Church of God, Carmichael, CA
and the Lord's Day
H. M. Riggle, 1928
[Original Page Numbers]
the covenant that he made on Sinai, they appeal to the dictionary and find this definition: 'Covenant. A mutual agreement of two or more persons or parties, in writing and under seal,' etc. Then confining the covenant made on Sinai within this single definition, they look for something that answers .thereto, or rather they search for something else besides the Ten Commandments to which they may apply those scriptures that declare the abrogation of the old covenant. So in their literature and preaching they light upon Exod. 19:5 8. 'Here,' say they, 'is an agreement between God and the people; and this promise on the part of Israel to do all that God had spoken, is the covenant made on Sinai.'
"An argument is drawn from the fifth verse, which reads thus: 'Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people.' The word 'covenant' occurring in the context of the people's promise to obey all that God had spoken, is used to prove that that agreement alone constituted the covenant. U. Smith asserts in a little work that this agreement, and nothing else, was the old covenant, and that nothing else was abolished by the bringing in of the new order under Christ Jesus.
"1. The Word does not assert that the promise of the people to obey God, alone constitutes the covenant made on Sinai. But it is repeatedly declared that the ten words written in the stone tables were included in the covenant made with Israel at that time and place.
"2. If the response on the part of Israel to obey what God had spoken, only was the covenant; and if nothing else, as U. Smith affirms, was abolished in Christ, then the ceremonial laws, and the penalty of death for the violation of the Sabbath, and the other judgments written in the book of the law, are all yet in force.
"3. If that agreement on the part of the people of God to obey him was the covenant, and nothing else, and if that only was done away in Christ, then it follows that in Christ Jesus we cease to be under covenant obligations to obey God."
"The word 'covenant' in Exodus and Deuteronomy referring to the law of God given on Sinai is from berith  Hebrew, and the same thing in the New Testament is from the Greek word diatheke. It is translated 'testament' thirteen times. And in the following instances, where rendered 'covenant,' in the margin it is more correctly translated 'testament'; Rom. 9 :4; Gal. 3 :15; 4:24; Heb. 8:6;12:24; 13:20. It is seen that in Heb. 9:16 the word is used in the sense of a will, such as men make for the disposition of their property, etc.... In Heb. 9:15 the same word is used with reference to both the old and the new testament. If, therefore, diatheke simply means a mutual agreement, then the twenty seven books we have been in the habit of calling the New Testament are not the 'new testament.' "
"But let us look at their position again. A covenant is a mutual agreement between two or more parties; therefore the Ten Commandments are not the covenant made on Sinai, because they are not such an agreement. Again, say they, 'The new covenant written in the heart are the Ten Commandments formerly written in stone.' But the same word, diatheke, occurs in Heb. 9:15 in speaking of both the old testament and the new. Therefore, if the 'old diatheke' cannot be the Ten Commandments because the word means a 'mutual contract,' then, for the same reason, the 'new diatheke' cannot be the Ten Commandments. Thus their scheme to overthrow the fact that the old covenant includes the ten stone written words overthrows their own position that the Decalog is the new covenant.
"Let us now see what the real Scriptural meaning of the word 'covenant' or 'testament' is. 'Testament. 1. A solemn, authentic instrument in writing, by which a person declares his will as to the disposal of his estate and effects after death. 2. One of the two general divisions of the canonical books of the sacred Scriptures; as, the Old Testament; the New Testament.' These are the only definitions given in Webster's Unabridged Dictionary.
" 'Diatheke, any disposition, arrangement, institution, or dispensation: hence a testament, will (Heb. 9:15). Greenfield
" 'Diatheke, a disposition, arrangement. A testament, a will. The Abrahamic covenant. The Mosaic covenant,  entered into at Mount Sinai, with sacrifices and the blood of victims (see Exod. 24:3 12; Deut. 5:2). The new covenant, the Gospel Dispensation.'Robinson's Lexicon.
" Thus, the covenant of Sinai was conditioned by the observance of the Ten Commandments (Exod. 34:27, 28; Lev. 26:15), which are therefore called "Jehovah's covenant" (Deut. 4:13), a name which was extended to all the books of Moses, if not to the whole body of Jewish canonical Scriptures (2 Cor. 3:13, 14). This last mentioned covenant, which was renewed at different periods, is one of the two principal covenants between God and man. They are distinguished as old and new (Jer. 31:31 34; Heb, 8:8 13; 10:16).'Smith and Barnum's Dictionary
"Thus, we see by Scriptural use and standard authorities that the word rendered 'covenant' signifies a 'will,' a 'dispensation,' etc., and the Ten Commandment covenant is cited as an example. The word is properly used to designate the two general divisions of the Bible. The Decalog, properly speaking, is the old covenant, but as the last authority has truthfully observed, the old testament is also used in an extended sense, as including all the books of Moses, or the entire body of the Sinaitic law.
"We have now proved that the very word 'covenant' in its Scriptural meaning is in perfect accord with the statements of the Almighty when 'he declared unto you his covenant, which he commanded you to perform, even the Ten Commandments; and he wrote them on two tables of stone' (Deut. 4:13). But once more, the Adventist teachers will cry, 'A covenant is an agreement with some one, but such is not the Decalog.' Here is God's answer by Moses: 'When I was gone up into the mount to receive the tables of stone, even the tables of the covenant which the Lord made with you' (Deut. 9:9)."
Every effort to exclude the Decalog from the Siniactic covenant is squarely against the Bible. But let us examine closer. The Decalog did enter into, and become a part of, an agreement between the Lord and Israel. The Decalog was the basis of the whole arrangement at Sinai. There. fore, by way of eminence, it alone was frequently called "the covenant." 
The Purpose of the Church of God is to spread and
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Carmichael, California USA
5334 Whitney Ave. Carmichael, CA. 95608
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