The following allegory illustrates a fundamental truth. An extremely wealthy man passed away, and his attorney called the man’s son to come to his office to hear the last will and testament read.
The son had been on speaking terms with his father, but they weren’t very close. So he knew it was a waste of time but to honor his father, he reluctantly went. He was certain that dad hadn’t left him anything, and he knew why. He had never lived up to the high standards of his Godly father. He had tried but didn’t seem to have the willpower, so he hadn’t become the kind of person his father wanted him to be. He went on to make a life for himself, but it never measured up to his father’s values. For many years, he hadn’t spent much time with his dad because it was uncomfortable for him. He knew what a great man his father was but his own life wasn’t all his father had hoped for.
However, as the lawyer read the will it said his dad had left him everything he owned; the business, his stock portfolio, bank account, all his real estate, the art collection, and the antique sports car that he always liked.
The son was incredulous and asked, “Are you sure that’s my dads will? Several years ago I read his will, and I wasn’t included because I wasn’t the son he hoped for.”
The lawyer responded, “Oh that was your father’s old will, but he loved you so much that he made a new will.”
Then the attorney went on to say; your dad talked to me often about how disappointed he was that you didn’t know that he loved and accepted you. Even though you didn’t achieve all the desires he had for you, his love was greater than you thought. He said he told you this, but you either weren’t listening or couldn’t believe it was true. If you had believed it, you could have had a much more satisfying relationship with him.
For many believers, our understanding of God is much like this son’s relationship with his dad. We’ve read and in many cases have been taught God’s old will (Old Covenant) and we’ve tried to keep its standards. We knew the standards were right, but we just couldn’t live up to them. Oh, we’ve tried many times, but we just haven’t been able to keep his commandments perfectly.
God knew that, so He made a new will. Under the old will, we had to keep the law perfectly to receive His blessing. However, under the new will, His acceptance is not based on our performance.
The new will is called the New Covenant or New Testament, and when we fully believe it, we can live a life of joy and freedom.
Here is the bottom line:
Let me say it a second time, God’s acceptance is not based on our performance. However, since God’s requirement for perfection is unchanged, Jesus kept his laws perfectly on our behalf. Therefore, the new covenant means that when we receive His Son, we become joint heirs with Him and inherit everything he owns.