Creflo Dollar - Comparing Covenants
Father, we thank you for this, another opportunity to minister to feed your precious sheep. Thank you, Lord, that revelation knowledge will flow freely uninterrupted and unhindered by any Satanic or demonic force. And Father, I pray that you will speak through my vocal chords and think through my mind, none of me and all of you. It's in Jesus's name we pray.
And everybody said, amen. You may be seated and just for a moment, let's go over here to the Book of Galatians chapter 1. You know, Paul calls this gospel of grace, he refers to it as the gospel of peace because when the grace of God is working in your life, the peace of God's gonna be working as well. But he said some things here that I want you to take note of because I believe that some very interesting things are happening here. And he starts off in verse 3, Galatians 1, "Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father". Sin's no longer an issue, ladies and gentlemen, it's not the issue as far as you getting to heaven. You're hearing it over and over and over again. Jesus Christ has come and taken care of the sin issue. Verse 5, "To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen".
Now, Paul says, something here. He says, "I marvel that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel". The Amplified says, " I'm surprised and I'm astonished that you're so quickly turning renegade and deserting Him Who invited and called you by the grace, this (unmerited favor) of Christ (the Messiah) and that you are transferring your allegiance to a different even an opposition gospel". Now, that's interesting because first of all here in verse 6, he's identifying he says, "You've been called into the gospel of grace, into the grace of Christ unto another gospel". So, it identifies grace as the good news and then he says, "I'm shocked that you've turned renegade and you're going to some other gospel". Verse 8, verse 7, "Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ". He says, "Not that there is or could be any other genuine Gospel," other than this gospel of Christ, other than this gospel of grace, "but there are obviously some who are troubling and disturbing and bewildering you with a different kind of teaching which they offer as a gospel and want to pervert and distort the Gospel of Christ (the Messiah) into something which it absolutely is not". Verse 8, But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed".
When I read that, hey dude, I got it. "Let him be accursed". And then he goes to the next verse and says, "As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that you have received, let him be accursed". Now, to be cursed means to be empowered to fail. It also means to be hemmed, to be hemmed in on all sides. And I'm telling you, ladies and gentlemen, we have got to get in this Word so that you don't become exposed to these perversions that will go out in these last days. You gotta know what the Word says for yourself, amen? And he says, "For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of God". I like the Amplified, "Now am I trying to win the favor of men, or of God? Do I seek to please men? If I were still seeking popularity with men, I should not be a bond servant of Christ Jesus".
You're gonna have to take a stand. You're gonna have to take a stand on the truth of this gospel. You can't just be rolling with every wind, the doctrine that comes by or you cannot allow your tradition to cause this Word to be of no effect. All of different things that out in the world that can cause the Word of God to be of no effect, and we've gotta get in this. We've got to cross our T's, dot our I's. We've got to understand what this Word is saying so that we can begin to get the results that we are supposed to be getting, amen? Praise the Lord. Well, let's begin here and let's talk about something. I want to deal with some major covenants in the Bible, and my objective this afternoon is to begin to deal with that New Covenant that we're under.
Now, let's talk about, you know, what is a covenant. We know the Bible is a book of covenants and we know that a covenant is a pledge, it's a vow. It's a promise or agreement between two or more parties to carry out the terms and the clauses that are stated in that covenant. And most of these covenants in the Old Covenant are blood based. Now, I want you to lift up out of this terms and clauses. There's something about identifying the terms of an agreement, identifying the terms of that covenant so you will know what you need to do in order to be in agreement and understanding your part of that agreement so that the blessings of it will continue to flow. So, if you understand what the agreement is and you understand, you know, your obligation and understand you're part of that agreement, than you should have no problems continuing to get what was promised. Does everybody see that? So, what we want to do is we want to look at a couple of those covenants leading up to the New Covenant and begin to compare and contrast what they offered versus what we see in this New Covenant.
So, I like to start at the beginning. Let's start in the garden first and work our way up to Hebrews chapter 8, where that New Covenant is considered. Go with me to the Book of Genesis chapter 2, and verse 16. Genesis chapter 2, and verse 16. Now, the agreement, verse 16. And let's read verse 16 and 17 out loud together. Ready? Read. "And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die". All right, now let's check out the agreement that will allow the blessings to continue to operate in their lives. I mean, you gotta understand it was all good in that neighborhood, you understand? It was good. I mean, the weather was good, the food was good. Adam and Eve were naked of artificial clothing, but they were not exposed. Their nakedness was not exposed because they were clothed with the glory of God, amen?
