Hebrews 8:10,11 ” For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. None of them shall teach his neighbor, and none his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them.”

     This covenant that God speaks of is the New Covenant on Jesus Christ.  It’s our new deal!  Are we the ‘house of Israel’?  Barnes’ Notes  tells us; “This is the arrangement, or the dispensation which shall succeed the old one. ‘With the house of Israel.’ With the true Israel; that is, with all those whom he will regard and treat as his friends.”   Can we be God’s friends?  Jesus tells us; “You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.” (John 15:14,15)

     Some may wonder where the actual state of Israel fits in to all this. I don’t. Scripture tells us that we are all together in Jesus; “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise.” (Galatians 3:28,29)  God is describing the ‘geography’ of the heart and spirit rather than this world’s geopolitical boundaries.
 
     Indeed, within our hearts this redrawing of the map of allegiance is gradual, culminating in a complete take over. The Forerunner Commentary points out; “The ultimate fulfillment of this process will culminate when we are completely composed of spirit, and God’s law will be our first nature, not just second nature. But, while we are in an embryonic stage, the process has already begun in us, incrementally, as God gradually displaces our carnality and sin, replacing it with His Holy Spirit, leading to right behavior and godliness.”
 

    The Bible speaks of this conversion; “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2)  We cooperate with God’s Holy Spirit in the transformation by letting go and being open to His rule over our lives; “But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.” (1 Corinthians 13:10-12)

     As God perfects us, our intimacy with Him will increase to the point where our will  conforms to His; “Conversion, then, is a life-long process in which we move from a reactive approach to lawkeeping—motivated by rewards and punishments—to a proactive approach—motivated by a deeply placed inner desire to yield and comply to the law’s principles, knowing intrinsically from experience that they work for the good and harmony of all.” (Forerunner Commentary)

     This is entirely God’s Holy work in us; “. . . for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:13)  No seminary, no religious priest, no school can possibly impart this sacredness into us.  No brick and mortar church full of fancy clergy  can do this work of Holiness in us.  Jesus and only Jesus is able to take a dead  man and make him live again.  This confounds the worldly church today as it did in His days among us; “The Jews then said to Him, ‘What sign do You show us as your authority for doing these things?’ Jesus answered them, ‘Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.’ The Jews then said, ‘It took forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?” (John 2:18-20)

     We are His Church.  God raised up Jesus and us with Him; ‘”We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” (Romans 6:4)  The blood of Jesus planted the only church that counts and He planted it in my heart and your heart and in the heart of all his true friends throughout the world.  And it truly only took Him three days to accomplish this eternal miracle!

     Two thousand years later, I walk every day in that church He planted; “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)  And so do you because in Him our hearts are united and bound with His love.

    The apostle Paul calls us to it; “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (Ephesians 4:1-5)

     Jesus is above all, in all and with His true church. He will abide no counterfeits; “Now this is the main point of the things we are saying: We have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, a Minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man.” (Hebrews 8:1,2)

     Come Lord Jesus!
Advertisements