A New Covenant

The principle of a blood sacrifice for sins, is a confusing concept for many people to understand. How can the death of one man save the lives of every person who has been born?

When God created Adam, He placed him on the earth and gave him dominion over every creature and the earth itself. This first man was subject to all the laws of the universe, just as we are today. Man does not live for himself. He exists within a set of boundaries that allow him to continue to reside on the earth. God established these laws for mankind, just as He established them for the universe.

There are Physical Laws which govern the universe:

Gravity and Relativity
Thermodynamics
Continuity and Transfer
Electromagnetism
Classic Laws of Planetary Motion, Universal Gravitation
Photonics; Reflection and Refraction
Quantum Mechanics
Radiation
Chemistry
Geophysical Laws.

There are Spiritual Laws with govern the universe:

Sin and Death
Judgment
Forgiveness
Salvation
Eternal Life

The principle law that we will concern ourself with in this chapter is the laws of sin and death. As gravity; “The force that attracts a body toward the center of the earth, or toward any other physical body having mass,” defines objects; the laws of sin and death defines behavior for human beings; “the soul that sins will die.” God did not place us on this planet with no directives. We all understand that in order for human life to exist, there must be laws to govern behavior. This only became true after the fall of man. Before Adam fell into sin and death began, there was only one rule: “Don’t eat from one fruit in the garden. This single law became the method, by-which, man could measure his love and obedience to his Creator. If Adam truly loved God and would do as He had instructed him; there would be no end to his life, nor the perfection of his existence. If Adam wished to exercise his right of choice and disobey God, then the result would be a loss of eternal life, and his relationship with God.

And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:16-17

There was only one rule: don’t eat from this one tree, one penalty: death.

This is the law of sin and death that God had established: “The soul that sins will die.”

Ezekiel 18:4 “Behold, all souls are Mine; The soul of the father As well as the soul of the son is Mine; The soul who sins shall die.”

This is what God told Adam on the day that he first sinned. His disobedience would result in a “curse,’ that would permeate the entire earth and cause death and decay to begin.

The curse:

Genesis 3:17 Then to Adam He said, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it: Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat of it All the days of your life.’ ”

The Bible is clear that all men, since Adam, are under a curse. From the moment that Adam disobeyed God, he was under the judgment of sin and death. Because all men are descended from Adam, all human beings have inherited this curse.

Paul wrote later in the New Testament that this was the purpose for Jesus coming into the world, to remove the curse.

Galatians 3:10-13 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse; for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who does not continue in all things which are written in the book of the law, to do them.” But that no one is justified by the law in the sight of God is evident, for “the just shall live by faith.” Yet the law is not of faith, but “the man who does them shall live by them.” Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”)…

What happened to Adam after his sin:

Genesis 3:7-8 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings. 8 And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.

Their eyes were opened; and for the first time, they noticed that they were naked. They felt guilt and hid themselves from God. Prior to Adam’s sin, he was not focussed on himself; he was looking at Eve and his relationship with God and all of creation. The fact that immediately after Adam’s sin occurs, he becomes self-aware; illustrates the defect that is in all of us. We are sinners by nature, being self-consumed. This defective nature that we all posses is the cause of all of the pain and suffering that is in the world.

The Bible is clear that all men, since Adam, are under a curse because of the actions of Adam. He was our representative and by his failure, every person on the planet has suffered the consequences. From the moment that Adam disobeyed God, he was under the judgment of sin and death. Because all men are descended from Adam, all human beings have inherited this curse.

We are not sinners because we sin; we sin because we are sinners.

Our propensity towards sin comes from the fact that we are inherently flawed in our basic spiritual D.N.A. We commit sin because that is what we do best. It is not really possible for any human being to not sin.

A large part of the plan of God in allowing Jesus to suffer for the sins of all people was that God would have a righteous basis to forgive sin. The pronouncement of God was that: The soul that sins will die.

In order for God to be seen as Just, He must punish sin by the death of the guilty. God does not ever overlook sin; He always judges it and punishes all wrong, just as He said that He would. There is, however, a provision in the law of God that allows for an innocent, who has done no wrong, to substitute his life for the life of the guilty. The innocent is made culpable by the transfer of sins to his account and then takes the punishment that is due. The former guilty party is treated as innocent, and there is no record of wrongdoing attached to his account. This is exactly what was accomplished by the provision in the law of God, to which Jesus availed Himself on our behalf.

