Let's turn in our Bibles to 2 Corinthians Chapter 3. 2 Corinthians 3. Last week I told you there were eight truths that we're going to look at in this passage.
We got through two of them last week. My goal is to get through the other six, and by faith we do do that. 2 Corinthians Chapter 6 through 18. Paul writes, Who also hath made us able ministers of the New Testament, not of the letter, or talking about the Old Covenant, the Old Testament, but of the Spirit, for the letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life. But if the ministration, or the ministry of death, written in a graven in stones was glorious, that was when God wrote the Ten Commandments out of stone, so that the children of Israel could not steadfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance, which glory was to be done away. How shall not the ministration be done away? How shall the ministration of the Spirit be rather glorious? For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteous and succeeding glory. For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason the glory that exceleth. What he's saying there is, is Moses had glory.
I mean, glory was radiating from him, and if that was glory, which was true glory, how much more glorious is Christ, who came, who shines above the brilliance of the sun, and it made it, he was so glorious, it made Moses and the Old Covenant seem as though there was no glory there at all. Verse 11, for if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious. Verse 12, seeing then that we have such a hope, we use great plainness of speech, or boldness and clarity. Verse 13, and not as Moses, which put a veil over his face, that the children of Israel could not steadfastly look to the end of that which is abolished, but their minds were blinded, for until this day remaineth the same veil untaken away in the reading of the Old Testament, which veil is done away in Christ. But even unto this day when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart. Nevertheless, when it shall turn to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away. Now the Lord is the spirit, and where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all with open face is beholding in a glass or a mirror, the glory of the Lord are changed or transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the spirit of the Lord. We ask that you would allow the word to do its work in our hearts in life. Oh, God, may you give liberty and clarity to what is preached, and may our hearts be receptive to it.
In Jesus' name, and God's people said, Man, you may be seated tonight. He loves to cause people confusion in the area of salvation. And the chief way he does that is to make people think that they are good enough to get to heaven, that they are not bad enough to get to hell, but they are good enough to get to heaven, and that they can actually work themselves into favor with God, that if we can be religious enough, we can be saved.
Therefore, you see great numbers of groups inside of Christianity that hold to external ceremonies, sacraments, rituals, baptisms, and such things as being necessary for salvation, that you must do these things to be saved. Yet the Bible is crystal clear that salvation is all of grace, it's all of mercy, and it's all through faith. Ephesians 2 verse 8 and 9 says, Let's read that together. You know this verse very well. For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast. Because if we could work ourself into favor with God, we would boast in who?
Ourself. And the Bible says that will not happen. Romans 1 17 tells us that salvation is from faith to faith. It starts with faith and it ends by faith. Titus 3 5 lets us know it's not by works of righteousness which we have done, but it's according to his mercy that he saves us.
So it's not something we can do to earn favor with God. Now the battle for salvation by grace through faith was launched immediately after the church was launched. Paul in the New Testament writers battled against the heretical group known as the Judaizers who believed in Jesus plus the law, circumcision, keeping Sabbath day, the feast, the holy days, and so forth. And so they believed in Jesus, but they believed you had to do all these other things in order to be saved.
Galatians 5 1, Paul tells them, he says, stand fast therefore in the liberty or the freedom where with Christ hath made us free and be not entangled again in the yoke of bondage. Behold, I Paul say unto you that if you be circumcised, Christ shall profit you what? And then what took the place of Old Testament circumcision is really New Testament baptism. And there's churches today that believe that you have to be baptized to be saved.
We reject that. And if you believe in Jesus plus circumcision, Christ profits you nothing. If you believe in Jesus plus baptism, Christ profits you nothing. You don't do these things to be saved, you do these things because you are saved. Hebrews 11 was written for the purpose of showing that the Old Testament saints were in fact saved by faith. Hebrews 11 6 says, but without faith it's impossible.
Please God, for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. So salvation always been by grace, always by faith, and the whole chapter of Hebrews 11 is the hall of faith of Old Testament saints that were believers and saved by faith. But even the greatest of Old Testament saints, Hebrews 11 39 says this, and these all having obtained a good report through faith received not the promise. God providing some better thing for us that they without us should not be made perfect or should not be saved as good and as great as their faith was, though the faith of David, the faith of Moses and Abraham and all of those Old Testament saints, it says they through faith could not become perfect under the Old Covenant.
