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  • Old & New Covenants

    From another thread:

    His death signaled the end of the old covenant;
    his resurrection signaled the beginning of the new.


    Many say this...so

    What is the old covenant?

    What is the new covenant?

  • #2
    Covenant theology is sometimes equated with Reformed theology, and basically overviews a strong continuity between the Old Testament (Covenant) and the New Testament (Covenant) in how God has always worked with his chosen people through the covenants He has made with them in covenant toward the revelation of their redemption. It is a systematic approach to understanding how the whole of Scripture fits together.

    Here are some helpful links, though I've not included the "covenant theology" wiki link due to too many errors in its presentation. It is important to understand that even within the broader umbrella of Covenant theology, there are significant differences in various aspects of belief and presentation:

    http://www.theopedia.com/Covenant_Theology (a good basic overview)
    http://members.aol.com/rbiblech/MiscDoctrine/DispCov.htm (a general comparison chart with dispensationalism, to which covenant theology is often contrasted)
    http://www.oggclan.us/church/theochrt.htm (another helpful snapshot chart, generally mapping denominational placement, though not without error)

    Comment


    • #3
      I started this thread so I get to set the rules on this one.

      Rule #1- No links to what others say the covenants are. If you like a link, read it and then give us the short version of what YOU believe God has taught you.

      I want to know what some of the folks that through the new and old covenants around believe is differant and the scriptures they are trusting.

      Comment


      • #4
        The New Covenant did not replace the Old Covenant. The New Covenant fulfilled the Old Covenant. The only real differences between the covenant is the application of grace. In the Old Covenant, grace was given based on following the law and animal sacrifice. The New Covenant grace is given by faith and faith alone in our Savior. The promises of the Old Covenant are still valid in the New Covenant. The New Covenant is a better covenant due to the fact that grace is not dependant on our actions.
        Last edited by Reynolds357; Jun 10th 2008, 08:32 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          The old covenant was God's promise to one group of people -the descendants of Abraham. It is tied up in Genesis 12:3:

          "I will make you into a great nation
          and I will bless you;
          I will make your name great,
          and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you,
          and whoever curses you I will curse;
          and all peoples on earth
          will be blessed through you."
          I don't think it's any controversy to state that all mankind are "God's people". So why did God "choose" one people? I believe it's because God works in our world through people - he created a unified, unique nation in which His plan could grow and develop. That is what the law of Moses carried to a further level - they grown into a large nation, and the laws prescribed by Moses were to bind them together. The Sabbath, circumcision, the rejection of all other gods - these made the Israelites unique. It set them aside from all other nations around them and bound them together more tightly. Into this community, God placed into this nation scribes to record His words; prophets to challenge His people and to reveal the future; judges and kings to lead.

          And what was the ultimate purpose of choosing one people? Israel was like a field that God was plowing, weeding, hoeing, removing rocks, fertilizing and such, to produce the perfect fruit. That fruit was Jesus Christ. When Christ died, he was "replanted" outside the field, essentially becoming a new covenant to the rest of the world.

          And there lies the chief difference -the old covenant was with the descendants of Abraham - the new covenant, with all mankind. The covenant is based on grace rather than law. Christ's sacrifice has made that possible. While the NT does list rules and such - and reiterates all but one of the 10 commandments - obeying the rules is no longer what saves us. It is instead our belief.

          Comment


          • #6
            The Old Covenant was like a shadow. A shadow can help us imagine its source, but has severe limitations. A shadow contains accurate information, but has no independant power to act towards a desired end. A shadow fades when light is shined upon it. A shadow can be quite confusing until the source is revealed. The New Covenant shows the source of the shadow. It is unlimited, powerful & shines brightly.
            The Matthew Never Knew
            The Knew Kingdom

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Reynolds357 View Post
              The New Covenant did not replace the Old Covenant. The New Covenant fulfilled the Old Covenant. The only real differences between the covenant is the application of grace. In the Old Covenant, grace was given based on following the law and animal sacrifice. The New Covenant grace is given by faith and faith alone in our Savior. The promises of the Old Covenant are still valid in the New Covenant. The New Covenant is a better covenant due to grace that is not dependant on our actions.
              I have to disagree. Passages like the following indicate that the old covenant was taken away and replaced by a better covenant.