See, you gotta understand, man had a coat before he lost it. Everything God created had his own coat. The dog God a coat. Everybody got a coat except us. We gotta go buy a coat. Well, we had a coat, amen? But the agreement was if you want to continue to enjoy the flow of the blessings of God that are flowing in the garden, here is the agreement. "Do not eat from this tree, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Don't eat from that. You may freely eat". Now, that's just showing God's generosity there. "You may freely eat". Now, get ahold of what he's saying, "Freely eat of all the trees in the garden". You would wonder, why would they even want to look at that other tree compared to all of the trees in the garden? And I want to make an input here, that also included the tree of life. The tree of life was available to them in the garden. And he said, "You can eat them all, freely eat of all the trees of the garden but here's the agreement now we're entering into. In order for you to continue to freely eat of all the trees of the garden and enjoy the blessing, you must agree, you're part of the agreement, do not eat from this tree of the knowledge of good and evil".
That tree I'm convinced represented the law. That's what the law is. The law is the knowledge of good and evil. And he said, "Don't eat of that tree". Now, it wasn't called the tree of death. It wasn't called the tree of darkness. It was called the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Now, you know, you might ask, "Well, why wouldn't God want them to eat from that tree? What's the big deal"? You see, God wanted man to live a life where he could enjoy the life of God, just knowing the life of God without having to deal with the knowledge of good and evil. He just wanted them to freely enjoy God. Can you imagine, just knowing God, just enjoying God and knowing God, that's what God wants. All right now, if we'll begin to look very carefully here, we thank God today that in Hebrews chapter 10:22. Flip over there just for a moment, Hebrews 10:22. I gotta show you everything today. Again we go back to this issue, well if the devil want to just end this thing, how come he didn't just tempt Eve to go ahead and murder Adam? 'Cause there was no law that would make murder a transgression.
So, it would be very difficult for Satan to tempt them to do something where there is no law. Hold your place there. Go to 1 Corinthians chapter 15 while the Holy Ghost and I square out which way we gonna go here. 1 Corinthians chapter 15, I want you to see this. I want to look at verse 56. If you're there, say, "amen". He said, "The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is," what? "Is the law". That the law is the strength of sin. And so, that's why he was able to tempt them with the tree because in a sense, there was a law there saying, "Don't eat from that particular tree," and it added strength to that temptation. Now, go back to Hebrews chapter 10, and verse 22. Let's read verse 22 out loud together. Ready? Read. "Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water". So, according to this Scripture, our hearts have been sprinkled from an evil conscience.
Now, what's an evil conscience? An evil conscience is a sin conscience. An evil conscience is when you have the consciousness of sin. You remember the Scripture in, I believe, it's 1 Timothy chapter 4, verse 2 where it makes mention of a seared conscience, that your conscience has been seared with a hot iron? Well, some think that a seared conscience is a conscience that can no longer detect when you sin. Well, I began to look at that and in the Greek, it literally means a conscience that is perpetually sin conscience. In other words, when you have a seared conscience, you are perpetually sin conscience. That's on you all the time. You're sin conscious all the time. Your consciousness has been seared and you're sin conscious the whole time. That is an evil conscience, that is a seared conscience. And what happens, ladies and gentlemen, is when you get that evil, seared conscience, it becomes very, very difficult to find the liberty to do the will of God.
And the Bible said that Adam and Eve died because they broke the agreement, the blessings stopped, they lost the code of glory, they were put out of the garden because they broke the agreement. And what happened when they broke the agreement? They began to be conscious of sin. God comes in the garden looking for his boy to have some fellowship with him. "Adam, where are you"? The boy hiding trying to get some fig leaves and if you know what fig leaves, they got sticky stuff on them, all right? All because the agreement was broken. All right, that's good there. Now, let's fast forward and let's go to the covenant of Sinai or probably more popularly known as the mosaic covenant. Let's look at the Ten Commandments. Let's look at the law that was given at Mount Sinai.
And let's now locate the agreement for this mosaic covenant in order to keep the blessings flowing. Go to Deuteronomy chapter 28. Deuteronomy chapter 28, and let's see the requirements of this agreement. Verse 1, "And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments," I want you to see that now. Did you see something there? To observe and to do, what? Not two or three of them but, what? Say it again. All right, "Observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations, and all these blessings shall come on thee". So now, we've got to recognize that the agreement for all these blessings to continue to come on you is gonna be based on whether or not you are going to keep all these commandments. Wow, so if I keep all the commandments, these blessings will continue to be perpetual. They're just gonna continue to work.