Hebrews 7 11 says, if therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood for under it the people receive the law, what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchizedek and not after the order of Aaron? Hebrews 7 19 goes on to say, for the law made nothing perfect. Nothing was saved by the law, but the bringing in of a better hope did by the which we draw nigh into God. Hebrews 10 one tells us for the law, having a shadow of good things to come and not by the very image of the things can never with those sacrifices which they offer year by year continually make the comers there into perfect. No one was saved in the Old Testament through making sacrifices.
Save no one. Hebrews 10 14 goes on to say, for by one offering God or he hath perfected forever them that are sanctified and the offering was the body of Jesus Christ. Jesus was the fulfillment of those sacrifices.
They all pointed to him. So without the New Covenant, the Old Covenant saints would never have been saved. They looked forward to the New Covenant.
We look back to it. It is essential to defend this truth that salvation is by grace through faith apart from works because we cannot earn our self favor with God. Romans 3 24 tells us that we are justified freely by grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.
It's free. It's salvation is free through Christ. So here in second Corinthians Paul is defending the purity of the gospel and the New Covenant against those who would want to hang on to Old Testament laws and ceremonies and circumcisions that it was the biggest struggle that you find in the early church.
It was cleansing it from legalism and ceremonial systems. A group called Judaizers will go into churches and teach salvation is through Christ plus keeping the law and ceremonies and all of those things. Sadly, some of the Corinthian believers were being persuaded by these who would seek to bring them back under the Old Covenant.
And second Corinthians chapter three is is really a condensed version of the book of Hebrews and the book of Hebrews is just telling us that everything in the New Testament is better. We have a better priesthood through Christ. We have a better sacrifice. We have a better covenant.
Everything is better. And what you find is the Old Testament pointed to Christ, but the Jews were lost in their pride and the blindness of their heart. They could not see that reality. Now you need to understand when I use the word New Covenant, Old Covenant, it's New Testament, Old Testament, the Old Covenant, Old Testament was ratified by God through the shedding of blood after he gave them the commandments. He shed blood and they sprinkled the covenant with that. And the Bible tells us that the Testament is not enforced until there is the death of the testator, the death of the one who and there's blood that has to be shed. So the Old Testament was ratified through blood and so is the New Covenant.
It's like if you have a will, your will is not enforced until the death of the one who wrote that. And then it's applied and the beneficiaries are given those blessings in the same way Christ ratified the New Covenant with his own blood. And that's what he said in Matthew 26, 28. He said for this is the blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. So in this section, we will see eight ways the New Covenant is superior to the Old Covenant.
And I just want to quickly review the first two and then we'll jump into the next six tonight by faith. So the New Covenant, first of all, gives spiritual life, not death. And we saw that in verse number six.
Who has also made us able ministers of the New Testament, not of the letter, but of the spirit for the letter killeth, but the spirit gives life very simply, the law exposes our sin. How do you know it's wrong to go 55 and a 35? Because there's a law that says that. How do you know it's wrong to lie, steal, kill, commit adultery, do all these things? Because the Bible tells us that. People say, no, that's just being an American, being a human. Where do you think we got that from?
Right? Those are the laws that a nation was grounded on the word of God that was given to us. And that's where we're hanging on to a little bit of morality still. And as we've shoved away the word of God, you're seeing morality fall off of the, and it will just continue to descend. And so the spirit brought salvation, the letter brought, the New Testament brought the gift of life and salvation where the letter just pointed out our sin and brought death. Secondly, the new covenant produces righteousness, not condemnation. We saw that in verse nine and 10 last week. And we saw how the old covenant declares man is guilty.
We said that the law is a mirror, not soap. It gives our diagnosis, but it cannot cure our cancer of sin. The new covenant through Christ delivers us from condemnation and produces real righteousness. And the way it does that is by the verse that Talina read tonight out of Ezekiel chapter number 36, where God says, I will give them a new heart. And the only way righteousness can be established in our life is by changing not the outside of a person, but the inside of a person.
That's where transformation happens. And so we saw the new covenant is better because it produces righteousness, not condemnation. The old covenant would condemn a person because of their sin. The New Testament can produce lasting righteousness. And again, that's in verse nine and 10.
Thirdly, and that was by way of review. Thirdly, the new covenant is permanent and not temporary. It's permanent, not temporary. Look at verse number 10 says, for even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect by reason the glory that excel it for that which is done away. What's glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious. And then back in verse seven, Paul speaks about Moses' face that shone, but over time it began to fade. This symbolizes the fading of the old covenant that was only temporary. In verse 10, Paul says how the old covenant did indeed have glory, but the new covenant exceeds in glory. Moses' face shining, God coming down his Shekinah glory, the mountain quaking, the 10 commandments given, it was all glorious. And as glorious as it was, it only produced condemnation and could not make people righteous. On the other hand, the new covenant exceeds in glory as verse 10 says.
