The New Covenant Made the First One Obsolete (Hebrews 8:13)
“By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and aging will soon disappear” ( Hebrews 8:13 )
Right now we have a whole generation of children growing up that are not familiar with some of the things we grew up with. Take a VCR for instance, most have seen one but in all likelihood have never used one. A record player would be another good example; enough advances have been made in this area that most children probably have never ever heard of one. In fact today’s generation of kids do not know what the world is like without video games, computers, iPads and smartphones. The point is that advances in technology have made obsolete items of those that were once commonplace in our homes and lives.
The same is true with the Covenants. The intent of the New Covenant was to completely replace the first because it was aging and obsolete. After all, God found fault and set about to establish the new one based on better promises ( Hebrews 8:6-7 ). We are not to live under a hybrid of the two Covenants mixing both Law and grace. We solely live in the Covenant God instituted through Jesus Christ because the Old Covenant is out of use and annulled and ready to be dispensed with altogether.
God went to great lengths to bring about this New Covenant so that it would be completely different than the first. To start with, He set up Jesus as our new High Priest, who was not from the earthly priestly line ( Hebrews 7:14 ). This in in itself would nullify the first agreement. Secondly, He sent the Holy Spirit to dwell on the inside of believers so that the laws and precepts of God are a part of their new creation ( Hebrews 8:10 ). Next, the Holy Spirit reveals God to people so that we can be fully acquainted in all His ways ( Hebrews 8:11 ). And lastly, our sins are completely wiped out, forgiven and forgotten ( Hebrews 8:12 ). These things are vastly different than what the Israelites experienced under the Covenant of Law. This is why we should fully embrace our Covenant by understanding and living it.
The New Covenant is so superior that it is meant to fully replace the first. Just like in the example of the record player and VCR, advancements in our Covenant make the first one obsolete and showing its age. It was retired a long time ago and is useless in comparison to the agreement we have through Jesus Christ.
This is an exciting and amazing truth! We are truly blessed to be a part of this wonderful covenant of grace based on better promises and guaranteed through Jesus Christ. God saved the best for last. The first is ready to disappear but our covenant will be a lasting and eternal memorial to our wonderful and faithful God.