Covenant Law

Covenant Law

Scripture: Deuteronomy 7:9
Date: 05/22/2021  Lesson: 8
God’s law was an integral part of the covenant. Yet, it was a true covenant of grace. Grace, however, never nullifies the need for law. On the contrary, law is a means by which grace is manifested and expressed in the life of those who receive grace.

The Bride of Christ - Paper or Digital Download

The Bride of Christ - Paper or Digital Download
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Rod Thompson: Good morning, everyone, and happy Sabbath. Welcome to the Granite Bay Hilltop Church "Sabbath School Study Hour." Whether you are here in the sanctuary with us or whether you're watching at home in the local area, online, or across the nation or around the world, we are excited that you have chosen to join us this morning as we continue our study in the quarterly, "The Promise, the Everlasting Covenant."

Pastor Carlos Muñoz is going to be our teacher this morning, but before he comes out, I want to point you to our free offering this morning. It is the Bible study guide, "The Bride of Christ," and you can get that by dialing 866-788-3966 and ask for offer number 133. If you'd prefer, or you are outside of North America, you can text the number 40544 and put in the code SH073 and you could get that download as well. That is the study guide, "The Bride of Christ."

Let's begin this morning with a word of prayer. Oh loving Father, we thank You for the everlasting covenant. We thank You, Lord, that You love us so much that You have gone to such great lengths to provide a way for us to be restored to relationship with You. And as we study today, we pray for our speaker. We pray that You would use him in a very powerful way, that You would teach us. Edify us, Lord. Give us wisdom. But most of all, Lord, help us to apply Your Word to our lives. And may You transform us more and more into the image of Jesus, and we ask it in his name, amen. Ladies and gentlemen, Pastor Carlos.

Carlos Muñoz: Today, the topic--today is lesson number eight, "The Promise, God's Everlasting Covenant," amen? And the topic for this presentation is "The Covenant Law." So let's have a word of prayer.

Heavenly Father, we thank You for this opportunity to come together and spend time in Your Word in such an important, such a vital topic, part of our sanctuary message, part of this end-time message of the three angels' message. And so we thank You, Father, for this opportunity together. Father, we ask that Your Spirit guide us, direct us so that we can understand Your truth, so that we can understand Your Word and have a better deeper understanding of Your character. So we thank You, Father, and we ask this in Jesus's name. Amen. Amen.

So the memory text for today is Deuteronomy chapter 7, verse number 9, and it says like this: "Therefore know that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and," do what? "And keep His commandments," amen? And so for the lesson today, we're going to be talking about the covenant law because the covenant we see has a law that is related to it. So it is impossible to talk about the everlasting covenant without talking about the law of God. Is everybody with me?

Now, go with me, please, to Deuteronomy chapter 4. Go to Deuteronomy chapter 4. Let's solidify this belief. It's impossible to talk about the covenant without talking about the law of God. So open your Bibles with me to Deuteronomy chapter 4. And when you're there, say, "Amen hallelujah." Deuteronomy chapter 4, and we're going to start on verse number 9. Deuteronomy 4:9, and look at what it says here. "Only take heed to yourself and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life."

Moses is talking about the evidences of God's love, of God's providence, of God's guidance. Now look at what he says and continues in the verse. "And teach them to your children and your grandchildren," that means the wonderful works of God, "especially concerning the day you stood before the Lord your God in Horeb when the Lord said to me, 'Gather the people to Me and I will let them hear My words, that they may learn to fear Me all the days they live on the earth and that they may,'" what? "'They may teach their children.' Then you came near and stood at the foot of the mountain, and the mountain burned with fire to the midst of heaven with darkness, cloud, and thick darkness. And the Lord spoke to you out of the midst of the fire and you heard the sounds of the Word but saw no form. You only heard a voice."

So remember, they--God spoke to them directly the Ten Commandments, right? God wanted them to enter in to this new covenant experience. God wanted to write His law in their minds and in their hearts. God wanted an intimate relationship with Israel, but they were like, "Ah, ah, ah, that's a little bit too much, Lord," right? "We're not ready for that yet." And so they said, "Yeah, Moses, you speak to God, and you speak over there. We'll stay over here on this side." Verse 13, "So He declared to you His covenant, which He commanded you to perform." And now it explains what is the basis of that covenant. The Ten Commandments. "And He wrote them on tablets of stone, and the Lord commanded me at that time to teach you statutes and judgments, that you may observe them in the land which you cross over to possess."

So it's not only talking about the moral law, it's also talking about the ceremonial law, about the health laws, and all of the other laws that were part of this covenant; but specifically the core, the foundation, the basis of this covenant is the law of God based on these verses. Is everybody with me up to now? Amen.

Now, I am going to start off with a thesis, and then we're going to look at that thesis. We're going to show it through the Word. Now, what is that thesis? Look at it right here. "The law of God was the basis of the covenant, which was simply an arrangement for bringing men," and women, "again into," what? "Into harmony with the divine will." This the basis of the covenant. Now look at this.

