THE OLD TESTAMENT COVENANT AND THE NEW TESTAMENT COVENANT: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS
The purpose of this research project was to analytically compare the Old Testament Covenant and the New Testament Covenant. In line with this, the paper made a descriptive analysis of the Old and the New Testament Covenants. Furthermore, both covenants were compared and found out that they share a lot in common which include both covenants having the same origin, a mediator, involves a relationship, were bilateral with a sign and sealed with “blood”. However, they differ significantly in many ways which include the nature of the sacrifices, priests, duration among others. On the whole, it was highlighted that God gave to Israel through Moses a law of complex and strict conditions which became the basis of His covenant with them. It was foreseen to be typical for a better covenant which would accomplish all that the old covenant could not, and more. The New Covenant, into which believers in the sacrifice of God’s son could enter, would have a new law and effective provisions. This forms the common difference between both covenants, the blood of animals and the blood of Jesus Christ. The common necessity of the new covenant brings the faultiness of the old covenant due to Israel’s disobedience. In view of these findings, it was recommended that the Christian world should come to the understanding that salvation or remission of sin is not based on the old covenant which was characterized by animal sacrifices, but should see the old covenants under the law only as shadow pointing to the new covenant as a reality. Also, in Christ all forms of sacrifices were abolished, hence Christian theology, principles, and practices are built on the new covenant.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Cover Page - - - - - - - - - - i
Declaration - - - - - - - - - - ii
Certification - - - - - - - - - - iii
Dedication - - - - - - - - - - iv
Acknowledgement - - - - - - - - - v
Abstract - - - - - - - - - - vi
Table of contents - - - - - - - - - vii
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background of the Study - - - - - - - 1
1.2 Statement of the Problem - - - - - - - 2
1.3 Purpose of the Study - - - - - - - - 3
1.4 Research Questions - - - - - - - - 3
1.5 Significance of the Study - - - - - - - 3
1.6 Limitation of the Study - - - - - - - 4
1.7 Definition of Terms - - - - - - - - 4
CHAPTER TWO: REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
2.1 Theoretical Framework - - - - - - - 5
2.2 An Overview of the Old Testament Covenants - - - - 5
2.3 An overview of the New Testament Covenant - - - - 14
2.4 The New Covenant - - - - - - - - 15
2.5 The Necessity of the New Covenant - - - - - - 16
2.5.1 Disobedience - - - - - - - - - 17
2.5.2 Change in Priesthood - - - - - - - 18
2.5.3 Lack of Universality - - - - - - - - 18
2.5.4 Temporality - - - - - - - - - 18
2.6 The Institution of the New Covenant - - - - - - 19
2.7 The Person of Jesus - - - - - - - - 20
2.7.1 Jesus as the Mediator of the New Covenant - - - - - 21
2.7.2 Jesus as the High Priest of the New Covenant - - - - 21
2.8 Conclusion - - - - - - - - - 23
CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
3.1 Research Design - - - - - - - - 24
3.2 Area of Study - - - - - - - - - 24
3.3 Instrumentation - - - - - - - - 25
CHAPTER FOUR: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF THE OLD AND NEWCOVENANTS
4.1 Introduction - - - - - - - - - 26
4.2 The Similarities between the Old and the New Covenants - - - 26
4.2.1 Both Covenants had the Same Origin - - - - - 26
4.2.2 Both Covenant Involves a Relationship - - - - - 27
4.2.3 Both Covenants had a Mediator - - - - - - 27
4.2.4 Both Covenants are Bilateral - - - - - - - 27
4.2.5 Both Covenants had a Sign - - - - - - - 28
4.2.6 Both Covenants were sealed with Blood - - - - - 28
4.3 Divergences between the Old and the New Covenants - - - 28
4.4 Conclusion - - - - - - - - - 33
CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
5.1 Summary - - - - - - - - - 34
5.2 Conclusion - - - - - - - - - 34
5.3 Recommendations - - - - - - - - 35 REFERENCES - - - - - - - - 36
1.1 Background of the Study
The most publicized and circulated “Literature” in the world is the Christian Holy Bible which has distinctive but related parts known as the Old Testament and the New Testament. These two parts, though written over a long period of time and by the writers who often did not know each other, reveals a marvelous unity of thought. Hence, the two parts agree in their views of a divine revelation concerning Gods’ purpose for mankind and man’s condition and needs. They depict man’s sinful fallen condition, his inability to save himself, God’s revealed will to save man through a substitutionary sacrifice and the salvation of man through saving faith alone. The unity of the Old Testament and New Testament is also seen in many specific prophesies concerning the coming of Christ the Messiah and of His sacrificial death which were fulfilled in His life and death. Another unity of the two parts is Gods’ covenant with Israel. God made His covenant with Israel through Abraham and later with Moses. This covenant extended to the whole world using the name the New Covenant.
