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The New Covenant: Does It Abolish God's Law?

Does the New Covenant negate God's law and do away with any need to obey the Ten Commandments and other laws of God? The belief that it does has long been a popular teaching in traditional Christianity. We'll thoroughly examine this question in this booklet. Even more important, we'll address the real purpose of God's biblical covenants—more than one—and their vital role in the Creator's overall plan for mankind. It's highly important that we understand their true meaning.

Introduction: The New Covenant

Does the New Covenant negate God's law and do away with any need to obey the Ten Commandments and other laws of God?

God's Magnificent Series of Covenants

What is the central message of Jesus Christ's gospel?

Did Abraham Keep the Same Commandments God Gave to Moses?

Most religious teachers say that God's commands given through Moses applied only to ancient Israel and are not for us today.

How Can We Obey God's Commandments?

What is the nature and purpose of God's Ten Commandments?

The Sinai Covenant and the 'Voice of the Lord'

The covenant that God made with the ancient Israelites at Mt. Sinai—to give them His special blessings and protection—was conditional on their obedience to His instruction.

God's 'Laws, Statutes and Judgments'

God's instructions to His people and their officials are usually summarized under the three broad categories of statutes, judgments and laws

Key Elements of the Sinai Covenant

The Sinai Covenant's total package of law, the entire five books written by Moses, was designed to cover in principle every major aspect of national life in ancient Israel.

Rightly Understanding 'Justification' and 'Righteousness'

The words righteous or righteousness in English translations of the Scriptures describe primarily personal character as demonstrated in appropriate behavior.

Did the Ten Commandments Exist Before Moses?

Many people assume that the Ten Commandments and the covenant God established with ancient Israel are identical—and that both were abolished by Jesus Christ's death.

God's Law: Is It a Burden or a Blessing?

Why did God give His law?

A New Covenant for Transforming the Heart

God planned from the beginning to transform the limited and temporary covenant He made with ancient Israel—with its abundance of symbolic sacrifices—into a far superior covenant commitment with a permanent sacrifice for sin open to all of mankind.

What Was the Main Weakness of the Sinai Covenant?

What was the problem with the Sinai Covenant?

How God Balances Justice With Mercy

God balances justice with mercy by considering what is in the heart—whether there remains any possibility of repentance.

How Is the New Covenant 'New'?

The New Covenant unquestionably provides a better relationship with God than the relationship portrayed only symbolically in the former covenant.

The Ten Commandments: Keys in a Law of Love

The love most often spoken of in the bible is an outgoing concern for others as demonstrated by our actions and more meaningful than mere feelings.

The High Priest Essential to Salvation

Only by having constant access to a living, permanent High Priest is it possible for us to obey God in a manner that pleases Him.

Grace and Law: Why Are They Inseparable?

The word grace is regularly used by some religious people as if it replaces all need to obey God's law. That conclusion is not only inaccurate, it is also diabolical!

A High Priest Eager to Help Us

The key to solving the problem of sin is the help we receive through Jesus Christ.

Circumcision vs. a 'New Creation' in Christ

"Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is a new creation" (Galatians 6:15, NIV).

Current Confusion Over Christian Freedom

In countering the Galatian heresy, Paul sometimes refers to Christian freedom. But the freedom he describes is very different from the way his words are commonly interpreted today.

The 'Curse of the Law'

Galatians 3:10-13 is one of the most frequently misused passages in the Bible.

Galatians 4:9-10: Are God's Laws Bondage?

Some view Galatians 4:9-10 as condemning Old Testament laws.

Why Paul Used the Term 'the Whole Law' in Galatians 5:3

Was Paul implying that the gentiles' exemption from physical circumcision also exempted them from having to obey any of the laws of God?

What's Wrong With Our Human Nature?

The Bible represents Satan as the master manipulator of human nature.

The Holy Spirit: God's Promise of His Divine Help

We need God's help, through His Spirit, to obey Him from the heart and bring our thoughts, attitudes and actions in line with His.

The Justice and Judgment of God

God is a judge who holds every human being accountable to His law is a theme repeated again and again in the Scriptures.

How Paul Put the Law on 'Firmer Footing'

A comment by Paul that many lift out of context and misinterpret in Romans.

How Does Justification Relate to Salvation?

In understanding the relationship between justification and salvation, we need to realize the different senses in which these terms are used.

Does Romans 14 Abolish Laws on Unclean Meats?

Many believe Romans 14 says that Christians are free from all former restrictions regarding the meats they may eat.