What does it mean to be in harmony with the divine will? To place them where they could what? Obey God's law. So the foundation, the basis of the covenant, which is the law of God and the purpose of this covenant manifesting the law of God especially inside of the Ark of the Covenant, was to what? Was to bring us in harmony with the divine will, and that harmony means that we could what? That we could obey God's holy law, His Ten Commandments, which as we know, the Ten Commandments are a reflection of what? A reflection of God's character, right? Ten principles that reflect the glory of God, the goodness of God, the righteousness of God.

They were written on this tablets of stone not because God wanted to write them on tablets of stone originally. He wanted to write it on their hearts, but they said no. So God said, "Okay, so I'm going to have to break it down to you in a different way since you don't want this intimate, new covenant relationship with Me." So will--God basically adjusts or adapts to what they want at that time, say, "I'll follow your ways." And that's what happens when He writes the law on tablets of stone.

Now, to show or to prove this thesis, this point, I'm going to take a little detour, but you will see how we will hit each of the main points from the lesson and land at the same destination. So I just ask you to be a little bit patient. Why I say this? Because I've been studying the concept of the everlasting covenant, it's interesting, for over three years now. I mean, this has been the center of my personal devotional life. It's studying the everlasting covenant. So when this lesson comes out, I'm like, "Woo!" I'm excited. Right?

I'm excited because this is exactly what I've been studying. And so if you've heard me teach or preach before, you know that I was an elementary school teacher in New York City. And so over the last few years as I have been studying the concept of the everlasting covenant, I have developed this map to help me organize and explain the covenant and the law in an easier way, right? As an elementary school teacher, I had to break things down to my kids in basic forms and so my mind works in that same way. I have to understand thing, and so I developed this curriculum map, this concept map, whatever you want to call it, and I've shared this--if you've heard me preach before, you've seen this already. And so I'm just going to use this map to show us exactly what the center, what the focus, why is the law the basis of the covenant, the everlasting covenant. Is everybody with me up to now? Amen.

So here's the everlasting covenant or the covenant map. Here's how I break it down. So number one, what do we start with? Number one in the everlasting covenant gospel map is the everlasting gospel, right? The good news. Now, good news about what? The great news about what? What is the gospel? What is the basis of the good news, the gospel message that is going to go out to the world? Well, 1 John chapter 4, verse 10. "This is love, not that we love God, but that," what? "He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation," or the atonement, "for our sins." Who said amen? That's the foundation of the gospel message. Look at what it says in 1 John 4:9. Not only that Jesus is going to pay for our sins, but it says in the verse before, 1 John 4:9, "And this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world," Why? Not only to pay for our sins, but why? "That we may live through Him."

It's early in the morning, but I'm getting warmed up already. The promise of the gospel, the promise of the covenant is not just to receive forgiveness of sin, but that the life of Christ can be manifested, reproduced in each and every one of us. Woo! Romans chapter 1. Let's go. Romans chapter 1. Watch this. Romans chapter 1. This--Romans chapter 1 through my studies of the everlasting gospel has become the primary, the core verse of my study into the everlasting gospel, which is the everlasting covenant, the good news. Romans chapter 1. When you're there, say, "Amen."

Look at what it says in verse number 16. "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek." So when somebody asks you what is the gospel, you point them to Romans chapter 1, verse 16. And it says here that the gospel is the what? The power of God. Amen? That word power is the word "dunamis," where we get the word "dynamite." So the gospel is the boom of God to save. It explodes.

Now, when something explodes, does everything stay the same? No, there is a radical transformation in anything that is in the vicinity of that explosion. Is everybody with me? Woo, and that power, that dunamis, that dynamite of the gospel is what brings people to salvation, amen. They see the power of God and they're blown away.

Now watch this. Now comes a Hebrew parallelism. In other words, what God says in verse 16, He is going to repeat it in verse 17 but presenting it from a different angle or perspective or concept. Verse 17--same concepts, I'm sorry, but different phrase. "For in it," that is in the gospel, "the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith," amen? So that means that the gospel or that means that the power or the dynamite or the dunamis of God to save humanity is what? Is found where? In His righteousness.

Now, I have a question. How's the manifestation of the righteousness of God only been manifested through the life of Jesus Christ? Has it been manifested only through the life of Jesus Christ? No, it's been manifested throughout the whole Bible. Amen? From the very beginning. From the very beginning, God was showing. When Adam and Eve fell, there's God presenting the gospel, amen? There's God presenting the covenant. The goodness of God has always been manifested through humanity. Now, through Christ there is a what? A special, a perfect, a complete manifestation of His righteousness, amen? Because even though Adam and Abraham and David--even though it told--it says that they walked in the light and the righteousness of God, of course they had their flaws, right? But in Christ, we have a perfect manifestation of the righteousness of God, a perfect manifestation of the goodness, the power of God.

Is everybody with me? But it doesn't stop there because it says here in verse 17 that the righteousness of God is revealed how? From faith to faith. That's the life of Jesus Christ, from the beginning to the end. And it says, "As it is written, the just shall live by faith." In other words, the same righteousness that was manifested in Christ, which was the righteousness of the Father, that same righteousness will be manifested in us. Woo, what? Yes, that same life of Jesus Christ that promises, God is going to restore His righteousness in us too. Can I get an amen about that? That should blow our minds, right? That should just marvel at us.

