What transfers from the Old to the New. Now I made a video on our Facebook page. 

  • Love
    • Love of Insiders
    • Love of Outsiders
    • Specific Application: Love of the Lowly
  • Marriage and Sexual Ethics
    • Honour Marriage
    • Do not Defile the Marriage Bed
  • Contentment: Money

Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 6 So we can confidently say,

     “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?” 

What transfers? Contentment. The command to find our security and satisfaction in the Lord rather than in our possessions or our pocketbook. 

The Holy Spirt here speaks of this contentment in two ways, first negatively and then positively: 

  • Keep your life free from love of money:  “Love of money” = a philo argoron = not love silver. This is the third word he uses in this section with the phila prefix. This points us to a heart issue, our orientation toward our possessions. This was not a concept expressed in the Old Testament, but we are warned about it often in the New. : 
    • Love of money may cause us to reject Christ: Luke 16:12 And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own? 13 No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” Luke 16:14   The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all these things, and they ridiculed him. 15 And he said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God.
    • Love of money may cause us to wander from the faith and experience pain: 1Tim. 6:8 But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. 9 But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs. 
    • Love of money will increase in the last days2Tim. 3:1   But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. 2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, 4 treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,
  • The other phrase “and be content with what you have” is the positive command. Be content with what you have. I can think of two reasons as to why a person might not be content with what they have. You are either longing for what is not yours, or longing for what was once yours. 

Looking for things that have not, is the type of coveting and discontentment that we often experience here in the prosperous West. I wish I had a bigger house, a bigger car, and nicer wife. God spoke against this coveting in his law: 

  • Ex. 20:17   “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.” 
  • Deut. 5:21   “ ‘And you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife. And you shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field, or his male servant, or his female servant, his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.’ 
  • Deut 7:25 The carved images of their gods you shall burn with fire. You shall not covet the silver or the gold that is on them or take it for yourselves, lest you be ensnared by it, for it is an abomination to the LORD your God. 

This is an important commandment. It’s the only one of the ten commandments that obviously dealt with the heart. Now to be sure, all the commandments dealt with the heart. Jesus took the other commandments, like don’t murder, and don’t commit adultery and turned them inward, don’t hate and don’t lust, but he didn’t have to do that with the command about coveting, because the command about coveting was already internal. It was the signal or the hint that something deeper was going on with the other commands. The other thing interesting about the command to not covet is that, on the surface of things, it doesn’t seem all that wrong. Why is it a sin to want what you don’t have? Our entire economy is built upon the premise that we want what we don't have. coveting seems so natural, perhaps this is why the apostle Paul said “I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” “ So again the law was pointing us to a spiritual reality about ourselves that we wouldn’t have understood otherwise. And here we see why the command to not covet is so important, because coveting is more than desire something, it is ultimately showing our discontentment with God’s provision for us in our lives. So beware of discontented coveting. 

Yet i think there is something more going on here. Perhaps the Hebrews are not just longing for what was not theirs, but they were also longing for what was once theirs. Remember that the church has just started experiencing the first tastes of societal disapproval and persecution. In Hebrews 10:32 we are told that they had already experienced reproach, prison, and “joyfully accepted the plundering of your property”. See the call to contentment is that much more meaningful when we understand that these are people who had started to lose what they had for the sake of Christ. This call to contentment could be strengthening them for another round of persecution, because persecution always hits the pocketbook first. Persecution doesn’t start with beatings and martyrdom. It starts with being excluded from certain professional organizations. With being passed over for promotions. With being told that you are not a team player. With having your business closed down. With others not wishing to do business with you. With your law school not being accredited. With your degree rendered meaningless. Persecution will hit our pocketbook first. Many cultural observers believe that this sort of pocketbook persecution is coming soon to Canada. And if and when it happens we will see if we who our God is, if we are indeed trusting in the Lord or if we are trusting in our savings and our securities.

One of the reason I believe this passage is speaking of this pocketbook persecution is because of how he grounds his exhortation to be content: for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” This is actually the answer to the question of what transfers from the Old Covenant to the New- what transfers is The Covenantal Presence of the Lord. See, the words “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” are significant for a couple of reasons. The are significant because of how emphatic they are, and because of when this promise was given. 

The words are located in Deuteronomy 31:1-8, and they are spoken twice, in verse 6 and 8

Deut. 31:1   So Moses continued to speak these words to all Israel. 2 And he said to them, “I am 120 years old today. I am no longer able to go out and come in. The LORD has said to me, ‘You shall not go over this Jordan.’ 3 The LORD your God himself will go over before you. He will destroy these nations before you, so that you shall dispossess them, and Joshua will go over at your head, as the LORD has spoken. 4 And the LORD will do to them as he did to Sihon and Og, the kings of the Amorites, and to their land, when he destroyed them. 5 And the LORD will give them over to you, and you shall do to them according to the whole commandment that I have commanded you. 6 Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” 

Deut. 31:7   Then Moses summoned Joshua and said to him in the sight of all Israel, “Be strong and courageous, for you shall go with this people into the land that the LORD has sworn to their fathers to give them, and you shall put them in possession of it. 8 It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” 

side Note: The early Christians believed in inspiration. The author of Hebrews equates the words Moses penned in the Bible as being spoken by God himself.

First, the emphatic nature of the encouragement. ou mh, Most emphatic way of saying - it will never happen. He says it again and again in these three verses.  

Second, when this is spoken. In Deut 31, God is through moses giving his final words to the Covenant Community of Israel re-establishing covenant with them as they are about to enter into a hostile land. this is His promise to them, in emphatic terms, that He will go with them and they need not fear, because of his presence among them. God acknowledges that there will be opposition - the nations will rage against them, they will need to be strong and courageous, but they are His people and He is their God and his promise to them cannot be broken. 

That’s what carries over from the Old Covenant to the New. Just as God was with his covenant people then, He is with his covenant people now. Just as he promised to be with them in the face of opposition then, he promises to be with us in our pocketbook persecution now. 

6 So we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?” This is from Psalm 118.    Let’s read it together. Again, covenant God, Hesed love

Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 6 So we can confidently say,

     “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?”