Did Paul Teach That All Days of Worship Are Alike?

Did Paul teach that the Sabbath is no different from any other day or that we are free to choose for ourselves whatever day we wish to observe?

Did Paul Tell the Romans One Thing and the Corinthians the Opposite?

Many people assume that Paul was dismissing any need to keep the Sabbath and other biblical Holy Days...

Peace and Unity in Christ

Paul's letter to the Ephesians is about God's marvelous plan to bring peace, unity and salvation to all peoples—Jews and gentiles alike.

Paul Imprisoned Over a Man-Made Taboo

Both internal and historical evidence indicates that Paul was in prison when he wrote his epistles to the Ephesians and Colossians.

The Corruption of Apostolic Christianity

Almost immediately after the Roman armies destroyed the city of Jerusalem and its temple in A.D. 70, intense prejudice against Jewish beliefs and customs spread like wildfire throughout the Roman Empire.

What Was 'Wiped Out' by Jesus Christ's Death?

The inadequate and misleading translation of a passage in Colossians 2 in some Bible versions is often used to support the flawed belief that God's law was "wiped out" by Jesus Christ...

What Does 'Shadow of Things to Come' Mean?

Paul explains in Colossians that God's weekly Sabbath day and sacred festivals are a shadow of things to come.

The Calendar Used by the Earliest Gentile Christians

The following quote from a book by Dr. Troy Martin, professor of Religious Studies at Chicago's Saint Xavier University, on Paul's letter to the Colossians provides an effective rebuttal to the common but false argument that Paul taught Christian gentiles not to observe the sacred days that were used by the Jews.

The Ascetic Philosophy Affecting the Colossians

Paul warned the Christian gentiles in Colosse against misguided human philosophy, not against the need to keep God's law.

Colossians 2:16-17: Are God's Laws Obsolete?

Many people assume from Colossians 2:16-17 that Paul is saying that God's laws about the Sabbath, Holy Days and clean and unclean meats are no longer necessary.

The Apostles, the Old Testament and God's Law

One of the most misguided conceptions of the New Covenant is the idea that through it Jesus Christ canceled obedience to the laws contained in the Old Testament.

Jesus and Paul Emphasize the Law's Correct Focus

By the time of Jesus and Paul, some Jewish religious leaders had distorted the focus of God's law.

Paul Regularly Used the Old Testament as the Authority for His Teaching

In many Bible versions it can be difficult to tell when a New Testament writer is quoting from the Old Testament.

Acts Shows What the Early Church Believed and Practiced

The book of Acts is a key historical record of what the early Church believed and practiced.

What Did Paul Mean by 'Christ Is the End of the Law'?

Jesus Christ, the living Word of God, is a perfect replica of what God's law teaches. Pointing us to His character and work is the aim" of the law.

The Jerusalem Conference of Acts 15: What Was Decided?

Some people believe that the early Church's decision in Acts 15 freed Christians from the need to obey the laws revealed in the Old Testament. But is this the case?

Jesus' Teaching on God's Law

Perhaps the most widespread controversies about the teachings of Jesus concern His attitude toward the laws of God recorded in the Old Testament.

Other Important Ways Jesus Fulfilled the Law

Consider for a moment the penalty that each of us brought on ourselves by sin.

Does the New Covenant Abolish the Commandments?

The popular belief that the New Covenant abolishes God's law reflects a misunderstanding of both covenants.

The 'New' Part of Jesus Christ's 'New Commandment'

Did Jesus replace God's previous commandments with just this one new commandment?

Confusion Over Legalism: What It Is and Isn't

The religious authorities who accused Jesus Christ of breaking the Sabbath have been described as having a legalistic approach. But what does the term legalism mean?

Does God Set Conditions on His Gift of Eternal Life?

Eternal life comes as a result of God's grace. It is His gift, unearned and undeserved on our part.

All the World Under the New Covenant

When God confirmed the Sinai Covenant with ancient Israel, He summarized how He wanted the people to respond.

Liberty Through God's Law

Today's democratic system of government in Western nations is based on liberty that is both defined and guaranteed by law. Biblical freedom or liberty is no different. Without law, there can be no effective or lasting liberty.

A Covenant of Marriage

Few people realize that the Old Covenant was essentially a marriage covenant...

Did Paul's Words to the Galatians Contradict His Actions?

One common interpretation of the book of Galatians is that Paul criticized the Galatians for keeping the biblical Sabbath and Holy Days.

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