Leviticus 1:4 Then he shall put his hand on the head of the burnt offering (who is innocent), and it will be accepted on his behalf to make atonement for him (who is guilty).

Although the process of sin’s removal is the same in both the Old and New Testament examples, through an innocent second party, the permanent removal of those sins in the Old Testament did not occur until the Messiah made His one perfect sacrifice for all those sins. After Jesus’ death, everyone who comes to Him, based on this provision in the law; they have their sins fully paid, and removed from their record.

In the Books of Exodus, Chapter 29, and Leviticus, Chapter 4, the Lord describes a process whereby a person who has committed sin may have those sins atoned for by the death of an innocent animal. This sacrifice did not remove the sin of the persons who committed them; it simply acted as a kofar—a covering, until the Messiah would come and make His one perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people. God was illustrating the seriousness of sin and the cost involved to have those sins judged. If no sacrifice was made, if there was no shedding of blood, then the sins could not be atoned for.

Hebrews 9:22 And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.

Jesus came, in the words of Isaiah; to proclaim to the ends of the world this great salvation that would be accomplished by the Messiah. Jesus fulfilled every point and purpose of the law of God, by becoming the perfect sacrifice that would; once and for all, remove our sins.

Hebrews 9:11-15 But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. 12 Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. 13 For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, 14 how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? 15 And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.

Paul’s puts forth the argument in Hebrews Chapter 10, that if innocent animals who shed their blood, could take away the guilt of the offending sinner and allow them to continue to worship God, how much more can the precious blood of the Son of God completely remove our sin and our guilt—forever? The purpose of these Old Testament laws were to serve as a “shadow of the good things to come.” If the Old Testament sacrifices had been perfect, then the person offering the animal would have experienced the complete removal of their sins. This was not the case; however, the sinner who brought his sacrifice, understood that his sins were still present. God was allowing a temporary provision to cover the guilt of the sinner until the Messiah arrived to permanently remove them forever.

Hebrews 10:1 For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect. 2 For then would they not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified, would have had no more consciousness of sins. 3 But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. 4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins.

To be “saved,” means to be rescued from the law of sin and death, so that it no longer has any effect upon you.

To this end, the prophet Jeremiah describes the arrival of a God-man, who will have the capacity to remove the curse that Adam caused and restore all those who believe, back to a perfect relationship with God.

The Messiah will make a new covenant in His blood that will make the first covenant obsolete.

Old Testament Prediction:

Jeremiah 31:31-32 Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah—not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke…

New Testament Fulfillment:

Matthew 26:28 (Jesus Speaking) For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

Hebrews 7:22 by so much more Jesus has become a surety of a better covenant.

Hebrews 8:6-10 But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second. Because finding fault with them, He says: “Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah—not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they did not continue in My covenant, and I disregarded them, says the LORD. 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.

Hebrews 8:13 In that He says, “A new covenant,” He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.

Hebrew Scholar, Paul of Tarsus, confirms that Jesus was the object of Jeremiah’s prophecy

In confirming the fulfillment of this prophecy from Jeremiah 31:31-32, Paul directly quotes the exact words of the prophet in describing the work of Jesus Christ, to accomplish our complete salvation; by the shedding of His blood on the cross.

Jeremiah: Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah. —Jeremiah 31:31

Paul: Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah —Hebrews 8:9

According to the covenant of the Old Testament, a person who had sinned could have his sins “covered” (not removed) by the blood of an innocent. These sacrifices for sin had to take place every time a sin was committed.

For more information on why and how the new covenant has fulfilled and eliminated the old covenant, see the chapters: Dying For Our Sins, Bearing Gods Wrath, and Hanged on a Tree.

The Old Testament sacrifices had limits in what they could accomplish:

Although the sacrifice of these animals served as an illustration for what God would do later through the Messiah’s perfect sacrifice for all sins, these animals could not permanently remove sin’s penalty and make a person perfect before God.

Hebrews 10:1-4 For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect. 2 For then would they not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified, would have had no more consciousness of sins. 3 But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. 4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins.

The Sacrifice that Jesus made for us, as described in the New Testament, is without limits in what it has accomplished:

Jesus death on the cross, fully vindicates all those who look to His sacrifice as the final payment for their sins. These sins were completely removed at Jesus death, and they no loner remain on the account of those who receive Jesus by faith.

Hebrews 10:10-14 By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. 11 And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God, 13 from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool. 14 For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.