And so when we look here again, point number one, the gospel--the everlasting gospel or the good or great news, right? Now the question is, what is that great news? We already study it, but we can look at that. The great news is what? It's the plan of? It's the plan of salvation, amen. Now, to save us from what? From sin, right? That's the plan of salvation. God is wanting to what? God is wanting to save us from sin, why? Because sin is what has caused separation between God and us. And so God is wanting to manifest what? He's wanting to manifest His goodness, His righteousness through the plan of salvation, salvation for humanity. Who says, "Amen?"

Now, what are the three main problems with sin? The three main problems--or let's say four main problems with sin is the guilt of sin, it's the penalty of sin, which is death, it's the power of sin, and then it's the presence of sin. Now, how specifically is God going to solve that problem of sin, which we also know that 1 John chapter 3, verse 4 says that sin is what? The transgression of the law. Now, if the law is the foundation, the basis of the covenant, then there's a problem, right? There's a very serious problem because we are transgressing the covenant. So how is God going to solve this?

Well, point number three, the everlasting covenant with who? Please pay attention to this. God does not make a covenant with us. What? No. God makes a covenant with His Son. God makes a covenant with Jesus Christ. And you're asking, "But wait a minute. I thought He said, 'I want to make a covenant with you'?" We'll get to that in a second, but we're going to--I'm going to show you that God makes a covenant with His Son. And the question is, why does the Father make a covenant with His Son?

Look at how it says in "Desire of Ages" page 778. "Before the foundation of the earth was laid, the Father and the Son had united in a," what? "In a covenant to redeem man," and women, "if he," or she, "should be overcome by Satan. They had clasped their hands in a solemn pledge that Christ should become the," what? "The surety," the guarantee, "for the human race," amen? And so it says very clearly here that even before we were ever around, God made a covenant with His Son.

The Father made a covenant with His Son. That's why it's called the everlasting covenant. Were you and I around when this covenant was made? No, we weren't around. Was Adam and Eve around when this covenant was made? No, even before. It was conceived in the mind of God. That's why it's called the everlasting covenant.

Now, let's look at some verses here. Zechariah chapter 6, verse 12 and 13, "Thus says the Lord of hosts, saying: 'Behold, the Man whose name is the branch!" Who is the branch? Christ. "From his place he shall branch out, and he shall build the temple of the... he shall build the temple of the Lord." Now watch what it says here. "He shall bear the glory, and it--shall sit and rule on His throne; so he shall be a priest on His throne, and the counsel of peace shall be between Them..." Who's that counsel of peace with? Who are they--who's it talking about? The Father and the Son. Because it's saying that the Son shall sit as a priest on the throne of the Father, amen? And so this counsel of peace, this covenant of peace is what was made with-- through the Father and the Son before creation. That's why it's called the everlasting covenant.

Look at what it says in Isaiah chapter 54, verse 10. "For the mountain shall depart and the hill shall be removed, but My kindness," in Spanish it says My mercy, "shall not depart from you, nor shall My," what? "'My covenant of peace be removed,' says the Lord, who has mercy on you," amen?

Notice the covenant cannot be broken. Why can't it be broken? Because it was made between the Son and the Father. And so what it says that Jesus says the covenant of peace--what is the name of Jesus Christ given? He's called the prince of the covenant. He's called the Prince of Peace, why? Because through Jesus Christ, humanity was going to have peace again with God, amen? And so that's the covenant that God has made with the Son. It's about what? It's about showing us and restoring us back.

Now, how do we fit into this? It's very simple. It says there that the everlasting covenant was Christ, but we are what? Inserted into the covenant. Are you catching me? That means we can participate. We can come heirs. We can come beneficiaries, right? The everlasting covenant is with Christ, why? Well, my loved ones, how do we participate? Is that we are invited into the covenant through faith in Jesus Christ, and through faith in Jesus Christ we become participants, heirs, beneficiaries to the promises of the covenant, amen? That's basically what it says in Monday's lesson on the election of Israel, it's those that what? That choose, that receive, that heed the call of God to what? To be His people. Amen? To enter into His covenant. That's the promise of the Father. Is everybody with me?

Now watch this. Isaiah chapter 42, verse 1 and 6, "Behold, My servant whom I," The Father upholds. "My Elect One in whom My soul delights! I have put My Spirit upon Him; I, the Lord, have called You in righteousness, and I will hold Your hand. I will keep You and give You as a covenant to," what? The covenant through us, amen? The Father makes a covenant with the Son and then He says, "And you become," what? Heirs of the covenant. I have a question. In a testament, which is a better explanation of the covenant--sometimes we try to explain covenant in the words of an agreement or a contract and not so much--you can use it, but it's very limited, at least how the Bible presents the concept of covenant. The concept of covenant is better explained through a testament.

Now, did you do anything in a testament? No. Who has all the goods? It's whoever the person that made the testament, right? You don't do anything. The person just what? Signs over a testament that when they die everything that belongs to them will be given to you, amen? You don't have to do anything. Sometimes there are some conditions. Let's not put it that way, but yes. But he gives it over. There's nothing on your part, and that's what God did. He said, "I'm going to make a covenant with My Son." Now, why?

