Tuesday: Tablet of the Covenant
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Although a covenant is based on promises, there are usually conditions to meet before the promises are fulfilled. The Abrahamic covenant involved the circumcision of all males who were either born to Abraham or his descendants. When Yahweh covenanted with Israel, He personally engraved the requirements for the relationship on tablets of stone (Deut. 9:8-11). These requirements, preserved in the Ten Commandments, were to form the basis of God’s everlasting covenant with all humans.

Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

Because they detail certain terms of the covenant, the Ten Commandments are often termed the tablets of the covenant (Deut. 9:9, NKJV). The Ten Commandments are not intended to be an obstacle course designed to make life hard for those who have entered into the covenant with God; instead, as an expression of God’s love, the commandments have been given for the benefit of those who have entered into a covenant relationship with their Lord.

In what ways do Jeremiah 31:31-34 and Hebrews 10:11-18 uphold the everlasting nature of God’s law in the New Covenant?

Under the Old Covenant at Mount Sinai, the Israelites and those who joined the community were obligated to demonstrate faithfulness to the covenant by keeping the Ten Commandments. When they violated a commandment they were expected to offer an animal sacrifice if they wished to have their sins forgiven.

Under the New Covenant at Mount Calvary, God’s people are still obligated to keep the Ten Commandments. However, when they sin they don’t have to offer continuous sacrifices, because Jesus is their full and complete sacrifice (Heb. 9:11-14). The New Covenant is so much better than the old because now, by faith, we claim the promises of forgiveness offered to us through the sacrifice of Jesus. There is hope for us only as we come under the Abrahamic covenant, which is the covenant of grace by faith in Christ Jesus.-Ellen G. White Comments, The SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 6, p. 1077.

What does it mean to have God’s law written in your heart? How does this differ from merely understanding God’s law as a code of obedience?

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Tuesday: Tablet of the Covenant — 27 Comments

  1. I personally think that, to have God's law written in our hearts is to die daily with in Him. And i mean that we need to give up our self desires and to live in Christ, or allow Him to be in you. When Christ is living inside of you, it would be easy for us to follow His commandments naturally as if they are our natural behavior or way of life. However, the difference to the code of obedience is that, it is an act of appreciation by keeping the law but not a way of life.

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    • I agree, Gina! Also, those living under the old covenant didn’t have that personal relationship with Christ. They were told to keep the laws but it seemed to blow them away when Christ gave the Sermon on the Mount where He expounded further on just what keeping the commandments entailed, e.g., adultery beginning with lusting. It makes me keep asking myself where I am limiting my understanding of law and therefore, not living up to all it encompasses. But as you said, as I give up my self-desires and allow Jesus to live in me then I think by default that keeps me within the law.

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    • I want to emphasize one point, the writing of God law in our hearts is said in the scripture to be something that God does for us. That's the beauty of it! We give ourselves to Him and He does the rest.

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  2. its true that the new covenant at mount calvary is far much better. the impotent sin offering of the old covenant were to be repeated and individually offered but the blood of Jesus can cleanse us all. Moreover, the Lord sent us the Holy spirit to convicts and give us power to do the will of God.

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  3. For approx 2000 yrs before the flood God spoke to men and the listened, there was no book to record. It was all head knowledge. After the flood, God called Moses to record his words because the children were stubborn and rebellious. The written words served as a reminder in history. Deut 6:3-10. During that time Jesus gave Moses 5 laws; ceremonial, civic, moral, health and statues and judgments. The death of Jesus did not affected the moral law as it affected the other laws. Many parts of the other laws had met their fulfillment of the cross, while the moral law (10 commandment) continues. The new covenant spoken of by Jeremiah and Paul is the same 10 commandments but now as God's people have Jesus living in them, the 10 commandments will also be living in them because Jesus and his commandments are one. As written in Jeremiah 31:31-34 and Hebrews 8:6-13.

