The New Covenant at a Glance

I was asked: “What exactly is the New Covenant, and where is it described in the Bible.”

Great question.

The short answer is that the New Covenant is mentioned and described in Jeremiah 31:31-34. That passage is quoted in Hebrews 8:8-11.

If you want a passage that gets right to the point in explaining the New Covenant and the difference between it and the Old Covenant, that passage can be found in Acts 2:14-38. If you want a description of the power of the New Covenant, read Acts 2:39 through the end of chapter 4.

Paul explains the difference between the Old and New Covenants in 2 Corinthians 3 as well as in Galatians 4.

The biggest difference between the Old and New Covenants? Perhaps the most important difference is that everyone who enters the New Covenant receives the Spirit of God, as Peter explains in Acts 2:14-38, quoting Joel 2:28-32. Under the Old Covenant, the Holy Spirit was not promised, and only great people like Daniel, David, and others like them received the Holy Spirit.

There are other differences, too. We have the promise of resurrection was never given under the Old Covenant. We have this promise because Jesus rose from the dead. We get complete forgiveness for our past, good and bad, because in baptism God regards us as having died and risen again in Jesus. We really are risen again, or reborn, because he gives us the Spirit and we thus possess the life of God inside of us.

Great promises! Better, they are offered free in Jesus so that all of us can be made together into a holy people, zealous for good works (Titus 2:11-14), and so that we can fulfill the righteous requirement of the Law by living our lives by the Spirit (Rom. 8:1-14).

About Paul Pavao

I am married, the father of six, and currently the grandfather of two. I run a business, live in a Christian community, teach, and I am learning to disciple others better than I have ever been able to before. I believe God has gifted me to restore proper foundations to the Christian faith. In order to ensure that I do not become a heretic, I read the early church fathers from the second and third centuries. They were around when all the churches founded by the apostles were in unity. I also try to stay honest and open. I argue and discuss these foundational doctrines with others to make sure my teaching really lines up with Scripture. I am encouraged by the fact that the several missionaries and pastors that I know well and admire as holy men love the things I teach. I hope you will be encouraged too. I am indeed tearing up old foundations created by tradition in order to re-establish the foundations found in Scripture and lived on by the churches during their 300 years of unity.
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1 Response to The New Covenant at a Glance

  1. Great answer Paul! Have always loved Jeremiah 31:31-34 for the hope it instilled where there really wasn’t any prior to the coming of Christ and His resurrection. Although we know that King David expected to see his first born with Sheba and Job expected to see G-d at his death most of the People of G-d had no expectation beyond the grave. We surely do have a better Covenant today this side of the Cross. May we all come to a knowledge of that ‘better’ while still attending to Father’s business whilst in the earth.

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