Studies in Torah

Deuteronomy 29 — ‘New Covenant’ isn’t entirely so new

This chapter points out that the “New Covenant,” or “New Testament,” isn’t so new and doesn’t replace deals cut between God and Adam, Noach (Noah), Abraham, Moshe (Moses), David, etc. The LORD intended the Torah from the very beginning to be “written” on the hearts (emotions) and minds (reason) of His people.

Food for thought

How many times has there been a “new covenant,” or “new testament” in the history of God’s people (Deut. 29:1)? Did that make the covenant at Mt. Horeb (Sinai) invalid? Does the “new covenant” foretold in Jer. 31:31-33 invalidate the covenants of Sinai (Exodus 19-20) and Moab (Deuteronomy 29)? If not, why did the writer of the apostolic letter Hebrews write, “When He said, ‘A new covenant,’ He has made the first obsolete. But whatever is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to disappear” (Heb. 8:13; see Heb. 8:6-13 and note whether the problem was with the covenant or the recipients of it)?

What were the terms of this “new covenant” (Deut. 29:2-13)? What’s the significance of the mention of foreigners in Deut. 29:11? How is that related to Acts 2:39?

If this covenant applies to foreigners in the community governed by the covenant, does God believe in religious freedom?

How are bread and wine central to this new covenant (Deut. 29:5-6)? How is this teaching related to Messiah? How is the opening of eyes and ears in Deut. 29:4 related to the “new covenant” prophesied in Jer. 31:33 and quoted by Messiah Yeshua’s apostles in Luke 22:20, 1 Cor. 11:25, and 2 Cor. 3:6? How is true salvation being introduced to the people of Israel in Deuteronomy 29?

Prior to giving the commands at Sinai (Exodus 20), what did the people of Israel swear to do (Ex. 19:8)? How are the terms of the “new covenant” in Deuteronomy 29 related to apostle Paul’s statement, “The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, ‘ALL THE NATIONS WILL BE BLESSED IN YOU'” (Gal. 3:8, quoting Gen. 22:18)? What did the prophet Daniel see when he prayed about the coming end to the 70 years of exile in Babylon (Daniel 9) that is related to Deuteronomy 29?

 Where do we find a description of one’s name being removed from the Book of Life (Deut. 29:19-20; Rev. 20:12)?

Many think that Deut. 29:29 refers to the mysteries of the universe? How is the meaning clarified by the context of Deut. 29:19-28? What did Messiah Yeshua say about sins in the heart (Matt. 5:27-28)? How is this related to apostle Paul’s command to excommunicate the unrepentant man who was having sex with his father’s wife (1 Cor. 5:1-6)? What, then, are the “secret things” God says He will reveal to His people so they will follow His law (Deut. 29:29) clarify what Paul meant?

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