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  4. In the covenant with Abraham, God walks through the sacrifices alone toward Abraham. God saves us we can do nothing to save ourselves. Genesis 15:17-18. God is calling a people; “To your descendants I give this land.”
    In the covenant with Moses God continues to call a people to Himself. The covenant is the establishment of the relationship. Exodus 19: 5-6. The Ten Commandments are the terms and conditions of the relationship. The covenant was broken, the relationship was broken, but the terms and conditions stood firm. The people responded in verse 8, “Then all the people answered together and said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do.” The people broke their relationship with God and started serving other Gods. They were even serving themselves.
    In heaven it will our greatest happiness and joy to be kind and loving to all people. We will naturally always put the happiness of others first. There will be the sweetest relationships. However we are called to start those sweet relationships here on earth. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and love your neighbour as yourself.

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  5. Even though I understand and agree with the main thesis of this quarter’s lessons concerning our relationship to the law I disagree with the way that thesis is being supported, such as in today’s lesson about the covenants.

    Many theologians in our denomination feel that there is really no difference between the old and the new covenants and that the problems that existed actually is a matter of application of faith after the fact but as far as I am concerned that absolutely wrong. That misunderstanding tends to show up in this lesson when it says:

    Under the Old Covenant at Mount Sinai, the Israelites and those who joined the community were obligated to demonstrate faithfulness to the covenant by keeping the Ten Commandments. When they violated a commandment they were expected to offer an animal sacrifice if they wished to have their sins forgiven.
    Under the New Covenant at Mount Calvary, God's people are still obligated to keep the Ten Commandments. However, when they sin they don't have to offer continuous sacrifices, because Jesus is their full and complete sacrifice (Heb. 9:11-14).

    Here the lesson is confusing the basis of the covenants with the sanctuary services which actually were not directly a part of the old covenant. The difference between the two covenants was in the agreements (promises), therefore, the Israelites couldn’t keep the old covenant no matter how much faith they had because the promises were man’s promises – not God’s.

    The new covenant, on the other hand, (Heb 8:10-12; Jer 31:33-34) is God’s promise to do what man could not do through the old covenant, change his heart and forgive his sins. The issue of the covenants is how a person becomes righteous – by man’s promises or by God’s. Under the old covenant man was attempting to become perfect by his own works, "All that the LORD has said we will do, and be obedient" (Ex 24:7 NKJV) while under the new covenant God is the one who promises and does. As Jesus said of Himself while condescended to the Father for everything, “The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works” (Jn 14:10 NKJV). That is the same thing that happens with the one who by faith believes in the promises of the new covenant. As Peter says, “as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust” (2 Pet 1:3-4 NKJV). Again, I say as did Paul, we become righteous through faith, not of works!

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    • Tyler,
      While the promises were an important differentiator between the two covenants there are other significant differences (not all captured in the lesson). A few questions which might help with our study are: Why was the Old covenant necessary, especially since there was already the Abrahamic Covenant? Was the Savior experimenting with covenants? Did God knowingly implement a flawed covenant, and thereby set up the people to fail? Could it be the Old Covenant served a different, but valid purpose from that of the New Covenant?

      Both Covenants included promises/obligations for both parties, that is God and the people. It was possible for the promises/obligations to be kept, just not the way the people thought. They needed divine enabling power, in the same way we do today.

      Indications are the Abrahamic (Everlasting) Covenant was always in force, and not suspended while the Old Covenant was in place. They were/are not meant to be optional paths to salvation or replacements for each other. The problem the Israelites had was misplaced trust. They reposed confidence in a symbol (Covenant) expecting something it was not intended, nor indeed could deliver. The Old Covenant was a good thing, initiated by an All-knowing God and served its purpose, except that the people failed in their obligations and application.

      The New Covenant (pre-existing) became a replacement for the Old only in the sense that the people sought to make the Old substitute for the Everlasting Covenant. The better promises available to us today were available to Adam. He like us was saved by grace through faith.