It's surpassing glory. It says in verse 10, for even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect by reason of the glory that exceleth. The glory of the new covenant, in other words, is of such surpassing glory it makes the old covenant seem as though it had no glory. The glory of the old covenant is like the glory of the moon, and the glory of the new covenant like the glory of the sun.
As soon as the sun rises, the moon fades, and that's what we see. Verse 11 says, for if that which was done away or passing away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious. Here, yet another element and characteristic of the new covenant that exceeds the old is that the new covenant is permanent where the old covenant was only temporary. Hebrews 8 13 says this, in that he sayeth a new covenant, he hath made the first old, now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away. Today, the gospel of Jesus Christ, listen, is God's final word to man. There is no new revelation we're seeking. God is not writing more scripture. We have the word of the living God.
This is the final word. You want to be saved? You want to know eternal life?
You want to live forever? This is God's word on the matter. This is the covenant that he sealed in his own blood.
And he validated it by rising his dead body out of the grave three days later. Colossians 2 16 says, let no man therefore judge you in meat or drink in respect of a holy day or of the new moon or the Sabbath days, which are a shadow of things to come, but the body is of Christ. You know, some people think we still need to hold to the Sabbath.
You have Seventh Day Adventists. What's so interesting about that is, I mean, if you're doing the Bible in a year calendar, you get into Genesis and Exodus. And then by the time you get into part of Exodus, you get into Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy. I mean, it's Sabbath day this, Sabbath day that, Sabbath here, Sabbath, Sabbath, Sabbath there, Sabbath everywhere. I mean, Sabbath regularly. I mean, it's just all this Sabbath stuff, right?
You get into Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts, Romans, you start getting the New Testament name one time it says to obey the Sabbath day. Show me one New Testament verse that reiterates that. Show me one place when they came in Acts chapter 15 at the council at Jerusalem and said, what should we tell the Gentile believers?
It says, don't tell them they even need to be circumcised. There was no Sabbath day regulations they told them, nothing. Romans chapter 12 through 14 doesn't say anything when it says, let no man judge you anymore about a holy day. Don't esteem one day above another, esteem every day alike. And so we honor God on the first day of the week now because it's a reflection of Christ rising from the dead. The greatest event God ever did was the creation up until the resurrection.
And then that surpassed it like the glory of the new over the old, right? So now we worship him on the first day of the week and every Sunday when you wake up, you should say, I should get up because he rose, right? If he rose, I should rise and he's worthy of me getting uncomfortable this morning. What's my only day off? You know, God never takes a day off. If God took a day off, we'd be dead already.
They were telling Jesus, they were like, hey, why are you doing the healing on the Sabbath? And Jesus is like, I'm Lord of the Sabbath. The son of man owns the Sabbath. I gave the Sabbath to you as a gift.
And by the way, if God ever took a day off, you're all dead. Like Jesus upholds the world by the word of his power, Hebrews 1 through 3, right? So we see that the new covenant is permanent. The old covenant was to be done away.
Fourthly, and I need to skip so that we make it through in time. The new covenant brings hope instead of despair. Look at verse 12. Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech. The word hope there, Elpis is the Greek word, speaks of an absolute certain future good.
It refers to the believer's total confidence in our salvation and the new bodies that Christ will give us and the glory of the eternal heaven. MacArthur defines hope as hope is the confident belief that God will fulfill all the promises of the new covenant. Hope is not wishful thinking. When you see it in the Bible, like we say, well, I really hope that happens. That is not the idea of Elpis.
Elpis is like, I have sure confidence of that coming to pass. I believe without a doubt that's going to happen is the idea because God said it. Hebrews 6, 17 through 19 refers to this future hope as the anchor of the soul for the believer. The Old Testament saints had no certainty through the old covenant. It left them hopeless on their own. Hebrews 7, 19 says, for the law made nothing perfect.
I mean, do you ever feel like you can never live up to a certain standard in your life? I mean, if you're in the old covenant and that's true, you'll never make it. It never made anything perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did by the which we draw nigh unto God. Now, the Old Testament saints looked forward to the new covenant that brought them hope. 1 Peter 1, 10 through 12. This is interesting because they wrote about the new covenant. They wrote about the mysteries that would be revealed in the New Testament, and they didn't understand it.
