New Covenant Not Yet Established?
Some Christians believe that the new covenant has not yet been established and is still way far off into the future. They also believe that the old covenant is not yet obsolete. That is, it is still in effect up to this time. For proof, they cite Jeremiah 31:31-34. Is this an accurate view? Has the new covenant really been established already or not? Are we still under the old covenant? Let’s find out.
All Judah and Israel will know the Lord
One major reason they don’t believe that the new covenant has already been established is because they don’t see that all Israel and Judah already know the Lord from the least to the greatest (Jeremiah 31:34). And truly, to me that is a correct observation. No doubt about it from what we can see in reality today. Israel don’t know yet “the Lord from the least to the greatest.”
But does that negate the fact that the new covenant has already been established and has already begun? Of course not!
New Covenant Established, Enacted
Hebrews 8:6 clearly, categorically and explicitly says that the new covenant has been “established” in the King James Version. Both the New American Standard Bible and the English Standard Version translate it as “enacted.” The New International Version uses the word “founded.” And it’s all in the past tense! This is not in doubt that this covenant has been established, has been made and has begun since the time of Christ and Christians today are now under this new covenant.
This is an explicit statement in the Bible and is quite clear. Yes, the the new covenant has been established and it has begun.
Old Covenant Out, New Covenant In
The New International Version clearly says in Hebrews 8:13 that the old covenant is obsolete. That is quite clear also. However, in the Kings James Version, it seems to be saying that the old covenant is only decaying and growing old implying that it is still here and is not obsolete — as some would like to interpret it. So how are we supposed to understand this?
Well, let’s look at the King James Version (KJV) then and prove that this new covenant has indeed been established. We have already read and studied Hebrews 8:6 which says that this covenant has been established. It is not in doubt.
Let’s look at Hebrews 10:9, this time in the KJV: “Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.” Here again, this is quite clear that the the old covenant is now obsolete (Heb. 8:13) since the “second” or the new covenant has already been established. It’s saying the same thing as in Hebrews 8:6 that indeed, the new covenant has already been established, enacted and founded.
Established with the Blood of the Covenant
Just before he died, Jesus said “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you” (Luke 22:20). The new covenant was established with the blood of Jesus Christ himself, the blood of the covenant” (Hebrews 10:29). Jesus’ blood, the blood of the new covenant, was poured out for us at the crucifixion, establishing the new covenant.
When Jesus said, “It is finished,” the new covenant was established at the Cross thus making the old covenant obsolete, becoming old and worn out and vanishing away.
Ministers of the New Covenant
Paul said that they had been “made ministers of the new covenant” through the Holy Spirit (2 Cor. 3:3-6). A covenant must be established and made first before it can be implemented or administered. Paul could not have said that they were “made ministers of the new covenant” if the new covenant was not yet existing and established.
Christians Under New Covenant
Clearly, the new covenant has already been established, founded and enacted. This covenant has already been established with the blood of Christ himself. Christians are now under this covenant and has been given the Holy Spirit writing God’s laws into their hearts and minds. The final fulfillment, the full completion and the full reality is still in the future where all Israel and Judah will know the Lord from the least to the greatest.
For Further Study:
- Covenant, Law and God’s Faithfulness
- Has the New Covenant Been Made?
- Articles About the Covenants
- Covenants in the Bible
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