Updated: Mar 5
For many, this question will seem a no-brainer, as many teachers/leaders proclaim that we are in the renewed covenant. Yet, when I study this topic, I come away with a different perspective. When I began following Messiah Yeshua in Torah, the renewed/ new covenant was one of the first things I researched. Despite it being one of my early research projects, I haven’t shared it here on Red Pill Messianic.
While there are many covenants in the Bible, the word covenant means an agreement, when speaking about The Covenant most people tend to be referencing the covenant that establishes Elohim’s people. It is this covenant that I will be exploring today, first breaking down what is the covenant (also known as the Sinai covenant or the ‘old’ covenant), and afterward covering the renewed covenant.
The Sinai Covenant
“For they set out from Rephiḏim, and had come to the Wilderness of Sinai, and camped in the wilderness. So Yisra’ĕl (Israel) camped there before the mountain. And Mosheh went up to Elohim, and יהוה called to him from the mountain, saying, “This is what you are to say to the house of Ya‛aqoḇ (Jacob), and declare to the children of Yisra’ĕl(Israel): ‘You have seen what I did to the Mitsrites(Egyptians), and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself. ‘And now, if you diligently obey My voice, and shall guard My covenant, then you shall be My treasured possession above all the peoples – for all the earth is Mine – ‘and you shall be to Me a reign of priests and a set-apart nation.’ Those are the words which you are to speak to the children of Yisra’ĕl(Israel).” (Exodus 19:2-6)
“And it shall be, if you diligently obey the voice of יהוה your Elohim, to guard to do all His commands which I command you today, that יהוה your Elohim shall set you high above all nations of the earth.” (Deuteronomy 28:1)
The covenant made at Mount Sinai was between Yah and the House of Israel (Here meaning all twelve tribes, as all are present). The agreement hinges on the people obeying Yah which is His Torah (instructions), and if they do then they will be accepted as His people. It’s important to note that this is not the first time the Torah is given, to learn more please see my article titled “Torah before Mount Sinai”. That means, Adam and Eve, Enoch, Noah, and Abraham; were all expected to obey the Father and if they didn’t, then they were punished as is the case for Adam and Eve being exiled from the garden. With this understanding, and given the context of the Israelites being freed from Egypt after hundreds of years of slavery, Sinai is the perfect place and time to bring up the covenant. As the Israelites probably forgot the ways of the Most High after several generations of being in Egypt. Later on, we see Ruth, a natural-born Moabite, making the same vow so that she might be counted among Elohim’s people.
“But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you, or to go back from following after you. For wherever you go, I go; and wherever you stop over, I stop over. Your people are my people, and your Elohim is my Elohim.” (Ruth 1:16)
By declaring that Yah will be her Elohim, she’s affirming to diligently obey His voice and to do all that He commands. For there is no other way to enter into that covenant, remember the language used during the giving of the covenant. If you obey the Voice of Yah, then you shall be His people, and Ruth agrees to those conditions.
The Renewed Covenant
“See, the days are coming,” declares יהוה, “when I shall make a renewed covenant with the house of Yisra’ĕl(Israel) and with the house of Yehuḏah(Judah), not like the covenant I made with their fathers in the day when I strengthened their hand to bring them out of the land of Mitsrayim(Egypt), My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them,” declares יהוה. “For this is the covenant I shall make with the house of Yisra’ĕl(Israel) after those days, declares יהוה: I shall put My Torah in their inward parts, and write it on their hearts. And I shall be their Elohim, and they shall be My people. “And no longer shall they teach, each one his neighbor, and each one his brother, saying, ‘Know יהוה,’ for they shall all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares יהוה. “For I shall forgive their crookedness, and remember their sin no more.” (Jeremiah 31:31–34)
There are two key elements of the renewed covenant that should be pointed out. First, the covenant is only between Yah, the House of Israel, and the House of Judah. Eventually, the two houses will be made one once again (also tethered to the renewed covenant), for more information please see my article titled “Israel and Judah”. Secondly, the Torah gets written on the hearts of His people. How this covenant is not like the one He made at Sinai, is that where the original covenant relied upon us to learn and teach the Torah. The renewed covenant has the Torah written on the heart; in essence, it becomes second nature to the Israelites. There will be no need to teach the Torah to others, as they will all intrinsically know it.
This aspect, having the Torah written on the heart and not having to learn/teach it to others, is an indicator that the renewed covenant has not taken place yet. As we still have to learn the Torah and teach it to others. Furthermore, In Ezekiel, we have the same covenant being discussed with the added information that all who are scattered will be brought back. This has not happened yet and is directly tied to the renewed covenant.
“And I shall take you from among the nations, and I shall gather you out of all lands, and I shall bring you into your own land. “And I shall sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean – from all your filthiness and from all your idols I cleanse you. “And I shall give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you. And I shall take the heart of stone out of your flesh, and I shall give you a heart of flesh, and put My Spirit within you. And I shall cause you to walk in My laws and guard My right-rulings and shall do them. “And you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers. And you shall be My people, and I shall be your Elohim.” (Ezekiel 36:24-28)
The book of Baruch corresponds with Ezekiel.
