A Renewed Covenant

We have already pointed out that Moses was instructed to build the Tabernacle according to the pattern of the Heavenly Tabernacle shown to him.  The specific purpose of the Covenant Ark, situated directly under the Throne of YHVH, was to accommodate God’s Law which would serve as Witness of the Divine Covenant with His people Israel.  The heavenly Tabernacle is everlasting and indestructible. YHVH will most certainly keep His Promises to His people as contained in His Covenant with them, unless He would choose to do away with the Witness thereto, namely the Content of the Covenant Ark.

Misunderstanding and ignorance of the true facts have lead to, what amounts to an accusation against YHVH, of being guilty of doing just that.  We are referring to the theory that the Covenant has been replaced by a ‘New’ Covenant which does away with the essence thereof, namely the Law, and that “the Law has been nailed to the Cross”.  Those who believe this, fail to see that the ‘New Covenant’ is simply a Renewed version of the unchangeable Old Covenant’.

Revelation 11 also strongly opposes the replacement theory.  It describes a scene which even at this time (year 2000) is yet future.  It describes the climax of the ages, when, during the events of the seventh and last trumpet, which is described in this Prophetic vision, the Saviour establishes His Kingdom here on earth.  This will also be the time of the great Judgment of both the living and the dead.  It is that phenomenal occasion which believers through the ages have hoped and prayed for (Matthew 6: “ Our Father…Your Kingdom come ….”).

Let us now examine this situation as described in Revelation 11:15-19  “Then the seventh Angel blew his Trumpet and voices could be heard shouting in Heaven, calling: “The Kingdom of the World has become the Kingdom of our Lord and Messiah, and He will reign for ever and ever.  The twenty-four elders, enthroned in the presence of God, prostrated themselves and touched the ground with their foreheads, worshipping God with these words: ‘We give thanks to You, Almighty YHVH, He-is-and-He-was, for using Your great Power and beginning Your reign.  The nations were seething with rage and now the time has come for Your own anger, and for the dead to be judged, and for Your servants the Prophets, for the Saints and all who worship You, small or great, to be rewarded.  The time has come to destroy those who are destroying the earth.  Then the Sanctuary of God in Heaven opened, and the Ark of the Covenant could be seen inside it..  Then came flashes of lightning, peals of thunder and an earthquake and violent hail.”

What consternation!  What a Day!  What an Experience!  And yet the Ark of the Covenant is still there, exactly in its place in the Heavenly Sanctuary, serving as witness that the Almighty Creator will not go back on or dishonour His Word!

Could the content and conditions of the Covenant then perhaps have been changed?

Conditions And Terms Of The Renewed Covenant

Psalm 89:34  “I will not break My Covenant.  I will not revoke My given Word.  I have sworn on My Holiness, once for all and cannot turn liar…”

Yet, the Almighty does refer to a ‘New’ Covenant which He would make with His people.  Scripture itself defines the difference:

Jeremiah 31: 31-33 “See, the days are coming – it is YHVH Who speaks – when I will make a New Covenant with the House of Israel (and the House of Judah).  But not a Covenant like the one I made with their ancestors on the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the Land of Egypt.  They broke that Covenant of Mine, so I had to show them who was Master.  It is YHVH Who speaks.  No, this is the Covenant I will make with the House of Israel when those days arrive – it is YHVH Who speaks.  Deep within them I will plant My Law, writing it on their hearts.  Then I will be their God and they will be My People.”

Ezekiel 11:18 describes this same futuristic event and confirms the spiritual nature of this Renewed Covenant in His own Words: “I will give them a new heart and I will put a new Spirit in them.  I will remove the heart of stone from their bodies and give them a heart of flesh instead, so that they will keep My Laws and respect My Observances and put them into practise.”

Please note that, according to these references, the Law still is the core of the Divine Covenant. This time however, it is written on the hearts and in the minds of His people!  In fact, He gives them a spiritual rejuvenation with the purpose of, or “so that” they keep and respect all His Laws and practise it.

Just as Israel of old received the Law at Sinai on the feast day  of Shavuot, in order that they could fulfil their part of the Covenant, so also, by the outpouring of His Spirit on exactly the same feast day in New Testament times, which became known as Pentecost (Acts 2), YHVH, according to His Promise, spiritually enables the re-born, repentant believer, to observe His Laws under the new dispensation Covenant.   However, the choice to accept or reject this spiritual motivation to Law abiding, still lies with the individual, since the Almighty will not impose Himself on us.

The evidence of His indwelling Spirit, should therefore be displayed by Obedience to His Laws, in fulfilment of one’s share in the Covenant, unless one rebels against the keeping of the Laws, as ancient Israel also did.  They received their due punishment for this, by being banished from the Land of Israel and dispersed throughout the world.

