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God Eternal Purpose in the New Covenant - Part 10
Dr. Allen M. Barber


2 Corinthians 3:14-16 NLT

14 But the people's minds were hardened, and even to this day whenever the old covenant is being read, a veil covers their minds so they cannot understand the truth. And this veil can be removed only by believing in Christ. 15 Yes, even today when they read Moses' writings, their hearts are covered with that veil, and they do not understand. 16 But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, then the veil is taken away.

Watchman Nee said, (the man of God G. Richard Fisher condemns; the truth is Mr. Fisher could not untie Watchman's Nee's shoe laces when it comes to a life lived for the Lord; for those of you who do not know, Watchman Nee died in one of Mao Tse-tung’s gulag's after twenty years of imprisonment, often at hard labor and solitary confinement; on April 22, 1972, he wrote his sister-in-law what was his last letter and told her that though he was dying from a chronic heart condition, he maintained his joy in the Lord):

"How full of life and full of riches is the New Covenant. To those who do not know the Lord, it is but a letter. But You O Lord know what it is and You have unveiled it this day. You have opened the heavenly spiritual treasure-house and distributed its treasures to Your beloved ones. Lord, this is indeed most marvelous and most gracious! We want to thank and praise You once more!"

Obviously, Watchman Nee was given much insight into the revelation of the New Covenant and lived it every day of his life. Sadly and unfortunately, while many read the letter of the New Covenant (for that matter the whole Bible) they do not know the spirit of it or have any revelation of its riches. I have said many times that the Bible is a closed book until the Holy Spirit provides the revelation. When I studied business and science (I have a double major in my undergraduate degree) in college, it was all intellectual knowledge, which is the environment in academia. It is all stuff crammed into the head and often comes out in unintelligent verbiage. The same was true in seminary - the focus was upon gaining more head knowledge. The first day in seminary when the President gave his welcome address to the new students, he commented the purpose of the seminary was to train our minds and that we would have to get our spiritual knowledge somewhere else. I thought that was a strange comment coming from a seminary president whose institution was to train ministers in the Word of God. During my two years there (Baptist seminary), I found his words to be true. It was all about becoming theologians and Ph.d's, not mighty men of the Spirit.

Today, the Church of the redeemed and firstborn is placed under the New Covenant as the spiritual body of Christ on earth. One day in the future, a remnant of Israel will come into the covenant. However, it is not the same as the Jews who today are being saved and added to the Church. The promises of God to Abraham involved both a physical and spiritual aspect. It is the will of God that both Jews and Gentiles believe the gospel today and come into the better covenant - the New Covenant in the blood of Jesus. The blessed hope the Church is looking for is not some secret rapture to escape all the bad stuff, but to receive our glorified bodies when Christ returns and serve with Him in His kingdom reign. The Jews today who receive Christ (Paul did not teach in Romans 11 that the Jews as a race of people were blinded to the gospel for if that were true no Jew could be saved; he used the word "partial" meaning that some were judiciously hardened by God because of their gross unbelief and I believe those were and are the religious leaders) are part of the Israel of God (the Hebrew meaning of "Israel" is prince of God or prince with God; the word has more a spiritual than a physical meaning); the Israelites were Hebrews and not until God renamed Jacob, "Israel" do we find them referred to as Israelites; therefore, Israel means those who are separated unto God; this is why Paul used the phrase, the Israel of God in Galatians 6:16. God called the Hebrews to be a separate nation and people unto Him and they failed miserably. It is the same with the Church, we are a separate people unto God, a chosen nation (spiritual) and a royal priesthood. God is not today choosing a secular nation as His chosen people, and that includes the Zionist state in the Middle East. He is choosing a spiritual people, His Church and the One New Man (See Eph. 2:15).

What is not understood among most evangelicals and theologians (I do not boast in this knowledge for it was shown to me by revelation of the Spirit) is that the remnant of Israel who are saved when Christ physically returns to earth (See Zechariah 14: 4) are not part of the Israel of God, the spiritual body and bride of Christ. Actually, the Greek word in Romans 11:26 for saved is sozo (pronounced suds zo), which has the connotation of deliverance, protection and to save. Therefore, when Christ returns, He will physically deliver the Jews (the sealed of Revelation 7 whom He has protected from Antichrist) as well as save them spiritually. However, this remnant will enter the millennium in their physical bodies and populate the earth along with the favored Gentiles. They will not receive their glorified bodies at that time, but will have to wait until the millennium is over just as not all in the Church will rule and reign with Christ in His kingdom. Only the overcomers in the Church will be resurrected, raptured and receive their glorified bodies and rule with Christ. Carnal believers will have to wait until the millennium is over to receive their glorified bodies.

Both Old and New Covenants teach a general resurrection, but only the New Covenant teaches the First and better resurrection. Revelation 20 does not teach only lost people will stand the general resurrection and judgment at the Great  White Throne, otherwise there would be no need to open the book of life. The dead (lost) are judged by the books of the law while the living believers coming out of the millennium (many are going to be saved during the millennium for there will be many children born during that period) as well as dead believers who were not resurrected at the First Resurrection will be found in the book of Life. They will enter the eternal state in their glorified bodies while the lost will enter into the Lake of Fire. The 8th millennium is the beginning of the eternal state when the New Jerusalem becomes the capital of the universe. There will no longer be any unsaved people on planet earth, for there will be new heavens and a new earth and all will be the people of God from all ages or epochs of time.

The Lord is today building the Church with the principles of the New Covenant as well as blessing us with the blessing of the New Covenant (See Eph.1:3). Jesus shed His blood not only that we could be saved but also to establish the New Covenant. Christ first had to solve the problem of our sin before He could bless us with the spiritual blessings of the New Covenant (notice the blessings are primarily spiritual; this is why the prosperity movement emphasizing material blessings finds its roots in the Old Covenant not the New; it is also why it is a heretical doctrine, which the Lord is going to severely condemn at the Bema Judgment; all these prosperity preachers who are leading the saints  astray are not going to hear the Lord say, "Well done good and faithful servant," no they are going to hear words of rebuke for teaching heresy to the saints).

The New Covenant in the blood of Jesus not only removes the penalty of sin (judgment and punishment in the Lake of Fire), but also "restores all that was lost in the Garden of Eden as well as gives us many new things."  What was lost in the Garden of Eden - our spiritual heritage, which is our relationship and fellowship with God in the Spirit; although Adam and Eve were human, their fellowship with God was in the Spirit for only Spirit can fellowship with spirit. God created them in His image, which meant they had the ability to know Him and to fellowship with Him in their sinless state. It is sin that separates and breaks fellowship with God. That is why Jesus had to come to earth and die in order to restore to man what he lost in the Garden of Eden. This is the glory of the New Covenant - man is restored to full fellowship with God via the eternal Spirit.

The New Covenant is both one of atonement and restoration. The Old Covenant did not permanently deal with sin nor did it restore our lost spiritual heritage, only the New Covenant is able to do both.

May God give you understanding of this wonderful New Covenant and may you walk in it each day of your life as we wait for the appearing of the Lord.