Acts + Letters Lesson 15 Day 2

Hebrews 8

Questions for Acts and Letters of the Apostles Lesson 15

A Far Better Covenant 

3. Covenant (בְּרִית)

A contract or agreement between two parties. In the Old Testament the Hebrew word berith (בְּרִית) is always thus translated. Berith is derived from a root which means “to cut,” and hence a covenant is a “cutting,” with reference to the cutting or dividing of animals into two parts, and the contracting parties passing between them, in making a covenant (Gen 15; Jer 34:18, 19).

The corresponding word in the New Testament Greek is diatheke, which is, however, rendered “testament” generally in the Authorized Version. It ought to be rendered, just as the word berith of the Old Testament, “covenant.” (Easton’s Illustrated Dictionary)

Old versus New

Old Covenant

Laws written on stone tablets and paper

Based on the individual’s holiness

The priests offered gifts and sacrifices to God.

“Destined to be broken because no one was capable of keeping it completely.” (AWLC)

Worship and sacrifices took place in a physical tabernacle and later in temples.

“The Old Covenant was not merciful to our unrighteousness and our sins and iniquities were held against us.” (AWLC)

Several offenses including murder and adultery required the person to be stoned to death.

New Covenant

Laws written in our minds and hearts (v. 10)

I will imprint My laws upon their minds, even upon their innermost thoughts and understanding, and engrave them upon their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. (v. 10 AMPC)

Based on Jesus’ holiness

Jesus offered Himself.

He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live to righteousness. You were healed by his wounds. (1 Peter 2:24)

“The New Covenant cannot be broken, because the covenant is between God the Father and Jesus. We simply get in on the benefits of Jesus’ covenant with His Father.” (AWLC)

A special physical building is unnecessary. 

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am in the middle of them. (Matthew 18:20)

Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in[a] you? God will destroy anyone who destroys this temple. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple. (1 Corinthians 3:16-17 NLT)

Teaching others will be unnecessary because all will know Him inwardly. (v. 11)

God will be merciful and forgive evil deeds. (v. 12)

He will never remember our sins again. (v. 12)

4. The New Covenant is far better.

He will never remember our sins again and we shouldn’t think about them either! 

Farther than from a sunrise to a sunset—
that’s how far you’ve removed our guilt from us. (Psalm 103:12 TPT)

For if animal sacrifices could once and for all eliminate sin, they would have ceased to be offered and the worshipers would have clean consciences. Instead, once was not enough so by the repetitive sacrifices year after year, the worshipers were continually reminded of their sins, with their hearts still impure. (Hebrews 10:2-3 TPT)

5. Amazing Grace how sweet the sound.

I don’t know about you, but I need frequent reminders that God’s lovingkindness is better than life.

God, you are my God.
    I will earnestly seek you.
My soul thirsts for you.
    My flesh longs for you,
    in a dry and weary land, where there is no water.
So I have seen you in the sanctuary,
    watching your power and your glory.
Because your loving kindness is better than life,
    my lips shall praise you.
So I will bless you while I live.
    I will lift up my hands in your name.
My soul shall be satisfied as with the richest food.
My mouth shall praise you with joyful lips,
    when I remember you on my bed,
    and think about you in the night watches.
For you have been my help.
I will rejoice in the shadow of your wings.
My soul stays close to you.
Your right hand holds me up. (Psalm 63:1-8)

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Unless noted, all Scripture from public domain WEB translation.

My answers to BSF Bible Study Fellowship questions Acts + Letters of the Apostles Lesson 15 Day 2