The purpose of the many Old Testament laws was to serve as a shadow of the good things to come. If the Old Testament sacrifices were perfect, then they would not need to be offered continuously. Once the person who made the sacrifice completed the ritual, then his sins would have been completely removed. This was not the case however; the sinner who made his sacrifice understood that his sins were still present. God was allowing a temporary provision to cover the guilt of the sinner until the promise of God through His Messiah could come and permanently pay for these sins, and thereby remove them forever.

This is the topic of this prophecy by Jeremiah 31:31-32, that God will make a “new covenant” with Israel, and finally to the whole world. In this new agreement, the sacrifice that Jesus made one time for all of us, is the only means by which God is ready to save us all.

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Malachi continues our education is understanding the laws of sin and death and how the Messiah will bring the message of a new covenant between God and man. What God requires for salvation, is the most important issue of all human life. The basis of forgiveness of sins in the Old Testament was the animal sacrifices that were continually offered. On every occasion when a person would sin, they must bring a sacrifice for each sin. Under the new covenant of God, all sins were fully paid and forgiven, by one sacrifice. As the Messiah comes to offer His perfect and eternal life for the sins of the world, by His death and resurrection; salvation is available to every person.

Here the prophet Malachi states that when the Messiah comes, He will bring a new covenant that will exist between God and man.

Old Testament Prediction:

Malachi 3:1c “Behold, I send My messenger, And he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, Will suddenly come to His temple, Even the Messenger of the covenant, In whom you delight. Behold, He is coming,” Says the LORD of hosts.

New Testament Fulfillment:

Hebrews 10:5-9 Therefore, when Messiah came into the world, He said: “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, But a body You have prepared for Me. In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You had no pleasure. Then I said, “Behold, I have come—In the volume of the book it is written of Me—To do Your will, O God.’ ” Previously saying, “Sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings, and offerings for sin You did not desire, nor had pleasure in them” (which are offered according to the law), then He said, “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.” He takes away the first covenant that He may establish the second.

Hebrews 10:10-12 By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. 11 And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God…

What is the basis for God to allow us admission into heaven when we die?

This is one of the most important questions of a person’s life. Just as there are thousands of religions, with millions of churches who claim to have the answer to this question, how can we know who is correct? The correct answer is: Jesus.

What distinguishes Christianity from other religions of the world, is the singular life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. As you have read through this book, you have no doubt been struck by the uniqueness of Jesus. You have come to understand that salvation is not possible for any person, apart from Jesus death for our sins. The reasons are many, but they are all directed at two important points:

First: God requires perfection of human morality. He created us perfect and He demands that all of our behavior is perfectly righteous.[1] Since it is not possible for any person to meet these requirements, there is no possibility of anyone attaining salvation by their effort.[2] The new covenant that Malachi speaks of is one where our salvation is accomplished by a work of God, not by human attempts. God sent His Son into the world for the purpose of saving us. He was able to accomplish this because of His unique qualifications. Jesus took the body of a man and came to earth as one of us. The law of God requires that only another human being can save us.[3] As Jesus is also the Eternal God, dwelling within the body of a human being, His life is of infinite value. This is a prerequisite because the one who is offering His life for ours, must have a value that is equal to, or greater than; all of the lives that He is saving. As God came to us in the form of a human being, and His life has sufficient value to redeem us; Jesus was uniquely qualified to offer His life for us. See the chapters: Virgin Birth, A Body Prepared, and Passover Lamb.

Second: Based upon the above requirements, there is no other person, religion, or institution of man; that can meet these demands of God’s law. Therefore, it is impossible for us to save ourselves by our good works, since they will always fail the test of perfection. Although we may have the capacity to do many good things, we are not capable of being good in all things. This is a requirement of God for eternal life: perfection in moral behavior. We all understand that if imperfection is allowed in any system, before long, it begins to affect all of the other parts of a system. In the simple example of a basket of fruit: just one spot on one piece of fruit that has begun to decay, will eventually cause the ruin of all the other pieces of fruit. The entire basis of all human law is to remove those from society who refuse to obey the laws of government that protect the safety and serenity of all other persons. We all understand that imperfection in human life, greatly affects the quality of life for everyone. In heaven, there will be no imperfection in anything. Only those who are fully ready, by obtaining perfection in their moral behavior, will be permitted in heaven. By Jesus death and resurrection, His perfect life, has made all of our imperfect lives—perfect. Once we believe upon Jesus, our sins do not have the power to keep us out of heaven, since they have all been removed. They do, however, have the capacity to affect our fellowship with God in our current relationship. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to remove them; and our fellowship with God can continue.[4] This new relationship with God, based upon Jesus death and resurrection; makes us fully ready for heaven. This is the new covenant that Malachi speaks of.