Please note however, that the divinely promised Return of Israel to the Land, would however be used as a Sign from God to the nations, of His faithfulness to His Covenant with Israel, to settle them there eventually, when He will reign over the earth from Jerusalem.  (This topic is discussed fully in the book “JERUSALEM – Final Countdown to Armageddon” (click here for direct transfer to Web Page)

Note also, according to the above Scripture, that the Renewed Covenant is concluded with the House of Israel, just as with the Old Covenant.  However, as already mentioned, It was the specific purpose of the Almighty through His selection of Israel as His Covenant people, to demonstrate to the other nations, what His purpose is for all of humanity in general – not only for Israel. He wishes to include all of humanity in the Divine Covenant.  Israel was selected to physically demonstrate what the result would be for being faithful to the Creator or otherwise.  As a result, the history of Israel reflects clearly both Divine Blessing and Divine Discipline. Through Israel, God would demonstrate His faithfulness to His Promises; that He would punish them, yet never destroy them totally. That He would cast them out of their land, and scatter them across the face of the earth, yet eventually return them in miraculous fashion to the Land which He solemnly promised them by divine oath.  In this way He would demonstrate His faithfulness to His Covenant. (Read Ezekiel chapter 20).

Ezekiel 36: 17-19 “… The House of Israel used to live in their own Land, but they defiled it by their conduct and actions … I then discharged My fury at them … I scattered them among the nations and dispersed them in foreign countries.”

This banning from the Promised Land had been predicted long ago (Leviticus 26:33-45) as a disciplinary measure for their breaking of the Covenant.  Even the specific length of time of their banishment was predicted, namely ‘seven times’ or 2520 years (7×360) (Leviticus 26:18; Daniel 9:25-26). Daniel chapter 2 refers to this same period of time during which the Kingdom of Israel would be taken away from them, by presenting it in the form of a giant human statue which was shown him in a dream.  According to the Bible’s own interpretation, the image represents the subsequent world empires of Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and the Roman Empire, as confirmed by History in the centuries following.  After this, the world rulership would be divided into two camps: East and West, as (represented by the two legs of the Image), until, during the reign of various Kings (represented by the toes of the Image), YHVH would destroy the worldly Kingdom to establish His own Kingdom. Measured with this ‘yardstick’ of 2520 years, the destruction of the kingdom of Israel stretches from the establishment of the kingdom of Nebuchadnezzar (603 BC), when he deported the ten Northern tribes of Israel, until 1917, when the first World War triggered the beginning of the gradual return of Israel to the Land.  In the same way that the crumbling of the kingdom of Israel gradually took place over several decades, so also the restoration thereof took place over several decades starting from 1917 onward, even to this time. The measuring rule of 2520 years can be moved forward and backwards, to connect a beacon in the past with a beacon in the future.  The establishment of the Kingdom extends over many years and cannot physically occur in one moment of time.

Likewise, the return of the nation of Israel to their own Land, also extends over a period of time, beginning at the turn of the 19th to the 20th century.  It was accelerated drastically by the 1st and 2nd World Wars and is continued to this day.  The early 90’s saw phenomenal moments as masses returned from both Russia and Ethiopia. The latter occurrence, being ‘black Jews of Ethiopia’, was seen as miraculous by Israel itself.

According to Scripture, the first to return would be Judah, consisting of two tribes; thereafter the remaining ten ‘lost’ tribes would follow.  These two groups would then be united in one nation once again (Ezekiel 37:15-23).  Apparently the 10 tribes consist of various Western nations who are, as yet, unaware of their origin as being from the original 10 tribes of Northern Israel. They too, form part of the Eternal Covenant.

Notwithstanding the realisation of the Divine Promise of the re-gathering of Israel, which has been taking place in miraculous fashion right before the eyes of the modern world, the multitudes are still unaware and blind to what is happening.  Many believers dispute the fact that the re-establishment of modern Israel, is in fulfilment of a Divine Promise. There are even some who regard Jews and Israelis as “deceivers and impostors who are not truly descendent from ancient Israel” … and who are “the reincarnation of Satan”!  These people then normally regard themselves as the ‘chosen’ people, claiming the Promises to Israel for themselves. (Our booklet:  “Self appointed Israel”, exposes this movement in South Africa)

The true Covenant people of YHVH comprises the actual descendants of Israel; proselytes (those who join themselves to the Jewish Faith) and anyone who wish to bind themselves to the Eternal Covenant and live accordingly.  In Ephesians 2:11 to 3:11, Paul reveals the age-old Mystery in the Plan of YHVH and shows how, through the Sacrifice of the Messiah, those who are excluded from membership of Israel by birth, are brought into the Covenant. “So you are no longer aliens … you are citizens … and part of God’s Household … built into a House where God lives in the Spirit” (Eph. 2:19 & 22). This according to His Promise of the New Covenant.

This revelationary portion of Scripture is often used to support the claim that  “the New Covenant abolished the Law”.  In fact, it claims just the opposite: “(Messiah) has made the two into one and broken down the barrier (division between non-Jew and Jew), actually destroying … the hostility caused by the Law.”  Note: Not the law itself, but the carnal rebellion in the non-Jew against Jewish Laws and Customs “…through the Cross to unite them both in a single Body” (Eph. 2:14,15) … and now, one with the Jew, also obligated to the Covenant and thus to the Law.