that we could get out of our unrighteousness and be given His righteousness!

Only those who are in Christ can receive the Spirit! Jesus Christ is the the Anointed One and He is also the Anointing! He sends us the anointing of the Spirit! (Acts 2) The world cannot receive Him because satan is its god and it cannot see Christ. It does not have faith, nor does it know Him. But you know Him! Christ dwells with you and is in you!

Jesus said, "I will not leave you comfortless; I will come to you." He has kept His promise! He HAS come and He abides in us! He is the new covenant for us! He gives us Himself and in Him we have everything we need, for He IS those things that we want of God! He is our covenant, He is our guarantee, He is our life, and He is made unto us wisdom, etc.! Our estrangement from God has caused us to be filled with so many wrong concepts! We think we have to earn the right to have our prayers answered; we think they will be answered if we try to be good, read our Bible, etc.; we think God will then have compassion on us and do something for us. As we realize what CHRIST is doing, our prayers will change. God is redeeming us from OURSELVES - from our wrong consciousness! In Christ we are being ascended out of our death realm. God is bringing Christ forth in us. He brings us a true realization of Himself because He is the Spirit of truth.

When truth comes error is dissolved; when light comes darkness is dissolved. Christ is the light that lights every man that comes into the world! We have received a new covenant which has a new law. It provides the tabernacle for us to dwell in, and this tabernacle is the presence of God! God is our life! In Him we live and move and have our being. (Acts 17) The Athenians were not aware of that, even as people are not aware of it today. We need to recognize that we are not of this world; we have been born of an incorruptible seed! That which is incorruptible can't die!

Every seed has its own body! We are members of the body of Christ and He is life, truth and resurrection! This is sonship! This is the new covenant! If we mix the old covenant with the new, we live in confusion - in Babylon, for Babylon means confusion. It is very sad to see the confusion in which many Christians live today. A marriage of the old and the new has taken place and this has brought confusion. They can't separate the God of Christ from the God of the old covenant; they can't separate the covenants!

Moses was unable to bring in a covenant that was perfect, efficient and immortal! Only Christ could do that! Why is it so difficult for people to believe that the old covenant is decaying and passing away? The fact that there is an old covenant proves that a new one has come! Jesus Christ did not come to destroy the Old Testament and the prophets. He came to fulfill them! When He said, "It is finished", He had fulfilled the old covenant!

Everything is FULFILLED in Christ! We are no longer waiting for God to do more of this or that! We are growing into the realization that it already IS - it is here already. Jesus HAS finished the work of redemption for us! Do we see it as fulfilled already? No, of course not! The anointing is only for the new man. Unless we are living in the new man, we will never get to know this. We can't grow up into Christ unless we are IN Christ. We can't understand God unless we can hear the Spirit. We can't dwell in God unless we are comfortable in His presence. To be comfortable we have to know that our sins are taken care of!

Christ has done all this! He has fulfilled all things! So why is humanity still waiting for various things to happen in the future? The Christian church is waiting for the return of a physical Jesus, for the rapture and the millenium. By waiting for everything to happen in the future, they are denying the new covenant - denying that Christ is here and that He is abiding in us even as He said He would. He is our Redeemer, He is our covenant, He is our wisdom, He is our life! Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. He will never accuse us to God! Once the Spirit has taught us what the new covenant truly means, it takes on a new significance and we begin to realize how wonderful it is!

Humanity cannot accept this. It says, "Look, we still sin so we are still sinners." That is unbelief! It is hard to change when our actions match our feelings and seem to belie what God says. The way to change is to continually abide in the Christ who is within us! Then we will bear the fruit of a correct understanding of who God is! No longer will we be opposing God and giving people a wrong idea of God through actions that do not portray God's nature! If we make traditions and the law our God, we will not worship the true God, but only a god who exists in our imagination. As a matter of fact, I believe that the present church system and the Jews still have the same idea of God that contradicted the words of Christ and put Him to death!

Let us think about this and be a people who see that everything is fulfilled in Christ! We are a people who are to live in His abiding presence!!

"Consider what I say, and may the Lord give you understanding."

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