Classic Christianity – A Closer Look at The New Covenant P17 (06-30-21)
The word “brainwashing” is used a lot more today. In regard to the vaccination propaganda, with bribes for free doughnuts, cruises or college tuition, and peer pressure to comply and get the shot, as media continually broadcasts that it is safe and effective. Yet, why would well-renowned doctors, experts in virology, front line doctors, be willing to lose their license and their reputation by telling the truth?
So too with the disciples of Jesus Christ. Why would they lie about the resurrection of Jesus Christ? They saw Him on that waters edge to cast their net to the other side, and to become fishers of men. Why would they be willing to lose everything to tell about Jesus? Why would they be willing to be persecuted and face a martyr’s death for something they thought was a lie? That would not make sense. They believed Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and no one comes to the Father except through Jesus.
Sadly, the Christian world today has been stuck in faulty thinking. It is so much easier to brainwash someone to believe a lie than to unbrainwash someone to come to know the truth that can truly set him free. A topic that often seems to stir up the Christian world is on the proper understanding of 1 John 1:9. A person wrote on social media that 1 John 1:9 is a passage that shows a true born again believer that though His sins are forgiven, past, future and present, we still live in this fallen world and need daily cleansing and we can come directly by faith to God on those shortcomings since He is faithful and just to forgive and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Sadly, this is double talk. Either Jesus took away the sins of the entire world, never to see them again, or He didn’t? Jesus did not die for some sins, nor choose to remember certain sins we are learning to overcome today, putting the burden on us to make a sacrifice of confession for that sin. I am not a sinner saved by grace. I once was a sinner, now made a saint, set apart as holy, set apart in my thinking, who is learning to walk under grace as a new creation, a child of God, getting my mind renewed, as He is my Counselor.
1 John 1:9 is not to be used as a bar of soap for spiritual cleansing, to get your current sins washed away again. Why is it that one passage of scripture is used to form doctrine in contrast to so many clear passages of scripture? One has to read scripture in the context of understanding the difference between the Old Covenant then and the New Covenant we are under today. How can Jesus’ shed blood be a better sacrifice if you still have to do something to get your sins erased or to remain in fellowship with God? Would that not be a continual reminder of your sins, no different than atonement by the shed blood of a bull or a goat or going to a priest to get your sins forgiven?
I can go boldly to the throne of grace because there is no more sacrifice for sin. I was once an enemy of God in my mind because of my sinful behavior, and my sin was ever before me. How could I approach a God whom I see is forever angry at sin, at my behavior, and I can never get it right? But through the death of Christ my sins are never to be seen again by the eyes of God. He demonstrated His love toward me in that while I was yet a sinner, He died for me. I responded to that love. I am now ready to listen to what He wants to do for me. If He did that for me at the cross, what else would He do for me? He has risen and He promised me eternal life through belief in Him, in His resurrected life, so that since He lives I too can live. So I allow Him free control over my life, not out of obligation but because I want to because I have come to know His love for me. That is what frees me to come to Him for what He came to give me, His life to be lived in me and through me.
He shed His blood once, not twice, but once, for sin, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. So if I am going to go to God for forgiveness, would I not be asking God to shed His blood on a cross again? If not, then what sacrifice could I make that would satisfy God’s just judgment for sin, that being the wages of sin is death? God would be asking me, “Where is your sacrifice?” If I was honest I would say, “I have none”, which is the answer God wants me to come to and wants to hear from me. Jesus’ shed blood is the only propitiation, not an atoning sacrifice like that of a bull and a goat that covers sin, but propitiation that took away the sins of the entire world forever from the eyes of God, sins back to Adam and forward to eternity.
So asking God to forgive you of your sins would be an insult to the Spirit of grace, making a mockery of the blood of the cross, and calling God a liar who said, “It is finished”. He is not going to shed His blood again. He has made me perfect forever, complete in Christ, having His perfection imputed to me. I have been made into a new creation. I go boldly to the throne of grace because there is nothing for God to chide me with. I come to God because I am a child of God and I know He loves me perfectly. I have been made perfect, complete, forever, having not any perfection of my own, but His perfection. He lives in me. I am a new creation.
So my heart is desiring to walk in the new way of the Spirit. I come to Him thanking Him for what He has already done, and allow Him to renew my mind. I am no longer under the law of sin and death but under the law of liberty in Christ Jesus. He said “It is finished”. What is finished? The sacrifice for sins, once and for all, so that in Him, I have the righteousness of God imputed to me as a gift from God. I go to Him in faith, believing what He said, that He has given me everything I need for life and godliness. I do not go to Him as a child of God because I am incomplete but because I have been made complete, having all I need. God is no longer dealing with man on the basis of sin. That is obvious, for if He was, Jesus could not have made the statement that when He comes back, He is not coming back to bear sin but to bring salvation to those waiting for Him. The reason He is not coming back to bear sin is because he has done so once, and for all, and forever.