              13In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away. - Heb 8:13

              This verse doesn't say the new covenant fulfilled the old. It says it made the first covenant old (obsolete). Any traces of it were about to vanish away for good.

              9Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. 10By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. - Hebrews 10:9-10

              Again, the new (second) covenant did not fulfill the old (first) covenant. Christ TOOK AWAY the first, old covenant so that He could establish the second, new covenant.

              The old covenant "of ordinances that was against us" was nailed to the cross (Colossians 2:14). We are no longer under the law but under grace.

              That the old covenant was replaced by the new covenant is also illustrated in the following passage:

              22For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman.
              23But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise.
              24Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar.
              25For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children.
              26But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.
              27For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband.
              28Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise.
              29But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now.
              30Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.
              31So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free. - Galatians 4:22-31

              In this passage, the bondwoman represents the old covenant and the freewoman represents the new covenant. The bondwoman is cast out. We are not children of the bondwoman (old covenant) but of the free (new covenant).

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Buck shot View Post
                I started this thread so I get to set the rules on this one.

                Rule #1- No links to what others say the covenants are. If you like a link, read it and then give us the short version of what YOU believe God has taught you.

                I want to know what some of the folks that through the new and old covenants around believe is differant and the scriptures they are trusting.
                Sorry, buck. Sure thing. Since you didn't link to the thread you quoted it's difficult for me to follow the context of what you're asking, looking for, or would have me comment on. Looks like I've jumped into the middle of a conversation you're interested in clarifying regarding those participants, so I'll just politely bow out.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by grit View Post
                  Sorry, buck. Sure thing. Since you didn't link to the thread you quoted it's difficult for me to follow the context of what you're asking, looking for, or would have me comment on. Looks like I've jumped into the middle of a conversation you're interested in clarifying regarding those participants, so I'll just politely bow out.
                  No problem, I should have linked it.

                  I am interested in your opinion also!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The Old Covenant was only between God and the Jewish people, and it was basically that he would give them the Promised land. The New Covenant came in to play when Jesus shed his blood on the Cross that forever took away our sins.
                    Jesus Christ is The Way, The Truth, and The Life.

                    Soli Deo Gloria!


                    My Video's:
                    http://www.youtube.com/thewoodsofjordan

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by John146 View Post
                      I have to disagree. Passages like the following indicate that the old covenant was taken away and replaced by a better covenant.

                      13In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away. - Heb 8:13

                      This verse doesn't say the new covenant fulfilled the old. It says it made the first covenant old (obsolete). Any traces of it were about to vanish away for good.

                      9Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. 10By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. - Hebrews 10:9-10

                      Again, the new (second) covenant did not fulfill the old (first) covenant. Christ TOOK AWAY the first, old covenant so that He could establish the second, new covenant.

                      The old covenant "of ordinances that was against us" was nailed to the cross (Colossians 2:14). We are no longer under the law but under grace.

                      That the old covenant was replaced by the new covenant is also illustrated in the following passage:

                      22For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman.
                      23But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise.
                      24Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar.
                      25For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children.
                      26But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.
                      27For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband.
                      28Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise.
                      29But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now.
                      30Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.
                      31So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free. - Galatians 4:22-31

                      In this passage, the bondwoman represents the old covenant and the freewoman represents the new covenant. The bondwoman is cast out. We are not children of the bondwoman (old covenant) but of the free (new covenant).
                      Matthew 5:17
                      The old covenant was fulfilled with the new covenant, a better covenant.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Okay, but what do you think the covenants are or were? Ya'll are saying there are two but what is covered by the first and what is covered by the second?

                        I think a lot of folks use these terms as an easy out. What do they mean to you?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by JordanW View Post
                          The Old Covenant was only between God and the Jewish people, and it was basically that he would give them the Promised land. The New Covenant came in to play when Jesus shed his blood on the Cross that forever took away our sins.
                          Where is the law in what you are seeing here? Did any of God's laws change?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Part One of Two

                            It has to do with one’s understanding of Dispensationalism. “Dispensationalism” is, of course, the idea that God’s approach in dealing with humankind has been a gradually developing process in which the rules “change” occasionally, going from one “dispensation” to another. Two prominent examples of occasions when the rules supposedly “changed” would be the giving of the Ten Commandments, which initiated the Mosaic Covenant, and Christ’s death/resurrection, which made the so-called “Church Age” possible. (There are other examples in Biblical history, these are only two of them.)

                            The argument used most often is that the beginning of the Church Age, or “New Covenant”, supposedly necessitated the end of the Mosaic Covenant (“Old Covenant”) in which God’s dealing with humans was primarily through Israel. The Mosaic Covenant is now over (supposedly) and God is now dealing primarily through the Church. The reasoning this leads to about the Rapture is that when the Rapture occurs, membership in the Church is cut off, meaning that the “rules” that apply during the Church Age can no longer be in effect, necessitating a reversion back to the Mosaic Covenant rules and a change of God’s focus from the Church to Israel. This argument is most often used in support of the Pre-Trib position, since God said in Daniel 9:26-27 that there would be so many “sevens” for Israel and, as most of us would agree, there is still one “seven” left to go. Therefore, since God supposedly cannot be dealing with Israel and the Church simultaneously, the Church must be gone by the time that final seven years begins.

                            Some problems with this line of reasoning are as follows:

                            1. The suggestion that God “cannot” deal with two groups at once is ridiculous. God can do whatever He durn well pleases. There is nothing in Scripture that makes it impossible for God to deal with more than one group at a time. In fact, as we will see in a moment, there are actually Scriptures that specifically indicate that He does indeed deal with more than one group at once today at this very moment!

                            2. Even a Pre-Tribber/Dispensationalist would agree that Israel’s national salvation depends on their final acceptance as a nation of Jesus not only as their Messiah, but also as their Savior. Therefore, the “rules” of the Mosaic Covenant are not in effect, at least certainly not in their original form (which would beg the question, what other changes can we expect? to which a reasonable answer does not seem possible without useless random speculation and guesswork). There was no Jesus during the Old Testament that Israel had to accept, so the Mosaic Covenant’s rules therefore cannot be re-applied. There’s no going back.

                            3. It seems foolish to suggest that every single Gentile on the entire planet who remains after the Rapture (unless it is literally a Post-Trib Rapture) has absolutely no further opportunity for salvation. This would mean that God’s focus will not be exclusively on Israel. In fact, even Pre-Tribbers agree that Gentiles will be saved (by the billions, is what Pre-Tribbers usually say) during the Tribulation! That sets up a contradiction in a Pre-Trib Dispensationalist’s position. They say that God will be dealing only with Israel, but then they say there will be billions of Gentile converts. So which is it?? If the rules of the Mosaic Covenant make a comeback after the Rapture, how do all these Gentiles get saved?

                            4. Hebrews 10:1 tells us that the Mosaic sacrifices were never intended to achieve true justification before God for Israel. They were only a “shadow”.

                            Hebrews 10:1 – “The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming—not the realities themselves. For this reason it can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship.

                            Ultimately, even the Old Testament saints are dependent on Christ’s death on the cross for their salvation, even if they were not aware during their lifetime of the specifics of precisely how their salvation was won for them by God. For God, this is no problem since He sees all of history occurring simultaneously, including history that is still future from our point of view, so to Him when Old Testament saints died, Christ’s death was an already-accomplished fact since He was “slain from the foundation of the world” (Revelation 13:8). This being the case, Christ’s death is the only reason that anybody ever gets into Heaven all the way from Adam & Eve all the way through until the end of the Millennial Kingdom. The procedures and rules for what believers of each period were expected to do changed, yes, but the means of salvation has always been Christ’s death ever since that first bite from the forbidden fruit. Without Christ’s death on the cross, there would be no salvation for anybody at any time in all of history, no can do, no sir, no how, do not pass Go, do not collect $200. God even specified that Jesus’ death would be the key event when he said at Genesis 3:15:

                            “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”, which most prophecy students would agree is the first prophecy of the coming Messiah/Savior. If Jesus had not died on the cross, there would be no salvation for anybody throughout all of history and every single human in all of history would be doomed, no matter how many sacrifices we kill on the alter, no matter how many “wave” offerings we bring to the Temple, no matter how many “arks” we build, no matter how many times we prove that we are willing to sacrifice our Isaacs on an alter. It would all be for nothing were it not for Jesus’ death on that cross.

                            So the means of salvation has never changed, ever. As a matter of fact, the Mosaic Covenant is STILL in effect today and we are still living under it! Now before you start accusing me of being a Judiadizing legalist, I’ll point out that we live in a time when the Mosaic Covenant has been fulfilled on our behalf by Christ’s perfect, sinless life, and we are therefore not bound by its rules, just as Paul went to great lengths to explain in Romans and Galatians, among other places. Because Christ paid a price for us that He didn’t owe for Himself, we don’t have to worry about the Mosaic Law, because Christ fulfilled it for us. The Law is still in effect, but we can get out of it, so to speak, by claiming Christ’s death as our own. That’s why the apostles explain at great length that those who choose to live as being under the Law must obey the ENTIRE law or bring condemnation on themselves, because the Law is still in effect today.

                            James 2:10 – “For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.

                            If it wasn’t still in effect, then one cannot bring the Law’s condemnation on oneself by breaking even just one law and the apostles are liars. It’s just that you and I don’t have to worry about it, because we have been given judicial immunity because of Christ’s death and our acceptance of it on our behalf.

                            So the Mosaic Covenant is still in effect at this moment, although it has been fulfilled on our behalf by Jesus. This means that there has been no “shift” from the Mosaic Covenant to the “Church Age”. Rather, we are simply in a time where we have the opportunity to have the Mosaic Law not held against us because of Jesus. So what does this mean for the Rapture? It means that the Rapture will have NO EFFECT on who God is dealing with, because the people He is dealing with remains unchanged. He’s still dealing with Israel at this very moment as you are reading this, right now. They’re just not listening yet. In the meantime, we Gentiles are being “grafted in”.

                            There’s another problem with Dispensationalism that I’ll mention. Notice in Romans Chapter 1 that God is holding everyone throughout history in the entire world responsible for rejecting Him:

                            Romans 1:19-20 – “...what may be known about God is plain to them [humankind in general], because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.”

                            Notice here that God is talking about a level of revelation that involves no Israel, no Mosaic sacrificial system, no Scriptures, and no Christ, only nature and the creation around us. God says we should know based only on His revelation of Himself in the creation around us. This is precisely the condition that existed up until Moses wrote the Pentateuch. And yet Paul is using it as a reason for God’s condemnation of the lost in the present, AFTER the start of the “Church Age”. “...what may be known about God IS plain to them...” “...so that people ARE without excuse.”

                            Here’s why that’s a problem – traditional Dispensationalism has one phase of God’s revelation replacing the previous one, all going sequentially in order. Romans Chapter 1 directly contradicts this. Romans Chapter 1 says the creation around us is sufficient justification for us to be condemned. But conversely, if that is the case it also has to mean that it is also sufficient information for us to receive salvation. That being the case, the only logical conclusion is that God’s phases of revelation do not replace each other, but rather are added on top of each other, each one clarifying the previous and giving us a better understanding of the issues at hand.

                            The highest level of revelation we have been given thus far is the combination of the completed Word of God along with the historical revelation of Christ Himself in the flesh when He visited the earth 2000 years ago. But that doesn’t mean that everything else before that simply gets thrown out with the bathwater. And neither does it mean that anybody today without knowledge of the actual name of “Jesus” is automatically condemned. There is enough information from the Creation around us for us to respond favorably to God or to reject Him, even if we don’t know His name in the process of making our choice.
                            ----------------------------------------------
                            When the plain sense of Scripture make sense, seek no other sense.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Part Two of Two

                              (I should also point out that this does not provide an “excuse” for us to not respond to Christ. We cannot say “Well, I don’t want to respond to Christ, but I can agree that the world around me was definitely created by an intelligent being, so I’ll just respond on that level.” Nope, sorry Charlie, you’re still condemned, because Christ was revealed to you and you are responsible to respond to the revelation that you were given.)

                              This is proof that it is indeed possible for God to deal with more than one group of people at a time. He is not restricted to dealing only with Israel or only with Gentiles.

                              So my point is that different phases of Dispensationalism do not cancel each other out, they simply clarify previous phases. It’s like adding layers on a cake. Each layer makes the cake better, because it adds more flavor, but the lower layers are still kept. The key is that we are all responsible for the level of revelation that we have been given.

                              So there is only one program for both Jew and Gentile, the death of Jesus on the cross. There will be only one body of redeemed people who were saved prior to Christ’s second coming. This will include Old and New Testament saints. “People will come from east and west and north and south, and will take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God.” (Luke 13:29). And again, “When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, ‘Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ ” (Matthew 8:10-12).

                              There is only one group, Israel with the Gentiles grafted in, both dependant on the same root, that root being Abraham’s faith being credited to him as “righteousness”, via the death of Christ on the cross, both parties, Israel and the Gentiles, being merged into one set of believers.

                              The “remnant of Israel” from throughout history IS the Olive Tree. There has always been a “remnant”, as God told Elijah when he ran from Jezebel in I Kings 19:18 – “I reserve seven thousand in Israel—all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal and whose mouths have not kissed him.” There was also a remnant in Jesus’ day which included the disciples plus His other followers, there is a remnant today, and there will be one at the end of the Tribulation. There has never “not” been a remnant. It will include the Jews who are saved at the 2nd Coming when they see “Him whom they have pierced”. Israel has never been set aside. They are still God’s chosen people. God still wants them to come into fellowship with Him even at this very moment, but since Christ has been revealed as the Passover Lamb, the procedures set down by Moses are outdated and no longer necessary. Jesus, the ultimate High Priest, has offered a sacrifice superior to those offered at the Jerusalem Temple so that no further sacrifice is needed for obtaining salvation. The Jews still have an open door in front of them just as they did in 69 AD. They just have to individually choose to walk through it, just as they could have in 69 AD. The way to walk through the door is to recognize Jesus as their national Messiah and as their personal Savior, which is precisely what we are called to do – to call on the name of the Lord. That includes Jesus as the Messiah and our Savior.

                              The destruction of 70 AD had a key result in God’s program of redemption: The Temple was destroyed, making carrying on with the Mosaic sacrifices impossible. That alone should give any devout Jew pause, that God would allow the destruction of Israel’s ability to carry out what they thought was His will. If God allowed that practice to be destroyed, then it must not be His will anymore, hmmmm? Which just goes along perfectly with the fact of Jesus having made the perfect, once-for-all sacrifice. So Israel still has an open door in front of them. Unfortunately, they won’t step through it as a nation until the end of the Tribulation. Some of them are stepping through it today, but most will hold out until they’re either dead or facing certain annihilation in Petra/Bosrah at the hands of the Antichrist/Mahdi, at which time all the teachings they will have been hearing from the Two Witnesses along with various other sources will finally get through their hard heads and they will finally acknowledge their mistake and say “Blessed is He Who comes in the name of the Lord.”, resulting in the 2nd Coming.

                              Now, in the meantime, we Gentiles are being grafted into the Olive Tree while Jewish branches are being broken off due to “unbelief”. We are part of the Church that was originally an Israeli organism.

                              The Greek word translated “Church” in the Bible is “ekklesia”. It means “a called out assembly.” It is found 112 times in the Greek New Testament. In all 112 cases, except Matthew 16:18, Acts 7:38, 1 Corinthians 10:32, Ephesians 1:22, Ephesians 3:10, Ephesians 5:23-32, Colossians 1:18,24, Hebrews 2:12, Hebrews 12:23, “ekklesia” refers to local churches. Of these few exceptions, one of them refers specifically to Israel in the Old Testament (Acts 7:37), and another is a quote of an Old Testament prophecy about the Church (Hebrews 2:12).

                              Acts 7:37-38
                              37 This is that Moses, which said unto the children of Israel, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear.
                              38 This is he, that was in the church in the wilderness with the angel which spake to him in the mount Sinai, and with our fathers: who received the lively oracles to give unto us:
                              (KJV)

                              Dispensationalists typically define the “Church” as a unique body which began on the day of Pentecost, completely separate from the nation of Israel. Yet, in Stephen’s defense before the Sanhedrin, he referred to Israel after the exodus as “the Church in the wilderness.” Why would Stephen violate the supposed dispensational divide by referring to Israel as “the Church?”

                              Most of the early Christians could not read Hebrew. They used a Greek translation of the Old Testament made by 70 Jewish scribes about 200 years before Christ. The early Christians and Jews called it “The Version of the Seventy.” Today it is referred to as the “Septuagint” (meaning 70) or simply by the Roman numerals “LXX.” In the first century, the Greek LXX was the common Bible of the Jewish synagogues and the early churches, although the Jews of Judea primarily used the Hebrew Scriptures. The Apostles frequently referred to the LXX and quoted it extensively in the New Testament. In fact, the New Testament writers quoted the LXX more frequently than the Hebrew Old Testament. This is because it was written in the common Greek and could be read by the average believer of that time. Copies were plentiful and relatively cheap, while copies of the Hebrew Scriptures were usually only found at the synagogues within Israel itself and were moreover very expensive.

                              In Acts 7:37, the reason Stephen referred to Israel as “the Church” was because of his familiarity with the LXX. He was referring to passages like the following.

                              Deuteronomy 9:10 (LXX)
                              10 The Lord gave me two stone tablets inscribed by the finger of God. On them were all the commandments the Lord proclaimed to you on the mountain out of the fire, on the day of the Church. (“ekklesia”)

                              Deuteronomy 18:16 (LXX)
                              16 For this is what you asked of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the Church (“ekklesia”) when you said, “Let us not hear the voice of the Lord our God nor see this great fire anymore, or we will die.”

                              There are many more cases in the LXX where the whole assembly of Israel, when they were gathered to worship, is called “the Church” or the “ekklesia” in the LXX. In fact, the Greek word “ekklesia” (Church) is found 73 times in the LXX Old Testament, almost as many times as in the Greek New Testament. So, the early Christians who spoke Greek had this background as their understanding of the word. They saw the “ekklesia” of the Old Testament as being the same organism as the “ekklesia” of the New Testament of which they were a part and had been “grafted in”. And we are the continuation of that even today at this moment! It is all one assembly of the remnant of those being called out to salvation by faith in God’s sacrifice on our behalf. Those of us today are fortunate enough to know that this sacrifice’s name is Jesus Christ.

                              So we Gentiles who are being grafted in are not a separate group in God’s program of redemption, but are one with the others, all under the death of Christ on the cross on our behalf. We will have distinctive national identities during the Millennium, such as Jews occupying the land given to Abraham in the Abrahamic Covenant, and everybody else, the redeemed Gentiles, having the rest of the world, but we will all be citizens of the same Kingdom of God under Christ’s rule from His throne in Jerusalem and Ezekiel’s Temple.

                              I should clarify that this is certainly NOT Replacement Theology. True Replacement Theology says Israel has been cast aside and has no place in God’s plans. Quite the opposite is true. Were it not for Israel, we Gentiles would have no place in God’s plans. Without Israel, we are nothing. “You do not support the root, but the root supports you.” – Romans 11:18
                              ----------------------------------------------
                              When the plain sense of Scripture make sense, seek no other sense.

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