Why does the Father give or make the covenant with the Son? And it explains it in the verse, if you can put it up, please. Because the Father knew that what? That He would be able to uphold Christ. The Father knew that He would be able to hold His hand. The Father knew that He would be able to keep Jesus. In other words, the Father knew that the Son would live completely, constantly, daily consecrated and surrender to the will of the Father. And so the Father knew that the Son was going to do that. That's why the Father says, "I can make a covenant with Him because He's not going to break it."

Are you catching me? He knew that His Son would always, every decision, every step, every temptation-- everything that He does, He knew that the Son was going to lean and depend and seek the counsel and the guidance and the strength of the Father. That's why the Father makes a covenant because He knows, "My boy is not going to break this covenant," amen?

So why doesn't God make a covenant with us? It's very simple. We are incapable of keeping the covenant. We cannot because remember the basis of the foundation of the covenant is what? The Ten Commandments, the law of God. God knows this and God says, "No. If I make a covenant with them, they're going to break it. I'm going to make a covenant with," who? "With My Son." And through him, his perfect, righteous life, then we become beneficiaries of those promises. Amen?

Now, remember the thesis. I'm pointing to you to the thesis. What was the thesis of this presentation? "The law of God was the basis of the covenant, which was simply an arrangement for bringing men again into harmony with the divine will, placing them where they could obey God's law." Did you catch that? What it's saying here is that the purpose of the covenant is to restore us back into the will of God. In other words, that we can live according to His righteous law, to His righteous principles. Is everybody with me? Can I hear an amen?

Now, here's where it gets very interesting. Why did God not make a covenant with us? Well, I just explained it, but let's look at it a little bit deeper. When you go into Genesis--Genesis chapter 1 and chapter 2, it explains the beginning, right? It explains the beginning. God gives everything to Adam and Eve. Is that true? Yes or no? Yes, he says, "Here it is." The earth is the wedding gift that God gives to Adam and Eve, and all God asks on their behalf is that they what? That they obey His command. That's all He asks. And that is one simple command: "Don't eat off of the tree." One simple command. God gives them everything.

Now I had a question. Does--was Adam and Eve capable? Did they have the capacity to obey that command? Yes, they did. So it wasn't difficult. They had all the willpower and all the moral power to say what? "No, I don't want to eat off that tree." Right? This isn't an issue. They had everything capable, all the preparation. They had everything into development to develop those characters even more and more as they got to know God. And so when God makes Adam and Eve, it says they made Him--He made them in His image and likeliness.

Go with me to Genesis chapter 1, please. Genesis chapter 1. Genesis chapter 1. I just love using Genesis to explain everything. The first three chapters of Genesis, you've probably heard me mentioned this before, that is the foundation of everything that happens in the Bible, and you can explain everything through Genesis chapter 1 through 3, especially chapter 3. Woo, chapter 3 is my favorite chapter in the Bible. Genesis chapter 1. Everybody there? Verse number 26.

Look at what it says here. "Then God said, 'Let us make man in our image, according to our likeliness.'" Verse 27, "So God created man and woman in His own image. In the image of God He created him. Male and female He," did what? He created them. So Adam and Eve were created in the image and likeliness of God, or in another way-- terms--we can say it in a number of different ways. They had the character of God, right? That was to develop more and more. They had the mind of God. They had the desires of God. They had the feelings of God.

But one way of saying that they had the image of God is that they had the law of God written on their hearts. That's another way of saying it. They already came with the law written in their hearts and their minds, that means it was already part of who they were, right? To live according to these beautiful principles, these Ten Commandment promises. Is everybody with me? That's why it says in Psalms chapter 40, verse 8, "I delight to do Your will, O my God, and Your law is," where?

So what it means is that when they had their laws of God written in their hearts and in their minds, it was what? It was a delight to do the will of the Father. That's what it says in the Book of Psalms. That's what it says--Paul says it in Romans chapter 7. He says, "I delight--my inner being delights in the law of God," why? Because if the transgression of the law is sin and sin brings misery, and depression, and sadness, and suffering, and pain, then that means that doing the contrary to sin, which is righteousness, must bring what? Peace and joy and delight to the human experience, amen?

And so when a human being is exposed to the Ten Commandments, then the human being what? He delights in doing God's will. Who says amen to that? Look at how it says here in the book, "Great Controversy." "In the beginning, man was created in the image of God. He was in perfect harmony with the nature and the law of God." And what does that mean? "The principles of righteousness were written upon his heart." It's exactly what we're talking about and what the Bible says, that the image of God is what? Is to be in perfect harmony with the nature and the law of God, and those laws are the laws of righteousness written in the minds and in the hearts.

Is everybody with me up to now? But something happened. Genesis chapter 5. Genesis chapter 5. Are you enjoying yourself? Woo! Genesis chapter 5, verse 3. We know that Adam and Eve sadly chose to disobey God. They chose to follow a different path, and because of that--look at what it says in Genesis 5:3. "And Adam lived 130 years and begot a son in his own likeliness, after his own image."

