The Old and the New
Hebrews 9:15-28
And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death…

It was a part of the mission of the apostles not to transfer the allegiance of the Jews from one God to another, but to teach them how to serve the same God in a higher dispensation, under a noble disclosure of His character, and by new and better methods. It was to be the same heart and the same God; but there was a new and living way opened. The old was good, the new was better. The new was not an antagonism of the old, but only its outgrowth, related to it as the blossom and the fruit are to the root and the stalk. The old was local and national in its prime intents, and in its results. The new was for all ages. The old was a system of practices. It aimed at conduct — of course implying a good cause for conduct. The new is a system of principles, and yet not principles in a rigid philosphical sense, but principles that are great moral impulses or tendencies of the heart. The old built men for this world. Therefore it hardly looked beyond this world. The whole force of the new dispensation is derived from that which scarcely appeared at all in the old — its supereminent doctrine of the future. That is its very enginery. The aims of Christianity are supramundane. The motives are drawn from immortality-its joys, honours, promises, rewards. The old addressed the conscience through fear, and soon overreached its aim, losing some by under-action, and others — and the better natures — by over-action. What the law could not do, in that it was weak, it is declared, God sent His own Son to do. The new aims at the very springs of moral power in the soul, and that through love. It is a total change, it is an absolute difference, in this regard. The old was a dispensation of secular morals. It lived in the past. The new is a system of aspirations. It lives in the future. We are the children of the new testament, and not of the old. Woe be to us if, living in these later days, we find ourselves groping in the imperfections of the old testament, instead of springing up with all the vitality and supereminent manhood which belongs to the new testament. We are the children of a living Saviour. We are a brood over which He stretches His wings. We ought to have more than a creed which is only a modern representation of an old ordinance or institution. We ought to have something more than an ordinance. To be a disciple of the new testament is to have a living Head. It is to have a vital connection with that Head. It is to be conscious, while all nature speaks of God, and while all the exercises of religion assist indirectly, that the main power of a true religion in the soul is the soul's connection with a living God. Ye are the children of the new and not of the old. Let your life mount up toward God.

(H. W. Beecher.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.

WEB: For this reason he is the mediator of a new covenant, since a death has occurred for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first covenant, that those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.

The Eternal Inheritance
Top of Page
Top of Page