New Wineskins and Old Wineskins
He told them this parable: ‘No one tears a patch from a new garment and sews it on an old one. If he does, he will have torn the new garment, and the patch from the new will not match the old. And no one pours new wine into old wineskins. If he does, the new wine will burst the skins, the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, new wine must be poured into new wineskins. And no one after drinking old wine wants the new, for he says, ‘˜The old is better.” (Luke 5:36-39)
The old wineskin in the parable refers to the old covenant while the new wineskin in the parable refers to the new covenant. Jesus is saying that a person who follow the old covenant will not be able to accept the new covenant. Similarly, a person who follow the new covenant will not be able to accept the old covenant. Anyone who chooses to be under the old covenant and follow the Old Testament law will not fit in to the new covenant.
The Old Covenant
The old covenant starts from a promise that God gave to Abraham. Abraham and his wife, Sarah, were well advanced in age and they don’t have any children. God promised Abraham that he will give him a son in his old age. Abraham trusted in God’s promise and Sarah did gave birth to a son when he was 100 years old (Genesis 18:1-15; Genesis 21:1-7).
God’s covenant with Abraham is that he will make his descendants grow numerous until it become a nation (Genesis 15). God first passed on Old Testament laws to Moses on Mount Sinai (Exodus 34:1-28). In Deuteronomy 18:15, the LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken.
The old covenant is based on works. Anyone who want to be saved must do the commandments.
The New Covenant
The new covenant was made into effect by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ has already nail the Old Testament law to the cross so there is no need to follow it anymore.
In Acts 15, some Jews who became Christians taught other Gentile Christians that they need to undergo circumcision. This caused Paul and Barnabas to become involved in a sharp dispute with them. The issue was so serious that it was brought to the attention of the apostles and elders at Jerusalem. After some discussion, Peter stood up and addressed the people that there is no requirement for the Gentiles to get circumcised. But they just need to abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood (Acts 15:20).
With the implementation of the new covenant, Christians no longer have to follow the Old Testament laws. However, this does not mean that Christians don’t have to follow all the Old Testament laws. Following the Old Testament laws is just like nailing Jesus Christ to the cross all over again so we should no longer observe them. There is no need for Christians to follow the Old Testament laws concerning the festivities, and rituals. But Christians still have to obey the moral laws such as the Ten Commandments, don’t pierce or tattoo your skin and etc.
In Romans 2:25-29, for circumcision verily profiteth, if thou keep the law: but if thou be a breaker of the law, thy circumcision is made uncircumcision. Therefore if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted for circumcision? And shall not uncircumcision which is by nature, if it fulfil the law, judge thee, who by the letter and circumcision dost transgress the law? For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.
The new covenant is based on God’s grace. Through the new covenant, anyone can be saved and receive eternal life by having faith in Jesus Christ. In Romans 10:9-10, that if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.
New Testament Versus Old Testament
|Salvation is based on works (Galatians 3:23-25).||Salvations is based on grace by having faith in Jesus Christ. (Ephesians 2:8-9, Romans 3:28-30, Romans 4:5, Romans 5:1, Romans 9:30, Romans 10:4, Romans 11:6, Galatians 2:16, Galatians 2:21, Galatians 3:5-6, Galatians 3:24, Philemon 3:9)|
|Sins are cleansed and forgiven through the sprinkling of the sacrifices of sin offering on the altar during the Day of Atonement on the 10th of the seventh month according to the Jewish calendar every year (Hebrews 9:7)||Sins are cleansed and forgiven through the precious blood of Jesus Christ if you confess and repent from your sins. (Hebrews 9:22; 1 John 1:7; Revelation 1:5). Jesus Christ offered himself on the cross all at one time for the sins of the people in the world (Hebrews 10:8-10)|
|The Old Testament laws were written on stone tablets (Exodus 34).||The New Testament laws are written in our hearts (Hebrews 10:16).|
|The Old Testament law is a shadow of the good things that are coming (Hebrews 10:1-4).||Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of our faith (Ephesians 4:13).|
|The Old Testament laws cannot make you repent but it can give you conviction in your heart (Romans 7:7).||Obeying and walking in God’s commandments in the New Testament will lead you to life in Jesus Christ (John 10:10).|
|We can be Under the Law or||We can be in Jesus Christ|