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Is There Salvation Outside the New Covenant?

    I suppose that we should be reminded of just what salvation is from, before answering this question. The Jews who lived by the Old Testament certainly knew what salvation was from as well as did the New Testament writers: The answer is simply the personal judgment of your sins.

A Personal Judgement    

The Bible teaches that at the final judgment Jesus will judge the whole human race individually ("the quick [living] and the dead") as well as the fallen angels. In his preaching at the Areopagus, Paul was clear on the universality of the last judgment. He said,

"And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead." - Ac. 17:30-31

    All men everywhere (a double expression emphasizing universality--"every person in every place") must repent because the world ("all men everywhere") will be judged. One cannot legitimately restrict the term "world" in this passage to just worldly unbelievers or to certain groups of people. It is a personal, individual judgment regarding your personal, individual violations of God's Laws regardless of your religious affiliation or whether of not you consider yourself a believer or not.

    In Hebrews 9:27, the personal nature of each person's judgment that he is confronted with is clear: " And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment"

    The account in Revelation 20:12 is especially clear on the issue:

"And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works."

    Jesus preached about the reality of a personal judgment during his earthly ministry: 

"Marvel
not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation" - John 5:28-29

    And what is the good work that saved some? Jesus answers:

John 6:28 -29 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

    Since belief is critical to salvation, as Jesus said - This will now be elaborated on. 
  

What the New Covenant Is Not


    The anonymous Watchtower writers have gone to great lenghts to obscure what the New Covenant is. If you ask the average Jehovah's Witness what the New Covenant is and why they personally reject membership in it; they will tell you that the New Covenant is a contract between God and certain men (144,000) to rule inside of the governmnental portion of God's Kingdom. They base this belief upon the  reading in the New World Translation of Luke 22: 29 which erroneously reads: "and I make a covenant with you, just as my father has made a covenant with me, for a kingdom".

    On page 1584 of the New World Translation Reference Bible, each of the 33 occurances of the Greek word for covenant, diathe'ke is listed. Luke 22: 29 is not included in this list because the word "covenant" does not appear in the greek text for this scripture.  Here is the page so you can see for yourself. Despite this, Fred Franz added it twice anyway in this NWT passage. Shame on him.

    Because of this, when a Jehovah's Witness rejects the New Covenant at their observance of the Lord's Supper, he thinks he is only rejecting some sort of governmental position in God's Kingdom, not forfeiting his salvation. Further, he feels OK with this because he doesn't feel like ruling material anyway because deep down he knows that he is not justified before God. In other words, the Jehovah's Witness doesn't really know for sure if his sins are forgiven and so naturally he cannot imagine any such a position. 

    
    However, feelings are not a wise basis for belief. It is God's words that Christian beliefs are supposed to be based upon. The appointment of a kingdom in Luke 22: 29 is for all believers because all will rule as kings and priests over a future earth, after the rapture of believers, and during the Thousand Year Reign of Christ over the survivors of the  Great Tribulation and their descendants. These will doubtless number many billions "as the sands of the sea" during Jesus kingdom rule. Those who believe Jesus now are invited to avoid a guilty judgment at the end of the Thousand Year Reign, and to join him in the interim as co-rulers during that thousand years here on earth.


What the New Covenant Is


    The New Covenant is a blood-wrought contractual agreement that guarantees forgiveness of sins. How do we know it is a guarantee? God's words says so. Notice how members of the New Covenant already have forgiveness:


Ephesians 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Colossians 1:14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:



Where the New Covenant Is

1 Corinthians 11:25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. (Remember that the English words "testament and "covenant" are interchangeable and come from only one Greek word)

 

So forgiveness of sins is found in Jesus' blood, which is symbolized by the wine during the Lord's Supper, which Jesus commanded believers to drink:
   
    In Matthew 26: 27-28, "Drink ye all of it".

And remember God's warning regarding changing Jesus original message: 

But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you,
let him be accursed. Gal. 1: 8



People who believe Jesus will do as he commanded. However, the anonymous Watchtower comes along and says no! Don't drink it, Jesus isn't talking to you. A choice is now presented regarding whom to believe.

    Remember, the criteria for judgment previously mentioned? Read it again in case you missed it:

John 5:28-29 "Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation"  And what are those good works?

John 6:28 -29 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

    
We all face the same situation that Adam and Eve faced in the Garden of Eden regarding the issue of whom to believe. There, God said one thing, Eve believed someone else. Not all people will make this mistake though. Jesus said that his sheep would hear only his voice and none other.

Jehovah's Witnesses have a faulty bible that distorts key words of God; and they have faulty teachers that tell them to do the opposite of what Jesus says. Whom we believe determines our salvation, not your works. Yet, believing Jesus takes real work. It takes little work to believe men.

John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

    The choice of whom we will believe will never be taken away from any of God's moral creatures. The choice was there in the beginning, it is here now, it will forever be present. We choose our destiny. There is a special warning given to those who willingly reject the blood covenant for the forgiveness of sins. It seems especially directed Jehovah's Witnesses:

Hebrews 10:29 - Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?

    While Jehovah's Witnesses do not esteem the New Covenant to be unholy, they certainly insult ("do despite") the Spirit of Grace by rejecting God's chosen method for forgiveness of their own personal sins.

    Other scriptures proving that the New Covenant is for the purpose of forgiveness of sins and NOT for rulership positions:

Hebrews 9:15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament [literally, Covenant], that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.

Hebrews 9: 13,14 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

Other passages to consider:


2 Cor. 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

1 John 5:12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

Heb. 9: 21 "And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission."

v. 26 "For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself."

v. 28 "So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear  the second time without sin unto salvation."

    

Salvation is a free gift. But, believing and receiving the Lord Jesus Christ  over your church, government, family etc. will have a price attached. I end this section with a bit of sound advice from the Master."

"fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." - Jesus

Jesus will help you bear and make possible any burden you must bear. He is always faithful to us - those who believe him.