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A Better Hope – A Better Covenant (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
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February 17, 2022 6:00 am

A Better Hope – A Better Covenant (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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February 17, 2022 6:00 am

Pastor Rick teaches from the letter to the Hebrews

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Faith will say, I don't care what's happening to me.

I care about how I'm performing in the presence of the King. It's so easy to preach. Watch, I'll do it again, but it's not easy to live when it's right there in your face. When you can't have what you want, when it hurts, that's what we're called to. So early on, we packed that into a haversack. It's part of us now.

We understand it. Today, Pastor Rick brings you part two of his study called A Better Covenant in Hebrews chapter 7. There were these truths about the future that came from God to him and were backed up by scripture already written and Melchizedek is one. The 110th Psalm is all about Messiah. We know it's Christ. The Hebrew word for Christ is Messiah. The Greek word for Messiah is Christ.

Same word depending on which culture, what emphasis you want to place upon it. Psalm 110 verses 3 and 4. David writing the Psalm, he says, your people shall be volunteers in the day of your power. He's talking about coming Messiah and we'll tie that in momentarily. He goes on in the beauties of holiness and then he adds the next verse, Yahweh has sworn and will not back down. You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.

Now, here's the tie in. This is a direct link between David dancing before the ark with the ephod of a priest with the crown of a king. He is saying prophetically there is coming a Messiah. He will be both priest and king.

We've never had anything like this before but it's coming and he will follow that pattern of Melchizedek who long ago in the days of Abraham was both, Melchizedek was, a king and a priest. And so we go to that moment in 1 Chronicles where it talks about David dancing before the ark and the Psalm that he delivered at the delivery of the ark to Jerusalem and the ark represented the presence of God. It wasn't Noah's ark with all the animals. This is that chest that had the mercy seat atop of it, the angels facing each other, the cherubim that is. I don't want to get that wrong. Somebody will correct me.

I thought it was a cherubim. And we want to make sure we get that right. 1 Chronicles 16, 29, give to Yahweh the glory due his name. This is the song he delivered at the delivery of the ark. Bring an offering and come before him. Oh, worship Yahweh in the beauty of holiness.

See the connection? Psalm 110. See, I can see it because I have it right here in front of me. Psalm 110, in the beauties of holiness. 1 Chronicles 16, the beauty of holiness. In other words, David's mind was fixed on Messiah coming in the beauty of holiness. He connected the life of Melchizedek with the coming of Messiah and he demonstrated it in the dancing before the ark as king, priest. And God honored it all. He radicalized the nation. He brought a wave of worship in that Israel had not seen since the days of Joshua. And he did all this, God is doing all of this without insulting the Old Testament.

He's just moving past. It's sort of like change of software developers. They bring in new software.

They insult maybe the end user, but they don't insult the old software. They just move forward on the strength of prior discoveries. Now that might not be the best analogy of how the word develops, but it makes the point that change is constant and when it comes from God, it is wonderful. In other words, the prophecy of Melchizedek was a sleeper prophecy. Do we have sleeper cells?

We know about that. There are those agents that are out there and they're just waiting for a command to do whatever it is that they do. This has been in history from the beginning of the insurrections and overthrows of time. Well, with the Lord, the prophecy of Melchizedek was sort of a sleeper prophecy, waiting for activation. And then God activated it right according to plan in Christ. And so we have Galatians, but when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth his son, born of a woman, born under the law. Now you might say, what does all this have to do with my problems? I don't know. Verse 13.

No kidding. The word of God is living and powerful. That's what. No matter what you're going through, no matter which way it ends up, so long as you stick with the Lord, there will be a day when it will all be gone. And you will be with the Lord in glory forevermore. And Satan knows this, and so he devotes himself to pushing you off. And if he cannot push you off the faith, then he just wants to shut you up so you don't preach the faith.

And we come back and we say, but wait a minute. My scripture is so mapped out that only the hand of God could have done it. I will side with God's word, no matter what's happening to me. I will stick with the Lord, even though I may think that he's not sticking with me. By faith, I accept he will never leave me nor forsake me. Why else would a pastor spend so much time digging into verses, and not just me, other pastors who do this, why else would we waste our time if it was a waste of time?