Look what it says in 1 Peter 1, verse 10, of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you. I mean, they searched diligently, like, what does this mean? They wrote it and they didn't fully get it. Verse 11, searching what or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify when it testified beforehand the suffering of Christ and the glory that should follow, unto whom it was revealed that not unto themselves but unto us they did minister the things which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sitting down from heaven, which things the angels desire to look into. I mean, even angels were like, what does that mean? You believe what's...the Old Testament saints, angels did not fully understand it. You say, how could they write something they didn't fully understand? Do you understand everything in Revelations? So, it's still true for us, right?
That's how they feel. Now, who are going to understand the fullness of Revelation, the people who have lived through it? That's why Daniel 12, verse 4 says, in the end times, knowledge shall be increased. It's not simply talking about a technological advancement, but it's speaking about the understanding of Scripture.
People will be like, that's what it's happening. Let me give you one example. The nation of Israel, Josh McDowell was an atheist, committed. In college, he began to be challenged about his beliefs.
He began to study it out. The resurrection really put him in a predicament. He studied it for over like 700 hours, the resurrection. He's gone on to become a believer and written over 100 books.
He's preached all over the world, every country. And Josh McDowell, in his studies of the resurrection, the studies of Christ, the challenge of all of that, when you begin to examine it for yourself, really desire, really want to know the truth, pursue that, it comes to light as you seek to know the truth. God will bring that truth to you.
And so here in 2 Corinthians, again, chapter number 3, verse 12, if you look at that again, he says, seeing then we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech. Jesus declared that if you seek the truth, you will find him there. John 539 said, search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life, and they are they which testify of me. And he says in verse 46 of the same chapter, for had you believed Moses, you would have believed me, for he wrote of me. When you read the Bible, you should walk away seeing Christ in them. When you read the Old Testament, it's about Christ.
When you get to Genesis 3.15, it's speaking about Christ, the seed of the woman will bruise the serpent's head, he'll crush Satan, the seed of the woman is the coming Messiah. So as Christians, we look to Christ for our future glory with certainty in times of trial, we look to that hope. Now, 1 Peter 1.13 says, wherefore, gird up the loins of your mind, be sober in hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. And so he says there in verse number 12, we use great plainness of speech because of the certainty of our hope. We speak with great boldness, we speak with great clarity, the gospel, we don't hesitate about it, we don't refrain ourselves because of persecution from it. We just share the truth, we preach the Word of God. So the new covenant gave them hope, whereas the Old Testament left them hopeless in their sin. So let me give you, there was an example I was gonna tell you earlier in my mind drifted somewhere and now I remember what I was going to say. So like for the last three minutes while I'm preaching, I'm like, what was that that I was going to say?
Now I remember. So one example that Josh McDowell comes across is the nation of Israel. So how do you know, how do you, like, because they didn't, like, we are reading the Bible as Daniel 12 says, and we're like, well, that makes sense, it's coming to pass. Well, one of the evidence is like the nation of Israel. The nation of Israel was dispersed in 70 AD when Nero came against the Jews, 1.1 million Jews were slaughtered, and they literally ran them out of Israel all over the world. They had no nation, they had no temple. There was no nation of Israel then.
They were scattered around the world. This is a fact of history. Any people group that is dispersed from their homeland after five generations bleeds into whatever nationality they are. You don't maintain your national identity.
Like if you were to take a country over and you pulled them into your homeland, like they would no longer identify as whatever they were, they would become what you are like the Americans or whatever. That's why you don't have present day Moabites, Philistines, Ammonites, none of that. But you do have Jews today.
How is that possible? You know the Bible says in Isaiah, Jeremiah, multiple places, it says this. In the last days, God's going to bring the nation of Israel back into their homeland, and he will send hunters after them and fishers, and they will call them back to the land.
If they don't come, he's going to send hunters after them. Well, there were men who tried to get the Jews for years to come back to the nation of Israel, and they never did. And so there was a hunter sent after them named Adolf Hitler, and Hitler hunted them from the clefts of the rock and all over the world. And it was through the chaos and the tragedy and the horror of the Holocaust that literally God birthed the nation of Israel again.
How do you kill six million Jews, Satan trying to eradicate them, and how are they even identified as Jews anymore? They have no homeland. They come back into their homeland again, and on May 15th, 1948, they are declared an independent state. Praise God, back then America was the first nation to stand up and say, we identify them as a sovereign nation. That is a present day miracle.
