The Gospel of the New Covenant centres around the fact that God has changed the way He relates to mankind, not through the obedience of the law, but through Grace alone. Through faith in Jesus Christ alone we are justified:
Gal 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. (KJV)
God made promises to Abraham in Genesis 12, saying that Abraham would be blessed, that God would make his name great and that in him all the nations of the earth would be blessed. God later in Genesis 17 confirmed these promises to Abraham with a Covenant. And for the simple reason that Abraham believed God, God counted Abraham’s faith to him as righteousness.
Gen 15:6 And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness. (KJV)
God also blessed Abraham with lots of earthly possessions:
Gen 13:2 And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold. (KJV)
430 Years later, God made another Covenant with a group of “stiff-necked” people:
Deut 6:9 Therefore understand that the LORD your God is not giving you this good land to possess because of your righteousness, for you are a stiff-necked people. (KJV)
After having just brought them out of Egypt with ten mighty plagues, providing for their every need in the desert, Israel still refused to believe that God wanted to bless them SIMPLY because He is a good God – therefore God gave them the Law. Under the law they would have to live morally, perform rituals, make sacrifices and fully hold up their side of the deal in order for God to bless them. But during a major part of the Old Testament in the Bible, we see the sad unfolding of Israel’s failure to comply with the requirements of the Law. They were defeated, taken captive, their cities destroyed, and scattered across the earth.
And here is the shocker: At any moment in their history, Israel could have chosen to come out from under the law, and live under the covenant that God had made with Abraham, once again believing that God would bless them and see them as righteous NOT BECAUSE they tried to live up to the Law, but simply because they believed in God. The covenant of the Law did not cancel the promises that God made to Abraham!
Gal 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. 17 And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect. 18 For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise. (KJV)
During that period there would have been two covenants operational in the earth, since the Old Covenant only became obsolete after the cross.
Under the Old Covenant, the Laws were given to obey. Under the New Covenant, promises are given to believe in. Jesus came to the earth more than 2000 years ago to fulfil the requirements of the Law, thereby cancelling it and effectively nullifying the Old Covenant. (Heb 8:7-13). Those who were still trying to live according to the Old Covenant tried to oppose Jesus, claiming that they were children of Abraham because of their natural descent. This was Jesus’ reply to them:
John 8:39 They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham. 40 But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God: this did not Abraham. 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him… 8:45 And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. (KJV, emphasis added)
Here we see that these people did not believe in Jesus. Therefore we see that those who believe in Jesus are sons of Abraham, and are blessed along with Abraham simply because they believe.
Gal 3:7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. 8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed. 9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham. (KJV)
Rom 4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all. (KJV)
When we understand this, it changes the way we receive (because we don’t have to think about whether we’ve been good or bad in order to receive from God); it changes the way we pray (because we’re praying from a place of victory, and not for victory); it changes the way we see God (not a harsh being who judges us for being bad or blesses us for being good, but a loving Father that blesses simply because we believe in Jesus His Son).