But it's not a waste of time. It is the very thing hell fears, that Christians will get it, that the lights will turn on and they will be stronger because of it in the face of opposition. There are those opposing forces that we face that we can beat because God empowers us.

But then there are those opposing forces that are more subtle. And we don't find ourselves as confident in the faith when facing them. We begin to complain to God, to whine about his methods and his systems. And God lets us go just to see, when it's all said and done, where we will be. And so it's critical we make up our minds that I don't care what happens around me, I will stick with the Lord. Ten thousand may fall at my right hand, a thousand at my left. It will not come near me.

That's the idea. Well, back to this development, Christ the end of the law, Romans 10.4. Let me read the verse.

Christ is the end of the law for righteousness, not without it, to everyone who believes. What happens if you don't believe? I wouldn't want to be you.

That's the first thing. And the second thing, you don't have to be you. You can be you in Christ. Jesus, like David, Jesus the greater king, has changed everything. David never lost sight of that. He wrote it in his Psalms. He said, The Lord said to my Lord, there's one higher than me, and he's coming, and I love him.

I've not seen him, but neither have you. And we love him, and we know him, because God has moves that we could never, never understand, because they are that high. Verse 13, For he of whom these things are spoken belongs to another tribe from which no man has officiated at the altar. For, verse 14, it is evident that our Lord arose from Judah, of which tribe Moses spoke nothing concerning priesthood. Well, if you were a Jew in that system, only those who were descendants from Aaron, who was from the tribe of Levi, could be a priest. Judah's tribe, no one there could be a priest. The writer is talking to Jewish people.

They know this. And he's saying, now let's remember, Jesus came and he was not from Levi. He was from Judah.

And he's systematically establishing the prophetic fulfillment of Christ as Messiah according to Genesis and according to Psalm 110. That whole system barred Jesus from being priest, but not the order of Melchizedek. It invited him to be priest. It demanded he be priest.

And forever. You see, Aaron's tribe never received from God this word. You are a priest forever. But the order of Melchizedek did, from which Christ is going to assume in his ministry. We'll get to this in verse 22, I owe you. I owe you nothing but love, in verse 22, when we get there. And, verse 15 now, and it is yet far more evident if in the likeness of Melchizedek there arises another priest who has come, not according to the law of fleshly commandment, but according to the power of endless life, for he testifies you are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. How many times this morning have I said Melchizedek? And I'm not done. There's more.

So you see, again, we started off this Hebrew consideration with these words. It is a pile driver. It is going to hit that piling over and over until it hits the bedrock, and it won't stop until then. And, you know, if you've ever listened to a pile driving for, I don't mean a little job, I mean a big skyscraper, it's got a little beat to it. On and on until finally it's like, shut that thing off! Okay, I'm back.

Just a minute there, I had a hard hat on, short sleeves and everything. So, on the basis of his indestructible life, where it says here that there arises another priest, verse 15, then in verse 16, but according to the power of endless life, this is what overrules everything. This priest, unlike Aaron, and Eleazar, his son, and all those after him, they drop dead.

This one did not. Christ died on the cross, but he did not drop dead, he gave up the spirit. He lives forever.

And then he got up. It's a distinction of Jesus Christ that we recognize. Without it, we cannot be Christians. You cannot be a Christian if you don't believe in the resurrection of Christ, which presupposes the crucifixion and death on the cross of Christ. Jesus is no ordinary person.

No ordinary man. He's the Son of God. I like to say God the Son.

It focuses a little bit more just where he came from and who he is. When we pray to Jesus, we are praying to God. Well, the Jews, after hearing this, might say to themselves, after this whole endless life thing, not according to Levi, but Melchizedek, as he made the point earlier, without mother, without father, without beginning, without end, they might say, yeah, we forgot about that. We're thinking about going back down to the temple and offering sheep and goat, but we forgot Jesus is no ordinary priest. And he is just that, a priest. Do you know, early in the church's history, even priests were converted to Christianity? Acts chapter 6, then the word of God spread and the number of disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith. Acts 6, verse 7. So, this was not new stuff, which makes it more dangerous, more dangerous in this way. It was dealt with years ago at the beginning of their faith, but now, late into Christianity, it's resurfacing.

