The New Covenant In My Blood (Luke 22:20) (part 2)

“Do not think that I will accuse you with the Father” says Jesus. “There is one that accuses you, even Moses, in whom ye trust. For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me, for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not his writings how shall ye believe in me and all that they had said about the great priest, the great prophet, and the great king that was to come. Moses and the prophets pointed only to me.”

“You blaspheme,” said the scribes and the pharisees in answer to this claim. “It is you, not we, who reject Moses when you place yourself above him. Whom do you make yourself? Can you forgive sins? Who can forgive sins but God? Are you the Son of God? God has no Son—never will have a Son. You must be removed from our midst as subversive to the service of the only true God through his true servant Moses.”

Thus the issue was being joined. Who was blaspheming, Jesus or they who rejected him? Conscious of this issue, Jesus trained his disciples. If the leaders of the Jews will reject him, he will still provide for his father a people from the nations of the world. And was not this, in any case, the final intention of the Father? Were not all the nations of the world to be blessed through the promise given to Abraham?

And now the time for the appearance of the New Testament has come. The way into the holiest of all must now be made manifest. The time for reformation has come. Now in the end of the world Christ hath appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. Said Jesus to his disciples, “The things concerning me have an end.” Lifting up his voice to the Father he said, “In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast no pleasure. Lo, I come to do thy will O God. And for you, my disciples, I shall now finally obtain the eternal inheritance that I have promised you. He taketh away the first that he might establish the second.”

Look now at the total picture. There is the first supper. “Go ye then and tell the good men of the house,” says Jesus, “My time is at hand. I will keep the Passover at thy house with my disciples. I will keep the last Passover at thy house. If anyone after this keep still another Passover, he will do so at his cost. He will be crucifying the Son of God afresh. He will thereby show that he has never held the Passover truly, even in the past. He will thereby show that he has never truly honored Moses and that he has never truly kept the law in which he boasts.”

“You must truly honor Moses and the prophets now in that you see their ordinances and prophecies as pointing forward to me. We shall truly remember that our covenant God brought us out of Egypt but we shall think of Egypt as pointing to the bondage of sin. We shall celebrate the fact that the Angel of the Covenant, the Angel of the Lord went forth before us in the pillar of fire to lead us in the promised land. But we shall think of the promised land as pointing to the city that hath foundation, whose builder and maker is God and eternal in the heavens. We shall think of the passage through the Red Sea as a baptism of our people into Moses, but we shall think of Moses as the servant of the house which Christ himself, the builder of the house, came to build. Belief in the promise given to Abraham must henceforth be a belief in the fulfillment of the promise.

“Through the blood of the New, that is the everlasting covenant, I shall set your conscience free from dead works forever. Now shall, Isaiah’s prophecy be fulfilled, ‘this people I have formed for myself. They shall show forth his praise.'”

Satan sensed something of the significance of this critical hour when Jesus said, “I came to do divine will O Lord.” Then Satan gnashed his teeth as never before and swore by all the demons of hell, “It shall not be.” He inspired Judas Iscariot to go to the chief priests and they covenanted with him for 30 pieces of silver that he should betray him and from that time on, Judas rejected finally the pleadings of the Savior to come unto him with all his sin and sought to betray him.

How quiet it was in that room where Jesus met with his disciples. But Heaven and Hell were both astir as they watched him who had come to destroy him that has the power of death, even the devil, break the bread and solemnly say, “take, eat, this is my body.” And took the cup and gave thanks and gave it to them saying, “drink ye all of it for this is my blood of the New Testament which is shed for many, for the remission of sins.”

The Father in heaven, who sent the Son, now saw the Son deliberately accomplishing what he had made an eternal covenant with him to do, namely, to save his people from their sins, to save a people for himself that should declare his praise in this world. In the Old Covenant time the angels with their piercing eyes sought to see the ark of the covenant, if they might understand how the God of holy Justice, symbolized by the law, the commandments, that were in this ark, could keep his promise of redemption to his sinful people. They were lawbreakers every one of them.

Would not their sin always make these promises of none effect? Now they rejoice as they see the son of God deliberately go forth to war with utter determination to vanquish the powers of hell forever. In the garden they come to minister to him in his agony.

And then there were the saints of the Old Testament already in paradise. They had sent their chief emissaries, Moses the lawgiver, Elijah the defender of the law, to speak with him on the mount of transfiguration of the decease that he should accomplish at Jerusalem. “Do not come to glory now,” he said. “For, if you do we then must leave.” Moses knew that he had not really given, and Elijah knew that he had not really defended the law. But that this one soon to say “This is my body and this is my blood of the New Covenant,” that he alone had both given and kept the law. They knew that as the great high priest after the order of Melchizedek, Jesus would now establish true righteousness in the earth by the shedding of his blood for the remission of their sins as lawbreakers.

Part 1.

Part 3

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  • Cornelius Van Til
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    Rev. Cornelius Van Til, PhD (1895–1987) studied at Calvin College (A.B.), Calvin Theological Seminary and at Princeton Theological Seminary, where he earned a Th.M. He earned his PhD at Princeton University. He served briefly in the pastorate but taught apologetics and theology at Westminster Theological Seminary from 1929–1972. The best introduction to his life and work is John Muether, Cornelius Van Til: Reformed Apologist and Churchman.

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5 comments

  1. Dr. Clark,
    Is this passage:
    “ Look now at the total picture. There is the first supper. “Go ye then and tell the good men of the house,” says Jesus, “My time is at hand. I will keep the Passover at thy house with my disciples. I will keep the last Passover at thy house.” Matthew 26:29

    Where are the Scripture references in the OT & NT regarding these statements?
    If anyone after this keep still another Passover, he will do so at his cost. He will be crucifying the Son of God afresh. He will thereby show that he has never held the Passover truly, even in the past. He will thereby show that he has never truly honored Moses and that he has never truly kept the law in which he boasts.”

      • Catherine,

        If you’re asking what is the meal in view when our Lord said, “until that day when I drink it anew…” I take that to refer to the heavenly/eschatological marriage supper of the Lamb.

    • Catherine,

      Van Til was interpreting our Lord’s words by paraphrase. He was alluding to and paraphrasing Matt 26:17-19.

      Re the Scriptural support for his point, it’s the book of Hebrews. See Heb 6:4-6; Heb 10:26-31. The types and shadows are done. Anyone who goes back to the types and shadows has trampled underfoot the Son of God.

  2. Thank you for responding with the references in Matthew 26; Heb 6; and Heb 10. I see this will help me understand the emptiness of the types and shadows.

    My next question involves young people who claim to be Christians but are involved in the Hebrew Roots ideology, which includes observing the Passover and the other holidays. How do I warn them?

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