Hebrews 8:7-13

Sunday, April 2nd, 2017

THE INTRODUCTION OF THE NEW COVENANT

INTRODUCTION:

 

In Hebrews 8:1-10:18 Christ is seen to be the mediator of a better covenant.

 

We have seen a summary of what the writer has said thus far in 8:1-6. In this message we will see that a new covenant is promised in 8:7-9, that this new covenant is described in 8:10-12, and that this new covenant has made the old covenant obsolete (8:13).

 

    I.     THE NEW COVENANT IS PROMISED – 8:7-9

 

Hebrews 8:7 For if that first covenant had been faultless; then, should no place have been sought for the second.

 

For is used to introduce another contrary-to-fact condition.

 

The condition is if that first covenant had been faultless; and the conclusion is then, should no place have been sought for the second.

 

Inasmuch as the condition is contrary to fact or false, it is clear that the first covenant was not faultless and as a result, a place has been sought for the second covenant.

 

It means that that first covenant, which refers to the law, was faulty.

 

Faultless is blameless.

 

Then introduces the resultant conclusion.

 

Should no place have been sought is should no place have been looked for.

 

For the second refers to the second covenant or the new covenant that God has promised which has Christ as its high priest.

 

Because the first covenant was faulty, place was sought for the second covenant, the new one established on the basis of the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

Hebrews 8:8 For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.

 

Verse 8 explains the need for a second covenant as is indicated by for.

 

Finding fault suggests either when He finds fault or because He finds fault.

 

With them may be understood with finding fault and mean finding fault with them, or it may be understood with saith and mean He saith to them. Both actually are true.

 

In either case, it refers to the people to whom the following statement was said, i.e. to the house of Israel and to the house of Judah; and it is because He found fault with them.

 

He saith means the Lord says or the Scripture says.

 

What He says or what it says is quoted from Jeremiah 31:34 and extends through verse 12.

 

Behold the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.

 

Behold is simply you see.

 

The phrase the days come is literally days are coming, which suggests that they already are on their way. It is just a matter of time before they arrive.

 

Saith the Lord indicates that the Lord is the One doing the speaking, and indicates a continuation of the statement.

 

In the phrase when I will make, when implies that the time God will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah is in these days that are coming.

 

I will make is I will carry out, I will fulfill, I will accomplish, or I will bring to accomplishment and is predictive of a future event which God will definitely bring to pass.

 

As such it is a commitment or promise God has made to do this.

 

What God will make, fulfill, accomplish, or bring to accomplishment is a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.

 

A new covenant is a new testament.

 

With the house of Israel and with the house of Judah reminds the reader that the nation of Israel had become two different nations at the time of the divided kingdom.

 

However, when Jeremiah was writing this, it was during the Babylonian captivity.

 

Israel, the northern kingdom, had gone into captivity to the Assyrians; and Judah, the southern kingdom, was in captivity to the Babylonians.

 

It indicates that the nations of Israel and Judah will be united again, and it also indicates that neither one of them is lost.

 

Even though Herbert Armstrong and his followers and others holding to British Israelism have implied that the ten tribes are lost, they are not lost.

 

The word translated with is usually translated over or upon.

 

It implies that the covenant is one-sided.

 

It is not an agreement between the two parties but is an agreement made by God Himself in relation to the nation of Israel.

 

Hebrews 8:9 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 Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.

 

In verse 9 it is learned what covenant believers are not going to have.

 

It is not going to be a covenant like the first one that was made, i.e. like the law.

 

It is going to be a different type of covenant.

 

This covenant is described negatively as 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 Egypt.

 

This covenant refers to the law which was given at the time of the exodus.

 

According to the covenant is with reference to the testament or in accordance with the testament.

 

That I made with their fathers refers to God’s giving the law to the ancestors of the Levitical priests.

 

In the day when I took them by their hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt refers to the exodus out of the land of Egypt.

 

I is the Lord, and He took them by the hand indicates that He led them in a personal way.

 

When I took them by their hand is when I grasped them by their hand.

 

To lead them out of the land of Egypt indicates the purpose for which God took them by their hand.

 

The reason that the new covenant which God was going to make with the houses of Israel and Judah would not be according to the covenant that He had made with their fathers is stated: because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.

 

Continued not in suggests remained not in or persevered not in.

 

What they had failed to continue in, to remain in, or to persevere in was God’s covenant or God’s law. They had not kept His law.

 

And I refers to God.

 

I regarded them not is I became unconcerned about them or I neglected them. They had neglected God; and as a result, He has neglected them.

 

  II.     THE NEW COVENANT IS DESCRIBED – 8:10-12

 

Hebrews 8:10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people.

 

Verse 10 introduces the reason God will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.

 

For is the word ordinarily translated because and is to be understood in this sense in this verse.

 

This refers to the covenant that the Lord will make with the house of Israel after those days.

 

Then, in the middle of verse 10, beginning with I will put my laws into their mind and continuing through the end of verse 12, is a description of this covenant.

 

Is has been supplied by the translators.

 

The covenant is the testament. The before covenant makes this a specific covenant or testament. It is the new covenant in Christ’s blood.

 

I will make means I will decree, I will ordain, or I will issue a decree; and it is God Who is making this covenant.

 

It is not a covenant in the sense of a contract which is mutually agreed upon by two parties, but it is a covenant in the sense that God has promised it.

 

It is a one-sided matter, however, in that the Israelites had nothing to say about it. God made the covenant without asking them for their approval or for their agreement.