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    • Tyler, I agree that the portion of the lesson that you quote is confusing. For more clarity, see this week's "Ask the Author video."

      Dr. Burton's thesis is that there was ever only one covenant offered by God. It was expressed in different situations - in Eden to Abraham, to Jacob, to the Israelites at Sinai, and, of course in the promises through Jeremiah.

      God's covenant (which we usually call the "New Covenant") is unilateral in that God makes the promises, and we accept them into our lives. The "old covenant" came into existence when the Israelites failed to see the Ten Commandments as promises of what God would do if they accepted Him as their God and saw it as a check list of things to do and promised to to these things, without entering into relationship with Him. (Remember they begged Moses for God to stop speaking to them directly and let only Moses speak to them?) The human promise to "keep" God's Covenant without entering into relationship with Him is what made up the "Old Covenant."

      By the time of Paul, the"old covenant" had developed into a complex system of rules to keep in order to remain in covenant relationship. And these rules were quite impossible to keep. So whenever Paul refers to the "old covenant' he refers to this system based on the promises of the people. Paul rightly emphasizes that the "New Covenant" is based on "better promises," namely God's promises, rather than human promises.

      Certainly, the sanctuary system was never intended to be an "old covenant." It consisted of symbols and symbolic rituals that pointed to the Redeemer to come, according to the eternal promise of the "New Covenant." But the sanctuary system became part of the "old covenant" (based on human promises) when the Israelites forgot its symbolic promise of the Savior and treated it as a transactional covenant whereby they could purchase God's favor through offerings and rituals.

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      • Could we say the difference between "old" and "new" is in how it is received by the sinner? Either in faith or unbelief. (Yes, it can be "received" in unbelief, as with those who soon were worshiping a golden calf, or those who crucified Jesus.)

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    • The priesthood was not part of the covenant. But the scriptures co-relates them. Heb.7:11 "Now if perfection had been attainable through the Levitical priesthood (for under it the people received the Law), what further need would there have for another priest to arise after the order of Melchizedek rather than one named after the order of Aaron?" The people must have etchers of the law and a way of expiation of sins.

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  6. I agree with Tyler. I think we propagate a legalistic view point. It is now a personal relationship and now the law is written in our hearts. The focus is now on love to God and love to man. Obedience becomes more than just those 10 rules. We grow to love each other.

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    • From the History of the Reformation by Thomas Lindsay page 168.
      The great men who built up the Western Church were almost all trained Roman lawyers.
      Tertullian, Cyprian, Augustine, Gregory the Great (whose writings form the bridge between the
      Latin Fathers and the Schoolmen) were all men whose early training had been that of a Roman
      lawyer,—a training which moulded and shaped all their thinking, whether theological or
      ecclesiastical. They instinctively regarded all questions as a great Roman lawyer would. They
      had the lawyer's craving for exact definitions. They had the lawyer's idea that the primary duty
      laid upon them was to enforce obedience to authority, whether that authority expressed itself in
      external institutions or in the precise definitions of the correct ways of thinking about spiritual
      truths. No branch of the western Christendom has been able to free itself from the spell cast upon it by these Roman lawyers of the early centuries of the Christian church.

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  7. Ellen White provides a good description of the state of the people of God at the time of Christ and, by extension, the time of Paul, in the book Education by Ellen White, p. 74 and on. And she follows this up with a description of the remedy, as found in Christ:

    The Jews, destitute of the power of God's word, gave to the world mind-benumbing, soul-deadening traditions and speculations. The worship of God "in Spirit and in truth" had been supplanted by the glorification of men in an endless round of man-made ceremonies. Throughout the world all systems of religion were losing their hold on mind and soul. Disgusted with fable and falsehood, seeking to drown thought, men turned to infidelity and materialism. Leaving eternity out of their reckoning, they lived for the present.