I cannot add to or improve upon what God has already done. That would be like trying to touch up the Mona Lisa, insulting the expert artist who signed his name at the bottom signifying the drawing is finished or complete. Jesus signed His name with blood and it is written on my heart, “It is finished” so that I can receive what God came to give me, eternal life, God’s life to be lived in us and through us, and that by faith. Right now, if you are in Christ Jesus, you are as holy as the one who made you holy in the sight of God. You are without blemish and you are free from accusation. That does not mean I cannot find things I can accuse you of. It does not mean that you have blemishes that I cannot see. But it means He has clothed you in the righteousness of Christ Jesus His Son. When He looks at you He sees the righteousness of Christ Jesus, not yours, but His.
Why are we trying to improve on that? God is saying, “Since you entered into my death with me, ceasing from your works as I did from Mine, recognizing My work for you, and you allowed Me to enter into your life, I have made you complete, perfect forever.” The work is complete in me, and God has promised to complete what He began in me. One day I will have a new glorified body, and the Holy Spirit in me is a guarantee of that promise.
We talked about a better sacrifice, the contrast between an Old Testament sacrifice, which the blood of bulls and goats could never take away sins, and the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ, who came in a certain time in history and fulfilled the entirety of the law and the prophets through his death, burial and resurrection, not to cover sins, as the atonement, but coming to take away sin, which is propitiation. The word atonement is not used in the New Covenant. The word atonement was Old Testament and was the shedding of the blood of a bull and a goat, which could never take away the sins of the world.
We finished up in Hebrews 10:17-18.
17 Then he adds:
“Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.”[Jeremiah 31:34]
18 And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary.
In other words, they have been taken away from the eyes of God. God is no longer dealing with man on the basis of sin. That is obvious, for if He was, Jesus could not have made the statement, when he comes back, he is not coming back to bear sin but to bring salvation to those waiting for him. The reason he is not coming back to bear sin is because he has done so once, and for all, and forever.
So He is not dealing with man on the basis of sin and death today. He is dealing with man on the basis of the sin of the rejection of Christ Jesus. No man will ever go to hell because of his sins. The sins of the world were placed behind the back of God never to see them again. Jesus said the world’s sin (singular) is unbelief in me. The only sin that will keep you out of heaven is the sin of the rejection of the finished work of Christ Jesus at the cross and through His resurrected life. Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more and where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary.
It does not say will be forgiven, but have been forgiven. Are you living in the have been or the will be? The majority of the Christian world lives with the will be’s. They live their lives as if their sins will be forgiven or can be forgiven. That is not truth, folks. The passage says where these sins have been forgiven. It is done. It is over. There is no longer any sacrifice for sins. The sacrifice for sins has been made. It was made over 2000 years ago at the cross.
2 Corinthians 5:21
21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
It is finished. He cried out from the cross, “It is finished.” He did not say that it is almost done or it will be done. He said, “It has been done. It is finished. It is paid in full.” These sins have been forgiven, not will be or can be, but have been forgiven. There is no longer any sacrifice for sins.
If there is no more sacrifice there is no more forgiveness, for without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. If there is no more sacrifice, it means there is no more forgiveness. So why are people telling others to beg for what in Him you already have instead of living in a state of thanksgiving for what we have? You say, “This is semantics.” No, it isn’t semantics at all. One is faith and one is not faith. One is faith in what Jesus has accomplished and the other is in faith in what I can keep records of. One is faith in Him and the other is faith in me. Which one do you think is most impressive to God? God is not looking for me to have faith in me. He is looking for me to have faith in Him. There is no more sacrifice for sins. That is precisely why Christ cried out from the cross, “It is finished.” What did he mean? It is finished. Why are we still keeping what He says is finished alive, and dead as a hammer as to what He says is alive and dead to what He says is dead? We have reversed the entire process.
2 Corinthians 5:18-19
18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.
This annihilates the idea that the work Jesus Christ did at the cross was strictly to the Jew. The New Covenant was not strictly given to the Jew. If that were true, then Paul is whistling dixie here. God has given all of us the ministry of reconciliation. The whole world is under the New Covenant. To the Jew, it was new in comparison to the old. To the Gentile, it was just brand new. But it is applicable to all, both Jew and Gentile.
What is that ministry of reconciliation? God was reconciling the world unto Himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation.
19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
21 Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior.
The same thing is true today. People think they are alienated from God because of their evil behavior. You have people dying thinking God is so mad at you. God loves you. God loves you so much that He demonstrated His love toward you while you were yet a sinner, He died for you. But in our own minds, we think we are alienated because of our behavior. But you are not.