“Yet you have dealt with us, Yah our Elohim, in all your kindness and in all your great compassion, as you spoke by your servant Moses on the day when you commanded him to write your law in the presence of the people of Israel, saying, “If you will not obey my voice, this very great multitude will surely turn into a small number among the nations, where I will scatter them. For I know that they will not obey me, for they are a stiff-necked people. But in the land of their exile they will come to themselves and know that I am Yah their Elohim. I will give them a heart that obeys and ears that hear; they will praise me in the land of their exile, and will remember my name and turn from their stubbornness and their wicked deeds; for they will remember the ways of their ancestors, who sinned before Yah. I will bring them again into the land that I swore to give to their ancestors, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and they will rule over it; and I will increase them, and they will not be diminished. I will make an everlasting covenant with them to be their Elohim and they shall be my people; and I will never again remove my people Israel from the land that I have given them.” (Baruch 2:27–35)
As mentioned earlier, the renewed covenant is also characterized by the two houses becoming one. To add, in the renewed covenant the Israelites no longer sin (Torah is written on their hearts), David (Most likely referencing Yeshua, as he is also called a son of David) is made king over Israel, there will be peace in the land, and Elohim will establish His set-apart place among them.
“And speak to them, ‘Thus said the Master יהוה, “See, I am taking the children of Yisra’ĕl from among the nations, wherever they have gone, and shall gather them from all around, and I shall bring them into their land. “And I shall make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Yisra’ĕl(Israel). And one sovereign shall be sovereign over them all, and let them no longer be two nations, and let them no longer be divided into two reigns. “And they shall no longer defile themselves with their idols, nor with their disgusting matters, nor with any of their transgressions. And I shall save them from all their dwelling places in which they have sinned, and I shall cleanse them. And they shall be My people, and I be their Elohim, while Dawiḏ(David) My servant is sovereign over them. And they shall all have one shepherd and walk in My right-rulings and guard My laws, and shall do them. “And they shall dwell in the land that I have given to Ya‛aqoḇ(Jacob) My servant, where your fathers dwelt. And they shall dwell in it, they and their children and their children’s children, forever, and My servant Dawiḏ(David) be their prince forever. “And I shall make a covenant of peace with them – an everlasting covenant it is with them. And I shall place them and increase them, and shall place My set-apart place in their midst, forever. “And My Dwelling Place shall be over them. And I shall be their Elohim, and they shall be My people.” (Ezekiel 37:21–27)
None of what we just read has occurred yet and would take some mental gymnastics to make it fit with the notion the renewed/new covenant is in effect. What about in the Messianic and Apostolic writings, is there any information on the renewed covenant that might be gleaned from its pages?
Messianic Writings on the Renewed Covenant
“And as they were eating, יהושע took bread, and having blessed, broke and gave it to the taught ones and said, “Take, eat, this is My body.” And taking the cup, and giving thanks, He gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. “For this is My blood, that of the renewed covenant, which is shed for many for the forgiveness of sins. “But I say to you, I shall certainly not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on till that day when I drink it anew with you in the reign of My Father.” (Matthew 26:26-29)
Yeshua plays a major role in ushering in the renewed covenant, and afterward when it’s fully enacted. Yeshua said he was sent only for the lost sheep of the house of Israel, he had to redeem them, and the only way he could was through death. That’s because of the Torah instructions concerning a man and his wife, after Israel was divorced and played the harlot, there was no other way to bring them back. For more information, please see my article “Redeeming the Bride.” Yeshua also takes on the role of mediator in the covenant, as described in Hebrews.
“But now He has obtained a more excellent service, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was constituted on better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second. For finding fault with them, He says, “See, the days are coming,” says יהוה, “when I shall conclude with the house of Yisra’ĕl(Israel) and with the house of Yehuḏah(Judah) a renewed covenant, not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Mitsrayim(Egypt), because they did not continue in My covenant, and I disregarded them,” says יהוה. “Because this is the covenant that I shall make with the house of Yisra’ĕl(Israel) after those days, says יהוה, giving My laws in their mind, and I shall write them on their hearts, and I shall be their Elohim, and they shall be My people. “And they shall by no means teach each one his neighbor, and each one his brother, saying, ‘Know יהוה,’ because they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them. “Because I shall forgive their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawlessnesses I shall no longer remember.” By saying, ‘renewed,’ He has made the first old. Now what becomes old and growing aged is near disappearing.” (Hebrews 8:6-13)
What are the better promises in the renewed covenant? Israel and Judah becoming one and never separating again, Elohim’s people will inherit the land promised to their forefathers and never to be cast out again, Elohim’s people will no longer sin, the Torah is written on Elohim’s people, Elohim will set His place among His people forever, Yeshua will be the forever King over Israel, and there will be peace for Yah’s people. At the end, Paul is simply stating that the renewed covenant is on its way, as the first is laid to rest when the renewed version starts.
I know there are many ministers out there, even Messianic/ Hebrew ones, that believe and teach we are in the renewed covenant. While I do think it’s important to which covenant is standing, although entry is essentially the same, I don’t think it should be a point of division. The population of Hebrews is small, and we do not need to be divided spiritually as many of us are physical. I implore everyone to do their own research and test everything, including this article. May the Ruach Hakodesh be your guide to all truth.
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