    As they ceased to recognize the Divine, they ceased to regard the human. Truth, honor, integrity, confidence, compassion, were departing from the earth. Relentless greed and absorbing ambition gave birth to universal distrust. The idea of duty, of the obligation of strength to weakness, of human dignity and human rights, was cast aside as a dream or a fable. The common people were regarded as beasts of burden or as the tools and the steppingstones for ambition. Wealth and power, ease and self-indulgence, were sought as the highest good. Physical degeneracy, mental stupor, spiritual death, characterized the age.

    As the evil passions and purposes of men banished God from their thoughts, so forgetfulness of Him inclined them more strongly to evil. The heart in love with sin clothed Him with its own attributes, and this conception strengthened the power of sin. Bent on self-pleasing, men came to regard God as such a one as themselves--a Being whose aim was self-glory, whose requirements were suited to His own pleasure; a Being by whom men were lifted up or cast down according as they helped or hindered His selfish purpose. The lower classes regarded the Supreme Being as one scarcely differing from their oppressors, save by exceeding them in power. By these ideas every form of religion was molded. Each was a system of exaction. By gifts and ceremonies, the worshipers sought to propitiate the Deity in order to secure His favor for their own ends. Such religion, having no power upon the heart or the conscience, could be but a round of forms, of which men wearied, and from which, except for such gain as it might offer, they longed to be free. So evil, unrestrained, grew stronger, while the appreciation and desire for good diminished. Men lost the image of God and received the impress of the demoniacal power by which they were controlled. The whole world was becoming a sink of corruption.

    There was but one hope for the human race--that into this mass of discordant and corrupting elements might be cast a new leaven; that there might be brought to mankind the power of a new life; that the knowledge of God might be restored to the world. {Ed 76.1}

    Christ came to restore this knowledge. He came to set aside the false teaching by which those who claimed to know God had misrepresented Him. He came to manifest the nature of His law, to reveal in His own character the beauty of holiness.

    Christ came to the world with the accumulated love of eternity. Sweeping away the exactions which had encumbered the law of God, He showed that the law is a law of love, an expression of the Divine Goodness. He showed that in obedience to its principles is involved the happiness of mankind, and with it the stability, the very foundation and framework, of human society.

    So far from making arbitrary requirements, God's law is given to men as a hedge, a shield. Whoever accepts its principles is preserved from evil. Fidelity to God involves fidelity to man. Thus the law guards the rights, the individuality, of every human being. It restrains the superior from oppression, and the subordinate from disobedience. It ensures man's well-being, both for this world and for the world to come. To the obedient it is the pledge of eternal life, for it expresses the principles that endure forever.

    Christ came to demonstrate the value of the divine principles by revealing their power for the regeneration of humanity. He came to teach how these principles are to be developed and applied.

    With the people of that age the value of all things was determined by outward show. As religion had declined in power, it had increased in pomp. The educators of the time sought to command respect by display and ostentation. To all this the life of Jesus presented a marked contrast. His life demonstrated the worthlessness of those things that men regarded as life's great essentials. Born amidst surroundings the rudest, sharing a peasant's home, a peasant's fare, a craftsman's occupation, living a life of obscurity, identifying Himself with the world's unknown toilers,--amidst these conditions and surroundings,-- Jesus followed the divine plan of education. The schools of His time, with their magnifying of things small and their belittling of things great, He did not seek. His education was gained directly from the Heaven-appointed sources; from useful work, from the study of the Scriptures and of nature, and from the experiences of life-- God's lesson books, full of instruction to all who bring to them the willing hand, the seeing eye, and the understanding heart.

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  8. Tyler, I wish you could clear this up for me. What was the wrong with the old covenant? Was it because the Israelites made a promise to God to do what he had said? Are you suggesting that they should not have responded, or made a promise at all? It that why God had to make a new covenant?

