A. “clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, [that is], of the heart.” 1 Cor. 3:3
B. Old Covenant
1. Tablets of Stone Outward Standard Based on the Character of God.
2. Mercy- Not getting what you deserve
C. New Covenant
1. Tablets of Flesh
Inward resource available through the grace of God.
2. Grace- Not getting what you deserve and getting what you do not deserve.
D. You- Which will you choose?
III. Old Covenant
A. Lev. 19:2 “You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God am holy“
1. The Old covenant was a relationship with God based on the covenant given to Israel by Moses. In the end the objective was for the people of Israel to conform to this perfect outer standard of holiness because God Himself is holy.
2. In the end though, the Old Covenant left you knowing what was right but being unable to do so.
3. The Old Covenant was summed up in the 10 commandments, you had to keep these commandments and if you ever failed to do so you had to make a blood sacrifice at the temple of God to atone for it, but this would not take your sin away… only cover it up temporarily. (See Ex. 20)
B. Under the Law you having the desire to do good but finding no way to do so. Romans 8:14-25
1. Only hope is Jesus
IV. New Covenant
A. Christ brought the New Covenant
1. Hebrews 10:11-14 Jesus offered the sacrifice for sins once and for all. Those who put their faith in Jesus Christ as the payment for their sins have been perfected forever through Him.
2. Hebrews 10:15-16 The Holy Spirit had witnessed beforehand that Christ would make this New Covenant that would replace the Old Covenant relationship. He writes His law on our hearts now. We go from dealing with God based on an impossible to keep outward standard of holiness to an inward resource that helps guide us to do the right things. Those who are justified by faith in Christ will hear God’s law in their hearts and mind changing them from the inside out.
3. Before you had to change your exterior to conform to the written law of God, now you give your heart to Jesus and He transforms your interior.
4. Under the Old Covenant you had to sacrifice at least once a year, under the New God never remembers your sins again.
B. Grace Abounds
1. Romans 5:19-21 Grace abounds, no matter how much sin you have the grace of God is still stronger.
C. God doesn’t condemn you, so don’t condemn yourself.
1. Romans 8:1-11 No condemnation to those who have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and the Spirit of God inside of you guarantees it.
D. So, draw near to God.
1. The whole reasons that Jesus did this for us is so what we may draw near to God. Based on the Old Covenant and our own efforts we could never draw near to Him, since all have sinned and fallen short of His glory, but Christ died to fulfill the righteous requirement of the law and gift to us righteousness simply because He loves us.
2. That gift is grace. Unmerited favor.
3. Hebrews 10:19-22
V. So, which shall it be?
A. Do you want to keep viewing your relationship with God based on what you do? If so you will never be able to conform to the perfections of the law.
B. Or do you want to simply trust in Jesus as your righteousness and let His Spirit write on the tablet of your heart and transform you from the inside out?
C. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
D. Prayer by Bob Hoekstra “O Holy Father, I would be hopeless, if Your perfect standard remained outside of me, demanding holiness by my performance. Thank You for bringing Your holy will inside of my life, providing internal resource for living and growing in godliness. Lord, I look to You to transform me from the inside out, in Jesus’ name, Amen.”