It's come back as a problem. And God says, let me put this in writing one more time. Let me put this next to Romans and Galatians. Let me add Hebrews to that. Maybe my people will appreciate the word that they have. We know it as the Bible, the scripture, what God says to man and the various ways he said it.

I mean, it's amazing. God uses scoundrels to make his points. All through scripture, there are men like Cain and Balaam, Saul, Judas, Ahab and Jezebel.

They're all over the script. Let's emphasize that woman Jezebel, as Jesus called her in Revelation. God uses people, then and now. It means something.

It's important that we be one of those people. If you are preoccupied, there's an old Christian saying, self-pity and faith can't dwell together. When I'm having my self-pity fits, I hate that little saying. But it's true. Because faith will say, I don't care what's happening to me. I care about how I'm performing in the presence of the king. It's so easy to preach.

Watch, I'll do it again. But it's not easy to live when it's right there in your face. When you can't have what you want, when it hurts, that's what we're called to. And so early on, we packed that into our haversack. It's part of us now.

We understand it. Verse 18, For on the one hand there is an annulling of the former commandment because of its weakness and unprofitableness. So the Holy Spirit is saying through the prophet, the system, the mosaic system, it was weak and it was not as beneficial as you might have thought it was.

He straight out calls the law inadequate and unbeneficial. Now again, compared to the world's religions at that time, it was superior. Jesus said this about how the law played itself out in the day that he walked. Concerning the Pharisees and the scribes, he said, They bind heavy burdens hard to bear and lay them on men's shoulders, but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. Because the law was too big. And so to sidestep it, they sort of had surrogate burden bearers. They enslaved others. In Acts chapter 15, Peter says, Now therefore, why do you test God by putting a yoke on the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear? They're talking about that Old Testament system of law. They say it was too heavy for us. All it did was condemn, condemn, condemn.

It never gave relief. Paul said, Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free. Free from what? The sin and judgment, yes, but he's talking about the law. And he says, And do not be entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Yes, sin is in that, of course.

No way getting that out. But it includes that system next to the New Testament. And their risk in returning to that was as going toward the shadow of the thing and not the thing itself. Again, imagine, imagine.

The Old Testament was a shadow of the New Testament. Imagine a loved one being away on a trip and coming home and you go to the airport to pick them up and you run over and greet their shadow and ignore them. Or imagine the sign. You're driving toward the airport and you see the sign that says airport. So you stop at the sign and stay there. Well, it's only a sign.

It's not the substance. Well, that's what the apostles were trying to tell everyone. That Old Testament was the sign. It was the shadow.

It was not it. Christ is. He is the one. Once he comes, there's an abandonment of the sign and the shadow.

We go to him. God has never saved anybody through the keeping of the law. Everybody who kept the law when they died, they did not go to heaven.

They went to righteous Sheol. And there's never been anyone that's able to keep the law except Christ. God saves on this basis, on this basis alone. Faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The cross of Christ. The blood-stained cross of Christ which puts your sin and my sin in your face until it's repented of and washed away it is forevermore after that. By faith, we accept it. We love it and we believe it and we know there's no other way. In the end, there is no other way for us to be with God unless he does something about our sin, the very thing the world does not want to hear. Verse 19, for the law made nothing perfect.

On the other hand, there is the bringing in of a better hope through which we draw near to God. So again, if they're not comfortable with this rearrangement, they're lost. They have to admit that his points are indisputable from scripture and reason. Logic. Righteous logic. The cold truth that they had to face.

All the law could do was pronounce men guilty. It could do nothing. It was like an x-ray, just an x-ray.

Here's the break. Can't do anything about it. Not the x-ray.

You'll need someone who's able to provide the cure or the solution. And so the law offered no remedy in that sense. It could not satisfy God.

It could not satisfy man. Verse 20, and inasmuch as he is not made priest without an oath. Now this, you know, we think of an oath. Raise your right hand.

