I am not a new testament Christian. The Bible says I can’t be, nor can you.
Now, before I get secretly voted off the deacon board, let’s consider why being a new testament Christian is of such importance. No one would bat an eye if it was proclaimed that I was not an old testament Christian, but what makes a new testament Christian much different?
New Testament to Israel
It is said, “the old testament was for Israel, but the new testament is for the church.”
While it is true that the old testament was made with Israel, it would be wrong to say the new testament was made with the church.
The scripture cannot be clearer that the new testament was merely a replacement for the old made with the “house of Israel and with the house of Judah”.
“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days,…” – Hebrews 8:10 (quoting Jeremiah 31:33).
New Testament is not the Body of Christ
It is said, “If you are not in the new testament, how can you call yourself a Christian?”
The answer is realizing that Christ did more than mediate for the new testament made with Israel, he also created a new creature called the church, the Body of Christ (1 Cor 12:27).
While both of Israel’s testaments speak prophetically of Christ, neither one speaks of the mystery of Christ to create this new creature where there is neither Jew nor Gentile. The mystery of Christ was kept secret since the world began, which means it was not contained in the covenants of promise made with Israel (Eph 3:4-5).
The new testament does not explain the creation of the mystery church, but it does guarantee that Israel will not cease to be a nation, which has little relevance to the hope of the church today.
“If those ordinances depart from before me, saith the LORD, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me for ever.” – Jeremiah 31:36
New Testament is a Law Covenant
It is said, “The new testament is faith in Jesus Christ.”
Yes, the new testament requires faith in the Messiah to be a partaker, but that is not all that it requires.
Remember, faith without works is dead for the new testament participant, because the laws of God are written in their heart and mind causing them to do them (Eze 36:27).
“…I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts:…” – Heb 8:10
Rather than a lack of works testifying to dead faith, a lack of works today can testify to a strong faith in the power of Christ’s finished work for salvation.
New Testament and the Kingdom
It is said, “The new testament is the kingdom of God on earth.”
While this may be true, according to the promises of the new testament we are not living in that kingdom today.
“And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them,…” – Jer 31:34
Instead of not needing teachers, teachers of the Bible abound in trying to exposit the truths of scripture. Instead of all Israel knowing the Lord, the majority of Israel is still in unbelief.
All of Israel will not be saved and the new testament fulfilled until the kingdom is brought by the Lord from heaven.
“And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.” – Rom 11:26-27
No New Testament Christians Today
The new testament was not made with Gentiles, it does not describe Christ’s work for the church, it is a law covenant, and it is not being fulfilled today.
No believer today can be a new testament Christian if the Bible means what it says to whom it says it.
Meanwhile, the believer today should be more than excited to be a member of the body of Christ, saved by grace without works, not under the law, teaching the gospel of the grace of God to a religious world whose only hope is wrongly thinking they have a special covenant with God.