This covenant is by rebirth and is not of bloodlines (blood), nor something that one can convert into like a proselyte (will of man), it’s not something that comes naturally (will of the flesh).
“But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”
But born of God by the Word. This is done through faith. It is done and sealed through blood but the blood is not the covenant itself. Consistent with OT blood covenants, this covenant of the Word being born from above of the Spirit, also has a blood sacrifice
“saying, “This is the blood of the covenant that God commanded for you.””
And this blood is superior to the blood even of righteous Abel, the covenant through this blood speaks a better word than Abel’s blood. For Abel’s blood cursed his brother Cain but the blood of this covenant offers redemption to those who accept by faith the covenant
“and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.”
And I will work backwards to explain the covenant that is accepted by free will, voluntary faith in the Word, which was activated and sealed by the blood (sacrifice) of Jesus on the cross
“For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!””
The means of entering into the new covenant by rebirth is
- First someone is sent with the gospel
- Second they must proclaim the gospel
- Third the audience must hear the gospel
- Fourth if they believe the gospel...
- Fifth, they will call on Him which the gospel speaks of.
Let’s go a step further
“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.”
This happens between step 4 and 5. The Father will draw the person that hears the gospel and believes the gospel, to Jesus, who is the fulfillment of the gospel
Notice what Jesus says in explaining Isaiah
“It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me—”
That’s why it’s important to have someone who is commissioned and sent to speak and proclaim and teach what the OT says. When a person hears this message and they believe the message then the Father draws that person to the fulfillment of the OT good news
“And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.””
The Father doesn’t draw people to Jesus unless they first believe the Scriptures that speak about Jesus.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this (meaning salvation) is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,”
Faith in what? The Word, which points to Christ and leads to faith in Christ.
““I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word,”
If the gospel doesn’t draw you to Jesus it’s not the gospel and if Jesus doesn’t draw you to the gospel (OT especially) then it’s not the real Jesus
Hence why the disciples and apostles put so much emphasis on expounding the OT (seen clearly in the book of Acts) and showing how the Scriptures relate to Jesus, so that those who heard it and believed could be drawn and enter into the new covenant.
This covenant is done by the drawing of the Father after faith has been found in the heart of the believer and this can only happen if someone proclaims this message, which can only happen if someone is commissioned, empowered and sent so God can speak through them and expound the Scriptures. None of this “repeat after me”, or “sinner’s prayer” propaganda.
“That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”
And the words of Scripture must be under the unction and inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the word is animated, made alive or put differently it is living.
“It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.”
This is a spiritual birth and it comes by the Word of God.
“since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God;”
1 Peter 1:23
This covenant comes by way of a new birth and the receiving of the Word
“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws תורתי into their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall not teach, each one his neighbor and each one his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest.”
The text here reads laws but the Hebrew in Jeremiah speaks of Torah. Or of the Scriptures. In other words God will put His Word into their MINDS and HEARTS.
Notice why the preaching of the Word is so important. Because the covenant comes by way of the word. And this all comes by faith. Faith in the word. Followed by calling upon the Lord which leads to being drawn to Jesus. Jesus being the fulfillment of the Scriptures. The Word of God Himself.
The Corinthian believers clearly believed the Scriptures, accepted Jesus Christ but not having crucified their flesh (meaning to starve and immobilize) the fleshly nature was warring against the spirit. That’s why in the letter to the Romans believers are admonished to
“For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body/flesh/carnality, you will live.”
In other words just because someone has entered a new covenant doesn’t mean they are guaranteed salvation, they must carry out their salvation to the end. The covenant is the agreement, the terms must still be respected for the covenant to hold.
“But the one who endures to the end will be saved.”