The New Everlasting Covenant
The prophet Jeremiah had accurately revealed that Israel would go into a 70 year captivity because of her sins and rebellion against God. Then after they had served their sentence, so to speak, God would restore them to their land once again. God speaks through the prophet concerning this time. –
Behold, I will gather them out of all the countries, where I have driven them in My anger, and in My fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again to this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely: (Jeremiah 32:37).
The people were allowed to return to their land just as God had promised and right on time.
And they shall be My people, and I will be their God (Jeremiah 32:38).
They had previously broken the covenant God made with them by Moses (Jeremiah 31:32). This covenant was conditional based on their obedience. If they obeyed the law, they could remain in the land. If they didn’t, then God would permit their enemies to remove them from it as their history aptly confirms. Their disobedience instigated their removal from the land and caused them to be captives in Babylon.
The “everlasting covenant” that God made with Abraham dealt with the personal relationship God desires to have with His people to “be their God” (Genesis 17:7). Here we see in Jeremiah’s prophecy, that relationship would be restored when they returned to the land; “and they shall be My People.” We are being shown here that even the “everlasting covenant” that God made with Abraham had to be restored for God to see them once again as His people. In order for that relationship to be restored, God promised them a new everlasting covenant.
And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them to do them good; But I will put My fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from Me (Jeremiah 32:40).
The prophet Ezekiel also mentions this New Covenant. –
Nevertheless I will remember My covenant with you in the days of your youth, and…
Because God remembered the covenant He made with them which they broke,…
…. I will establish to you an everlasting covenant (Ezekiel 16:60).
This covenant is not by anything they make themselves “but not by your covenant” (verse 61).
And I will establish My covenant with you; and you shall know that I am the LORD (Ezekiel 16:62).
God is talking about establishing an entirely New Covenant that would replace the previous covenants He made with them and restore their relationship with Him. This is all concerning the time frame of their restoration to their land after the captivity, and the construction of the second temple. It is during this time that this New Covenant with them would be made. "And they shall be My people, and I will be their God."
Through their idolatry, they had severed the relational everlasting covenant that God had instigated through Abraham to be their God. It would only be through this new everlasting covenant that the relationship could be restored and God would once again recognize them as His people.
And I will give them one heart, and one way, (John 14:6) that they may fear Me forever, for the good of them, and of their children after them:
And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from Me (Jeremiah 32:39-40).
Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a New Covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:
Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers I the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which covenant they broke, although I was a husband to them, saith the LORD: (Jeremiah 31:31,32).
This covenant would not be “according to the covenant” that God made through Moses, which was based on their ability to keep the law. It would be a relational covenant like the one He made with Abraham.
But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put My law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be My people (Jeremiah 31:33).
The sign of the first covenant that God made with Abraham formally establishing their relationship was physical circumcision. The sign of this New Covenant would be the circumcision of the heart. This New Covenant would enable the law, God’s word, to come into the hearts of the people. It would actually enable them to be indwelt by God’s Holy Spirit, changing them into the people God wants them to be.
As we have been shown, this New Covenant that would restore the relationship between God and His people would be given to them when they returned to their land after the Babylonian captivity and the second temple was built. This New Covenant would be made through the Messiah, the Branch, the root and offspring of David, the precious cornerstone of a New Beginning.
The prophet Malachi prophesied of this event very accurately. –
Behold, I will send My messenger, and he shall prepare the way before Me: and the Lord whom you seek, shall suddenly come to His temple, even the messenger of the covenant whom you delight in: behold, He shall come, saith the LORD (YHWH) of hosts (Malachi 3:1).
When the prophecy of Malachi was given, the Jews had been allowed to return to Palestine and the temple had been rebuilt. The prophecy states that the Lord will come to His temple and He is the messenger of the covenant. “He shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.” That’s God talking about the Messiah, the Lord, coming to the temple. It would have been the understanding of the people at that time that Messiah was coming to that new temple, which He did before it was destroyed, according to Daniel 9:25,26.
The first part of the verse is referring to John the Baptist the messenger/prophet who would prepare the way before the Lord, who is the messenger of the covenant. That covenant would be the prophesied New Everlasting Covenant (Jeremiah 32:40, Isaiah 55:3).
The wording used here in the Hebrew for Lord can also be used to designate God, but in the scriptures God is not referred to as a messenger, that term is reserved for prophets. So here we have a prophet designated by the word messenger, who can also be referred to as God, according to the usage of the word in Hebrew, being sent by God (YHWH). No one fulfills the description better than Jesus, the Messiah.
Jesus, the Lord and messenger of the New Covenant, eliminated all doubt that He is that messenger. At the last Passover, He instructed His disciples to symbolically eat the bread that represented His broken body, and drink the wine that represented His shed blood. He said, “This cup is the New Covenant in My blood, which is shed for you” (Luke 22:20).
This New Everlasting Covenant would restore the relationship God had with the Jews, and also make all who receive it His people, too, making Gentiles and Jews one through faith in the Messiah Jesus.
According to the Prophet Daniel’s historical record, there is no other beneficial Anointed One, or Messiah appearing in scripture after the destruction of Jerusalem in 70AD up to the last judgment in Daniel 12. Neither is there any New Covenant mentioned in that time frame either. Jesus has to be the long awaited, prophesied Messiah, and the instigator of the New Everlasting Covenant of eternal life; the covenant that was orchestrated by God that will enable the soul to live. –
Incline your ear, and come to Me: hear and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you even the sure mercies of David (Isaiah 55:3).
David is used many times in the scriptures as a similitude of the Messiah (Jeremiah 30:9, Ezekiel 34:24, 37:24,25).
The Covenant that enables the soul to live, and enables all people to have a relationship with God, was given to us as a gift though the Messiah Jesus, -
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life (John 3:16).
Copyright 2019 by H. D. Shively
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