I've read commentaries of men who wrote in the 17, 16, 17, 1800s, early 1900s. They had no idea what those prophecies meant. They're like, the nation of Israel doesn't even exist, like how are they coming back into their nation again? They couldn't see that. We read that, and we're like, there it is. We're like 70 years past that, and the Bible says that generation will see the Lord's coming. Now I don't know, some people with generations, 40 years, 70 years, or 100 years, it's true of all three in the Bible, but I can tell you the Lord's coming is near.
There's another, there's just a list of things like that I could talk to you about tonight, but we have other things to go through. So number five, the new covenant is also clear instead of veiled, it's clear, it's not veiled. In verse 13, it says this, and not as Moses, which put a veil over his face, that the children of Israel could not steadfastly look to the end of that which is abolished. But their minds were blinded, and for until this day remained at the same veil, untaken away, and the reading of the Old Testament, which veil is done away with Christ.
Let me give you some context. What he's talking about here is the second time Moses went up on Mount Sinai. Moses ascended Mount Sinai a couple times for 40 days where he fasted.
The first time he went up, fasted, his face didn't shine afterwards. God carved out the Ten Commandments, he came down, the people, if you remember, had corrupted themselves. I believe it's in Exodus 30, they'd made a golden calf, began to worship that. He's very upset, he throws the Ten Commandments down, breaks them, and brings judgment upon those people. And then he goes back up on the mountain by himself, and God says, now I want you to hew out two tables of stone. So this time he had to carve them out.
I bet he was thinking while he's chiseling them out, man, I shouldn't have, I don't know, I should have set them down. So carves them out, God writes on them the commandments. But when he comes down the second time, his face is glowing. Now I don't know if that's an answer to Exodus 33, 18. When he tells God, he says, show me thy glory, and perhaps God reveals not his fullness to Moses because he would have been consumed and died before the glory of God's presence, the Bible says, but he showed him some of his essence. The events of Moses' face shining are found in Exodus 34, 29 through 35, if you wanted to go back and read those. But it talks about where Moses didn't know his face was shining, and the people were afraid because of it, and so he put a veil over his face to cover that. And so when he went into the inner holy of holies to speak with, commune with God, he took the veil off, but he went out and talked to the people who put the veil on. When Moses veiled his face for that time, interestingly, Paul ties in an analogy and picture of what the veil can also represent. Paul says that Moses' veil was so that the sons of Israel could not look to the ends of that which was abolished or passing away, according to verse number 13 and 14. The veil was concealing, it veiled the glory of Moses' face, which was symbolic of the Israelites not being able to fully look upon and understand the glory of all that the Old Testament pointed to. It was veiled to them. The Old Covenant and Old Testament, the Bible says, are a shadow of good things to come.
Listen, if you look at someone's shadow, you can get an idea of what they look like, but you don't see their image, right? So the Bible speaks of the Old Testament saints, again, not fully understanding what they wrote. The New Testament declares many mysteries that were unknown to Old Testament saints. There's at least seven mysteries. The New Testament speaks of that the Old Testament had no...
The Old Testament saint had no idea about. The mystery of the kingdom was one of them, and a mystery according to the Bible is simply this. It was a truth hidden or kept from people until God was ready to reveal it.
It's something that was unknown that is now known. Mark 4-11, Jesus says, unto you it is given, and he tells the disciples, unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God, but unto them with that or without, all these things are done in parables. I tell you, if you're not saved, that should scare you. You will not be given the truth of God when you choose not to believe it.
He will not turn the light on for you if you choose to reject his reality. Also, we see not only the mystery of the kingdom, but the mystery of the incarnation. First Corinthians 2-7 says, but we speak the wisdom of God and a mystery, even the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the world unto our glory, which none of the princes of the world knew, for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. This was a mystery, he said. Ephesians 6-19 was the mystery of the gospel.
They didn't understand it. It says, Paul says in Ephesians 6-19, and for me that utterance may be given unto me that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel. You know, the church was a mystery in the Old Testament. They had no idea about the Jew and the Gentile coming together into one body called the church. Ephesians 5-32 says, this is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and his church. The mystery of the Jew and Gentile union in Christ was a mystery, according to Ephesians 3. The mystery of the indwelling presence of Christ is a mystery, according to Colossians 1. The mystery of the rapture. The rapture was a mystery of the Old Testament, according to 1 Corinthians 15-51. So you need to understand there were things that God chose not to reveal to them. According to the 12 disciples, he said, there are many things that I have to say to you, but you're not ready to hear them.