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  9. When you sign a contract for services or goods neither the work done, the item purchased or the money you give is the contract. The contract involves those things but they are not the contract. The contract is the promises concerning those things. The differentiation may be subtle to some but it is important. Just because the same law is presented in two covenants doesn’t make them the same covenant just as two identical kitchen knives can be used with vastly different intents and therefore end up with entirely different outcomes. The knives are inanimate and cannot promise or decide anything – it is the people handling those knives that are the difference.

    With the old covenant we are talking about a signed and sealed agreement between God and His people who were unaware of the facts of the situation. Here is a quote from Ellen White that I think explains the reason for the old covenant very well

    Another compact—called in Scripture the “old” covenant—was formed between God and Israel at Sinai, and was then ratified by the blood of a sacrifice. The Abrahamic covenant was ratified by the blood of Christ, and it is called the “second,” or “new,” covenant, because the blood by which it was sealed was shed after the blood of the first covenant. That the new covenant was valid in the days of Abraham is evident from the fact that it was then confirmed both by the promise and by the oath of God—the “two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie.” Hebrews 6:18.

    But if the Abrahamic covenant contained the promise of redemption, why was another covenant formed at Sinai? In their bondage the people had to a great extent lost the knowledge of God and of the principles of the Abrahamic covenant. In delivering them from Egypt, God sought to reveal to them His power and His mercy, that they might be led to love and trust Him. He brought them down to the Red Sea—where, pursued by the Egyptians, escape seemed impossible—that they might realize their utter helplessness, their need of divine aid; and then He wrought deliverance for them. Thus they were filled with love and gratitude to God and with confidence in His power to help them. He had bound them to Himself as their deliverer from temporal bondage.

    But there was a still greater truth to be impressed upon their minds. Living in the midst of idolatry and corruption, they had no true conception of the holiness of God, of the exceeding sinfulness of their own hearts, their utter inability, in themselves, to render obedience to God’s law, and their need of a Saviour. All this they must be taught.

    God brought them to Sinai; He manifested His glory; He gave them His law, with the promise of great blessings on condition of obedience: “If ye will obey My voice indeed, and keep My covenant, then ... ye shall be unto Me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation.” Exodus 19:5, 6. The people did not realize the sinfulness of their own hearts, and that without Christ it was impossible for them to keep God’s law; and they readily entered into covenant with God. Feeling that they were able to establish their own righteousness, they declared, “All that the Lord hath said will we do, and be obedient.” Exodus 24:7. They had witnessed the proclamation of the law in awful majesty, and had trembled with terror before the mount; and yet only a few weeks passed before they broke their covenant with God, and bowed down to worship a graven image. They could not hope for the favor of God through a covenant which they had broken; and now, seeing their sinfulness and their need of pardon, they were brought to feel their need of the Saviour revealed in the Abrahamic covenant and shadowed forth in the sacrificial offerings. Now by faith and love they were bound to God as their deliverer from the bondage of sin. Now they were prepared to appreciate the blessings of the new covenant. (Patriarchs and Prophets 371.1-4)

    The question of course is did they ever fall back on the Abrahamic covenant (new covenant)? I personally don’t think they ever did and as time went on they only seemed to have entrenched themselves in trying to keep a law according to the terms of the old covenant. All the rabbinical regulations seem to point to that as an attempt to do what they promised to do.

    There is one other point I wish to make here. A contract (covenant) cannot be changed once it is agreed upon. As a lawyer once told me about a point that was drummed into the students in law school, “post consideration is no consideration.” If the Jews ever decided to fall back on faith in God to do for them what they couldn’t do themselves they would have changed covenants, they would have placed themselves back under the everlasting covenant instead of being under the one made at Sinai. That would be so because the old covenant’s agreement was that the people were to be responsible for doing the law, not God.

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    • Just a question: What evidence would you expect to see that "the Jews ever decided to fall back on faith in God to do for them what they couldn't do themselves"?

      Do you believe no Jews were saved between Sinai and Christ's coming? If so, how were they saved, if no Jews lived by faith in God?

