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When Better Becomes A Necessity

posted Jan 26, 2014, 10:37 PM by hbchurch org   [ updated Jan 26, 2014, 10:39 PM ]

A quick glance at the world around us suggests that there seems to be an inherent desire in most of us for betterment. Our possessions probably bear testimony to this truth. We tend to “upgrade” what we have when such a move is to our advantage. On the other hand, lack of funds or frugality may cause us to either postpone or forget about it. What we have may be “good ‘nuff” for now. This is all OK in the world of material possessions, but not in the spiritual domain.

Some Christians in the first century were apparently having a hard time seeing the real advantage of the new covenant. The old covenant suited them just fine; there was no recognizable reason for them to “upgrade” to the new covenant. The Holy Spirit made his appeal to them by pointing out how much better the new was when compared to the old. (The book of Hebrews)

In the course of His argument, He also called the readers’ attention to the fact that the first covenant was not “faultless” (Heb. 8:7). Does this mean God did not know what He was doing, or maybe He was incapable of formulating a perfect plan? NO. He knew exactly what He was doing. So, why didn’t He give man the BETTER covenant first?

Before we look at the stated answer, we need to pause for a minute and think about our tendencies. If we are truly content with what we have, are we more or less inclined to be on the lookout for something better? Most of us would say, “Less inclined”. On the other hand, an awareness of the gross inadequacy of what we have will likely ignite a burning desire in our heart for that which is better. This was the Holy Spirit’s approach to those who were thinking the old covenant was serving their needs just fine. He noted, in line with man’s nature, “...if that first covenant had been faultless, no one would have looked for a second one” (Heb. 8:7 NET)

We must remember that the first covenant did nothing to remedy the desperate need of any person. Not one single person was ever forgiven of his/her sins on the basis of the “works of the law” (Gal. 2:16). It was impossible for “the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins” (Heb. 10:4). Hence, God had a BETTER plan. He explained that it was a BETTER covenant (Heb. 7:22; 8:6) with a BETTER hope (Heb. 7:10), enacted upon BETTER promises (Heb. 8:6) and based upon a BETTER sacrifice (Heb. 9:23).

Accepting the terms and conditions of the New Covenant is not merely an improved way of serving God; it is the ONLY WAY we can enter into a soul-saving relationship with Him. It’s a NECESSITY!    Ken Dart