You're not able to hear them. And do you know that's true of you even as a believer? As you grow, the Lord will continue to reveal the reality of truths as you study the scripture, but you don't come to the Bible and know everything right away. And so, now Paul says in verse 14 that the reason they couldn't see the truth was they were blinded. The word blinded there also can be translated as hardened or made dull. He likens their hard hearts to being unable to see clear, lucid truth of the New Testament that has now been revealed.
And why? Because they chose to keep the veil on. It's like reading with a veil over your face. You're like, I can't see it.
And you're like, well, just take the veil off and you'll be able to see the pages. No, I must keep this on. Why do you keep it on?
Because I have to have it on. And that's the foolishness of it. It's like they chose not... And that's why Jesus said, search the scriptures for in them you think you have eternal life and there they would testify of me. They're like, well, we believe Moses. He said, if you believe Moses, you would believe me for he wrote of me. This is the reality.
If they had a humble heart, they would have got it. But listen to me, you can read the Bible all day long and miss it. You must come with good soil. You can plant seed on a hard, crispy ground all day long and you'll see that stuff get burned up. You have to... There's a tilling of the heart. Some of y'all know what I'm talking about. Took some pain to till, didn't it? It's not comfortable. It takes some pressure.
It takes some heat in life. But then you begin to say, you know what? I'm not the God of my own life. I'm not the one who can be in charge even as a Marine, a retired Marine who's tough and says, I need the Lord to be in the driver's seat of my life.
I can tell you, you can be real confident when you're young and healthy. You begin to face the reality of death and you start thinking, man, am I right about God not being real? Am I right about salvation? So the new covenant is so much better because it's clear it's revealed and it's not veiled. Number six, the new covenant is centered on Christ instead of Moses. Verse 14, but their minds were blinded for until this day that remain at the veil and taken away in the reading of the Old Testament, which veil is done away with who?
Christ. Verse 15, for unto this day when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart. Nevertheless, when it shall, when their heart turns to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away.
Isn't that great? Those who trust in the old covenant to save them are trusting in themselves their own goodness. You know, Galatians 3.22, there's so many passages I had down today. I'm sure the media people in the back are like, oh man, he gave us 5,000 verses here. But the verses just really preach better than I can say it. Galatians 3.22 says, but the scripture has concluded all under sin that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that belief. The scriptures conclude everyone is a sinner. Verse 23, but before faith came, we were kept under the law like we were enslaved.
We're in bondage to this. Shut up unto the faith which should afterward be revealed. And look what verse 24 says, wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us to who? To Christ. That we should be justified by faith. But after that faith has come, we are no longer under schoolmaster.
So the law was never able to save. It's not soap. It's glasses. It's light. It reveals our sin, but it doesn't cleanse us of our sin. And it points us to our need of a savior. And it makes people seek to be self-righteous if they read it with pride. I mean, when something says you need to do this in order to be saved, either you say I cannot, and you cry out for mercy, or you say I can.
And then you begin to boast in yourself. And the Jews chose the latter because that's what pride did. It kept them in the dark.
How sad and blinding pride is. The Jews as a whole rejected Christ, so they held to the old covenant. And they couldn't see Jesus because their pride of self-righteousness. You know, in John 9, Jesus heals a blind man. They ask him five times in that story. If you go back and read John 9, five different times, like how were you made able to see blind man born with blindness? He says, I've told you, you won't believe it.
They ended up kicking him out of the synagogue. Jesus in John 9 39 says this, and Jesus said, for judgment, I am coming to this world that they would see not might see and that they would see might be made blind. Do you understand what he says there, friends? Does that make sense to you? Verse 40 and some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words and said unto him, are we blind also?
Look what he says. Verse 41. Jesus said unto them, if you were blind, you should have no sin.
You get what he's saying there? But now you say we see therefore your sin remaineth. If I could tie a parallel understanding with that, it's the Beatitudes. Blessed are the poor in spirit, theirs is the kingdom. It's not those who think they are something. It's those who recognize they have nothing to offer God. You go to church because you think you're good enough. No, we go to church because we realize we're not.
Yeah, we recognize we're a mess. Without Christ, we are nothing. So Jesus saying, you think you see?
You think you really have the eyes to see? Until you recognize you are sinful and destitute without Christ, you will never be saved because you'll trust in yourself. It's when you come and say, Lord, I am naked and blind and poor and bankrupt.