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      • As a people, divided into two nations, the answer is obvious and thus the final 70 "weeks" probation, with the Messiah cut off by His own, and Stephen, in Christ's stead, being stoned as the seal of their final rejection.

        As individuals, there are shining examples of genuine faith from Sinai to Calvary. These jewels of faith are for our admonition today, as are those who refused to trust in the Lord. We have both choices clearly illustrated in the history of Israel.

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    • If we view the Old and New(Everlasting) Covenants as being in conflict then we have a challenge to explain why God instituted opposing covenants or if the covenants were defective, what God was doing. If as apparent in the Patriarchs and Prophet, page 371 quote by Tyler the covenants are understood to be complimentary, or one supplementary to the other then God's purpose is clearly seen.

      Inge,
      It is not clear if you are saying above the covenants as instituted were one-sided, that is only one party has promises/obligations to fulfill. If so can they be said to be covenants?

      The reason the New(Everlasting) Covenant was described by Paul as having better promises was not simply because of who made promises (both parties made promises as noted scripture and in EGW quote referenced above), but because of the nature of the promises. One set of promises was eternal (redemption), and the other temporal in blessings. One was a lesser covenant to help the people appreciate/embrace the greater covenant.

      Generally the Old Covenant is defined by how the people misapplied it rather than God's intent and so sometimes it is cast in a negative light (including in scripture), but the error was not on God's part, who initiated the Old Covenant and set its terms. This is important because one may get the impression that God required of the people something impossible in the Old Covenant, and was therefore unreasonable, or made a mistake and then corrected himself.

      Understanding the purposes gives us a broader perspective than just the promises, which are clearly important.

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      • Since the "old" covenant was given because of Adam's sin, the implications were eternal as well as temporal. The law embodies eternal life which Solomon points out in Eccl 12:13,14 as "the whole duty of man" which will be weighed in the final judgment where all destinies will be eternal.

        We have to see that God was not just dealing with Israel in the old covenant, but knew their example would help to admonish all others to the last generation "upon whom the ends of the world are come". Most of the stiff-necked generation that left Egypt was unable to see through lack of faith, while a few among them were able to see clearly, since there is no other way to prosper except by faith. The "old" was merely faulty in how it was received incorrectly by those who were worshiping a golden calf only weeks after "promising" not to.

        The "new" covenant given through Jeremiah was to help those who could not see the obvious, which we have evidence that many did see clearly (see Ps 51:10-12; 119:33-40, etc). This lack of understanding continues today with any who do not come to know the Lord and receive His "exceeding great and precious promises" by faith. This is witnessed in both those who discard the Law, or in those who try to keep it without abiding in Christ. In either case the culprit will be harboring a known sin, whether one or many.

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      • Hugh, you said, “It is not clear if you are saying above the covenants as instituted were one-sided, that is only one party has promises/obligations to fulfill. If so can they be said to be covenants?”

        As I understand it a contract is actually a subset of the much broader term of covenant. Even a contract can be one sided in a way even though it always involves two parties. Consider pledging a sum of money to a charity. At least in the US doing that becomes a legal contract even though no one in the charity says anything. Another case of interest is the promise to marry. Traditionally it has always been considered legally binding even though the spouse says nothing in response.

        Now concerning covenants. A covenant doesn’t even have to involve another party. God covenanted with Himself that if sin should arise that He would sacrifice Himself to save His creation. That was before any intelligent beings were created. Therefore, a new year’s resolution is a sort of covenant. Another covenant is the treaty where one group becomes the vassal of another where there are terms and conditions for the vassal to meet but none for the lord or if there are some for the lord it is not something the vassal presents or bargains for but what the Lord offers voluntarily.

        As a prime example think of God’s covenant right after Noah’s flood where He stated, “And as for Me, behold, I establish My covenant with you and with your descendants after you, and with every living creature that is with you: the birds, the cattle, and every beast of the earth with you, of all that go out of the ark, every beast of the earth” (Gen 9:9-10 NKJV). We can certainly see God promising to Noah and thereby creating a covenant but how does one covenant with an animal that can’t respond? Likewise, the new covenant is something we don’t negotiate. God stated it and we can only accept it or refuse it. Either way there are consequences.