 

With the house of Israel suggests toward the house of Israel suggesting the nation of Israel.

 

After those days refers to the particular time period that God has in mind. It means at some point in time after the days when the first covenant was made, i.e. after the law was given.

 

Its reference is to the phrase in verse 9 in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt.

 

Saith the Lord reminds the reader that it is the Lord Who is making this covenant.

 

I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts.

 

I is the Lord.

 

I will put will occur at the same time that (I will) write occurs. By I will put, the Lord means I will give.

 

My laws reminds one of the ten commandments which Moses was given and which were written on tablets of stone. However, these are laws of God which are going to be put into their mind, and written in their hearts rather than in tablets of stone.

 

Their mind means their understanding, their intelligence, or their insight. When it says their mind rather than their minds, it suggests that they will all have the same mindset.

 

(I will) write them in their hearts suggests I will write my laws in their hearts or I will write my laws on (or upon) their hearts. The implication of this is that God will give them the desire to obey His laws.

 

This covenant goes on with and I will be to them a God and they shall be to me a people.

 

I is the Lord.

 

Shall be is predictive future, and its mood indicates that it is something that will definitely come to pass.

 

I shall be to them a God means I will be their God. It is a Hebraism showing possession.

 

And they continues the thought where they refers to the Israelites.

 

Shall be is predictive future and is something that is definitely going to happen.

 

They shall be to me a people means they will be my people and is another Hebraism showing possession.

 

Hebrews 8:11 And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.

 

Verse 11 continues the description of the covenant which the Lord will make with the house of Israel.

 

And they shall not teach is emphatic and suggests and they will absolutely not teach or and they will never teach.

 

Every man his neighbor suggests each one (teaching) his neighbor, and every man his brother suggests each one (teaching) his brother.

 

What they will under no circumstance have to teach neighbors and brothers is indicated by saying, know the Lord or come to know the Lord.

 

The reason no one will under any circumstance need to teach another to know the Lord is that it will be unnecessary. For all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.

 

For is the word ordinarily translated because and is to be understood in this sense in this verse.

 

Shall know is predictive of a future event which is definitely going to happen.

 

From the least to the greatest includes all persons.

 

The least may refer to the least in importance.

 

If so, then the greatest would apply to the greatest in importance.

 

The least to the greatest may instead have to do with age from the youngest little one to the oldest adult.

 

In any event, it includes everyone regardless of his age or status in life.

 

Hebrews 8:12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.

 

Verse 12 continues the description of the covenant which the Lord will make with Israel after those days.

 

It provides the reason no one will have to say to his neighbor or brother, Know the Lord, and the reason they will all know Him from the least to the greatest.

 

For is the word ordinarily translated because and is used in this sense in this verse.

 

I is the Lord.

 

Will be is predictive future and indicates something that is definitely going to happen.

 

Merciful is gracious.

 

To their unrighteousness is to their unrighteousnesses, to their sins, or to their iniquities.

 

And their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more is another way of saying the same thing.

 

And has been translated as continuing the thought, or it may be emphatic in the sense of indeed, in fact, certainly, verily, or yea.

 

Their sins is their wrongdoings, their unrighteousnesses, their wickednesses, or their injustices; and their iniquities is their lawlessnesses or their transgressions.

 

Will I remember no more is an emphatic denial.

 

It means I will never under any circumstances remember or call to mind.

 

If a believer is bothered by someone always reminding him of sins he has committed, even though he has confessed and forsaken them, the believer should remember this promise and realize that it is not the Lord Who is doing this.

 

 III.     THE NEW COVENANT HAS MADE THE OLD COVENANT OBSOLETE – 8:13

 

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

 

In that He saith suggests when He (i.e. the Lord) says or by His saying.

 

The phrase a new covenant is literally a new, but it implies a new (covenant).

 

He hath made the first old indicates action which has taken place in the past whose result has continued on.

 

At that point in time, the old covenant (i.e. the law) was made old. As a result, it is still old and is now obsolete.

 

Hath made the first old is has declared the first (covenant) obsolete or has treated the first (covenant) as obsolete.

 

What He has made old is the first and implies the first covenant.

 

Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away implies the present state of affairs.

 

There is this old covenant, and its time has passed. It’s time for the new one.

 

Now may indicate a continuation of the thought and be understood in the sense of and, or it may be emphatic and suggest indeed or in fact.

 

That which decayeth and waxeth old refers to the law, the first (covenant).

 

That which decayeth is the same word translated hath made old in the previous phrase and suggests what was made old. It refers to the law.

 

And waxeth old is and growing old, and what is being declared obsolete, and what is being treated as obsolete, or and what is being made old.

 

Is ready to vanish away suggests is near (or close) to disappearance (or destruction).

 

It suggests that the Mosaic law was still being practiced as long as the temple was standing but that the temple would soon be destroyed. This occurred in A.D. 70 shortly after the Book of Hebrews was written.

 

Although Christ had fulfilled the law and had brought an end to the necessity of the sacrifices by the sacrifice of Himself on the cross, the unsaved Jews did not realize this and were still offering sacrifices in the temple in accordance with the law.

 

The destruction of the temple would bring this practice to an end.

CONCLUSION:

 

We have seen that a new covenant was promised in 8:7-9, that it is described in 8:10-12, and that it has made the old covenant obsolete (8:13). If you are a Jew who has professed faith in Christ and are considering abandoning Christ and Christianity because of things you don’t understand, don’t do it. Go on with Christ. The law is obsolete; so, don’t place yourself back under it. It is not an improvement.