Lambs in Limbo

or Understanding Dominion by Covenant


The New Covenant is not about salvation. It is about dominion. Before you call in the inquisitors, have a look at this diagram from my book:


If you are not familiar with Ray Sutton’s 5 point Covenant discovery, read this first. I have used slightly different terms above, but the 5 points are the same.

My initial premise here is that the Treaty, as word, has 5 points, but that as it plays out in history, it has seven points. This is because there is a death and resurrection at the centre of the pattern. The “Ethics/Terms” point is split into three. It becomes Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy, or Law/Testing/Law. Israel is slain under the Law (except for Joshua and Caleb, Jew and converted Gentile) and resurrected. The Ethics are given again to a new generation.[1]

Genesis – God’s call through a Single Mediator (Sabbath)
…..Exodus – A people leaves the world for worship (Passover)
……….Leviticus – Draws near to God and is given ……….instructions (Firstfruits)
……………Numbers – Put to the test under the instructions,
……………put to death under the Law (Pentecost)
……….Deuteronomy –  A resurrected generation given
……….the instructions (Trumpets)
…..Joshua –  An army reenters the world for
…..government (Atonement)
Judges – Corporate Mediator (Israel rules the world) (Booths)

Now, we know Judges is about Israel’s fundamental failure to be a nation of wise judges, and the Lord’s calling of new “singular” mediators to bring deliverance. Each of the stories in Judges roughly follows this Covenant history pattern.[2]

My point is, step 2, Passover, is only the covering of the new vassal people. God calls them out and covers them for previous sin. Passover is merely a reparation for the failure in the previous cycle. It is a new beginning made possible by substitutionary sacrifice, and not an end in itself. It simply makes us acceptable before God for service. We are slaves bought with a price. We fall down dead at His feet, He lifts us up, and then gives us a job to do.

So, the New Covenant in Jesus’ blood is basically a new opportunity for the people of God to become a corporate mediator on a greater scale. Salvation is your ticket to boot camp.

Unlike Israel, the firstfruits church did not fail as a people who became an army. Revelation describes their battles in the Herodian wilderness, their conquest of Jerusalem as Jericho and their passing on of the baton to us as Succession in AD70.

The post-apostolic church also will not fail. Filled with the Spirit, this guaranteed corporate (not individual) success is the fundamental definition of the perseverance of the saints. The church will dominate the world. She will not blow this Covenant opportunity because we are more than slaves. Our carcasses will not fall in the wilderness because we are children of faith. We are Joshua and Caleb.

Any system of eschatology other than postmillennialism paralyzes Christians at Passover. We are covered, and that’s all it’s about. No wonder our churches are filled with frozen lambs. Lambs in limbo (or kids in kindy?), is the heart of gnosticism. It is a debilitating truncation of the definition of the New Covenant.

[1] I know in Sutton’s pattern that the Pentateuch is the 5 point Covenant, but this must only be for Moses as head. For Moses, Leviticus is Ethics, but for Israel, Lev/Numbers/Deut is combined as Ethics. For Moses, Numbers is Sanctions and Deuteronomy is Succession. For Israel, Joshua is Sanctions and Judges is Succession. We see the same thing in Christ. His ascension is Succession as head, but for the first century church (in this initial pattern) it is the taking of the gospel to the Gentiles (as the “four horsemen”) which is Succession. The resurrection/ascension was Deuteronomic for the disciples. This could be confusing so feel free to email me.

[2] After Judges, a “new Covenant” opportunity begins with the loss of the Ark, the dismembering and rebuilding of the Tabernacle and ends with Solomon as “Judge”.

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