I have nothing. Blessed are the poor in spirit. They shall see God, right? It's those who come and recognize their utter need. So the new covenant centered on Christ, you come to Christ, he removes the veil instead of Moses.
So much better. Number seven, the new covenant is liberating through the spirit, not enslaving through the flesh. Two more verses. Look at verse 17.
Now the Lord is that spirit and where the spirit is, there is liberty. Those inside of systems love rules, they love externals, and some of you probably have been in some of those situations where it was very external. If I were to ask the question, why do you do that? Why do you go through those motions, say those prayers, recite that? They don't always know. It's just, well, that's what we're told to do. That's what we're taught to do.
That's what our system does. And those who elevate the external, they always increase the external laws. They add to the Bible. They find traditions that are not found in the Bible. They lay burdens on men.
Matthew 23, four, Jesus says, for they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be born. I mean, they just lay it on people. You ever known people who they make a bunch of rules and it's like, is that found in the Bible? No, but it should be. You know, you should never play cards. Well, where does it say that in the Bible?
Where it just should be. You know, they get on you, you know, and then you started making all these things up. To those who are under the weight of all the external laws they had created in the Jewish system, Jesus said, come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden. He says, take my yoke upon you, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Jesus said, you'll know the truth and it will make you free. Jesus came to set it free, set free those who were in bondage.
And I can tell you, friend, there's nothing more enslaving than our own sin and the guilt of that. Why do you think there's so much medication trying to sedate people's minds in alcoholism and drug addiction? It's the greatest pain people take medication for is not external.
It's internal. You don't know why the drug addict stays on their drugs. It's not because their body's always hurting. It's because their soul is hurting. I've had full grown men multiple times in my office who've just wept because when they got off drugs, they said, now I, for the first time, I feel it like I feel it and the guilt and the regret and all that stuff.
You know what? Instead of me telling them you need to go back and get on some kind of medication, mental, I can take him to the word of God and say, today you can find forgiveness and grace and freedom in Christ and cast that upon him and he'll wipe your slate clean. You don't have to be afraid of your sin. You can come to God and he sees all of it. He says, come child, your sins and iniquities.
I will remember no more. I think that's good news. Is that better than giving a prescription to somebody and then followed up with five other prescriptions and medications and insanity? That's what Christ will do for somebody. I'm not saying all medications wrong now. Don't get me wrong. Pastors gets medication.
No, no, no. That's what I'm saying. But I can tell you there's a lot of just look at the billion, billion, billion industry out there, that multi level billion industry out there that is just shoving medication. There's as many drugs in the legal market as there are the illegal market. I'll make me go down that road.
We got to wrap this now. Freedom doesn't mean a license to be abused, to abuse sin. Because sin is sin and we're not to sin.
It doesn't mean you can go out and do what you want. It's not to be a license, but it's in love to serve one another. Galatians 5 13 says, for brethren, you have been called unto freedom or liberty. Only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. Like if I did something that like my friend Nick say, say I did something that really was a stumbling block to him and I was like, you know what? You don't understand. That's not wrong for me to do, but like say I drank alcohol and I don't drink alcohol, but if I took a sip of wine, I'm like, you know, the Bible, I feel like there's, there's some freedom there and, and so forth, but Nick's like, man, that really, really caused me to stumble.
I could argue and give you biblical reasons why I should be allowed to do that, but you know what? If I really love him, I would be willing to give something up that was causing my brother to stumble. Does that make sense? Either I love myself more or I love him more. Either I love my right and my freedom more or I love him more. Now you may have things in your life that may not be stumbling blocks and that's between you and the Lord, but whenever it comes to being a stumbling block for somebody else, then you need this.
Put them before your freedom. Does that make sense? Okay. Let me move on. So if you want to write a letter, send it to Braden, verse eight or number eight, we're on verse 18 his mailbox.
You can fill it up, right? We all, this, this, this verse I could preach on for all next week, but verse 18 we'll wrap it up pretty quick. It says, but we all with open face beholding as in a glass.
The glory of the Lord are changed into the same glory image from glory to glory, even as by the spirit of the Lord. The word changed here is metamorpho. It's where we get the English word metamorphosis and we think about a caterpillar, right? Going into it's, it's not a Cadillac, it's a chrysalis, isn't it? Sometimes your mind just kind of floats and that caterpillar goes into it and you look at a caterpillar, everybody's like, ah, you know, nobody wants to hold a caterpillar kind of.
Maybe there's some bug people out here. I know there's a couple. Yes. Yes.