Slap your neighbor. I mean raise your right hand. Do you solemnly? We think of an oath like that.

That's not how this is meant or used. This means the final word of God. When God speaks, it's an oath in the sense that it is full force.

It is pure, holy, and undefiled. And so he is saying the scripture says. God says. That's how we would understand. The Bible says that's what we would say. And he is saying, inasmuch as Jesus was not made a priest after Melchizedek according to Psalm 110, which is God's word.

That's the distinction he's making. Verse 21. Now the contrast between the priest of Aaron. For they have become priests without an oath. But he, with an oath by him, who said to him.

He's going to qualify it. The Lord has sworn and will not relent or back away from. You are a priest forever according to Melchizedek. The order of Melchizedek.

Yeah, the others. They were put in power by God's word, but not forever. Whereas this priest, according, which is Christ Jesus. According to the pattern shown in Melchizedek. Ratified by David and now brought forth in truth and logic and contrast here in Hebrews.

The writer is saying, this is a done deal. It's distinct. There's nothing like it. The Levites were not so sealed. That's a little too many yeses there.

The Levites were not established this way. Only Christ. Only his priesthood has this with it. So what if there is present now, listening.

Someone who doesn't have this working knowledge of the Old Testament scripture. And you're just completely lost. It is wonderful how you can be completely lost in God's house and God still finds his way of making his point to you. You can listen and say, well I have lost this, but I still understand what's going on overall. I understand that the sovereign hand of God is not only present but willing. That he is interested in me. That there's a lot to the Christian faith.

I thought it was maybe just a bunch of people who sat down and wrote things about God on their own, you know, as some creative writer would do. But actually there's something more to this. There's something more powerful to all of this. And we know that as the Holy Spirit who, when Jesus said, I will not, we'll use this verse, where two or more gathered there I am in the midst. He's always here in his house.

It belongs to him. So long as we don't chase him away with blatant and flagrant sin. Verse 22, by so much more Jesus has become surety of a better covenant. That, by so much more Jesus. Those five words. How much logic and goodness and emotion is built into that. Just those five words, by so much more Jesus.

How much would that have stood out in their heads, in their minds, as it was read, as they went and reread it, as it was being copied. A better covenant, he says, flat out, a better testament. And you know, when we say New Testament, it's the same as saying New Covenant. Testament is covenant. Nineteen times that word covenant shows up in Hebrews, more than any other New Testament book. It is about the covenant, the agreement with God. It is about the New Testament.

This too was baked into the Old Testament, not just with Melchizedek and Genesis and Psalm with David and Psalm 110, but Jeremiah. Now I told you, I promised this verse, and here we are. We all should know this verse. Even if we don't have it memorized, we should know of the verse. Jeremiah 31, verses 31-32. The prophet says, Behold, the days are coming, says Yahweh, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not according to the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand and led them out of the land of Egypt. My covenant, which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says Yahweh.

And so, again, none of this is showing up mysteriously. The pastor is told to convince, to rebuke, to exhort with all longsuffering and teaching, because the time will come when they will heap up for themselves teachers, Paul says, wanting their ears to be tickled. And so the pastor is to convince, rebuke, exhort. He is doing this in this writing. He is convincing them with logic and scripture. He is rebuking them for daring to turn away from it. And he is being gentle in his teaching towards them. The pastor can be very gentle in his teaching, but if it gets the guilty and the guilty aren't ready to admit that they're guilty, it can seem brutal.

But that's on them. You've been listening to Cross-Reference Radio, the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia. As we mentioned at the beginning of today's broadcast, today's teaching is available free of charge at our website. Simply log on to That's We'd also like to encourage you to subscribe to the Cross-Reference Radio podcast. Subscribing ensures that you stay current with all the latest teachings from Pastor Rick. You can subscribe at, or simply search for Cross-Reference Radio in your favorite podcast app. Tune in next time as Pastor Rick continues teaching through the book of Hebrews, right here on Cross-Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-04 01:45:09 / 2023-06-04 01:54:33 / 9

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