The Messenger of the New Covenant
Moses once offered to die for the people, Jesus did die for the people 


By Jon W. Quinn


Jesus did not begin His existence either at His conception in Nazareth nor His birth in Bethlehem. Jesus said that before Abraham had been born, He was there. He used the Divine name for Himself, the I Am of the burning bush. He does not say I was but I Am which means He is eternally existing. He has no beginning or end. This means He is deity, He possesses Godhood, because only God is eternal in both directions: past and future.

Additionally, He is the messenger of a new covenant which God establishes with us by His grace and our faith. There has never been a covenant made by God or man superior to this one; the one Jesus brought forth. Any covenant that God establishes with us the way this one was established must be powerfully necessary and important. At Mount Sinai, there was thunder and smoke and fear when God established His first covenant, but now He has established a new covenant; a better one (Hebrews 8:6-13; 10:9,10). Consider Jesus as the Messenger of the New Covenant.

The Messenger Ratifies a New Covenant
First, the Messenger had a messenger. Malachi's prophecy (Malachi 3:1) foretold the coming of a messenger (fulfilled by John the Baptist) who would prepare the way for the Messenger of the New Covenant (fulfilled by Jesus). He would come to His temple Himself (the temple at Jerusalem) and He would be the messenger of the Covenant (New Testament).
John's birth was announced (Luke 1:17). He was to be the forerunner of the Lord who was shortly bringing His covenant (see also John 3:28-30). Jesus is the One with the covenant (Hebrews 12:24). We are now to listen to Him (Hebrews 1:1-3).
The New Covenant was ratified by the sacrifice of Christ. This is what Jesus taught (Matthew 26:28). It is His blood by which we are forgiven (Hebrews 9:28; 13:20). Anyone who think any other system is adequate is sorely mistaken! Jesus died because it was the only way for redemption to take place. It is by the gospel, or New Covenant that we are saved. (Romans 1:16).

One other point. Jesus had a forerunner in John. We also have a forerunner: it is Jesus Himself! John prepared the way for Jesus' ministry to follow. Jesus prepared the way to heaven for us to follow. This is our hope; our best hope; our only hope (Hebrews 6:19,20; 9:24)! If you seek to see Jesus, then you seek to see the One who has ratified the covenant of our only hope by His blood.

The Messenger Brings a Better Covenant
The New Testament is better than the Old Testament. Both are of God, but one led to Christ and the other is of Christ. The Messenger of the Old Testament was Moses; the Messenger of the New Testament is Christ. (Hebrews 3:1-6) Because of this, we must be careful to open our hearts to its truths. Consider some ways the two covenants and their messengers differ.
Moses failed to enter the promised land of Canaan because of sin; but Jesus knew no sin and has entered into heaven. (Hebrews 4:14-16).

The Old Covenant priests/tabernacle/sacrifices/Holy place were mere shadows of the spiritual things of our Covenant (Hebrews 7:22-25; 8:1; 5,6).

The promises made under our covenant are better promises. Heaven is a better promised land than Canaan. (Hebrews 7:15,16; 22; recall 8:6).

Perhaps the most vivid contrast between the two covenants and their value is seen in Hebrews 12. What will it be? A return to the mountain, and the smoke and fire where the first covenant was given; or entering the sacred light of the New covenant made sure by the love of God, brought by His Son, and with the promise of eternal life (Hebrews 12:19-29). If you seek to see Jesus, then you seek to see the One who has ratified the better covenant. It contains the best promises that will ever be made to us by One who is absolutely trustworthy.

Our Covenant Has a Better Messenger
Moses was good; Jesus is better. Consider the attributes of the Messenger of the New Testament:

1. Compassionate (Matthew 9:36). Moses offered to die for the people; Jesus did die for the people. Moses' death would not have resulted in our salvation, but Jesus' death does bring about that result for all who come to God through Jesus in faithful, trusting obedience of the gospel.

2. Loving (Ephesians 5:25-27). Jesus loved us and gave Himself for us.

3. Propitiation (1 John 2:1). It is because of Jesus' sacrifice that we can have confidence that our sins are covered and we need not fear for our past transgressions.

4. Teacher (John 3:2; 7:46). Jesus is a wonderful example of a great teacher; both in His words and by His example.

5. Judge (John 12:48). How wonderful that the One who will judge us on the last day is the same one who loves us so much! But remember; He is also righteous. We can be confident and comforted by the prospect of the outcome at judgment only if we live by faith in Him today.

6. Helper (Hebrews 2:18). He will help us everyday; He always lives to assist us in every area of life.

7. Redeemer (1 Peter 1:18-20). He has paid the price for our sins.

8. Friend (John 15:13). There has never been a greater offer of friendship!

9. Savior (Hebrews 7:25). There is no other equal to the task of saving us eternally!

10. Mediator (1 Timothy 2:15). He seeks to bring about reconciliation between God and man. And wherever there is a willing human heart, Jesus is successful!

Jesus is the One who is the perfect example of all these things. No one else can be to us what Jesus can be and wants to be.

Conclusion
So, what do we do for those who would like to see Jesus? We show them the Messenger of a wonderful covenant of promise. There is no better; and one can do no better, than to pledge loyalty to the King, and then to follow through by keeping the covenant.

 
 
From The Bradley Banner 6/4/2006
Published by the Bradley Church of Christ
1505 E. Broadway
Bradley, IL 60915


 

 
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