How The Prophecies of the Messiah Relate to Salvation

I have been frequently asked, why I believe the study and knowledge of Bible prophecy is so important.

The issues that that are most significant:

How can we test the reliability of claims that are made about eternal matters? How can we know for certain what is acceptable to God? How do we know that what is taught in churches and synagogues is the truth?

If we understand that truth is absolute and always very narrow by definition, then we understand that the truth about what God requires will also be very narrow. The Bible declares that there is One God, One Church, and just one way to heaven. Jesus claimed that He is that way.

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

Jesus provided evidence for His claim that He is the only way to heaven by raising Himself from the dead after He was brutally crucified. Any church, religious organization, or person can claim that they are the only way; Jesus said that He could prove His claim by raising Himself from the dead. No other person in the history of the world has ever claimed to die for the sins of the world and then raised themselves to life; never to die again.[5]

One of the well established prophetic requirements of the Messiah that is described in various places of the Old Testament, is His resurrection from the dead, after He is crucified. See the former chapter: The Promise of Resurrection.

There are 56 Old Testament prophecies listed in this book that specifically state that the Messiah will die for the sins of the world.

There are 11 Old Testament prophecies listed in this book that specifically state that the Messiah will be raised from the dead.

The prophecies that describe the Messiah’s death and resurrection are fulfilled by Jesus Christ, as attested to by the prophecies detailed in this book.

It is by predictive and fulfilled prophecy that we have confidence that the Bible is the only reliable set of documents that prove that they are the word of God. Sixty-six books written by forty authors, over a period of more than one thousand five hundred years, yet containing one unified message: “Jesus is the Messiah.”

No other publication in the history of mankind has the record of predictive and fulfilled prophecy that is contained within the Bible. One hundred percent of every prediction that God has made in the Bible, has been fulfilled with precision; by the Life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It was the intent of God that by fulfilled prophecy, we would understand that the words of the Bible are from God, not from man.

And if you say in your heart, “How shall we know the word which the LORD has not spoken?”—when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him. Deuteronomy 18:21-22

And you know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one thing has failed of all the good things which the LORD your God spoke concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one word of them has failed. Joshua 23:14

God, who… calls those things which do not exist as though they did… Romans 4:17

The test for whether a word spoken by someone who claims to be a prophet of God, is a true prophet, is whether the words that they speak come to pass exactly as they said. Only someone with knowledge of every event that would take place in the history of the world could accurately predict future events with one hundred percent accuracy.

Not one prophecy of the Bible has ever failed to be fulfilled—exactly as God has spoken. Only a transcendent being with infinite knowledge, who lives outside of time, could tell us what will happen hundreds or thousands of years before the events they describe, take place.

It is for this reason that we should trust only the words of the Bible and not the words of men—who do not speak for God. The Bible claims that “Holy men of God” spoke, as the Spirit of God gave them understanding. The test for whether or not God spoke the things that are written is whether these things actually came to pass over the process of time.

The following verse written by Peter, is the theme of this book:

2 Peter 1:19-21 And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts; 20 knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, 21 for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.

True prophecy that originates from God will always be confirmed by the events of history. No prophecy that is contained within the Bible has its origin in the mind or heart of a man. The words of these prophecies came from the eternal mind and unlimited knowledge of the Living God. He spoke to the hearts and minds of men who had set themselves apart for God so that He could speak through them. They recorded the words of God in the Bible for us so that we would be able to test whether these words are the words of God. If any prophecy of the Bible had ever failed, we would not need to listen to the words of the Bible—for they would not be the words of God.

Every prophecy of the Bible that should be fulfilled by this date, has been fulfilled.

These events of prophecy are recorded for our learning, so we might understand that God has told us these things to validate His word. He has described all the details that will concern the life of His Son; whom He will send to earth to complete our salvation. It is by our awareness of these many prophecies that we can comprehend His plan for our lives.

