Is Sackcloth and Ashes a New Covenant Concept?

We are talking this week about testing the voice you hear to validate if it is the voice of God. In the previous post I started discussing the example of a "prophet" who is currently speaking in Kenya. One aspect of this test is whether the voice reflects the character of Christ. I will pick it up with the next aspect of that "prophet’s" message: walking around in sackcloth and ashes.

There is no New Covenant foundation for the believer to walk around in sackcloth and ashes to symbolize their shame and unrighteousness. This is an Old Covenant concept symbolizing unrighteousness and condemnation because of sin (John 12:47). Daniel used sackcloth and ashes in Dan. 9. Daniel clearly declared he was doing it because of (1) sin, (2) sense of shame, (3) disobedience to and curses resulting from the Law, and (4) to turn away God’s wrath. Under the New Covenant all of these issues have been resolved by the cross and the resurrection (see Rom. 5-8). We are in an era of grace and peace with the Father.

Next, the "prophet’s" declaration of fasting. Fasting is a concept of self denial that is okay under the New Covenant as long as we are led by the Spirit of God to do it and we do it understanding our righteousness is already in Christ, not in the fasting. Fasting, when led by the Spirit of Christ, can break down emotional walls that stand between us and the fullness of Christ in our soul. We have His fullness in our spirit, but our soul is being transformed into His fullness. It can help bring clarity and freedom in our understanding of spiritual things. Fasting under the New Covenant is not done to make us righteous but to better understand the righteousness Jesus has given us. Therefore, if you hear a voice telling you to fast, test to make sure it lines up with the New Covenant. The Kenyan’s prophet's voice does not reflect the character of Christ. Leaders must understand the difference. Let's continue this in the next post.

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