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Hebrews 8:6-8 by Robert Dean
Series:Hebrews (2005)
Duration:52 mins 34 secs

Hebrews Lesson 115    February 14, 2008 

 

NKJ Psalm 119:9 How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word.

 

We are studying the New Covenant for background to Hebrews 8 in our study in Hebrews, but we are in Isaiah tonight. As background for understanding the New Covenant, we have to understand first and foremost that it is the eighth covenant that's in the Old Testament. It is the fifth and final covenant related to Israel. The first and foundational covenant for Israel is the Abrahamic Covenant which promised Israel three things – land, seed and blessing. Each paragraph, each aspect of the Abrahamic Covenant is then developed in subsequent covenants so that the land provision is expanded in the Land Covenant, the seed promise is developed in the Davidic Covenant, and the blessing aspect is expanded in the New Covenant. The Davidic Covenant is important to understand because when we get into the study of the New Covenant we realize that it's often linked with the fulfillment of the Davidic Covenant. We'll see that in one passage in Isaiah this evening. It's also linked with the final fulfillment of the Land Covenant with Israel. So if Israel is not in the land and they don't have the Davidic seed on the throne, then the New Covenant hasn't been fulfilled yet. It hasn't been enacted. 

 

Now this chart we've looked at puts things into a chronological perspective with the dispensational timeline at the bottom with the different ages in the history of Israel and positioning the covenants. I just mentioned those four covenants within their framework and then showing that they are all fulfilled at the time that Jesus Christ returns and establishes His kingdom. These are all enacted at the beginning of the Millennial Kingdom. The dashed line indicates the relationship of the church to the New Covenant by way of our position in Christ, our relationship to Him.

 

We also looked at four aspects of the covenant. It's just general background. We have these various scriptures. We have persons – God who initiates the covenant; the house of Israel and the house of Judah are covenant partners. Then the importance, and I have revised this. It's important to understand why I have revised this. The importance of the covenant is it provides for the...and the previous reading was it provides for the regeneration of Israel. That terminology is common terminology to what you read in a number of books on prophecy, dispensations. Dr. Ryrie uses it when he talks about these New Covenant passages. Arnold Fruchtenbaum uses it even more. 

 

The more I started looking at some of these passages; the term regeneration is actually never used in any of these passages. There is washing. There is cleansing, the heart of stone being replaced by a heart of flesh. There are a number of things there that are related to regeneration. The term isn't used. 

 

The reason I want to be careful with it is because it is national. The people who receive this at the beginning of the Tribulation are not becoming saved. See, regeneration carries that sense of moving from being spiritually dead to being spiritually alive. There are two things we have to remember about these passages. Number one, they're not talking about individuals. Only an individual can be regenerated. Number 2, these passages are applied. These passages never use the word regeneration. They use terms that are similar and that…I can see why people have gone to use that word, but I think it leads to some other areas of confusion. I don't think it's the best choice of words because when the Jews come to the end of the Tribulation period, these Jews are saved. Many of them are saved. They're already saved when they leave Jerusalem. They see the Abomination of Desolation and they flee to the mountains. Why do they flee to the mountains?  Because of Matthew 24… Jesus said:

 

NKJ Matthew 24:16 "then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.

 

So, why would an unregenerate, apostate Jew be obeying Jesus' command in the Sermon on the Mount? So, the fact that they are fleeing indicates either they're sympathetic, they've got family members, they have friends that are already saved and are applying Matthew 24, or they're already saved and applying Matthew 24. But when they get to the wilderness in Basra and the desert there, they nationally call upon Jesus to come back as a corporate body – not just as individuals. See you had individual Jews saved at the First Advent before the crucifixion. You had more individual Jews respond to Peter's message in Acts 2 and in Acts 3 where he clearly promises millennial blessing. In Acts 3 he uses the term that if they accept Jesus as messiah, then the times of refreshing will come. That's millennial terminology. So this offer of the kingdom seems to still be a legitimate offer even after the ascension during that early stage that's of course long before they're taken out under the fifth cycle of discipline. So you have numerous individual Jews regenerated in the sense of being justified, saved, moving from spiritual death to spiritual life. But, you don't have this national change that takes place. That is what is described in these various New Covenant passages.