There is no other document of antiquity that has so accurately predicted all of the major events of mankind in greater clarity, than the Bible. Many people have tried to predict future events. At their best, they have achieved no more than a 25-50 percent success rate.[6] The Bible, on the other hand, has a one hundred percent record of precision and accuracy in all of the predictions that it has made.[7]

All of the prophecies that are contained within this publication, existed in Hebrew literature; have been examined by Hebrew scholars, and were verified as valid prophecies. The book of Joshua, penned around 1400 B.C., verifies that none of the prophecies that God gave to the ancient Hebrew prophets has failed.

…And you know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one thing has failed of all the good things which the LORD your God spoke concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one word of them has failed. Joshua 23:14

The prophet Isaiah, writing 700 years before the 131 prophecies that He wrote for the Messiah, were fulfilled by Jesus of Nazareth; said that what God has said, He will perform.

Who has performed and done it, Calling the generations from the beginning? “I, the LORD, am the first; And with the last I am He.” Isaiah 41:4

Those prognosticators today, who make predictions of future events, have repeatedly demonstrated that they cannot accurately predict events that will happen in the future, one hundred percent of the time. According to the Bible, anyone who claims to make predictions that God has allegedly spoken, are tested, for their validity, by whether their predictions actually took place, later. If any prediction spoken does not occur precisely as that prophet has spoken, he is defined as a “false prophet”; and no one should listen to them.

“… when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously…” —Deuteronomy 18:22

The Bible has been proven—over and over again, that it is the only trustworthy representation of the words of God. This is due to its record of perfect accuracy in the area of prophecy.

The new covenant that Jesus brought to us, which this prophecy from Malachi 3:1c, describes; states that God will accept us if we come to Him through the one perfect sacrifice that Jesus has made for our sins. The way in which we know for certain that Jesus is the fulfillment of the prophecies that predict who the Savior will be, is by His resurrection from the dead; which fulfilled the requirements set forth by the Hebrew scriptures.

The Old Testament requires that in order for sins to be forgiven by God, those sins must be “atoned” for. This is to say; a penalty must be exacted against those sins. The penalty required by the Bible is; death.

Behold, all souls are Mine; The soul of the father As well as the soul of the son is Mine; The soul who sins shall die.

The blood of an animal that was shed for the sins of those persons who brought their sacrifice to the priest, did so by faith. They believed what God said: if they came with a perfect sacrifice, God would receive them and forgive their transgressions. These sacrifices were brought continuously, until Jesus came and made His one perfect sacrifice that was costly enough to pay for the sins of the entire world.

In doing this and by fulfilling all of the Old Testament prophecies of the Messiah, Jesus has proven that only He is qualified to be the Savior of the world.

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In this final section of the chapter, Malachi asks the question: “who can stand when Messiah appears?” We have previously learned that the Messiah will appear on the earth twice. Once for salvation; in which He will die for the sins of the world. Second; He will return to earth for judgment. Here, Malachi describes the Messiah’s return to earth, the second time; for judgement.

Old Testament Prediction:

Malachi 3:2-3 But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire And like launderers soap.He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, And purge them as gold and silver, That they may offer to the LORD An offering in righteousness.

New Testament Fulfillment:

Luke 1:76-77 And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Highest; For you will go before the face of the Lord to prepare His ways, To give knowledge of salvation to His people By the remission of their sins…

Acts 13:38 Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through this Man is preached to you the forgiveness of sins…

Ephesians 1:7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace…

“Not Guilty”

Malachi asks the question: “Who can stand on the day of the Messiah’s arrival?” The question would be: “Which arrival is the prophet referring to?”

Jesus said that the purpose of His first appearance on earth was not for condemnation—yet, His presence here did bring judgment to all those who have rejected Him and the sacrifice He has made for their sins.

John 3:17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

John 9:39 And Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.”

John 3:18 (Jesus speaking) He who believes…is not condemned; but he who does not believe (in Jesus) is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Those who come to Jesus for salvation, through the forgiveness of their sins; will not be condemned. However, those who refuse Jesus, have judged and condemned themselves; because they have rejected the only way by which God has ordained that we can be saved. Those who make themselves blind to the truth of salvation that is only possible through Jesus Christ, affirm their blindness. Much in the same way that the Pharaoh of Egypt experienced the confirmation of his already hard heart, by seeing the judgments of God upon his kingdom. Because Pharaoh was persistent in his obstinance, God confirmed the hardness of his heart, making it impossible for Pharaoh to believe.

This is not to say that God conducted a transformation of Pharaoh’s heart; He simply placed circumstances before Pharaoh that would cause his already hard heart to be perfected in its hardened condition.