So that means that after Adam and Eve sinned, they became infected, we can say--if you want to say it that way, with selfishness, right? And so no longer did they have the image of God. They now reflected the image of what? Of themselves. Of self, of ego, selfishness, and now the law of God was not written in their hearts and their minds. It was not a delight. It was not natural. It was not--they were not capable. They did not have the preparation. They could not keep the law of God. They could not live according to His righteousness.

Look at what it says here, second part. "In the beginning, man was created in the image of God. He was in perfect harmony with the nature and the law of God; the principles of righteousness were written upon his heart. But," that could be a--whenever the word "but" shows up, it's really bad or really good. "But sin alienated--" Did I say that right? "Alienated." Thank you. See, I'm still learning English. "But sin alienated him from his Maker. He no longer reflected the divine image." And look at how she says it here. "His heart was now at war with the principles of God's law." Are you catching this?

So now there's a problem. Now we do not have that law written in our hearts. And now if we don't have the law written in our hearts and in our minds and the law is righteousness, then that means that we no longer revealed what? The righteousness of God. Now we revealed our own unrighteousness because there is only righteousness through God. And so anything that is not righteous then must be unrighteousness, and unrighteousness is sin.

Is everybody with me? Look at how it says in Romans chapter 3, verse 10 and 12. "There is none righteous, no, not one; there is none that understands, there is none that seeks after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that does good, no, not one." Now, what does that mean? What it means is we do not have the capacity, the capability to do good or to do righteous. Are you following me? We--it's not in our nature anymore. We don't have it as it was part of who we are. It's no longer--we're no longer capable of producing righteousness. And so what happens is, my loved ones, that God does what? They have to be taken out of the presence of God, right?

Go with me to Romans chapter 8, Romans chapter 8, Romans chapter 8. This is a very important point. We are incapable of keeping God's law on our own, on our fallen nature. It's just not possible. Romans chapter 8. Everybody there? Look at what it says here. Romans chapter 8, verse number 7--verse number 6, "For to be carnally minded," that is us in our fallen nature, "is death, but to be spiritually minded," that's the new birth, "is life and peace because," and watch this, "the carnal mind," that is us in our fallen nature-- the carnal mind is what? "Enmity against God, for it is not subject to the law of God nor indeed can be." Are you catching this?

We are incapable of obeying God's law in our fallen nature. We just can't do it. We don't have the equipment. We don't have the preparation. We just cannot. We are weak both physically and morally as well. Is everybody following me? But my question is, before Adam and Eve were expelled off the Garden of Eden, did God present His covenant? Before Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden of Eden, did God present the promise through the seed? Oh yes, He did. Amen? And that's what it's number three on my gospel map. It says the everlasting covenant is with who? With Christ, and so the Father now presents to the Son what? Number four, the promises and conditions to--now, these promises and these conditions are presented to humanity right after the fall. Is everybody with me? Amen.

Now, what are those--let's talk about the promises first. Well, there are three main promises that God the Father gives or promises to humanity through His Son Jesus Christ. Three main promises: number one is the forgiveness of sins; number two is the victory over sin; and number three is the eradication or elimination of sin from this world and this universe forever. Some of you are excited about that.

These are the promises--the three main promises of the covenant: forgiveness of sin, victory over sin, cleansing of sin, however you want to call it, and the eradication and elimination of sin. Now, were all three presented in Genesis chapter 3? Yes, all three of them won. First one, God said through the seed was going to come what? A human being. "My Son was going to come through a woman." A human being was going to be born. And what was he going to do? You are going to cause an injury to the seed, but he was going to what? Stomp on your head. Amen?

In other words, he was going to defeat the devil. Now, how do we defeat the devil? How is the devil defeated? Through Christ. And how did Christ defeat the devil? He never sinned. He never gave into temptation. He never surrendered to his fallen nature, amen? And so that victory, what it's saying is you're going to hurt him, but he is going to what? He is going to stomp on your head. He's going to put an--he's going to defeat you because he's not going to give in. But that promise was not only to the Son. You know that promise is for you and me too?

Go with me to Romans chapter 16. Romans chapter 16, verse number 20. Hoo-hoo-hoo, Romans chapter 16, verse 20. Oh, Lord, this is amazing. The promise was that the seed was going to stomp on the head of the serpent and put an end to him, but that promise was extended to us, why? Because the seed became a human being. Verse 20, "And the God of peace," the peace covenant, "will crush Satan under Christ's feet shortly." You weren't paying attention. It doesn't say he was going to crush Satan under the feet of the seed. It said he was going to crush the--Satan under our feet.

Get excited with me, please. That's what he's saying; is that the same victory that Jesus Christ had over the devil, over temptation, and over sin, that same victory was going to be given to us. That same victory, and that's what Jesus says in Romans--in Revelation chapter 3, verse 21. He says, "To those that," what? "That overcome as I overcame--"

In other words, the victory of Jesus Christ over the devil, temptation, and sin is your victory and mine, too. We have access to that same victory, that same power that Jesus Christ manifested. That's what it says in Romans chapter 1, verse 16 and 17, that that righteousness of God, that the power of God, the dunamis, the dynamite, the gospel of God was going to be what? Was going to be revealed from faith to faith in His Son Jesus Christ, but it also says the just shall also live by faith, amen? And that same righteousness was going to be manifested and revealed in us.