 

It's interesting when you get into them. They use that terminology of cleansing and changing, but there are other things that go with it that are not part of the regeneration package that a Church Age believer has. So if we use the term regeneration for what happens when a Church Age believer or Old Testament believer gets saved and we relate that to how these passages describe what's happening to the nation, then we can get into some real confusion. So I think we have to stop and reflect upon that to just make sure we're using the best terminology. So I have changed this to reflect the terminology that we have in the text of Scripture. 

 

The New Covenant provides for the national cleansing. Why? Because, the nation has been ceremonially and ritually defiled by their disobedience to God, their rejection of the Messiah, and their past idolatry. What happens at the Second Coming is their Messiah comes as the Son of David who is going to establish His personal residence in the Temple and there is going to be the consecration and sanctification of the land for the Temple. 

 

The Temple itself is a mile square. Jerusalem at the center part is ten miles square and then the whole temple, Jerusalem area in the Millennial Kingdom is like 50 miles square. So this has to be consecrated which means to be set apart to the service of God and it has to be cleansed because is has been defiled through the last centuries. But, that's not the same thing as moving from unsaved to saved. So I think it is very important to come in and clarify this terminology. So I've changed it to:

 

This covenant provides for the national cleansing and restoration of Israel along with a new spiritual life that is unique to the Millennial Kingdom. 

 

Just as we have in the Church Age a spiritual life that is unique to this age that is based on the indwelling and filling of God the Holy Spirit, there is a unique spiritual life for Israel in the Millennial Kingdom because everyone is saved. No one needs to be taught of their neighbor about God. Everyone will have an intuitive knowledge of the existence of God and the truth of Scripture and so it's a vastly different spiritual life and has different characteristics than what we have today. 

 

I think that by using the same term, using the term regeneration to describe all of that takes us beyond simple salvation. I mean it gets confusing because all of that goes way beyond simple justification and regeneration as we normally use it is a more restricted term. We'll see that as we go through some of these passages. So we're going to use the terminology that provides for a national cleansing, restoration of saved Israel along with a new spiritual life and the fulfillment of all other covenants and promises to them. 

 

And then we went through the ten provisions which reinforce that unique state of salvation and spiritual life for nation of Israel in the Millennial Kingdom. 

 

I think it is really important to reinforce again and again that this is talking about the nation as a corporate entity going through this cleansing, restoration process because a vast number of the individuals who make up the nation have already been justified, have already received eternal life.  So let's be careful not to confuse those ideas. 

 

So we started off our study in the Old Testament to understand the New Covenant's relation to Israel. I've started walking us through the Old Testament passages in a chronological manner. This is called the diachronic procedure. You take the study of a doctrine or scripture and trace it chronologically as it's revealed. 

 

So the first passage we looked at several lessons back was Hosea 2:17-18. Hosea flourished. His ministry was in the 8th century BC and it overlapped the time of Isaiah and Amos. He simply talks about that fact that "in that day I will make a covenant." And so indicates a new or different covenant other than the Mosaic Covenant, the Davidic Covenant or the Land Covenant. 

 

Then last time we started looking at the Isaiah passages. There are several key…there are 6 key references in Isaiah to a future covenant. The first passage that we looked at is this passage in Isaiah 42:6. So open you Bibles to Isaiah 42.

 

Just a brief review and we'll move into the next one, the next chapters. In Isaiah 40 a new section of the book develops which focuses on God's plan for Israel in the future. The first 39 chapters focus on His judgment. They are very negative. They focus on God's warning of divine judgment. This happens a couple of hundred years before the Babylonian captivity and Isaiah warns of this coming judgment. But then in chapters 40 to the end of the book, it focuses on the future hope, restoration of the nation and their salvation through the Messiah who is referred to in these passages as "Your Servant'. So these are called the Songs of the Servant in Isaiah. 

 

This is one of the most difficult…It is in this section Isaiah 40 to 66 that we have of course Isaiah 53 and several other very important messianic promises and prophecies. Up through the Middle Ages this was one of the toughest sections for Jews to deal with in terms of any kind of witness from Christians. Ask a Jew to read Isaiah 53 and explain what it means and they're not going to know. If they know anything today, if they are educated in what the rabbis have taught; they will say that the servant is the nation Israel. 

