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The Ten Commandments spelled out God’s conditions to receive His blessing and to enjoy the benefit of being His people. We call it “the old covenant.” It failed. Not on God’s part, but on our part. So it was necessary that God establish a new covenant.

“Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah—not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they did not continue in My covenant, and I disregarded them, says the Lord. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people” (Hebrews 8:8-10).

In this new covenant, God works from within. He changes our heart and transforms our mind. So the basic difference between the old covenant and the new covenant is that the old covenant rested on the people’s ability to obey external rules, while the new covenant depends on God’s work within our hearts to transform us from the inside out.

Jesus Christ established this new covenant through His work on the cross, as He said at the Last Supper: “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.… This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you” (Luke 22:19-20). Through Jesus Christ, God established a new covenant that makes possible a transformed life. As you walk with Jesus, God makes you a new person from the inside out.

That is why Paul wrote to the Colossians, “Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him” (Colossians 3:9-10).

And it explains why he wrote to the Philippians,

“Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure” (Philippians 2:12-13).

Since the time of Jesus, God works from within. He changes your mind and your heart. He gives you a new will that desires to please Him, that desires to do His work, desiring to obey Him, so that your own heart desires to love and serve the Lord. God changes you from within so that you do the things that you love to do—for Him.

Some people read Psalm 37 and get really pumped, but for all the wrong reasons. They read verse 4—“Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart”—and mistakenly think, Whoa! All I have to do is delight myself in the Lord and I can have a new Mercedes! I can live in a bay-front home on Balboa Island! Oh my Lord, You bet I delight myself in You!

No, no, that’s not what it’s saying. It’s saying, “If you delight yourself in the Lord, He will put His desires in your heart. He will write His law on your heart so that doing the will of God will become the delight and the joy of your life.” Then you will be able to say, along with the psalmist, “I delight to do Your will, O my God, and Your law is within my heart” (Psalm 40:8).

As God transforms you from within, He plants His desires in your heart so that you delight to do His will. There’s nothing you want more, nothing you like better than doing the will of God. It becomes your longing, your desire, your love. He puts His desires in your heart and then blesses you for acting on them. How can you lose?


– excerpted from Love The More Excellent Way by Chuck Smith

continue reading the views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of Calvary Southampton

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