Exodus 4:21 And the LORD said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt, see that you do all those wonders before Pharaoh which I have put in your hand. But I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go.”

God did not give Pharaoh a hard heart towards Himself, this condition already existed before the ten plagues that God sent to Egypt. It was by these events that confirmation was made that Pharaoh had no desire, nor intention; of humbling himself before God.

In Jesus’ first arrival, He saved all those who came to Him in humility, out of a broken heart for their sin, by extending mercy and forgiveness. People who will not turn to the Lord, because of the stubbornness of their heart, God will send them circumstances that will either confirm or remove their hardness of heart. Trials have two possible outcomes: One, we are humbled by our difficulties and turn to God for help. Two, we are hardened by our difficulties and turn away from God.

God will confirm the blindness and hardness of a human heart, if that person continues to deny Him and will not humble themselves to seek Him. He does this so that on the day of judgment, there will be no excuse that is valid.

There is a point at which a person who refuses to believe what is so clear and obvious, will reach a place where they will never be able to comprehend God, nor His plan of salvation. We observe this phenomenon in those who consider themselves informed and educated regarding the nature and existence of the universe, while denying its obvious source; God. In the words of atheist, and theoretical physicist, Lawrence Krauss; “God is not necessary…”[8] Dr. Krauss has reached a place where it is impossible for him to believe because of many years of denying and rejecting God in his life.

The Lord is not mocked, whatsoever a man sows in his life, he will reap. Those who sow unbelief in the truth of God’s simple message of salvation, will reap a heart that cannot believe. God will confirm their obstinance—thereby making their salvation an impossibility. There is a point in every human life, where after years of saying no to God, He will let this person go and they will be lost eternally. The impossibility of their salvation does not reside in God, who cannot save them; but in their own unwillingness to seek Him and be saved.

Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind…

2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

Once a person reaches a point of unyielding to spiritual truth, it becomes nearly impossible for him to ever believe.

In answer to Malachi’s question, “Who can stand on the day of the Messiah’s arrival?” The solution is found in the atoning work of the Messiah at the cross. As Malachi speaks of two purifying agents of fire for metals and soap for clothing, the Messiah’s atonement cleanses us from all sin—past, present, and future. The soap, represents the blood of Christ that washes away all of our sins; while trials are the fire that purifies the believer in a continuing process of refinement.

The Old Testament remedy for sin required that an animal should be brought to the priest at the entrance of the Tabernacle. As the lamb stands before you, the priest would take your hand and place upon the head of the lamb; transferring your guilt to him. When the Lamb dies and his blood is shed, your sins are forgiven.

The major problem with the old covenant of continuing sacrifices for sins, is that it did not have the power to permanently remove the sins of the guilty. The new covenant that God has made with us, is based upon what Jesus has accomplished at the cross. When Jesus died as our Lamb, He paid the penalty for our sins. According to God, when we believe this; we are viewed as righteous; fully satisfying the requirements for heaven. When this happens, God not only forgives all of our sins, He removes them as if they never existed. This is what the term “justification” means; “Just-as-if-i had never sinned.”

All those who had their sins covered by the blood of the Old Testament sacrifices did not have their sins purged completely. When Jesus completed His sacrifice on the cross and was put to death, rising from the dead on the third day; every sin from the beginning of the world, to the very end, was paid in full.

See the chapter: A Tabernacle, a Sanctuary, for a complete study on the Old Testament sacrifices at the Tabernacle, in comparison to the one perfect sacrifice Jesus made for us as the Messiah.

Hebrews 10:4-10 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins. Therefore, when He came into the world, He said: “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, But a body You have prepared for Me. In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You had no pleasure. Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come— In the volume of the book it is written of Me— To do Your will, O God.’ ” Previously saying, “Sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings, and offerings for sin You did not desire, nor had pleasure in them” (which are offered according to the law), then He said, “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.” He takes away the first that He may establish the second. By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

God’s new covenant, declares that we are “not guilty,” and grants every person—eternal life; if we come to Him on the basis of Jesus’ sacrifice for our sins. Just as it was not possible that the blood of bulls and goats under the old covenant could take away sins, it is also not possible for any human being to be saved apart from the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

God has chosen only one method whereby He will grant us a full pardon for our sins. If we accept this offer by faith, trusting that God will do what He has promised, at the end of our life; we will arrive at heaven and live in perfection and beauty forever.

