“But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified” (Hebrews 10:12-14, ESV).
What a sacrifice! God now says the covenant is not like the covenant made with the angels. It is not like the covenant made with Adam — and Adam failed. Nor is it like the covenant of circumcision — where the children of Israel failed. It is not like the covenant made with the Law of Moses and it is not like the covenant of the high priestly sacrifice. God says that this is a new covenant made through His Son, Christ Jesus. It is a better covenant, a more excellent covenant, a holy covenant. It is Christ’s covenant coming to bring us into new life, new creation. He is taking out the old and making all things new.
This is not a covenant based on our works. It is not a partnership with God. It is not God dealing with His people on mutual terms of performances. It is not God saying, “I will perform this if you will perform that.” Instead, God said, “Have you had enough of these old covenants? Are you weary enough now of failing?” Are you tired and frustrated of trying in your own moral power to show how holy you are before God? Are you tired of seeing yourself as equal with God, as if God could bring His bargain to the covenant and then you could bring your bargain and stand on equal ground?
The Word says that every single covenant God made long ago had one purpose — to show us the inability of our moral fiber, our inability to be covenant keepers on equal ground with God (Hebrews 1:1). It finally drove us to the point — as God does through the law now, even in the New Testament times — where we say, “I cannot do this myself. Nothing in my hand I bring to you, Lord. Without You taking both parts of the covenant, Your side and mine, without You fulfilling Your promises Yourself and fulfilling my promises for me, I cannot stand.”
There is now a new covenant!