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        • Notwithstanding the general use of the term covenant the main point of the question is if we have no obligations under the new covenant, including to keep God's commandments here or in the hereafter then under the terms of the new covenant such cannot be held against us, which brings into question the need of a judgment. Having claimed the promises (new covenant)we are free to do or not do as we please (no obligation) and still claim the benefits.

          We ought to be careful not to set up ourselves to treat sin lightly, thinking it is no big deal because we love the Lord (a notion widespread in Christendom).

          How we meet the obligations is another question. We depend on the enabling power of Christ. And if and when we slip the provision and basis of the new covenant - mercy covers us (1 John 2:1).

          We can agree the New Covenant was not negotiated. Neither was the Old. God set the terms (Exodus 19:5, 6) and the people accepted (Exodus 19:8).

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      • Hugh, concerning the rest of your comment. It is my understanding that the requirements of God are the same in all of God’s major covenants – perfection in righteousness. In that sense God indeed only made one covenant. It is man’s response to that requirement that was the difference. God always gives freedom and sets before man choices. As scripture says, “And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve” (Joshua 24:15 NKJV) and so it is concerning the covenants.

        When God restated His requirements to Israel at Sinai it was up to the people to choose. They could have negotiated but instead they decided to accept all the responsibility for compliance to the requirements themselves as stated. They simply didn’t understand that they were unable to comply without the intervention of God. That was a big lesson they had to learn and God was trying to teach them in many ways including the events of the exodus (Ex 14:13). Eventually there would be other lessons teaching the same thing over and over such as the victory at Jericho (Joshua 6:5) as opposed to that of Ai (Joshua 7) and what happened with Gideon (Judges 7:2) and Jehoshaphat (2 Chron 20:17).

        So, to me the old covenant was a special event intended to teach some very important lessons. It was different not only in intent and circumstances but the agreement itself was vastly different for the everlasting covenant included God’s intervention and power, something which the old covenant did not.

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        • Are we now obligated to two covenants? "But what does the scripture say? cast out the bondwoman and her son, for the son of the bondwoman shall not not inherit with the son of the free woman."(Gal.4:30).
          "For on the one hand, a former commandment is set aside because of its weakness and uselessness (for the Law made nothing perfect); but on the other hand, a better hope is introduced, through which we draw near to God".(Heb.7:18,19).

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        • Kenny, are you saying that the Ten Commandments are no longer binding for the Christian?

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  10. In Ellen White 's notes for the Sabbath School Lessons she made this statement. "Without the law, men have no just conception of the purity and holiness of God or of their own guilt and uncleanness. They have no true conviction of sin and feel no need of repentance. Not seeing their lost condition as violators of God's law, they do not realize their need of the atoning blood of Christ. The hope of salvation is accepted without a radical change of heart or reformation of life. Thus superficial conversions abound, and multitudes are joined to the church who have never been united to Christ."

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  11. There is much we have to say about this matter, but it is hard to explain to you, because you are so slow to understand. 12 There has been enough time for you to be teachers—yet you still need someone to teach you the first lessons of God's message. Instead of eating solid food, you still have to drink milk. 13 Anyone who has to drink milk is still a child, without any experience in the matter of right and wrong. 14 Solid food, on the other hand, is for adults, who through practice are able to distinguish between good and evil.
    1-3 So come on, let’s leave the preschool fingerpainting exercises on Christ and get on with the grand work of art. Grow up in Christ. The basic foundational truths are in place: turning your back on “salvation by self-help” and turning in trust toward God; baptismal instructions; laying on of hands; resurrection of the dead; eternal judgment. God helping us, we’ll stay true to all that. But there’s so much more. Let’s get on with it!
    Hebrews 5:11-6:3

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