 

Now one of the reasons I want to tell you that is because as we look at some of these passages you will see a few places where that could be corporate. But, we will point out that within the same context, why it can't be the corporate nation as the servant. It has to be an individual. We have to understand that so that if you get an opportunity and you are witnessing to a Jew, then you can go to these passages. It took 800 years before the rabbis came up with an interpretation that they thought could work to explain why the servant was the nation because they were losing too many Jews to conversion after they read Isaiah 53. 

 

So in Isaiah 42 we read;

 

 NKJ Isaiah 42:6 "I, the LORD, have called You in righteousness,

 

…singular you.  To whom does the "You" refer? 

 

And will hold Your hand; I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, As a light to the Gentiles,

 

Now this passage is going to be picked up and used and applied by Paul in Acts 13:47 to the mission of the apostles that they function as a light to the Gentiles. It's also applied in the gospels to Christ as light to the Gentiles in terms of application from Isaiah 42:6. If we look at Isaiah 42, it introduces the Servant of the Lord.

 

NKJ Isaiah 42:1 "Behold! My Servant whom I uphold, My Elect One in whom My soul delights!

 

This is God the Father speaking.

 

I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the Gentiles.

 

Now if you take notes in your Bible you ought to put a big "trinity" at the top margin here because in that passage you have the Old Testament reference to the trinity. You have the Lord speaking. He talks about "My Servant". He says:

 

I have put My Spirit upon Him;

 

So you have the Father; you have My Servant which is the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ; and, you have My Spirit. So you have the clear mention of the trinity there just for those who say that you don't find the trinity mentioned anywhere in the Old Testament. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 42:2 He will not cry out, nor raise His voice, Nor cause His voice to be heard in the street.

 

NKJ Isaiah 42:3 A bruised reed He will not break,

 

That indicates that He is suffering, but it's not destructive. 

 

And smoking flax He will not quench; He will bring forth justice for truth.

 

NKJ Isaiah 42:4 He will not fail nor be discouraged, Till He has established justice in the earth;."

 

So that is the ultimate direction for the Messiah to establish justice in His kingdom. 

 

And the coastlands shall wait for His law

 

Now the term coastlands was a term that usually referred to the Greek islands. So this becomes a general term for the Gentiles. Twice in this section you have a reference to the fact that the ministry of the Servant is going to not only be towards Israel, but it is going to extend to the Gentiles. 

 

In verse 5 we read: 

 

NKJ Isaiah 42:5 Thus says God the LORD, Who created the heavens and stretched them out, Who spread forth the earth and that which comes from it, Who gives breath to the people on it, And spirit to those who walk on it:

 

Two important doctrines there. One, it starts with God as the Creator -God.  So as the Creator-God, He is the one who provides the redemption solution. The second thing that we see there is that He is the one who gives breath. That's the  word neshemah which indicates that the source of life comes from God and that life is related to breath as we have taught in the past related to the origin of life and when full human life is present when breath begins at birth. 

 

Who gives breath to the people on it, And spirit to those who walk on it:

 

NKJ Isaiah 42:6 "I, the LORD, have called You in righteousness,

 

So it is talking about the mission of the Servant. He is called (which is a reference to His being designated with a specific mission) in righteousness. So this mission is going to be characterized by righteousness. 

 

And will hold Your hand;

 

Indicating God's sovereign care of the Messiah during His ministry in the incarnation.

 

 I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, As a light to the Gentiles,

 

So the role of the Messiah is so tightly connected to the establishment of this covenant that they are seen here as almost identical.  "I will give You as a covenant to the people."

 

So this distinguishes. This shows that this covenant that is mentioned here can't be the Mosaic Covenant; it can't be the Davidic Covenant; it can't be the Land Covenant. It has to be some other covenant. So it must be a reference to the New Covenant. As I pointed out before the term New Covenant is only used in the Jeremiah 31:31-34 passage. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 42:7 To open blind eyes, To bring out prisoners from the prison, Those who sit in darkness from the prison house.

