Share This Episode
Beacon Baptist Gregory N. Barkman Logo

The New Covenant

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman
The Truth Network Radio
May 13, 2024 2:00 am

The New Covenant

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 573 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.


May 13, 2024 2:00 am

Pastor Mike Karns speaks of three characteristics of the New Covenant, sovereignly determined and fulfilled by God.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
Our Daily Bread Ministries
Various Hosts
Core Christianity
Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
Delight in Grace
Grace Bible Church / Rich Powell
Beacon Baptist
Gregory N. Barkman
Matt Slick Live!
Matt Slick
The Line of Fire
Dr. Michael Brown

I want you to be aware of something that you wouldn't be aware of saying where you are. This passage that I read tonight from Luke 22, I read it, I don't know, six or eight times, maybe even more in preparation for this sermon. There's one thing to read scripture in your personal devotions and even as a preacher in preparation for preaching, but there's something unique about the preached word and the reading of scripture in the assembly of the saints. When scripture is read, I don't want to be mystic about this, but I think God manifests His presence in a very unique way.

We are hearing from Him. These are His words to us, and it has struck me many times as I've stood here and read scripture passages to you that I've studied, and I've been struck how it has hit me and impacted me in a way that it hadn't in all my study and preparation. And it's telling me that there's something very, very special about the people of God coming together in community and hearing thus saith the Lord. So tonight I want to speak to you about the New Covenant. And in considering the subject of the New Covenant, we typically turn to Jeremiah chapter 31.

So I would ask you to do that. Turn to Jeremiah chapter 31. Another place that is very similar is Ezekiel 36. We won't turn there, but Jeremiah 31 verses 31 through 34 where God promises to make a New Covenant with His people.

And I want you to understand the relationship between the Old Testament promise and its New Testament fulfillment. Notice with me Jeremiah 31 verse 31, Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah. Behold, the days are coming. So from Jeremiah's perspective, that was future. The days are coming.

They are not here. They are coming as far as Jeremiah is concerned. But when we turn to the New Testament, we find the fulfillment of what God was promising through the prophet Jeremiah in the book of Hebrews. And I read from Luke chapter 22 about Jesus making reference to His blood that He was going to shed being of the New Covenant. So where it is promised in the Old Testament, it is fulfilled in the New. And Jesus Christ brings what was promised to the Old Testament the reality in His death and resurrection. Jesus is the mediator of this New Covenant and He guarantees the conditions promised in that covenant.

Again, I read there from Luke chapter 22 earlier where Luke records Jesus taking the cup and saying in verse 20, this cup is the New Covenant in my blood, which is shed for you. So tonight in preparation for our time around the table, I want to speak to you concerning the New Covenant under three headings. And before I give you those headings, I want to say to you that I am indebted to Sam Waldron for these three headings from chapter three of his book, A Reform Baptist Manifesto, subtitled The New Covenant Constitution of the Church.

So these headings are this. Number one, the sovereign determination of the New Covenant, the unbreakable character of the New Covenant and the mediatorial guarantee of the New Covenant. Let's begin as we consider the sovereign determination of the New Covenant.

Five times in Jeremiah chapter 31 verses 31 to 34, Jesus says, excuse me, not Jesus says, Jehovah says, I will or they shall. And this is said in contrast to the Old Covenant, which is mentioned in verse 31 and verse 32. Notice again, notice the we're looking at the sovereign determination of the New Covenant and it is evidenced in the language where God says, I will or they shall. Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah. Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt. My covenant, which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the Lord. But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord. Now take note of the I wills and they shall here. This is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord. I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts and I will be their God and they shall be my people. No more shall every man teach his neighbor and every man his brother saying, No, the Lord, for they all shall know me from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity and their sin.

I will remember no more. This new covenant that is being promised in the future by Jeremiah is set in contrast to the old covenant that he says that Jehovah entered into and his people broke that covenant. Don't turn, but just listen as I read from Exodus Chapter 19 that gives us some insight into this old covenant.

It says in Exodus Chapter 19, verse 45 and six, you have seen what I did to the Egyptians and how I bore you on eagle's wings and brought you to myself. Now, therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to me above the people, for all the earth is mine and you shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel. I don't know if you picked up on that passage that is describing the old covenant, but that covenant was conditioned.

Let me read those words again where that condition is emphasized. Now therefore, if you will, that's in contrast to the new covenant where God says, I will, the old covenant, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to me above all people, for all the earth is mine. The old covenant, the promises of that covenant were predicated on their obedience and they were covenant breakers. But in contrast to that old covenant, this new covenant, there are no ifs in the language of the new covenant.