But then God also said in Genesis 3:21--and how is that victory going to happen? Through forgiveness. Through the blood of the lamb, victory was going to come, amen? The blood of the everlasting covenant is what was going to give humanity victory through forgiveness. Forgiveness is just--is not just a concept, forgiveness is power. Grace is power. Because when God says something, there is power behind what He says. He doesn't just say it to say it, He--when He says and declares something, He is also giving us the power, amen? And then the last promise, which is what?

The eradication of sin from this world and this universe is--does not appear in Genesis chapter 3. Yes or no? Yes, it does. Because it says at the end of Genesis chapter 3, it says that God guarded or protected the way of the tree of life. It doesn't say He eliminated it. It doesn't say He took it away forever. It said He guarded it. If He's guarding it, that's why because there was going to be a moment in the future where what? Where through the seed, those that live in faith in the seed, they would what? They once again would have access to the tree of life, everlasting life, and that's Revelation 21 and 22. There shall be no more pain, no more suffering, no more sin, no more sorrow, amen? Those are--the three promises were there, revealed and manifested, amen?

Now we go to the conditions. What are our conditions? I used to believe that the condition of the covenant was my obedience. [Pastor Muñoz gasping] Before you get a vegan heart attack--I used to believe that. But think about it. How can obedience be a condition if we can't obey? It can't be a condition of the covenant. I'm going to show you that obedience is a promise of the covenant, amen? The covenant promise is obedience, is living according to the will of God. That's the purpose of the covenant; is so that we can live according to His will, that we can live according to His righteous law, amen?

So then you're asking yourself, "Well, Carlos, what is the condition then?" The condition is very simple. Believe and surrender, or abide. In other words, to live by faith in Christ. That's the condition. God says the condition is to believe, trust, and walk in faith. "And I am going to give you the power to live according to the covenant. I am going to give you the power to walk according to this covenant," amen?

Now, once again I thought, as it says there, that obedience is the condition or the obligation of God for us in the everlasting covenant. That's what I thought, but I now know that obedience is not the condition or the obligation of God for us in the everlasting covenant. But obedience is the what? The promise, the blessing of God for us in the everlasting covenant.

Now, you're probably going to be scratching your head saying, "What? I've never heard that before." I know, I was surprised when I learned it, too. 'Cause I was always taught obey, obey, obey, obey, obey, and I'm always trying. And here's the problem, and I'll talk about this in a second. We think we have a misunderstanding of what the word "obedience" means in the Bible because in--look, in society, obedience means to comply. And so we think, "I have to obey, I have to comply." Yes. But we can't comply. That's because obedience in the Bible means surrender, give, abide. That's what obedience means. And through that abiding in Christ, through that surrendering, He gives us the power to comply. Is everybody with me?

Now, let's look at some evidence. "Patriarchs and Prophets," this is actually in the--your reading assignment and the lesson. So read it again, chapter 32. Look at what it says here. "The covenant of grace was first made with man in Eden," when? "After the Fall there was given a divine promise that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent's head. To all men," and women, "this covenant offered--"

Notice the three things. Number one, "Pardon." Number two, "The assisting grace of God for future obedience through faith in Jesus Christ." And number three, "It also promised the eternal life." Who says amen? There are the three promises. You thought I was making that up. But notice this. On what condition? On the condition of fidelity. That means faithfulness. That means faith. Is everybody with me?

Trusting in what God is saying, to His law, saying, "Lord, yes, I trust." And why are you trusting in the Lord. You probably say, "How can I trust in the Lord?" Because in the Bible, the law, we think of it as dos and don'ts. But in the Bible, when I was studying the concept of the covenant and the promises, I remember coming around in the New Testament where it says the promises of God, the promises of God. The promises show up everywhere and I'm like, "Oh, I want to find those promises."

But I couldn't find them anywhere in the old covenant. I'm sorry, in the Old Testament. I couldn't find the promises anywhere. And you know what I found out? Because God doesn't have to say, "I promise." Because when God speaks, His Word is a promise. That's why the Ten Commandments are the ten words or the ten promises. When God says to do something, He's not only showing us why that is good, but He's also giving us the power through the command, amen? So when it says, "Thou shall not have other gods," what He's saying is, "I through My power I am going to help you to be faithful to Me and not have other gods."

When it says, "Thou shall not commit adultery," what God is saying is, "Through My power and faith in Jesus Christ, I will uphold you so that you do not commit adultery, so that you do not lust after women." When it says, "Thou shall keep the Sabbath," God is saying, "Through My power and faith in My Son Jesus Christ, you shall learn to keep, to guard, to hold the Sabbath day as a delight and a glory," amen?

There are ten promises that God is giving us. Now, notice here--go back to this quote. Look at what it says here, the yellow part highlighted. The promise was what? The--"This covenant offered pardon and the assisting grace of God for," what? "Future obedience through faith in Christ." Is everybody catching that? That means that the obedience was the results of accepting the covenant by faith. This is so liberating.

