Troublesome Topic: The Signs of the New Covenant

Lesson 6 of 15

The Former Covenant had several covenantal signs, such as circumcision, the Sabbath, and the Passover. The New Covenant has two signs.

I will have you guess at what those two signs of the New Covenant might be.

They are both very different from circumcision. Neither of them effects any permanent change on our bodies, and are both practiced by males and females alike.

The first one is an act that only needs to be performed once (if done correctly) and is visible to anyone who wishes to observe it. The purpose is that by it everyone can know that we are proclaiming our allegiance to Christ.

If you thought of Baptism, you were right.

To be baptized is to receive the sign of the New Covenant (that is, being baptized as a believer, not as an infant). How do we know that baptism is a sign of the New covenant? We can be confident of this because it fulfills the same purpose. Baptism is a pledge of allegiance; it demonstrates that one has made himself subject to a covenantal relationship. That should add to the seriousness of the occasion as we remember that a covenant is a relationship for life or for death.

What is the other sign of the New Covenant?

This one is practiced time and time again. Its purpose is to serve as a reminder to us of our decision to follow Jesus. My final hint to you is that it is a dramatization of the inauguration of the New Covenant.

If you thought of communion you were right once again.

You may recall that inaugural meals were a common part of the cutting of covenants in ancient times. Dramatizations were often covenantal signs in days of old and so it was nothing new to ask for this. The words “do this in remembrance of me” were an indication, among other things, that this was to be a sign practiced by followers of Christ’s New Covenant. It was at Christ’s last Passover with His disciples that He announced that He was establishing a New Covenant, and in that same context He asked them to practice a dramatization of the event. I believe that the connection was not lost on the disciples.

The next lesson in all three series on Covenants is: The Witnesses of the New Covenant