See also: One God, One Way


[1] (Jesus Speaking) Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect. Matthew 5:48
For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. Hebrews 2:10
[2] not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, Titus 3:5-6
[3] See the chapter: Kinsman Redeeer
[4] If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1John 1:9
[5] Although there are some persons from history who are alleged to have been raised from the dead, their claims cannot be confirmed by empirical evidence, as in the case of Jesus of Nazareth. In these cases where an alleged resurrection is said to have taken place, these persons have died again. Once Jesus was raised from the dead, He never died again.
[6] Out of 35 predictions that were made in the calendar year, 2015, by Scott Alexander, only 9 were fulfilled. This is a .025714 percent success rate.
2015 PREDICTIONS: CALIBRATION RESULTS
POSTED ON JANUARY 2, 2016 BY SCOTT ALEXANDER
Predictions fulfilled are indicated in bold
Many people are making predictions for the new year around now. I see fewer people going back and grading the accuracy of their predictions about last year, even though that obviously has a lot of relevance for how seriously we should take this year’s predictions.
In keeping with the SSC tradition, here are the results for my (late) predictions for 2015. Successful predictions are normal-looking, failed predictions are crossed out:
World Events
1. US will not get involved in any new major war with death toll of > 100 US soldiers: 70%
2. North Korea’s government will survive the year without large civil war/revolt: 95%
3. Greece will not announce it’s leaving the Euro: 60%
3. Neither Russia nor Qatar will lose their World Cups: 80%
4. Ebola will kill fewer people in second half of 2015 than the in first half: 95%
5. No terrorist attack in the USA will kill > 100 people: 90%
6. Assad will remain President of Syria: 70%
7. Israel will not get in a large-scale war (ie >100 Israeli deaths) with any Arab state: 90%
8. Syria’s civil war will not end this year: 80%
9. ISIS will control less territory than it does right now: 70%
10. ISIS will continue to exist: 80%
11. Iran will reach a deal with the West on nuclear weapons: 80%
12. No major civil war in Middle Eastern country not currently experiencing a major civil war: 90%
13. Iraq’s situation not to get any worse (eg gov’t collapse, new rebellion): 60%
14. Obamacare will survive the year mostly intact: 60%
15. Hillary Clinton will be the top-polling Democratic Presidential candidate: 95%
16. Jeb Bush will be the top-polling Republican candidate: 50%
17. Trans-Pacific Partnership to pass at least mostly intact: 60%
18. US official unemployment rate will be less than 7% in Dec 2015: 95%
19. Bitcoin will end the year higher than $200: 95%
20. Oil will end the year greater than $60 a barrel: 50%
Personal Life
21. SSC will remain active: 95%
22. SSC will get fewer hits in the second half of 2015 than the first half: 60%
23. At least one SSC post in the second half of 2015 will get > 100,000 hits: 70%
24. Shireroth will remain active: 90%
25. I will remain at my same job through the end of 2015: 95%
26. There will be no further ramifications or lawsuits from either side over the flooding of my house: 80%
27. I will reach my savings target: 90%
28. I will get a score at >95th percentile for my year on PRITE: 50% (unknown, haven’t gotten score back)
29. I will be involved in at least one published/accepted-to-publish research paper by the end of 2015: 60%
30. I will not break up with any of my current girlfriends: 80%
31. I will not get any new girlfriends: 50%
32. I will not finish [project]: 60%
33. I will attend NYC Solstice ritual: 80%
34. I will flake out of my plan to lead some kind of Solstice Ritual myself: 60%
35. I will be living in the house I’m currently trying to arrange to rent: 70%
Source:http://slatestarcodex.com/2016/01/02/2015-predictions-calibration-results/
[7] When qualified persons who have the necessary knowledge and background to examine, understand, and evaluate these prophecies; the prophecies of the entire Bible, these predictions have been found to be one hundred percent accurate, by scholars, for more than 3,500 years. Critics who do not believe that God exists, nor that it is possible to predict the future events that are described in the various prophecies of the Bible, state that these prophecies were written “after the fact.” This assertion has been impeached by demonstrating that these prophecies existed in manuscripts of the original text, hundreds of years before the prophecies were fulfilled. Source: “Prophecies of the Messiah,” 2015, by Robert Clifton Robinson, Published by Teach The Word Ministries, Inc
[8] Lawrence M. Krauss, A Universe from Nothing (New York: Free Press, 2012), 191.