Full text of Zac Poonen’s teaching on ‘Hebrews’ (Part 4) which is part of the popular series called Through The Bible.
Listen to the audio version here :
Zac Poonen – Bible Teacher
Let’s turn to God’s Word, the book of Hebrews again. We finished in our last session in Hebrews chapter 8, where we saw in the concluding verses of Hebrews 8, we saw in verses 10 to 12 the terms of the New Covenant.
And let me just repeat them once again. Let me start from the bottom with verse 12. The first thing about the New Covenant is, God says, I will not remember your sins anymore.
In the Old Testament, there was a constant remembrance of sin. We read that in chapter 7. They were always remembering sin. In chapter 9, rather, we read about it.
But in the New Covenant, there is no remembrance of sin. It’s very important, if you’ve entered the New Covenant, one thing that you must accept is that God does not remember your past life against you. You may have been brought up in, I mean, you may have lived a very wicked life, but God sees you just like someone was brought up in a very godly family. All his life he’s lived godly.
Sometimes people have lived a very wicked life in the past and got converted. They feel that, well, I’m not as lucky as those other people who lived a very good life from childhood because they had godly parents. Okay? That may be. But now that you’re forgiven, God’s put you in the same level. His past is not remembered, your past is not remembered. What does it matter?
What does it matter if he got 30% and you got zero? Those marks are wiped out. Your past record of the marks you got in old examinations is all wiped out. So there’s no question of whether he got 30 or you got zero or somebody else got 50. All the marks are wiped out.
We must not look back in the past. If you come into the New Covenant, you start in verse 12, the Lord says, I will not remember their sins anymore.
Secondly, the Lord says in verse 10, I will put my laws — verse 11, before that, all shall know Me from the least to the greatest. Every person and starting with the least to the greatest. Now normally in the world we say greatest to least, right? But in the Bible everything is the opposite of the world. So we start with the least to the greatest. That means the least believer can know the Lord personally. You don’t have to go to a prophet to find out God’s will.
All shall know Me personally. To know God personally as your friend, as your Father, you can go to Him and you don’t have somebody else to teach you about God. Somebody may teach you about the Bible, that’s another thing. But to know God, you don’t need a secretary or anyone. You go straight to Jesus. You don’t have to go through another brother to know God.
All shall know Me. So please remember, this is your privilege under the New Covenant. Every one of you can know God personally as a friend and as a Father through Jesus without the help of a single human being. Personally.
To study the Bible you may need the help of a teacher. But to know God, you don’t need anybody’s help. Nobody will teach his neighbor saying know the Lord.
Thirdly, verse 10, God has promised to write His laws in our heart and in our mind. In the Old Testament He wrote it on tablets of stone outside and says you look at that and try to keep it. And they couldn’t keep it. Thou shalt, thou shalt, thou shalt not, thou shalt not and so on. They couldn’t keep it.
Now the Lord says I will write it inside so that you automatically keep it. You desire to keep it and you have the ability to keep it. There are two things. I will write it on your mind means I’ll give you the desire. I will write it on your heart means I’ll give you the ability.
You see we need two things. First of all I must have a desire to do God’s will. Second I need the ability to do God’s will. We read that in Philippians 2 verse 13: God works in us to will and to do His good pleasure. Same thing here. It’s written in other words. I will write my laws — I’ll put My laws into their mind. That is to give them a desire to do God’s will, and I will write it upon their hearts which means I’ll give them the power to do God’s will.
And if God gives me the desire to do His will and the power to do His will, I’m okay. And that’s His responsibility. Difference from the old covenant is old covenant said thou shalt, thou shalt, thou shalt not. In the new covenant God says I will, I will, I will. And when you read that and you still think that it is dependent on you, you’re mistaken. It is dependent on us in the sense that we have to submit.
Think of that rock in Mount Sinai where God wrote the commandments. That rock had to submit. When God wrote, rock said okay, write. And wrote. That is what our calling is. When God wants to do something in, we submit. Like Mary, she said, behold the handmaid of the Lord, whatever you have said, O angel, let it take place in me. She submitted.
But God was the one who produced that baby in her womb. Even if she tried for a million years, she could not have produced a baby in her womb. But at the same time, God would not have produced that baby in her womb if she did not submit. So that’s the perfect example.
Mary submitted and God the Holy Spirit produced the baby. You submit and God the Holy Spirit produces the nature of Christ within you. In Mary, it was the body in which Jesus came. In us, it is the nature of Jesus. So our part is not to produce it. Whenever you think of trying to make yourself holy, just think of Mary determining to have a baby. How much determination did Mary need to produce a baby? She could never have produced it. The Holy Spirit had to do that.