 

This is one of the passages that the rabbis went to, to substantiate their position that one of the distinguishing characteristics of the Messiah would be that He would give sight to those who were blind from birth, born blind from birth – not someone who became blind later on. This would be a unique sign that He was the Messiah, signifying that He was the Messiah which is the background for understanding the miracle in John 9 when Jesus heals the man who is born blind from birth. By doing that He is making an extremely clear statement that He is the Messiah. The rabbis all understood it, but they refused to accept it in operation of suppression of truth in unrighteousness. So this is another indication of the New Covenant. 

 

Now we'll go to the next passage which is in the same section of Isaiah, the Servant Songs – Isaiah 49:8.  It is set in the context of millennial fulfillment. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:8 Thus says the LORD:

 

Yahweh again.

 

"In an acceptable time I have heard You, And in the day of salvation I have helped You; I will preserve You and give You As a covenant to the people,

 

…again connecting the New Covenant to the work of the Servant. 

 

To restore the earth, To cause them to inherit the desolate heritages;

 

Or it even could be to restore the land because the Hebrew word for land, for earth is eretz. The word for land is eretz which is the same word that's used for Promised Land. Sometimes it's difficult to tell if it's talking about just to restore the earth or to restore the land meaning the Promised Land. I think that there is a very good case…could be made in this passage that the restoration is talking about the Promised Land because the context of Isaiah 49:8 is that the time when this will happen when the Messiah establishes this covenant happens after a lengthy period of destruction and desolation of the land and is associated with a restoration of the land. 

 

Now let's look briefly at the context. We don't want to make the mistake of going in here and taking these verses right out of context as proof text. 

 

Go back to verse 1. Again we see an emphasis here on the Messiah as a light to the Gentiles. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:1 "Listen, O coastlands, to Me,

 

Again that term was used to refer to the islands off the Mediterranean; the island of the Greeks so it becomes a metaphor for the Gentile nations.

 

And take heed, you peoples from afar! The LORD has called Me

 

So it is the Servant speaking. 

 

from the womb; From the matrix of My mother

 

…from the womb of My mother, from the inner parts of My mother

 

He has made mention of My name.

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:2 And He has made My mouth like a sharp sword; In the shadow of His hand He has hidden Me, And made Me a polished shaft; In His quiver He has hidden Me."

That reminds me of the picture of when Jesus returns, Revelation 19.

 

NKJ Revelation 19:15 Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

 

That pictures judgment. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:2 And He has made My mouth like a sharp sword; In the shadow of His hand He has hidden Me, And made Me a polished shaft; In His quiver He has hidden Me."

 

… talking about how God prepared Him for His role as Messiah. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:3 "And He said to me, 'You are My servant, O Israel, In whom I will be glorified.'

 

Wait a minute. Doesn't that say that Israel is the servant? If you stop there, you'll think that. But if you go down to verse 5 it becomes clear that the nation Israel can't be equated to the Servant because they are obviously distinct. What we have in verse 3 is that the Servant is the personification of everything Israel as a nation should have been. So he is identified or called "O Israel" in verse 3. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:4 Then I said, 'I have labored in vain, I have spent my strength for nothing and in vain; Yet surely my just reward is with the LORD, And my work with my God.' "

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:5 " And now the LORD says, Who formed Me from the womb to be His Servant, To bring Jacob back to Him,

 

So the Servant can't be Israel and then bring Israel back to God. It's obviously two different entities here. So the servant's role is to bring Jacob back to Him. A lot of times in Scripture when Israel is referred to as Jacob instead of Israel, it is because they were the same name for the same person.  Jacob is born. He is the heel grabber. He comes out second form the womb. He is the twin of Esau. He is called the heel grabber, jacob. He is the chiseler, the swindler as we studied in Genesis. He is the one who is always trying to make life work on his terms. He's going to work out the best deal. Then when God works through his life through a period of about twenty years when he is out of the land and he is working for Rachel. But he gets deceived and gets Leah instead. Then he has to work another 7 years for Rachel and then he ends up working another 6 years before he finally comes back to the land. When he comes back into the land and he has a face-to-face encounter with God at Peniel. This is when he wrestles with the angel of God and God gives him the new name Israel. When Israel is referred to in context like this (Israel versus Jacob) the name Israel speaks of Israel in their right relationship with God, the nation in their right relationship with God. When the nation is called Jacob like the time of Jacob's trouble for the Tribulation, it's because the nation is viewed as apostate and that's why they are under judgment and discipline. So that's what we have here is that the role of the servant is to bring Jacob. The term Jacob is envisioning the nation in an apostate condition. The servant is going to bring Jacob back to Yahweh. 