Woo! Look at this other. Same chapter. "The new covenant was established upon," what? "Better promises," that means not the promises that the people made on Mount Sinai when they said, "We will do it." God says, "You can't do it. But if you want to go ahead, I'm going to let you try and show--see how far you're going to get with that." But "The better promises--the promises of forgiveness of sin and of the grace of God to," do what? "To renew the heart." And what happens when the heart is renewed? "To bring it into harmony with the principles of God's law." Amen? Look at what it says. "'This shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after these days,' says the Lord. 'I will put my law in their inward parts,'" or in their minds, in their hearts, "and I will write it--in their minds, I'm sorry, "and I will write it in their..."

That's the new covenant experience. That's the cut--that's the experience that God had with Abraham, amen? Abraham had to learn to live by faith, but he learned the lesson. And God is wanting us to learn the lesson, too, amen? But notice it says there that it is the covenant that what? That brings us in harmony with the principles of God. And so here's the thesis again, and the thesis says it very clearly, the same chapter in "Patriarchs and Prophets." "The law of God was the basis of the covenant," pay attention, please, "which was simply an arrangement," between the Father and the Son, "to bring humanity again into harmony with the divine will." And what does it mean to be in harmony with the divine will? "To place us where they could obey God's law."

So now God has restored and given us back through the power of the Holy Spirit despite our fallen nature, the dunamis of God, so that we can live according to His will, and that is the condition to dwell in His presence. Woo, so again, obedience is not the condition or obligation of God for us in the everlasting covenant, obedience is the promise or the blessing for God in all--of us in the everlasting covenant, who says amen to that?

Now I'm going to show it to you in the Bible; I can show it to you in the Bible in so many different places, but there's one verse that just brings it out like a masterpiece. Go with me to Hebrews chapter 13, Hebrews chapter 13. Watch this. Woo, this is great news, my loved ones, amen? Get that burden off of your back. Stop trying to do things and surrender to God and trust in His promises that give us the power so that we can live according to His Word. Hebrews chapter 13.

Watch this. It doesn't explain it. I think this is the best explanation to what we're sharing here. Hebrews chapter 13, verse number 20. Look at what it says. "Now may the God of peace," God of the covenant, "who brought up our Lord Jesus Christ from the dead--" That means that God has power, amen, to resurrect the dead. "That great shepherd of the sheep through the," what? "Through the blood of the everlasting covenant."

Now, what is God going to give us through the blood of the everlasting covenant, through that power in the sheep-- in the Lord? And verse 21 says, "To make you complete--" In other versions it says, "Perfect in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight through Jesus Christ." Did you catch that? The promise of the covenant is that through faith in Jesus Christ He was going to make us complete, perfect.

Now, when we talk about perfect, we're talking about character perfection, we're talking about moral perfection, okay? Don't get it confused with perfectionism. That's something else. God was going to restore His character, His righteousness in us, and that was going to make us what? That was going to make us complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight.

Who's doing all the work here? God! All we have to do is what? Believe and surrender. So when we don't see this power manifested in our lives, when we don't see the righteousness of God being reproduced, when we don't see victory over sin, it's not God fault. It's ours because we don't trust in the promise, or sometimes we don't even know that it's a promise. We just keep on trying to chug along and trying to do our best and obey and obey, and comply and comply; not knowing that no, God is not asking you to comply, God is asking you to surrender so that he can give you the power to comply and to live a righteous, holy life, amen? That's why it says in Philippians chapter 2, verse 13, it says, "For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure," amen? That's how you write "Philippians" in Spanish. So just giving you a little Spanish test today?

God sent us both the will--we don't have the will or the desire and the doing of His good works. Who says amen to that? Now, you're probably sitting there and saying, "Wait a minute, but God says obey?" God says, "I'm going to make a covenant with you." Well, look at what Psalms 23:3 says. "He restores my soul; He leads me into the paths of righteousness for His name's sake." Look at Job chapter 33, verse 26. "He shall pray to God, and He will delight in Him, He shall see His face with joy, for He restores to man His..."

Get excited about that verse. God wants to restore His righteousness in you and me, and that's the promise. He says, "I'm going to do it through the covenant," amen? But wait a minute, Carlos. Exodus chapter 19, verse 5 says God says, "Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people, for all the earth is Mine."

There's two issues here. Number one is that they wanted to do the covenant on their own terms, on their own obedience. And God said, "Okay, if that's what you want, I'm going to let you see how far you're going to get with that." But the other thing is that remember when you see the word "obey," don't think compliance. When you see the word obey, think what? Power and promise through surrender, amen? The word "obey" says God's surrender, and I give you the power to obey because God knows that we do not have that power. Is everybody with me? And when it says, "Keep My covenant," what does the word "keep" mean? It doesn't mean to comply, it means to what? To cherish, to hold, to have in high esteem and say, "God, I love Your covenant. Give me--change my heart so that I can live according to Your covenant, according to Your Word." Amen?

And so I finish with this quote. "All true obedience," "Desire of Ages," "comes from the heart. It was heart work with Christ. And if we consent," through faith, "He will so identify Himself with our thoughts and aims, so blend our hearts and minds into conformity to His will, that when we obey His-- Him, we will simply be carrying out our own impulses." That is, once the heart is renewed, once the heart is done again, amen?

