Is the Body of Christ one and the same as the New Covenant Church?
I often hear Christians refer to the church as being in a “covenant” relationship with God. This is because it is widely taught in all the Christian religions that the Christian church is the New Covenant church.
What saith the Scriptures to this contention? Scripture, rightly divided, says, not so:
1.The church of the NC is revealed in the Old Testament prophetic Scriptures, and is exclusively an Isrealite (Jewish) church. 1
The church, the body of Christ, as revealed by the apostle Paul in his 13 letters, is part of what he referred to as “the mystery,” not revealed in the prophetic scriptures2, and is composed of both Jews and Gentiles. 3
If members of the church of the mystery, the body of Christ are in a covenant relationship with God, as the NC church is, that would mean they could annul the covenant by failing to remain faithful “unto the end.”6 The following scriptures clearly show that salvation/acceptance under grace is not contingent upon the recipient’s behavior:
Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast
Of course, under grace there are consequences for unfaithfulness, but one of those is not the loss of salvation
1 Cor 3:10-15
According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.
If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
Salvation under grace is a unilateral proposition, rather than a bilateral one, as it is under the New Covenant. All man must do to possess it is receive it as a free gift.7 Once it has been received, it is secured by the seal of the Holy Spirit, 8 and there is nothing the recipient can do or fail to do to abrogate or annul it.
No such designation is ever applied to the Gentile church of Paul’s revelation.
4. The kingdom saints will possess the “anointing,” which gives them the knowledge of “all things,” and therefore they won’t have any need to be taught.11
It is the exact the opposite with body saints, who must be taught, and therefore are provided with human teachers for their edification12, and are also charged with doing their own due diligence in the Scriptures to obtain God’s approval13
5. Gentiles in the body of Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, are no longer servants, but full fledged “sons” and “fellowheirs.” 14
Gentiles in the NC kingdom will be servants to Israel. 15
The fact that the vast majority of the Christian constabulary teaches that the body of Christ and the NC church of prophecy are the same thing does not make it so. The plain fact is, most of these systems have long ago abandoned the idea that the Bible is the word of God, and those few who haven’t fail to follow the apostle Paul’s command to “rightly divide” it, 20 which brings me to the conclusion that they all have something to gain in the here and now that drives this error.
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God,21 but are all the instructions, promises and inheritances in it to be applied to God’s people today? No, not by a long shot. For those of us in the body of Christ, it is paramount that we understand this, and seek to find and follow after that which God has given to us, if we wish to receive the reward of the inheritance22 when we appear before the judgment seat of Christ.23
ref. Jer. 31:31-34; Heb. 8:8-13 ↩
ref. Rom. 16:25; Eph. 3:1-5; Col. 1:26 ↩
1 Cor. 12:13 ↩
“A mutual agreement of two are more persons, a contract…” Webster’s 1828 dictionary ↩
The Old Covenant failed because the recipients of it failed to uphold their end of the deal. The New Covenant WILL succeed because the recipients of it WILL uphold their end this time around. ↩
ref. Matt. 24:23 ↩
Rom. 5:15 ↩
Ref. Eph. 1:13,14; 4:30 ↩
1Peter 2:9; Rev. 1:6 ↩
Matt. 6:10,13; Acts 1:6 ↩
Jer. 31:31-33; Heb. 8:6-11; 1 John 2:20,27 ↩
Gal. 6:6; Eph. 4:11,12 ↩
2 Tim. 2:15 ↩
Rom. 8:14-17; Gal. 4:5-7; Eph. 3:6 ↩
Isaiah 60:11,12; ↩
Matt. 24:21 ↩
Matt. 25:31-46 ↩
Eph. 3:2 ↩
Hos. 1:9 ↩
2 Tim. 2:15 ↩
2 Tim. 3:16 ↩
Col. 3:23,24 ↩
Rom. 14:10; 2 Cor. 5:10 ↩