Jeremiah 31, 31 through 34 has the tone of divine certainty and sovereign determination. The problem with the first covenant and what necessitated a new covenant was the people with whom that first covenant was made. They did not meet the conditions of the covenant. They were covenant breakers. The conditions and blessings of the covenant, again, were predicated upon their obedience and law keeping of which they violated. So that is the sovereign determination of the new covenant.

This is an overview. This is not exhausted by any means. There is an awful, awful lot here to consider, but I'm trying to just hit the high point so that we can get our mind around the new covenant in preparation for our time around the table. So this leads us to our second heading, which is the unbreakable character of the new covenant. The new covenant is not like the old covenant at one critical point. The old covenant could be and was broken by the people to whom the old covenant was made.

The law written on stone was broken. In contrast, the law written on the heart of God's new covenant people is of a different character. The law written on the heart of the new covenant believer assures the keeping of the covenant and the certain attainments of the covenant blessings. The new covenant cannot be broken. That is an absolutely critical distinction to be made between the old covenant and the new. The new covenant cannot be broken.

It is of unbreakable character. Don't forget the first point of this sermon. Almighty God is the sovereign determiner of the new covenant. He will put forth his almighty power in the hearts of his covenant people so that they fulfill the conditions of the covenant.

I hope you're thinking with me because there ought to be some questions that are arising in your mind. Are you saying that members of the new covenant community are of a different nature than those of the old covenant? Are you saying that those who are new covenant believers are unable to break covenant, unable to break and violate the law, unable to disobey God? No, that's not what I'm saying. But I'm saying that the character of the new covenant is that it is unbreakable.

Let's just be straight up and honest. Even though we're new covenant believers, we struggle to obey God. We struggle to obey him, honor him.

Notice the language. No more shall every man teach his neighbor and every man his brother saying, know the Lord for they shall all know me from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the Lord, for I will forgive their iniquity and their sin I will remember no more. So as people of the old covenant were covenant breakers, sinners, violators of God's covenant, members of the new covenant, it says I will forgive their iniquity and their sin I will remember no more. So there is iniquity. There is sin. There is transgression among those who are members of the new covenant.

So Jeremiah tells us this is a fact. He promises that God will forget the sins of his people and he will forgive their iniquity, but he does not tell us how a holy and just God can do this and remain holy and just. God is not abandoning his justice that demanded punishment to the old covenant people for breaking his law. So why doesn't judgment fall upon you and me for breaking the new covenant? Well, that brings us to the third heading, the mediatorial guarantee of the new covenant.

Pastor Barkman's Sunday morning expositional series in Hebrews helps us here. Remember not too long ago Hebrews chapter 7 and verse 22 that tells us that Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant. He's become the guarantee or the surety of a better covenant. Jesus Christ by his priestly once for all sacrifice of himself fulfills the demands of God's law and assures the forgiveness of sins for every new covenant believer. Jesus by becoming a surety paid the debt our sins incurred to the justice and the satisfaction of God's law.

Let me quote from Sam Waldron here. He says this, quote, he that is Jesus owed nothing for himself, but by his death he paid to the justice of God and by his life he paid to the law of God what his people owed. Because this is paid, the blessings of the new covenant become a reality. It's the only way that God can remain just and be the justifier of those who believe in Jesus. God is a God of inflexible unmovable justice.

He will not, he cannot compromise his justice. His justice must be satisfied and his justice is satisfied for new covenant believers in the death of Jesus Christ as their substitute. Now, turn with me to the book of Isaiah. Isaiah chapter 42. This is one of the servant passages in Isaiah that speak of Jesus Christ.

Isaiah 42. And I want you to notice what is said in verse 6. Unless you're wondering if this indeed is referring to the Lord Jesus Christ, four times in this one verse you will see the word, the personal pronoun you or your capitalized. It's referring to the Lord Jesus Christ. I, the Lord, have called you, capital Y, in righteousness and will hold your, capital Y, hand. I will keep you, capital Y, and give you, capital Y, as a covenant to the people. God has given Christ, it says here, as a covenant to the people.

Perhaps now better we're able to understand what Jesus meant as he observed the Passover with his disciples and said in reference to the cup there in Luke 22 20, this cup is the new covenant in my blood which is shed for you. I think we struggle sometimes to understand the concept that's being communicated to us here with the language of Jesus being a guarantee or Jesus being surety. Imagine with me a young man, he's graduated from high school, he's gotten a job but he hasn't really established any credit but he's earning some money and he wants to buy an automobile and he goes to the bank to secure a loan and the bank says you have no credit, we can't lend you the money for the car. Was he left in a lurch? What does he do?

