Search
Book Reviews
The Day of the Lord
Prophecy
Purpose Of This Website
Copyright Law
Contributions
What Does It Mean To Be Saved

God’s Eternal Purpose In The New Covenant – Part 4
Dr. Allen M. Barber


Galatians 4:24-26 NIV

24 These things may be taken figuratively, for the women represent two covenants. One covenant is from Mount Sinai and bears children who are to be slaves: This is Hagar. 25 Now Hagar stands for Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present city of Jerusalem, because she is in slavery with her children. 26 But the Jerusalem that is above is free, and she is our mother.

In figurative language, Paul was telling the Jewish Judaizers trying to hang-on to the Old Covenant that it represents Hagar, Abraham's mistress from whom he sired Ishmael, and Mount Sinai (the giving of the Law). It is also the old city of Jerusalem, the center of Judaism and temple worship, which represents slavery or bondage to an old obsolete system. But the Jerusalem from above, the New Jerusalem, is the free woman our mother. Christians are not to have anything to do with modern day Judaism, the orthodox Jewish religion, and Zionism, the political pursuit of the old Davidic and Solomonic kingdoms. The kingdom we look for is the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ whom He will establish when He returns.

The book or Hebrews makes it clear that the New Covenant in Christ Jesus is far superior to the Abrahamic and Mosaic Covenants. The book of Galatians (quoted above), Chapter 3 reveals that both the Abrahamic Covenant and the New Covenant are parallel covenants, they run along side one another - the one fulfilled in the other - the Old fulfilled in the New. In between these two covenants runs the Mosaic Covenant of the Law, which God gave to Israel at Mount Sinai (Gal. 3:15-17). It was added because of transgressions [sin] (Gal. 3:19; Rom. 5:20). The difference among the three covenants is that the Abrahamic and the New Covenant were established by faith upon the promises of God while the Mosaic Covenant was enacted strictly to enforce the law of sin. Paul said in Romans 7 that until the Law came there was no awareness of sin (conscience) that carried the penalty of death - both physical and spiritual. In Contrast, the Abrahamic and the New Covenant belong to the same system (See Gal. 3:7,9 16-17; Heb. 8:6) for the one gives rise to the other and is the foundation of the new and better covenant. While the Abrahamic Covenant is now the fulfilled in Christ, the Old Covenant mentioned in Hebrews 8:7 is the Mosaic Covenant or the Law.

The Hebrew word for the entire Old Testament is Tenauch and the first five books of the law is the Torah (the liberal Rabbis have replaced the Torah with the Talmud - a corruption of the Torah). How many Christians know that the early Church used the Septuagint version of the Old Testament, which is the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament, and not the Masoretic text of the Rabbinate? The reason is they knew the agnostic Rabbis had corrupted and changed many of the Old Testament Scriptures proving Jesus was the Messiah, yet today all of the modern translations base their versions on the Masoretic Old Testament. The reason the Rabbis hate the New Testament (they study it) is that it reveals Jesus as the Messiah as well as proof the Sanhedrin put Jesus to death. It is anti-Semitic to teach the New Covenant truth that the Kabbalistic Jews crucified the Lord Jesus. However, to fulfill the Scriptures, the Jewish Priesthood including the high priest had to put Jesus to death for only the priests could kill the Passover Lamb. Nevertheless, they are held accountable for their sin of condemning the Son of God and putting Him to death (the religious leaders not the people of Israel).

The Old Covenant (the Mosaic Covenant) does not refer to the 39 books of the Old Testament (Genesis to Malachi), but covers the period from the giving of the Law at Mount Sinai (Exodus 19 to the First Advent of Jesus). This is why Jesus said the Law and the prophets ended with John the Baptist - he was the last of the Old Covenant prophets operating under the Law. Jesus operated under the Law, but He was not part of it - He fulfilled it.

The thing about the Law, which many evangelical do not understand in regard to Israel is that it demands punishment for disobedience. When the children of Israel kept the Law, God blessed them (they kept it in outward form), but when they broke the Law, God punished them (Read the book of Judges). This is the way of the Old Covenant (Mosaic), yet the earlier covenant, the Abrahamic Covenant, continues today in the New Covenant of Jesus Christ. Failing to understand the New Covenant is the continuation of the Abrahamic Covenant, evangelical Christians do not comprehend such passages as Romans 9-11, which does not establish a new Israeli nation (the so-called chosen people), but speaks of both unbelieving Jews and Gentiles coming into the Olive Tree - the Lord Jesus and the New Covenant. The Church of the redeemed in Christ Jesus is the New Covenant and the Israel of God (the true Israel). The Abrahamic Covenant is incomplete without the New Covenant. Paul tried to tell the Judaizers this in his letter to the Galatians as well as his letter to the Hebrews (it is my opinion that Paul wrote Hebrews).

I once attended a so-called Jewish Messianic fellowship here in Dallas because I knew the congregational leader (He had presented Christ in the Passover to one of the Gentile Churches I pastored near Houston). After attending a couple of services (there was a significant Gentile presence), I realized they were all about resurrecting the Law or trying to mix law and grace, the very thing Paul condemned in his Galatian letter. I learned the Jewish believers tried to kick out the Gentile believers as they felt the Gentiles (Christians) would ruin the worship of the Law. In the back of the pulpit area was a large cabinet containing the Torah Scrolls. At the end of the Service, they would remove the Scrolls and parade them up and down the aisles kissing and bowing down to them.  I wrote the congregational leader  about this heresy and rebuked him for such un-Christian practices. He wrote me back and politely told me that if I did not like the way they worshipped to stick it in my ear - his tone did not show Christian love, but hatred. Later, some people from his congregation (they do not call themselves a Church) attended my home Bible studies and did not remain long after they learned my position against Messianic Torah fellowships.

There is no Jew or Gentile in the Church, but the One New spiritual man in Christ Jesus. In Christ, we lose our natural identities because the Church is a spiritual organism not an ethnic organization. This is the problem with Jews becoming Christians, they are afraid they will lose their Jewishness. Well, they are supposed to, for the Church of Jesus Christ recognizes no ethnic groups. The so-called Christian (not all, but many do) Jews want to hang onto the Law, but they are to let go of it and realize as children of Abraham they are complete in the New Covenant of Jesus Christ.

God's eternal purpose in the Abrahamic Covenant is fulfilled in the one who founded the New Covenant in His own blood - the Lord Jesus Christ. It is either Christ plus nothing or a Jew's religion is in vain. The same holds true of Gentiles who worship many gods - they must come out of all false religion and be yoked to the one true God - the Lord Jesus.

Well, I hope these brief articles are helping you understand God's purpose in the Covenants.

God bless you.