If you think that “not everything” is about the Covenants, you’re dead wrong. Obeying the New Covenant of Jesus Christ is a Heaven or Hell issue, and gaining the one while avoiding the other is everything. The Old Covenant is a history of the beginning, not a guide to Christian living.
How has the Christian Church gotten so far away from Jesus? The world is getting meaner, more vindictive, and more lacking in common courtesy because of the prevalence of teaching of the Old Covenant law of Moses. The members of the Religious Right are republicans who are dragging Christians deeper and deeper into apostasy by convincing them to put themselves under bondage of the Old Covenant law. Nothing in creation can separate a Christian from Christ (Rom. 8:39), but a Christian can separate himself from Christ by following after false teaching.
There are many differences between the Old Covenant and the New Covenant, like punishing sinners and paying tithes. But, the most egregious difference is in attitude. The vengeful, punishing, unforgiving attitude of the Republican Party comes directly from the Old Covenant and is in direct opposition to Jesus Christ.
A defining example of that attitude is the attitude toward children. The Old Covenant says that to spare the rod is to spoil the child (Prov. 13:24), but the New Covenant says that parents should not provoke their children to wrath (Eph. 6:4). The republicans are provoking the children of God to wrath through fear, anger, and hatred.
Through the Fox News Network, and through leaders like Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum, and Pat Buccannon, the republicans are teaching a perverted gospel. Instead of pick up your Bible and turn control of your life over to Jesus, the republicans are teaching that you should man-up, pick up your gun, and take control of your own life.
Instead of turn the other cheek, the republicans are teaching that you should stand your ground and fight back. Instead of love thy neighbor as thyself, the republicans are teaching that you should hate your neighbor for being lazy and taking advantage of your hard work. Instead of helping the poor by giving to the poor, the republicans are teaching that you should help the poor by giving nothing to the poor, thereby forcing them to be self sufficient for their own good.
The Old Covenant required God’s people to punish sinners themselves, but the New Covenant requires the followers of Jesus to leave the punishing of sinners to Jesus at the day of judgment (2 Pet. 2:9). The Old Covenant required God’s people to build temples to God and pay tithes to the Pharisees, but under the New Covenant, Jesus doesn’t require His followers to do either. The only money that Jesus requires of His followers is to give alms for the poor (Luke 12:33).
Not only are Christians prohibited from paying tithes because it comes from the law (Heb. 7:5), but also because paying tithes violates the promise of the free gift of grace. Jesus condemned the Pharisee for boasting that he paid tithes of all he possessed (Luke 18: 12), and Jesus specifically made His gift of grace free, not of Old Covenant law, lest any man should boast of having done something to earn it (Eph. 2:9). If Jesus required His followers to pay tithes, then the cost of His grace would be exactly ten percent of your income for life, making a lie of His offer of the free gift.
It is reasonable to think that because there is one God, both Covenants came from the same Source, and therefore, both Covenants are equally deserving of obedience, but that would be wrong on both counts. The Covenants came from two separate Sources, the Father and the Son, and only one Covenant, the New Covenant of better promises (Heb. 8:6,7), is deserving of obedience from the followers of Jesus Christ.
There is only one God, but God is a Holy Trinity; the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Nobody really understands how God can be one Entity, and at the same time, be three separate, autonomous Entities, but the Bible says that it is so, so it must be so.
It was God the Holy Trinity that created man. God said, “… Let us make man in our image…” (Gen 1:26). But, it was the separate Entity of God the Father that established the Covenant with the Jewish people. Actually, God the Father established seven covenants, and they are collectively known as the Old Covenant (Old Testament). With the very first Covenant, the Edenic Covenant, God the Father put His Plan of Salvation into action.
In due time, God the Father sent His Son, Jesus Christ, into the world to finish the Father’s Plan of Salvation (John 4:34). God the Father put all things under the authority of Jesus (John 3:35), and sent Jesus into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved (John 3:17).
God the Father did not make any Covenant with the Gentiles, but His Son did. Gentile Christians are required to obey the commandments of Jesus to stay in His love, just as Jesus obeyed the commandments of His Father to stay in His love (John 15:10). God the Father will not bless any disobedience of His Son. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh to the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).
The Pharisees attempted to put the early Christians under the Old Covenant law of Moses (Acts 15:5), but the apostles and disciples put a stop to it. Responding to the Pharisees, Peter said, “Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear” (Acts 15:10). Referring to the attempt to put Christians under the Old Covenant law of Moses, Paul said, “Christ is become of no effect to you, whosoever of you are justified by the law, ye are fallen from grace” (Gal. 5:4).
Obviously, the Pharisees had wanted to maintain their control over the people and keep collecting tithes from them. The New Covenant says that the love of money is the root of all evil (1 Tim. 6:10). It’s not surprising that at some point in time after the apostles and disciples were gone out of the world, the paying of tithes came first when there was a renewed effort to put Christians back under the law. Of course, today’s republicans were not responsible for that, but like everything else they do, today’s republicans are pushing the Old Covenant law to the extreme, openly and actively contradicting Jesus.
How has the Christian Church gotten so far away from Jesus? The apostles and disciples are gone, and apparently, there is nobody in the world today who is willing to risk the flow of money through the Church to stop the Republican Party from teaching more Old Covenant law in the Church. If anybody admits that more Old Covenant teaching is wrong, then they must admit that obeying the law of paying tithes is wrong.
You can follow after the republicans and the Old Covenant law, under which no flesh can be justified (Gal. 2:16), or you can follow after Jesus Christ and His New Covenant, under which salvation is gained by grace through faith (Eph. 2:8), but you can’t have it both ways. There is no such thing as a “pretty good” Hell for “pretty good” people.