 

So that Israel is gathered to Him ( For I shall be glorious in the eyes of the LORD,

 

So when we look at that 4th line there so that Israel is gathered to them. If the servant is Israel, how can the servant Israel gather Israel back to Him unless you make a distinction between Him as an individual in verse 3 that is being identified as the personification of everything Israel should be? So obviously verse 5 makes it clear that the Servant can't be the nation. It must be viewed as an individual. 

 

And My God shall be My strength),

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:6 Indeed He says, 'It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant To raise up the tribes of Jacob, And to restore the preserved ones of Israel; I will also give You as a light to the Gentiles, That You should be My salvation to the ends of the earth.' "

 

So the one speaking is God the Father. He is saying it is not enough. It is a small thing. It's a limited thing that you just have a ministry to Israel. 

 

The salvation of the Messiah isn't restricted to Israel and the Jews, but is expanded beyond that as a light to the Gentiles. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:7 Thus says the LORD, The Redeemer of Israel, their Holy One, To Him whom man despises, To Him whom the nation abhors, To the Servant of rulers: "Kings shall see and arise, Princes also shall worship, Because of the LORD who is faithful, The Holy One of Israel; And He has chosen You."

 

So there is the reference that Yahweh. God the Father is speaking here and He is called the Redeemer of Israel because He's the one who is the architect of the plan of redemption and He is speaking to Him whom man despises. That's the Lord Jesus Christ. That is the Servant. The Servant is the one who is despised. That comes out in Isaiah 53. So you clearly have two personages here, both divine. One is God the Father. The other has to be God the Son. The Father is called the Redeemer of Israel, their Holy One. 

 

So again we have these Trinitarian passages where the activities and the role of one or the Son are also fully ascribed to the Father. That gets confusing for some people. In many passages like Colossian 1:17, Jesus Christ is the one who created all things and by Him all things were created. Then you get into Revelation 4 and 5 and you have the four living creatures singing praise to God because "You created all things". If you're not careful in your understanding of theology and you build these abstract principles. 

 

And I've heard people do this where they abstract out. Well, Jesus Christ was the creator and you make that a lock down principle. You come into Revelation 4 and you see the angels ascribing honor to the one on the throne saying, "He is the one who created all things." 

 

Then what you can make is an interpretive blunder because you have a poor hermeneutic and say, "Oh, the one on the throne here has to be the Son because it's the creator." 

 

Then you take that and you run it back into Revelation 1:5-7 the one sitting on the throne you try to make that all be the Father and you end up making a confused mess. I've heard people do that so that's why I point that out. You can't do that. You have to recognize that in many passages the Father and the Son are both ascribed the same thing – the Father because He is the one who designs the plan. He's the redeemer according to this passage. He is the creator according to this passage. But Jesus is also the Redeemer because He is the one who performs the work of redemption. He is the creator because He performs the work of creation. 

 

So verse 8, our passage. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 49:8 Thus says the LORD: "In an acceptable time I have heard You, And in the day of salvation I have helped You; I will preserve You and give You As a covenant to the people,

 

The idea of hearing His prayer and the day of salvation – this has to do not with the work on the cross. It has to do with the prayers of the Son during the present age as He is praying to the Father to give Him the kingdom. And, we've seen this in previous studies - Daniel 7 you have the Ancient of Days and the Son is waiting to be given the kingdom. The Son of Man is waiting to be given the kingdom. So, 49:8 is not talking about the Son being sustained on the cross. It's talking about the present intercessory ministry of the Son as the Son of Man praying to the Father to give Him the kingdom. This is ultimately given when He returns at the Second Coming which is the Day of Salvation. This is the day when salvation is completed for Israel. That is when the covenant is given to the people to restore the earth. Restoration of the earth doesn't occur until the Second Coming. So we have to understand this whole passage within the context of what happens at the Second Coming. 

