We have seen the differences and similarities between the Abrahamic, Mosaic, and New Covenants. Now I want to focus on the benefits of the New Covenant. There are 3 major benefits of being under the New Covenant through Jesus Christ. In order to understand these benefits, we have to compare them to the Mosaic Covenant. As we determined in the previous article, the New Covenant is the fulfillment of the Abrahamic Covenant. In this article I would like to contrast the Mosaic Covenant with the New Covenant. In the Mosaic Covenant there were sacrifices, priests, and servants, all of which were a shadow of the things to come under the New Covenant.
I. The sacrifice of the New Covenant is far better than the sacrifices of the Mosaic Covenant.
11 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation; 12 and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. 13 For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh, 14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? 24 For Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, a mere copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us; 25 nor was it that He would offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the holy place year by year with blood that is not his own. 26 Otherwise, He would have needed to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. 27 And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment, 28 so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him. (Hebrews 9)
Jesus Christ is the sacrifice of the New Covenant and His blood is far more precious than the blood of goats and calves. The blood of goats and calves did not cleanse the conscious of the worshippers. That blood just covered their sin. They were not set free from the grip that sin had upon their lives and day after day, year after year, they were reminded of sin’s death grip upon them. When Jesus offered Himself as the sacrifice once for all time, His blood cleanses the conscious of the sinners and redeems them, setting them free from the death grip of sin. Under the Old Covenant the people were not servants of God because of their sin problem. There were only certain few from among the people who were servants. Under the New Covenant, all are cleansed and given the ability to serve God. Our sin has been done away with once for all time by Jesus Christ. We can experience salvation from sin because of the better sacrifice, Jesus Christ.
10 By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. 11 Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; 12 but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, SAT DOWN AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD, 13 waiting from that time onward UNTIL HIS ENEMIES BE MADE A FOOTSTOOL FOR HIS FEET. 14 For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified. 19 Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. (Hebrews 10)
Because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we are sanctified (set apart). We are different than we were. God has broken the hold that sin had on our lives. We can and now do say NO to sin. The sacrifices of the Mosaic Covenant cannot take away sins. There is a huge difference between covering sin and taking them away. God takes our sins away under the New Covenant, setting us free. Now we can enter into the presence of God. We can have a personal relationship with God. Under the Mosaic Covenant, the veil separated God from the people. The people could not come into the presence of God because of their sin. When Christ was sacrificed, the veil was torn (sin’s power broken) and now all people who enter the New Covenant can stand in the presence of God. We now have full assurance that our sins have been forgiven and that we can walk boldly into the presence of God.
II. The Priest of the New Covenant is far better than the priests of the Mosaic Covenant.
11 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation; 24 For Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, a mere copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us; (Hebrews 9)
Jesus Christ is the High Priest of the New Covenant. He entered into the heavenly tabernacle with His own blood. The priests of the Mosaic Covenant entered the earthly tabernacle (a mere copy of the real thing) and not with their own blood, but with the blood of animals. The High Priest under the New Covenant constantly stands in the presence of God for us, unlike the priest under the Mosaic Covenant, who only entered once a year.
11 Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; (Hebrews 10)
The priests under the Mosaic Covenant were not good enough to take away the sins of the people so they had to minister daily on behalf of the people. The High Priest of the New Covenant took care of the sin problem once for all time. Again, we can be set free from sin’s death grip upon our lives. We do not have to live as slaves to sin under the New Covenant.
III. The worshippers under the New Covenant are in a personal relationship with God and don’t just have a religion.
The Apostle Paul helps explain this truth in II Corinthians chapter 3. He sets in contrast those who live under the Old Covenant and hold to a religion to those who are under the New Covenant and have a personal relationship with God.
- God’s Word written on our hearts
- Confidence to stand before God
- Made adequate by God
- Able to serve God and others
- Glorified by God
- Veil is removed and we understand the Word of God
- We have freedom
- Constantly being transformed into the image (character) of Jesus Christ
- Not made adequate to serve God
- Nothing to do with God’s glory
- Hardened mind
- Not transformed (came in the religion the way that you were and stayed that way)
- No liberty, nothing but slavery (to sin, to rules and regulations, to what other people think about you, etc)
Which category do you find yourself in? Do you have a personal relationship with God that is transforming you or do you just have a religion that allows you to be comfortable as you are? Are you constantly reminded of the fact that you cannot overcome sin or have you accepted the sacrifice that cleanses from sin and sets you free from sin’s grip over you? There are only 2 options here, either you live under one of the other. God can transform you if you will let Him. He has done everything already and offers it all to you. Your job is to reach up and receive His gift of the New Covenant.