Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Old Covenant/New Covenant

      I don't claim any authority.  I certainly don't think I have everything right.  I am learning. These things are things that the Lord has put into my heart, and has asked my to share them.  I  am not perfect in writing, but I know that the Lord can make all things understood and known.  May the Lord bless us all to come unto Him.  

    There are many within the Remnant/Restoration movement who think that a covenant will be given them, that will bring them to be members of the Remnant of Jacob, or House of Israel.  While it may do that, it is a roundabout way to do things. There are two ways to become a member of the House of Israel.  1. By blood.  2. By adoption. There is only one way given by which the House of Israel and the Gentiles, or those who have been adopted into the House of Israel may receive Salvation and Exaltation. They all must fulfill the same requirements.  There is nothing special about either, nor is there anything lacking in either, it is a matter of self-selection. Galatians 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. Having read the covenant, I recognize that all that is happening, happened many years ago to the Isrealites when they came out of Egypt.

     When Moses led the Israelites, out of Egypt, the Lord was desirous to have them come up the mountain and speak with him directly, but they would not.  The Lord sought to gather them in, but they would not, for they could not let go of the idol worship that was had and taught among them during their time in Egypt.  It was needs be then that the Israelites would be cleansed of their idolatry.  Idolatry, in some ways,is laziness.  Instead of doing the work, laboring and struggling in a relationship with the Lord, it is easier to build symbols, pictures, statues, altars, temples, etc., of things that remind us of Him.  Things that give us a sense of a relationship or dedication to Him.  God was merciful unto the Israelites.  Instead of casting them off, he taught them, guided them, and gave them experience.  They sought idols and could not let go of them, so the Lord had them build a temple, an altar, a Holy of Holies. A symbol of our body and our heart.  He gave them laws to live by, an eye for an eye, the ten commandments, because they could not receive the fullness of the law.  He gave them sacrifices of lamb, ordinances to cleanse sin, and High Priests who could perform these for them, to symbolize the ultimate sacrifice and the High Priest who would perform this for our sins.   Numbers 15:37-41  37 ¶ And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
38 Speak unto the children of Israel, and bid them that they make them fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a rib band of blue: 39 And it shall be unto you for a fringe, that ye may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the Lord, and do them; and that ye seek not after your own heart and your own eyes, after which ye use to go a whoring: 40 That ye may remember, and do all my commandments, and be holy unto your God. 41 I am the Lord your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: I am the Lord your God.   This is the Law of Moses, because Moses became the mediator of this new covenant.  Moses became the mouthpiece for God to the Israelites who would not seek for themselves.  Hebrews 9 Then verily the first covenant had also ordinances of divine service, and a worldly sanctuary.
For there was a tabernacle made; the first, wherein was the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread; which is called the sanctuary.
And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all;
Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant;
And over it the cherubims of glory shadowing the mercyseat; of which we cannot now speak particularly.
Now when these things were thus ordained, the priestswent always into the first tabernacle, accomplishing the service of God.
But into the second went the high priest alone once every year, not without blood, which he offered for himself, and for the errors of the people: The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing:
Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience;
10 Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation.
11 But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building;
12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.
13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:
14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.
16 For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.
17 For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth.
18 Whereupon neither the first testament was dedicated without blood.
19 For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people,
20 Saying, This is the blood of the testament which God hath enjoined unto you.
21 Moreover he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle, and all the vessels of the ministry.
22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.
23 It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.
24 For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:
25 Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others;
26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.
27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
28 So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
     Christ fulfilled all the law and the prophets.  He fulfilled the law of Moses.  How grateful we should be for this, for the law was dead, and it could not bring life into us, for we never would be able to receive salvation by living the law, for we never could live it perfectly.  Christ, in the Sermon on the Mount, offered a more perfect living of the Ten Commandments.  I would encourage those who are interested to go and read the laws that were given in Exodus 20-23, to the children of Israel, and then go and read the teachings of the Temple on the Mount.  The ten commandments were not done away, but only made more perfect, or full by the teachings and examples of Jesus Christ.  Then in Exodus 24, see the sacrifice that was made in order for the people to accept the law of the Ten Commandments, or the Law of Moses, as he was the mediator of the Old Covenant.  In Hebrews 8, Paul talks about the need for a New Covenant, why it was needed and how the people would receive it. Hebrews 8:6-13 But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.
For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.
For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when 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 in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.