 

To restore the earth, To cause them to inherit the desolate heritages;

 

Really that doesn't make much sense to us, but it's the desolate possessions. It's the idea of inheritance. We've talked about this before. Inheritance has to do with possession. It's desolate. Why is it desolate? Because, the land has been the center of this violence and warfare during the Tribulation and preceding that now 2,000 years of destruction. So it shows that the establishment of the covenant comes after a lengthy period when the land is desolate. So it is restored to the people. That is an extremely important observation to make on this particular passage. 

 

We go from here, skip forward 5 about chapters to Isaiah 54:10. Again this is a passage related to the future restoration of the nation. Now the first part of this verse 54:10 says:

 

NKJ Isaiah 54:10 For the mountains shall depart And the hills be removed, But My kindness shall not depart from you, Nor shall My covenant of peace be removed," Says the LORD, who has mercy on you.

 

What this is describing is the fact that even though there may be physical changes on the planet… This is the contrast. There is a contrast between the change in the terrain versus the unchanging aspect of God's kindness – God's loving-kindness. This is a word we're studying a lot lately. We studied it Sunday morning. We studied it last week on Tuesday night. It's the Hebrew word hesed meaning his faithful, loyal love. It's not just mercy. Some translations translate it that way. It's not just love. It's not just kindness. It's more than that. It is an extremely robust concept that includes His faithfulness, His loyalty, His steadfastness – that His love is unchanging and unaffected by anything and that no mater how much instability we may see around us. His love never changes. So He says; 

 

NKJ Isaiah 54:10 For the mountains shall depart And the hills be removed, But My kindness shall not depart from you, Nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,"

 

So we add this idea. We've seen already the idea that it's everlasting. But now we have the idea that it's a covenant of peace. There won't be war anymore. It is only when the New Covenant is enacted that there will be peace in Israel. 

 

Says the LORD, who has mercy on you.

 

Again this is the thrust of this entire chapter and this is the focal point is that this covenant of peace will be established and no longer will the nation suffer. No more will it be overrun; no longer will it be the victim of violence.

 

Then the next passage is going to be Isaiah 55:3. God says:

 

NKJ Isaiah 55:3 Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live; And I will make an everlasting covenant with you -- The sure mercies of David.

 

So we now see the aspect of the covenant as eternal or everlasting. It's connected with David. Notice it says:

 

And I will make an everlasting covenant with you -- The sure mercies of David.

 

…which is future tense showing that the everlasting covenant is a future covenant. The Davidic Covenant has already been established so even though the Davidic Covenant isn't fulfilled this is talking about a future covenant and connecting it then to the Davidic Covenant. 

 

Now let's look at the context. One of the great verses on salvation and the free grace gospel is in Isaiah 55:1. Isaiah 55:1 says;

 

NKJ Isaiah 55:1 "Ho! Everyone who thirsts, Come to the waters; And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat.

 

See, you have no money and you buy and eat. It is a juxtaposition of what appears to be contradictory concepts to grab our attention that it's free.

Yes, come, buy wine and milk Without money and without price.

 

That is salvation. It is free. There is no cost. It is free to the one who is getting it. It doesn't mean it is free. It's not free to God. It wasn't free to Christ.  Christ paid the penalty, but grace means it is free to us. There is no such thing as a free lunch. Somebody always pays.

 

It's always amazed me and other pastors and we chuckle about that that among grace churches there is this mistaken notion that grace is free. It's amazing. Now this isn't true of this congregation. I just want to say that because I don't want you to think that I'm getting on to you. But it is true in a lot of doctrinal churches that they are almost afraid to give financially to the Lord. 

 

"Well, it's grace. Somebody else will pay for it." 

 

If you get 100 people in the congregation and they're all thinking somebody else is going to pay for it – nobody is going to pay for it. There is a responsibility to give not because you have to, not to gain God's pleasure, not to impress God but in response to God's grace and ministries like ours operate on grace because of the goodness and the grace and the graciousness and kindness of many people who supply for Dean Bible Ministries …make it possible to provide all the different things on the internet now. We put mp3's out there. People don't have to order them. People don't have to send in a little envelop now every month to make sure that they get their order in with a little reminder that they can make a donation. They don't have to. 