Now, I thought it was very interesting that God is giving them something to do that he already knew they couldn't do. He's giving them law and he knows they can't even keep it. Go to Exodus 20, let me show you something here. Exodus chapter 20. Now I'm gonna say some things that will rattle your religion and hopefully by the end of this day, you won't have no more religion. Even back then it wasn't possible to keep all these commandments. Now look at verse 24. Well, in Exodus chapter 20, this is where he's given the Ten Commandments and he's talking about, you know, "Thou shall not have no other gods before thee. Remember the Sabbath day, keep it holy," verse 8. It goes, verse 13, "Thou shall not kill. Thou shall not commit adultery. Thou shall not steal. Thou shall not bear false witness against thy neighbor". And right after he finished giving the commandments, verse 24 he says, "An altar of earth thou shalt make unto me, and shalt sacrifice thereon thy burnt offerings, and thy peace offerings, thy sheep, thy oxen: in all places where I record my name and I will come unto thee, and I will bless thee".
Now, if they could have kept all of the commandments, then why right after he gave them the commandments did he say, "Go build an altar so you can make sacrifices there and I'll bless you through the altar"? Ladies and gentlemen, please listen to me, nobody kept all of the law. He didn't give the law for them to be justified or to be holy. He gave the law to bring man to an end of himself. He gave the law so that men would understand what sin was so that men would understand that they were not gonna be successful without him. They were not gonna be successful without him. And even Jesus when Jesus came as a prophet operating under the Old Covenant, please understand, again, the right perspective, that when Jesus showed up and he began to talk to them about the law in Matthew, I believe 7, he says, "Now, don't think that I have come to you to get rid of the law". He says, "I came to you to fulfill the law". And somehow or another the Pharisees thought that they could manipulate the law and bring it down to a place where they can keep it, but Jesus was an expert in the law and he continued to show them, no matter how braggadocious they became about being able to keep the law, Jesus kept showing them, "You didn't keep it".
Even with the rich young ruler, he mentioned all of these laws and the rich young ruler said, "I kept all of these laws from the youth up to..." Jesus said, "Uh-uh, you missed one". You can't be bragging about keeping this 'cause nobody kept it, not all of them. And Jesus could always figure when he was going through this law and he said to them he says, "You have heard, you have heard thou shall not commit murder". He says, "But I say unto you, you shall not hate your brother". You know what Jesus was saying? You thought you kept the law 'cause you hadn't murdered somebody, but I'm telling you you still ain't kept it because you still hate your brother. You have heard that you shouldn't commit adultery but I say unto you, you shouldn't look at a woman with lust in your heart". What he was trying to show them is "I didn't give this to you for you to be able to successfully keep it without me".
Nobody kept all of the law successfully. Nobody, only one man and his name is Jesus. The law was put into place so that you understand you need a Savior. Glory to God. And I don't know about you, praise God, but I need a Savior, hallelujah. Are you listening to me, now? Because if they could have kept it, he would not have gone back in Exodus 20 and say, "All right, you know, through the altar, through you going to getting an animal that was faultless," what was God thinking about? Thinking about his faultless Son. When you brought a burnt offering, what was he thinking about? Thinking about his Son on the cross. When you brought a peace offering, what was he thinking about? He was thinking about his Son Jesus. He had this thing already on his mind, praise God, that "I'm gonna get man to see that he is not gonna be successful without me. But I'll be able to bless you that when you find out that you're not keeping all these commandments".
Now, they did a, you know, a pretty good job. I mean, they made sure they didn't have, you know, idols in their house and, you know, tried to stay away from a bunch of outward stuff, but they were just still lacking so much and the reason why they were blessed is because they were able to bring and to make a sacrifice at the altar and through that, God blessed them. You know, if you read 1, 2 Kings, Chronicles, you know, God made it very clear that a king was only supposed to have one wife, duh? Well, that didn't happen, did it? So, why did they continue to be blessed? Because they made sacrifices and through the sacrifices, they got blessed. Now that happened only, only if that king didn't switch gods. If he decided to switch God, he lost his kingdom, he lost his family, he lost all kinds of stuff when he decided to switch gods, why? Because when he switched gods, he ceased to make sacrifices and so the blessing could not continue because he was no longer making sacrifices at the altar.