10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:
11 And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.
12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.
13 In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away.
    Many prophets looked forward to the coming of Christ, with the understanding that He would do away with the law, and that the law was a teacher, to lead them to something more. To desire for something more. Hebrews 7:19  19 For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.  2 Nephi 25:23-30  23 For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.
24 And, notwithstanding we believe in Christ, we keep the law of Moses, and look forward with steadfastness unto Christ, until the law shall be fulfilled.
25 For, for this end was the law given; wherefore the law hath become dead unto us, and we are made alive in Christ because of our faith; yet we keep the law because of the commandments.
26 And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.
27 Wherefore, we speak concerning the law that our children may know the deadness of the law; and they, by knowing the deadness of the law, may look forward unto that life which is in Christ, and know for what end the law was given. And after the law is fulfilled in Christ, that they need not harden their hearts against him when the law ought to be done away.
28 And now behold, my people, ye are a stiffnecked people; wherefore, I have spoken plainly unto you, that ye cannot misunderstand. And the words which I have spoken shall stand as a testimony against you; for they are sufficient to teach any man the right way; for the right way is to believe in Christ and deny him not; for by denying him ye also deny the prophets and the law.
29 And now behold, I say unto you that the right way is to believe in Christ, and deny him not; and Christ is the Holy One of Israel; wherefore ye must bow down before him, and worship him with all your might, mind, and strength, and your whole soul; and if ye do this ye shall in nowise be cast out.
30 And, inasmuch as it shall be expedient, ye must keep the performances and ordinances of God until the law shall be fulfilled which was given unto Moses.   
 "For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:"  
     It is truly by Christ that we can be saved.  He is the mediator of the New Covenant.  Baptism, begins you on the path.  The doctrine of Christ is simple.  The Sermon on the Mount and the Two Great Commandments, which when built upon are the foundation of coming unto the presence of our Savior.  On these hang all the law and the prophets.  Why?  It is heart, it is faith! We are no longer judged by our works, for works are dead, but we are judged by our faith, our motivation.  This is why the law could only bring death.  Had the Savior not died for our sins, and we were still under bondage to the law of Moses, then we would have to be perfect in living them, in order to receive salvation and therefore there would be no mercy.  Because of the atonement of Jesus Christ and His love and sacrifice, His great example, we have mercy bestowed upon us.  We are no longer allowed to judge based on actions, and effect judgement, but we are able to be forgiven, and show mercy, as we would desire for ourselves.  Moroni 7, 4 Nephi, these talk about how a society can live in Christ.  Charity, the pure love of Christ, the fruit of the tree of life, all these explain how we are to receive the Savior and how we will recognize Him when He comes.  
      I admonish you, who are still deciding whether to make this covenant or not, think about what you are doing. Read Galatians 4 and 5.  There truly are 2 covenants given to the House of Israel.  The New Covenant is the only covenant whereby men may be saved, whereby, the Gentiles may become the Sons of God or adopted into the House of Israel/Remnant of Jacob.  This covenant, well may get you to a place of humility, charity, love, but it will be after much effort to live the law, to which you are putting yourselves in bondage to.  Be free!  It is the Gentile who wants order, organization, rules and law.  They want the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil more than they want the Tree of Life.  Anytime we seek to choose right, or wrong, we choose to partake of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Moroni 7. In following Christ, there can be no judgement of right and wrong, for when we are led by Him, He in His Eternal wisdom, knows what is necessary for the growth of each individual.  We have story after story of people in the scriptures who did things that were not acceptable.  
      Many have said that King Benjamin put his people under a covenant.  This is false! While he hoped for it, The people desired to make a covenant with the Lord. This was done individually, for we do not have anything showing how the covenant was made.  As we learn in Hebrews, it is by the shedding of blood that these covenants were made.  They had their hearts changed and they could sing the song of redeeming love. Can you?  The Lord does make and keep personal, individual covenants, such as with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  The Old and New Covenants were given to fulfill the promises which the Lord made with the Fathers.  The Book of Mormon and the teachings given therein, are also in fulfillment of the Covenant which the Lord made with the Fathers, for it is through the Book of Mormon that the House of Israel/Remnant of Jacob, may know the promises that were made to their Fathers, Lehi, Nephi, Enos, Mormon, Moroni, etc. We can individually receive the covenants given to the Fathers for ourselves, but to become His people, all we must do is accept Him, repent, become baptized, receive the Holy Ghost, and follow the Holy Ghost into the presence of Christ.  Anything more or less than this is not of God. Like the Israelites, who only had to keep their eyes on the serpent and be healed, so too, we must only keep our eyes and hearts focused on the Savior and we will be healed. I have read the covenant, what it says about loving each other is true, but people should be embarrassed that they have to be put under covenant to even try to keep those things.  The Lord wants your heart, give it to Him.  Stop living off of someone else's labor.  

2 Nephi 26: 33  33 For none of these iniquities come of the Lord; for he doeth that which is good among the children of men; and he doeth nothing save it be plain unto the children of men; and he inviteth them all to come unto him and partake of his goodness; and he denieth none that come unto him, black and white, bond and free, male and female; and he remembereth the heathen; and all are alike unto God, both Jew and Gentile.