 

One of the challenging things in this is you really have no idea what is going on out there. You really don't. In the old days when it was tapes you had some idea of how many people were listening because you knew how many tapes were being ordered every month. Now there's no clue how much is going on.  There have been some ministries have been so paranoid about the fact that if you don't have this ongoing mail connection where you're sending something out and then they're sending an envelop back in with an order which is a subtle reminder to put a little check in there that somehow God won't provide. So they make it a little more difficult to get things. We just put everything out there free of charge and don't emphasize the giving even though we have our financial policy out there. God has so graciously provided. 

 

Now we have some folks here who have been engaged in a project for the last I don't know 6 or 7 months converting the videos, the DVD's to Google video format and uploading this to Google posting, the website I don't know al the details. But what this means is that all the videos are going to be available to anybody to download on to their computer. We're not restricting this and so many ministries do this. You've got to pay. It's amazing. I was wondering what's going to happen. A lot of ministries charge $3 or $4 or even $5 for a cassette tape. What are they going to do when we make this shift to mp3's?  You can put 20 or 30 mp3's on a CD. What are they going to do? Well, they don't put 20 or 30 on mp3's. They'll put 3 or 4 and charge $20. Or if it's a DVD, they'll charge $15 or $20 a DVD. It's amazing to me. People don't want to trust God anymore to supply the resources. God supplies the resources for the material to go out. We need to relax and provide it. That is what grace is all about. But somebody has to supply it. If the money dries up and there's no money; it just won't go out. But, we're not going to sit back and have as a policy some sort of restrictive control that makes sure people have to always order from us because we are afraid somehow the money is going to dry up. God just has to sell more cattle. That's all it is. He owns the cattle on a 1,000 hills and He can just sell a few more cattle, a few more sheep and He is going to care of things and always has. 

 

So we have this great example of grace here. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 55:1 "Ho! Everyone who thirsts, Come to the waters; And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat. Yes, come, buy wine and milk Without money and without price.

 

It's not that it is- there was no cost, but the cost is paid for by God. He pays the price. 

 

He says in verse 2;

 

NKJ Isaiah 55:2 Why do you spend money for what is not bread, And your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, And let your soul delight itself in abundance.

 

What does not sustain, what doesn't sustain life? I think of all these people who go to all these churches and what you see is a constant marketplace. They have bookstores. I've been in churches where you'll have a couple of (two or three) songs after church. That gives enough time to run off about 50 or 60 cassettes and have them all at the back door so when people go out they can buy their tape for that morning's message for $5. What are these churches going to… and they're not really getting healthy food. And that's what getting to. Why do you go to these churches that are merchandizing religion and you're not really getting any doctrine or any truth that sustains life? 

 

NKJ Isaiah 55:2 Why do you spend money for what is not bread, And your wages for what does not satisfy?

 

…when you can get the truth for free because it's based on grace. 

 

Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, And let your soul delight itself in abundance.

 

God says: 

 

NKJ Isaiah 55:3 Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live; And I will make an everlasting covenant with you -- The sure mercies of David.

 

What this passage emphasizes…it's addressed to Israel that there is a condition set up that must be satisfied before the New Covenant will be established.  That is they have to turn and accept the grace of God. Until they turn to accept the grace of God which means nationally, corporately, not individually but corporately to accept Jesus as the Messiah then the times of refreshing will not come. 

 

That's what didn't happen at the First Advent. You had a tremendous number of individual Jews who were saved, who accepted Christ as the Messiah who trusted in Him. But, the leadership the Scribes, the Sadducees, the Herodians rejected Him and the vast majority of people rejected Him and so there was a national rejection. But, there were thousands maybe even tens of thousands of Jews who accepted Him as the Messiah. But it wasn't the nation as a whole.  It wasn't the corporate leadership accepting Him as the Messiah. So that's the call here… is to the nation, to the leaders, to those who represent the nation, to the nation as a whole to respond to the grace of God. At that time the everlasting covenant is established which is related to (It's different from but it's related to) the sure mercies of David. Verse 4 says:

 

NKJ Isaiah 55:4 Indeed I have given him as a witness to the people, A leader and commander for the people.

 

This is written some 300 years after David died. It doesn't make sense unless David is going to be resurrected and put in a position of political leadership over the nation in the future kingdom which is what Ezekiel is going to spell out. David is going to be the prince, the leader over the Israelites, over the Jews in the Millennial Kingdom. Jesus Christ will reign over the nations. But, it is David who will be resurrected and reign over the people. 