And we have a, we have folks who teach at the college level in that area. But when you see a butterfly, you would never think that that little caterpillar would go in there, liquefy, stay in there for a certain number of months and then turn into this butterfly. That's insane. You know, God has made physical creations that are pictures of our eternal spiritual realities. If you think that metamorphosis is something you wait until you see what God's going to do to you, he's going to turn your mortal body into an immortal body. He says in first Corinthians 15, your corruptible decaying body will never corrupt. Anybody get looking forward to no back pain, shoulder pain, knee pain?
Yes. If you see anything and be like, my stomach is sour, you'll never have to worry about that. You'll be like, I eat that and I feel great. You will live forever in that perfected state. God will do that eternally for your soul in your body.
You'll have a new body. Jesus said, a spirit hath not flesh and bones as you see me have, right? You could touch him, you could feel him, but then he could pass through walls.
This is the glory of that glorified body. People say, well, that's not even possible. That's so ridiculous. You can believe the Bible is true when it says that he had a body and he passed through walls. I could talk to you about physics where they have taken laser beams and they're shooting these molecules against it and they said they don't know how it happens. They don't know how it happens, but they jumped from this side without transversing the space in between and are on the other side. What's inside that world Jesus just displayed with his body.
Oh, you didn't know that. So we're going to be transformed, but how are we transformed now? Because and what is he wanting to transform us into? Well, he's wanting to conform us to the image of Christ. You were made in the image of God according to Genesis chapter number two, right? Verse 26 and seven. God made you in his image, but sin marred the image.
You were the regions of the earth. God designed you to be that way, but in our fallen state we are corrupted and salvation is restoring the image of God in man. You're not gods, but you're, you're his children.
The Bible says in second Peter one, four whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature unit unit partake in divine nature. You're gonna live forever. You're gonna be perfected forever. You're gonna be saved.
Trust in Christ. He'll give you eternal life and your bodies will be one day conformed to the image of Christ and the Bible says, when we see him, we will be like him for we shall see him as he is. One day we will reflect Christ perfectly. The Bible says, put on the Lord Jesus Christ, walk as he walked, love as he loved, forgive as he forgive. Why do you think the Bible says that? Because that's what you were saved to be like your elder brother. The Bible refers to Jesus as be like your elder brother, your Lord, your savior, your God, Jesus Christ.
Be like him. But until we're there, the, the, the, the mirror, the glass that it's talking about is the word of God. So as we gaze into the word of God, as we look into the scriptures, as we allow the word of God to fill our hearts, we're being molded into that image. We're being conformed into his image, the image that we will be like forever. So are you gazing in the word? Are you looking into the word? Search the scriptures and you'll find Christ everywhere. The more you spend in the word, the more you should walk away being more like him with patience, with grace, with love, with forgiveness.
Husbands should love their wife as Christ loved the church, wives, referencing their husbands and so forth. All of it falls into place. And so in conclusion, no, it's a miracle. The covenant, the new covenant gives spiritual life, not death. It produces righteousness, not condemnation.
It is permanent, not temporary. It brings hope, not despair. It is clear, not veiled. It is centered on Christ instead of Moses. It is a liberating, not enslaving, and it is transformational. It transforms us that it's not just simply ceremonial.
This is, this is the glory that we have. And so tonight, if you don't know Christ, why don't tonight be the night you surrender to him, know him, and if you don't know him, why don't you pursue him? If Jesus is real, you would want to know him, right? If you were wrong about Jesus, would you want to know?
And if you do know him, know him more, study him more, love him more, adore him more. Today you should look more like Jesus and every day we don't look more like him is because we're not looking in the perfect law of Liberty, the word of God. Let the mirror change us from the inside out. Amen. Let's all stand this evening with heads bowed, nice, closed, and this time maybe you need to come and take a moment in prayer.
You're welcome to do that. Father, we thank you for your word tonight. God, I thank you for the truth of the gospel. Lord, I pray tonight that if anyone doesn't know the Lord Jesus Christ is their savior, that tonight would be the night that they may come and call out to you for salvation. You said in your word, if we hear your voice, not to harden our hearts. So I pray God that you would open hearts up to your word. God, I pray as Christians that we would gaze upon you through the scriptures, that we would adore Jesus Christ. Conform us and fashion us into your glorious image. That's what you saved us for, to be conformed into your image, Romans 8 29. Lord bless this invitation time in Christ's name. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-30 20:20:23 / 2023-04-30 20:40:42 / 20