Law of Moses
Covenant between God & man.
Signs: Mt. Sinai & 10 Commandments
A shadow of the Promise to come.
Covenant of Grace
Covenant between God & Himself.
Resurrection & Day of Pentecost.
The fulfillment of the Promise.
There are 3 key points that I want to demonstrate.
The Law brings death. The Spirit brings life. (2 Corinthians 3:6).
Exodus chapter 19:8
“All the people answered together and said, ‘All that the Lord has spoken we will do!’ […]”
The Hebrew word translated as “we will do” is “na·‘ă·śeh“. The way the word is used in context connotes a boast and not just a devoted agreement. We must also take into consideration that in Hebrew there is no future tense. More directly the verse could be translated as “All that the Lord has spoken we do!”. This demonstrates the willingness of the flesh to boast in our own goodness and holiness. It is also important to note that prior to agreeing to the Law no one died and no one came under the curse. After they agreed to the Law they came under the curse of the Law and 3,000 people died. (Exodus chapter 32).
We must juxtapose this with Acts chapter 2 in which 3000 people were saved after the Holy Spirit descended on the Day of Pentecost. “[…]who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” 2 Corinthians 3:6.
2. Sign of the Mosaic Covenant: Mt. Sinai and the 10 Commandments.
Under the Law you must earn your position through your own obedience. Under Grace you receive your standing because of Christ’s obedience; Christ is your standing.
Exodus chapter 19:5-6
“Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all peoples, for all the earth is Mine; and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.”
1 Peter 2:9
“But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God’s OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;”
Under the covenant of Grace your state does not determine your standing. What do I mean by this? Whether you are a new believer or you have been walking with Christ for 50 years, we are all Kings and Priests before God. Our standing in Christ is not determined by our state. It is determined by the state and standing of Christ as our High Priest. It is not determined by our good works, but by the works of Christ. It is not determined by our obedience but by Christ’s obedience and it is Christ who now represents us. The Law demonstrates that no flesh can be justified in the sight of God and demonstrates the need for a savior.
3. How it Relates to us Today:
God desires to be a husband – a partner in life with us – not a slave master.
“Behold, days are coming,” declares the LORD, ‘when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,’ declares the LORD. ‘But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,’ declares the LORD, ‘I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.'”
God wants to be a husband to us. This is the true heart of God. We can see this demonstrated in Hosea 1:2 where God told Hosea to marry a prostitute and every time she ran away God told him to run after her.
“It will come about at that time,” declares the LORD, “that you will address me as ‘My husband,’ and you will no longer call me ‘My master’.
The passage reads in Hebrew as “that you will address me as ‘ish’, and you will no longer call me ‘ba’al’.”
There are two words for husband used in Israel by modern day Hebrew speakers. Theses are the same words that were used in Old Testament times – “ba’al” and “ish”. “Ba’al” mean owner or slave master. It is used as “Ba’ali” – literally “my husband”. “Ish” means man or husband and is used in a phrase as “ishi”, “my husband”. “Ish” is the equivalent masculine form of “ishti” or wife/woman in Hebrew; there is no equivalent female form of “ba’al”. Etymologically “ba’al” is hierarchical and “ish” is egalitarian.
God desires true relationship with His people. Not a slave master dictatorship. God desires a marriage covenant with us and a partnership with us.
Covenant is extremely important to God. Covenant is what God has built his relationship upon us with. It is what He has built His everlasting promises to us upon. It is where God has laid out His heart for us and offered a sacrifice for those willing to come to Him.