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No longer shall each one teach his neighbor

Posted by on Apr 23, 2010 in scripture | 4 comments

When Jeremiah writes about the new covenant (in Jeremiah 31:31-34), he says this:

And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” (Jeremiah 31:34 ESV)

The “no longer” indicates that something will change when God makes a new covenant with his people. So, what about “teaching” has changed because of the new covenant? What do you think Jeremiah means in this passage?


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  1. 4-24-2010

    The law of God (we can argue what that means) will no longer be an external element but with the new heart will be an internal motivation, I believe this is reference to a new priesthood also. Just my immediate thoughts.

  2. 4-24-2010

    Everyone under the New Covenant knows God and no one needs to be told “Know the Lord” because by definition under the NC they already do. That doesn’t remove the need for teaching but it might just call into question preaching the Gospel at believers week after week.

  3. 4-25-2010

    Lionel and Arthur,

    Thanks for the comments. Its an interested passage, no? Makes me think about what we should and shouldn’t be teaching.


  4. 4-26-2010

    God always desired the kingdom of priests. Look at Exodus 19:6. And, there were already priests among them (Exodus 19:22) – before the law. I believe that verse also defines what the priests were – those who come near to the Lord. We simply have no earlier defined role other than Melchizedek – and these people had been slaves for the last 200 years. They weren’t kings. But the people feared God and drew away at the mount – preferring instead to speak with Moses.
    The tabernacle was a physical representation that God instructed them to build so that he might “dwell among them” (Exodus 25:8). This seems a strange statement as it would appear he has been among them for more than three months at this point, leading cloud by day and fire by night, feeding them manna – but it isn’t the same thing. Only the sanctified priest could enter into the presence of God (draw near to Him) – and only with a blood sacrifice. They lived under and taught one another the law and the sacrifices. Paul tells us that the law is the schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ that we might be justified by faith (Gal. 3:24). The law is a means to an end. Without faith it is impossible to please Him. For he that cometh to God must believe that HE IS; and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. Hebrews 12:18-27 revisits this approach of the mount and calls us now to draw near, not to refuse him that speaketh (now from heaven – not on the earth). Hebrews 9 and in particular v. 23 teaches us that these physical patterns of heaven of the old covenant were purged with blood of animals, but the heavenly things with better sacrifices than these. We no longer have a human mediator to intercede on our behalf. We are not waiting outside the courtyard as our birth fathers bring the sacrifice to the priests. We aren’t teaching these things any longer.

    We are the priests. Our inner man is the tabernacle where God “dwells among us”.

    There is one high priest and He is our mediator.

    His name is Jesus.