22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation
1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,
2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.
You have been reconciled by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation. Right now, if you are in Christ Jesus, that you are as holy as the one who made you holy in the sight of God. You are without blemish and you are free from accusation. That does not mean I cannot find things I can accuse you of. It does not mean that you have blemishes that I cannot see. But it means He has clothed you in the righteousness of Christ Jesus His Son. When He looks at you He sees the righteousness of Christ Jesus, not yours but His. Why are we trying to improve on that? Why are we trying to make ourselves right before God when He has declared us to be righteous? Why are we trying to keep ourselves free from accusation through our confession instead of thanking Him for the fact that God says I am free of accusation? There is nothing he can accuse me of.
It is amazing to me where people go to John 3:16, a passage so well known, yet spit in the face of God.
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Is eternal life something I have to keep or maintain? No. It is His work. He did it. Greater love has anyone seen than this.
8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
This reconciliation required total forgiveness of sins. Under the law, forgiveness was conditional, based on what you do. Precisely why, and again, I want to clarify this. Jesus taught under the law, under the Old Covenant. The New Covenant did not go into effect until the death of Jesus. His teaching prepared us for the New Covenant. He prepared us by burying us under the old, showing us that we cannot do it. And when I come to realize I cannot do it, Lord, we are ready for the cross and the resurrection. That is the preparatory work of Christ Jesus. In the gospels, is the life of Jesus here on earth teaching under the Old Covenant and burying us under the Old Covenant. People will come and use the Lord’s prayer out of context.
9 “This, then, is how you should pray:
“‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, 10 your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us today our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’
Then we put an amen instead of reading on.
14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
How are you going to match that up with this passage in the New Testament?
2 Corinthians 5:19
19 God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation
Howan you match those two unless you are a man of forked tongue? How are you going to bring those two together? They are in total contrast. Which is it? Both. Under the Old Covenant that was the condition of forgiveness. If you do not forgive your brother your heavenly Father will not forgive you.
Under the New Covenant, a brand new covenant of grace, you are forgiven and therefore forgive one another as Christ Jesus forgave you. Under grace, forgiveness is final. It is based upon what He did. Under the law, under the gospel, under the Old Covenant, it is based upon what you do.
32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
What is the difference? People want to use the Lord’s prayer to say, “See, you still need to ask God to forgive you.” No. If you are under the Old Covenant you do. But even under that, that is not going to cut it. Go and forgive those you hate. Then He says under the Old Covenant, if you want to be under it, those are the conditions. See how well you do folks under that.
We have to come to grips on the truth of that. They are outside of that. James says to forgive your sins one to another, but it does not say from God, but from one another. There are no passages in regard to forgiveness from one another. The whole basis of modern-confused Christianity and teaching is based on asking and begging for forgiveness. Yet, how many sins did Christ forgive? All of them.
1 Peter 3:18
18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit.
13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.
Why was it opposed to it? When it flows through me, as Paul says, it kills me.
17 I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them 18 to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’
Receive it. Walk by faith in it. Thank Him for it.
34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.
Do you think the Father did not answer that prayer? Father forgive them. He says, I did.
43 All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”
1 John 2:12
12 I am writing to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name.
Your sins are not forgiven on account of your confession but on account of His name. So Jesus’ blood forgave sin that the blood of bulls and goats could never do. He gave up His spirit, saying “It is finished” and then sat down at the right hand of God in heaven. Now there is no more sacrifice for sins.
17 Then he adds:
“Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.”[Jeremiah 31:34]
18 And where these have been forgiven, there is no more sacrifice for sins.
There is no more judgment for sin.
17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.
The very thing we are talking about.
John 16:9 (TLB)
9 The world’s sin is unbelief in me;
The only sin that will keep you from ever entering the kingdom of God is the sin of the rejection of the work of Christ Jesus.
1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.
God wants us to walk by faith, and faith must have an object. Faith is like swallowing. You can say you have to swallow to live. Yes, that makes sense, but I can also figure out that I can swallow poison and die, using the same mechanism I use to live. Swallowing does not enable me to live. Swallowing food enables me to live. Swallowing poison causes me to die. It is the object of my faith. It is not how much faith I have but how much God I have. It is not how big my faith is but how big of a God I have. Faith is like swallowing. Are you swallowing, taking in truth that will set you free, or are you grabbing a hold of error? You can grab a hold of error with the best intentions in the world but good intentions are not going to get you into heaven. You must learn to examine the truth of the word of God. I do not want my faith to be the pastor’s faith. I do not want my faith to be mom and dad’s faith. I do not want my faith to be the Jewish faith. I want my faith to be my faith. I want it to be what I have placed my faith in, and whom I have placed my faith in is the Jesus of the bible, not the Jesus of the Mormon bible or Jesus of the Jehovah Witnesses but Jesus of the bible, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
That is the Jesus that I believe in that I put my faith in. I then put my faith in what Jesus accomplished for me. Before I get saved I have to recognize I am lost. In evangelism, I have to get people lost before I can get them saved. Lost people do not understand they are lost. I did not understand I was lost. I should have. I did not think I was lost. Yes, I do some bad things. In essence, I think God will oversee that. So you go through life fat, dumb and happy.