 

Our next passage in Isaiah is Isaiah 59:21.

 

NKJ Isaiah 59:21 "As for Me," says the LORD, "this is My covenant with them:

 

The idea here is this is what the covenant will consist of. Here he will summarize some of the characteristics of this covenant. Remember Isaiah is writing some 200 years (150 years or so) before Jeremiah writes Jeremiah 31. He says: 

 

My Spirit who is upon you, and My words which I have put in your mouth, shall not depart from your mouth,

 

So the first thing we notice is one of the distinctive characteristics of the establishment of the New Covenant has to do with the role of the Holy Spirit to the nation. The second thing is that it is going to be related to the content of Gods' revelation. His words are put in their mouth.

nor from the mouth of your descendants, nor from the mouth of your descendants' descendants," says the LORD, "from this time and forevermore."

 

The implication is that there will not be a time of negative volition among the Jews from this point forward. From the time that the covenant is established there will be no more negative volition among the Israelites. Now that is going to be developed more in passages when we get to Ezekiel, when we get to Jeremiah; but this is the first time that aspect is mentioned in Isaiah 59:21

 

Now let me give you four observations related to these passages that we have looked at. First of all, in all of these references...let me look at one more.

 

NKJ Isaiah 61:8 "For I, the LORD, love justice; I hate robbery for burnt offering; I will direct their work in truth, And will make with them an everlasting covenant.

 

So we bring in the idea in 61:8 again of an eternal covenant. It won't end, whereas the old covenant was viewed as temporary. This is viewed as permanent. 

 

NKJ Isaiah 61:9 Their descendants shall be known among the Gentiles, And their offspring among the people. All who see them shall acknowledge them, That they are the posterity whom the LORD has blessed."

 

No more anti-Semitism. 

 

Okay, now let me give your four principles of observation about these passages. 

 

  1. In all six references there is a covenant promised to the nation that is not enacted until there has been a period of national judgment. In all 6 of these, it sees a period of national judgment preceding the giving of this covenant. It's implied by the fact that once this covenant comes into effect there is not going to be a change. There is no more negative volition so obviously that implies that whatever judgment we see today must come before this.  So in all 6 references it's clear that a period of national judgment and discipline precedes a period of unparalleled prosperity and blessing.
  2. The second thing that we observe in these passages in all these passages but primarily in Isaiah 42:6 and Isaiah 49:8…  I'll put them back up here so you can remember them. The servant of the Lord is viewed as a mediator of this covenant. His role is so closely connected to the giving of the covenant that He is virtually identified with the covenant. God is appointing His servant to function as the one who establishes this covenant.
  3. The third thing we see in connection with Isaiah 55:3, Isaiah 54 is that this Servant is presented as the future heir of David. He is a Davidic descendent and as the seed of David. He is the one who enacts, establishes this covenant. This connects Him. This terminology is parallel to the covenant Davidic Covenant passages in II Samuel 7:12-16, Psalm 89: 29-30. In all of these we have an emphasis on God's hesed, on His faithful loyal love. So this passage in Isaiah 55:3 connects the covenant to the Davidic Covenant. 
  4. The fourth observation is that the Servant fulfills a saving role. He provides salvation for the Gentiles. He not only comes for Israel, He is a light to the Gentiles. We see this in both Isaiah 42:6 (the context) and the context of Isaiah 49:8 is given as a light to the Gentiles. It is too little for Him to just provide salvation for Israel. He will provide salvation for all of the Gentiles. So 100-150 years before Jeremiah God promises that He will make a future everlasting covenant with Israel. It's not temporary like the former covenant. 

 

Okay, that brings us as we go through the timeline – that brings us to the next key passage which is Jeremiah 31:31 which is the passage that's quoted in Hebrews 8. Jeremiah 31:31-34. We will start there next time because we just have 5 minutes left and that's not enough time but to barely introduce it and we will lose the context so I will stop. We have covered the Isaiah passages tonight. We will start with Jeremiah 31 next Thursday night.

 

Let's bow our heads in closing prayer. 

 

Illustrations