Well there's good old dad. Good old dad who has credit comes in and signs for that loan. What is he saying by signing that loan?

He's saying that if my son defaults on this loan, I will make good on it, I will pay it. Folks in God's economy, none of us have credit. We're all on the other side of the ledger. We owe God. We owe him because of our sin. The wages of sin is death and Jesus Christ is the one who is surety.

He is the guarantee. He says to God the Father, this person owes a debt and it's not that he may be able to pay his debt. There's no way we can pay our debt but Jesus says I will be surety. I will be the guarantee of this transaction, this arrangement, this covenant that we have entered into.

Who's we? God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit entered into a covenant in eternity past to redeem a people and Jesus is the surety, the guarantee. He will make good on all the conditions of the covenant so that you and I can receive the blessings of the covenant.

That's the difference between the old and the new. The problem with the old covenant was not the covenant itself, it was the people who couldn't keep it. They had the law but the law was written on tablets of stone and their ability to keep the law amounted to sheer willpower and fear of judgment. I wonder how does that work in your home with your children? Do they always obey because of fear of judgment?

No. There has to be a greater motivation than that to obey and what we have in the new covenant is not only Jesus Christ as a surety and a guarantee but we have divine enablement. God has written his law not on stone, not on tablets of stone but he's written it on our hearts. So there's something internal going on that the Spirit of God is superintending and empowering us that we are men and women who have an inclination to obey God. It's not that we're against the law, it's not that we're antinomian, opposed to law, it's not that God throws the law away, the law is still important.

We're bound by the moral law of God and God enables us by his indwelling spirit to walk in obedience and have a desire to honor him with our life. But folks, if the conditions of the covenant and the blessings of that covenant were dependent upon you and I, even though we have divine enablement, none of us would enter into those blessings because you can't ensure, you can't be the guarantee, you can't be surety for your own loan because you are without credit. That's why we need Jesus. Jesus is the surety. He is the guarantee to the Father. The Father will bless us because the Son is paid up front for our blessings. He has secured those blessings for us. And that's why the new covenant is unbreakable in its character. For God not to bless the people of God who have been made part of the new covenant, God would be unfaithful, God would be unjust. God is obligated to bless his people for the cause of Jesus and for no other reason.

And that's why the time around the table is so critically important. Jesus is the focal point. He's the center of our attention. He's the one worthy of our worship. And when we come around the table, we need to have hearts of thankfulness to him for doing for us what our bankrupt souls could never do.

We could never satisfy the demands of God, but Jesus has. And we are blessed members of God's new covenant community. There's so much more to be said about this, but for our purposes tonight, I just wanted to touch those three headings.

Again, what are they? Number one, the sovereign determination of the new covenant. Number two, the unbreakable character of the new covenant and the mediatorial guarantee of the new covenant. There is one mediator, one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus. It's him that we've come to worship. It's him we've come to remember around the elements and around the table.

Let us pray. Father, how we thank you for your son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Thank you that he has been made all in all to the people of God. Thank you that he is all that we need to find favor with you. I thank you that we are blessed because of him and for no other reason.

We thank you for the new covenant that has been established, entered into, secured by your son, the Lord Jesus Christ. And he did that at great cost to himself. It cost him his life's blood. It cost him death on the cross of Calvary.

And he died for sin, not for his own sin, but for the sin of his people. We are amazed. We've sung tonight corporately about the love of God. It is beyond our comprehension.

And yet at the same time, it's a subject worthy of serious meditation. We ask you to deepen our appreciation for the height, the depth, the width, the length of the love of God in Christ Jesus. Father, thank you for your son. Thank you that he is our Redeemer. Thank you that he is the one who has reconciled us to God. Thank you that he is the one who has stood in our place and bore your just wrath that was due unto us. Thank you that the demands of your law have been met in your dear son. Thank you for implanting a desire in our hearts to walk in obedience to your law. Father, you've told us that if we love you, we are to keep your commandments. It is the first, most important evidence that we are lovers of God, that we have been redeemed by you. You have put that desire in us.

You have given us that divine enablement. That is our orientation. That is our desire.

So fan the flames of that desire. Thank you for the truth that you are working in us, both to will and to do, according to your good pleasure. Bless your people tonight as we gather around the table and remember our Savior in the way that he has commanded us to. Thank you for these sacred symbols. Help us not to worship the symbols, but worship him whom the symbols point to. We pray in Jesus' name. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-05-15 17:28:52 / 2024-05-15 17:36:49 / 8

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime