Today we are going to begin examining the New Covenant. In my experience there are many Christians who do not understand the difference between the Old and New Covenants. A cursory look at the Bible will show that there is usually only blank page between the two.
We try and relate to the God of the Old Testament but are living in the New. This causes us to view Him as being angry and harsh in His dealings with man.
God did things in the Old Covenant that are completely out of line with the New. There we see His wrath and judgment being poured out. They did not have the blood of Jesus. We do.
I believe that the majority of Christians today have a skewed view of God. This is based on my interactions and also on the sermons I’ve heard.
The Old Covenant was incomplete. As a result God had to deal with humanity differently than He deals with us today.
But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.
The author of Hebrews tells us that our covenant is better. As a result we can have a relationship with God that was not available to the Old Testament saints. If we do not understand this it will lead to an incorrect view of God. This is what has happened to so many Christians today.
Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.
David wrote this after his indiscretion with Bathsheba. It is his prayer of repentance. There is a song based on these verses that is sung in many churches today. I do not believe it is appropriate for a New Testament believer to pray this prayer.
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
2 Corinthians 5:17
It was appropriate for David to pen the words of Psalm 51 because he was not born again. In the New Covenant we have been made new creations and have a new heart.
Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
The author of Hebrews tells us that God will never leave us or forsake us. Is it the same for the Holy Spirit?
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.
Jesus tells us that the Holy Spirit would “abide” with us forever. This means that He will be with us every step of our Christian journey. Praying the words of David in Psalm 51 is a statement of unbelief regarding Jesus’ promise.
God will never take His Spirit from us. Songs based on Psalm 51 have most likely been written as a result of not understanding the New Covenant.
Performance was important in the Old Testament but not in the New. The Holy Spirit is not going to come and go based on whether or not we are walking the straight and narrow path. He does not leave every time a Christian sins.
And she said, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he awoke out of his sleep, and said, I will go out as at other times before, and shake myself. And he wist not that the LORD was departed from him.
Samson had gotten into an illicit relationship. Delilah cut his hair while he slept and when he discovered that the Lord’s presence had left him while he slept.
Samson’s sin resulted in the Holy Spirit leaving Him. He lived under the Old Covenant which was based on works. We live in the New Testament which is based on the blood of Jesus. Our sin will grieve the Holy Spirit but He will not leave us because of it.
I have heard many Christians pray that God would anoint the preacher and pour out His Spirit in a service.
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised.
Jesus said that the “Spirit of the Lord” was on Him. We are sealed in Christ and so the Spirit is on us. He took up residence in our spirits when we became Christians. Why do we pray for Him to anoint us if He is already in us as a result of our position in Christ?
But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.
1 John 2:27
The Holy Spirit does not come and go from our lives. He came on the day of Pentecost and has never left. When we received Jesus as our Lord the Holy Spirit descended and took up residence in our hearts!
The Holy Spirit is with us. He has anointed us and we do not have to pray for His anointing. We are anointed while we are sleeping and we are anointed when we are awake!
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An interesting view of Psalm 51:10-11 that I had not heard before. You are right: God will never take his Holy Spirit from us, and he deserves all praise for that alone! Perhaps the renewal of a right spirit in David’s psalm might be compared to the renewal of the mind in Paul’s letter to the Romans (12:2)? Although David is asking God to perform the transformation; Paul tells his readers to participate in the transforming. You’ve provided food for thought, Mark! P.S. Thank you very much for becoming a follower of my blog, From the Inside Out. I am honored, and pray you find the posts meaningful whenever you’re able to visit.
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