However, this project is not intended to discuss the unity of the Old Testament and the New Testament, but it is aimed at discussing the Old Testament and the New Testament laying emphasis on the constituents of both covenants the necessity of the new covenant as well as the comparative analysis intended to articulate the differences and similarities of both covenants.
This seminar paper is made possible through library research. The library research is done analytically and critically expecting that at the end of the paper, the necessity of the new covenant will clearly be highlighted and the old covenant will equally be appreciated as a sine qua non in the era when God was not known as compared to the knowledge of God when the New Covenant was made. In view of the self evidence of the necessity of the New Covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-34) at the era when the old covenant was undergoing series of violation diminishable processes, this seminar paper is undertaken to show the indispensability of the New Covenant. It also aims at identifying the similarities and divergences of the Old Testament covenant and the New Testament covenant.
This project was limited to only the divine covenants, excluding covenants between individuals in the comparative analysis. The Sinaitic covenant and the new covenant are used in the analysis.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
In contemporary Christendom, many Christians are passionately involved in various routine sacrifices with the ideology that it is biblical. This position is either taken by commission or omission. However, it becomes necessary to examine the Old Testament covenants and the new testaments. In addition on the finished work of Christ which in turn abolished all forms of routine sacrifices excluding sacrifices of praise and thanksgiving.
The myopic view of covenant as God’s promise for his children is basically a problem which needs a theological solution. Hence, this research project within its context provides a theological masterpiece on covenant as bilateral, with man obligated to keep his of god’s stipulation if he must receive god’s promises or face the wrath of God for breaking the covenant. Bilateral, with man obligated to keep his part of God’s stipulation if he must receive God’s promises or face the wrath of God for breaking the covenant.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The aim of this research was to analytically compare a Old Testament and New testament Covenants. Specifically, the study seeks to achieve its aims through the following objectives which arc to:
i. Make a descriptive analysis of the Old Testament Covenants.
ii. Make an analytical implication of the New Testament Covenant.
iii. Make a comparative analysis of the Old and New Covenants.
1.4 Research Questions
The following research questions were posed to guide the study.
i. What were the various covenants of the Old Testament?
ii. Why was the New Covenant Necessary?
iii. What are the similarities and divergences of the Old and the New Covenants’?
1.5 Significance of the Study
It is believed that the findings of this research will benefit the church. Students of the bible and even teachers/preachers of the word. The church from this research will understand its expectations in every given divine covenant. vis, keeping God’s commandments is essential in obtaining his promise and failure to keep this commandment implies that one has broken the divine commandment so must either be punished or surfeit the divine promises.
Besides. the research is expected to be a reference material to students of the Bible. vis-à-vis teachers/preachers of the word. In addition, it will serve as research motivator to others who wish to undertake further research in the subject matter. Finally, the research is significant as it has contributed to the pool of literature that has been generated about covenants.
1.6 Limitation of the Study
This project is made possible through library research, and was limited to only the divine covenants. Hence excluding covenants between individuals. In the comparative analysis, the Sinaitic covenant and the new covenant is used in the analysis.
1.7 Definition of Terms
To effect a proper and comprehensive understanding of the topic, some key terms are hereby defined.
Analysis: According to the New International Webster’s Comprehensi’ e Dictionary of the English Language, analysis is a method of determining c describing the nature of a thing by resolving it into parts (2004:52).
Comparative: Etymologically, Pteifferci a! (2005;386) sees covenants as a derivative of the Greek word diatheses meaning pact. Normatively, convener:means an agreement between two or more persons in which four factors elements are present. In a similar view, covenant is an agreement between the people or two groups that involves promises on the part of each to the ore - (Youngblood, 1995:306).
Testament: Youngblood (1995;1240) maintains that the word testament refers to either of the two main division of the bible, the Old Testaments and the New Testament..