Look at what it says: "The will, refined and sanctified, will find its highest delight in doing His service. When we know God as it is our privilege to know Him, our life will be a life of," what? Why will it be a life of continual obedience? Because it will be a life of continual surrender, constant surrender, constant abiding, constant depending, constant leaning on God and not depending on me, amen? And when that happens, God says, "I promise I am going to help you, I'm going to give you the power to obey My Word." "Through an appreciation of the character of Christ, through communion with God, sin will become hateful to us."

That right there is explained the life of Jesus Christ. That's Jesus that was explained right there, and that's the promise that He gives us too. He says, "If you will learn to surrender completely, consistently, daily, every decision, every temptation, everything that comes across your plate--bro, lift up a prayer, ask the Lord for power, ask the Lord for deliverance."

If we do that like Christ did, if we have that type of surrender, the faith of Christ, the mind of Christ, the consecration of Christ; if we have all of that, we will live the righteous life of Christ also. That's the promise of the Word of God, amen?

And that's why, my loved ones, when we talk about the law--the covenant law, it is a blessing. It is a delight. Amen? And we will have a new body and none of this will happen again, and that's the last promise. Who wants to say tonight-- this morning, "Lord, I want to learn to consistently, completely, daily surrender and live like Christ. I want to live the faith of Jesus Christ," amen.

Stand up if you want to say, "Lord, help me. Help me, Lord, not to be better--" No, no, no, no, we can't be better. This is--there's no improvement here. "Lord, help me to learn to depend completely and totally on You, to learn to live like Christ, to live in the faith of Jesus Christ." That should be our prayer every day.

Let's pray. Father, we thank you for this wonderful, wonderful, everlasting gospel, which is the everlasting covenant, which is the power, the dunamis, which is your righteousness that draws us to You, Father, and saves humanity when we see the goodness and that righteousness, that power, that dunamis, that love was manifested perfectly through Your Son Jesus Christ and his sacrifice. And so we ask, Father, that You help us every day to learn to live like Christ. We have certain level of surrender, certain level of consecration, but, Father, we need to learn to live like Christ if we want to see the life of Christ reflected and manifested and reproduced in us.

Help us, Father, to stop to depend on our own works, on our own compliance because we don't have the capacity as we saw today, but help us to learn to depend on Your promises, on Your fidelity, and on Your power as Christ did every day, every moment while he was here on earth. Thank You for this blessing, Father, and we ask this in Jesus's name, amen. Happy Sabbath, everyone.

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Announcer: Amazing Facts changed lives.

Male: I actually grew up in a loving home, had no religious background. My parents were completely secular. I had questions in my life like most young people do. "What does my future hold for me, and what is my purpose of even being here?" There are questions that my parents couldn't answer. Because of moving around a lot and kind of hard to adjust at times, by the time I made it into high school my grades were really terrible and I had a problem with authority. Started smoking at the age of 14 and drinking by the age of 15.

I just really started getting involved with crime: break and enters, selling drugs, stealing cars. At one point I had overdosed on ecstasy, and I was doing anything I could just to find some sort of excitement or something that reflected some version of happiness in my life. Didn't want to be alone and I was looking for some sort of relationship. I had found myself in Australia, and I met a girl down there who was a Christian girl and we really started to hit it off. We ended up in a long-- fairly long relationship. We were together for about seven years. Neither one of us were having a relationship with God. We kind of excluded Him out of what we were doing and we were just trying to do everything on our own.

When we came out of that relationship, I ended up in a really deep depression. I was so depressed that I was coming home and as soon as the door closed behind me I would drop down in my knees and just start crying. I couldn't see the light at the end of the tunnel. I tried to take my life at one point with pills. And it wasn't because I wanted to die, I just--I didn't want to feel this way anymore. It hurt so bad, and I'd never felt so lonely. I would end up in my bedroom and I was praying for hours each day, and that was kind of my life. I was alone and unhappy, and I really needed answers.

I had started studying the Bible and found Amazing Facts online and was watching hours of sermons each day, spending more time with Pastor Doug Batchelor and really getting a lot of the answers to the questions that I was seeking out. I felt that there was hope that was coming through that and that was kind of pulling me out of--gradually pulling me out of the darkness that I was in.

So eventually I decided I was going to go to church. I would drive to the church and I would sit in the parking lot for about half an hour and then I would drive home. Eventually I found myself inside the church. They were all quite amazed that I kind of found my own way there. I started building relationships with people there and my life really started changing. Eventually I was baptized.

Still I couldn't get enough. I wanted to read more, I wanted to study more, and all these new things that I was learning were--it all made sense to me. I prayed to God specifically for two things at this point. I prayed for a new job, and I prayed for an opportunity in my life, some direction. And within one week, he had answered the prayer. I got a new job and I was going to be starting right away, but he'd also answered the other prayer. Two ladies in my church came up to me and offered to send me to go to AFCOE.

My life has changed so much since I started following God's path for me. I'm just so much happier in my life. And I realized that there's so much more in this world that I can do to help others, and I look forward to a life of service to God.

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