But the bible tells us that we are spiritually dead. We are born that way. If I am born spiritually dead then I need spiritual life. That spiritual life that is available to me is only the resurrected life of Christ Jesus. There is no one else. It is not narrow-minded. How many people am I going to send? I do not need two people. I am going to send one. When I come in person in Christ Jesus, that is enough. You do not need another God to come. I am going to come and do my work and you put your faith in that and that is what will save you. When you put faith in the fact Jesus died for my sins, realize Jesus took them away. So many are encouraging people not to come to Christ by faith, as if saying there is a Jesus that only died for some of my sins. There is no Jesus in the Bible who did not die for all of my sins. You are told to put faith in a Jesus who does not exist, one that only died for some sins. Jesus of the bible died for the sins of the world eternally.
That same Jesus, after fulfilling the law, upheld the law. The man who sins shall surely die. He took upon my sins and had to die. He upheld the laws through His death. His death, His burial, which proved His death, and then the resurrection.
What is resurrection? Resurrection is what saves you. That is why Paul said without it you are to be pitied of all people and are still in your sins, knowing full well there was a cross that took away the sins of the world, but also knowing that that provision for sin is only received in His resurrected life. We are saved by His life. I was dead, and now I am alive. I am a new creature.
2 Corinthians 5:17
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
We are under a New Covenant. The Old Covenant is gone. It disappeared. Gone. Just like an old victrola. It may be on your desk as an antique. But you will have a hard time finding anything to play on that thing. Records are obsolete. I still call them records. But it is obsolete. It has been replaced. Not that it was not good in its day, but it has been replaced by something greater, something better, something clearer. So too in regard to this New Covenant we live under today.
30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding,
Are you in Him? If you are in Him, you are in His resurrected life. You came to Him for what He came to give you, life.
1 John 5:12-13
12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
13 I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.
Not hope so, but know so. Not get, but have.
Are you in Christ? Yes. What do you have? Redemption through His blood. What else do you have? Forgiveness of sins. It says you have it. Does it say you get it? No. He says you have it. How many of you, who are born again, ask God to redeem you every day? None of you. Why? You are already redeemed. How many of you ask God to give you eternal life every day? If you do, you are foolish. Why? You already have it. In Him you have life. If you have the Son, you have the life. If you have the Son, then you are in Him, and have life. What else do you have? Redemption. What else do you have? Forgiveness. If you are not asking God to redeem you every day, then why are you asking God to forgive you every day, instead of thanking Him? I am not saying to ignore Him, but to thank Him. Thank Him from the bottom of your heart that He did for you what you did not deserve instead of walking around saying I am so deserving because I keep short accounts with God. So we have forgiveness in accordance with the riches of God’s grace. It is by grace you have been saved. It is a gift. He lavished that gift on us with all wisdom and understanding.
We just read in Colossians how we were alienated and reconciled to God to present us before God blameless and free from accusation. That is what God did for us. We have been set free, my friends. Put yourself in the place of Asaph. What would you have thought as you sacrificed the lamb, knowing that it was a substitute to pay for your sins? Would it give you a sense of the consequence of your sins? Now consider what Jesus did, God in human form, perfect, the unblemished Lamb of God. He did not deserve to die yet He freely offered Himself as the ultimate sin offering. So does the realization that He stood in your place to pay the punishment of your sins give you an even greater sense of the true consequence of sins. Jesus’ sacrifice was once and for all. Because He was perfect, His sacrifice was perfect. Nothing needs to be added to it and it never needs to be done again. It is eternal, timeless. This one act in history reaches back to the beginning of time and forward to our final rescue from this earth and its creation. In light of this wonderful reality, how should we respond to God? Do you now understand that you never need to beg God for forgiveness and why you can spend the rest of your life thanking Him for what He did? If so, you are ready to live as you never lived before, free from fear of punishment, free to listen to the Holy Spirit as He renews your mind, teaches you truth and sets you free, free to respond to God’s call on your life as He works His immeasurable love in and through you. That is the good news not only of the gospel, but is the good news of the better sacrifice. He has done it all.