|Posted by kelvinbueckert on February 15, 2019 at 11:55 AM|
What is a covenant?
Ecclesiastical: A solemn agreement between the members of a church to act together in harmony with the precepts of the gospel. There are national as well as legal covenants which bind people groups together for a stated purpose.
In the Bible it is an agreement between God and His people, upon whom He places covenantal blessings, conditioned by their obedience to His laws. A covenant binds two or more parties together….for example God made a covenant between the nation of Israel and Himself.
Chapter 16 of Ezekiel’s prophecy depicts Israel as an unfaithful wife. God reviews the nation’s sin (:3-34) and describes her punishment (:35-52)….not without hope. Verses 53-63 describe the restoration of His chosen people. True to God’s character of faithful love, He honours His everlasting covenant (:60) in the end. What is the purpose of God’s covenant with Israel? That “you will know that I am the LORD” (:62), declares the Sovereign LORD (:63).
God’s Sovereignty is a cardinal doctrine of the Christian faith. In spite of things seeming to be out of control, both in Ezekiel’s day as well as our own, God is in control. It is curious to reflect on the amazing way He brings about His purposes for our world as prophecies continue to be fulfilled. It would sometimes seem that Satan is winning the battle, but we must remember he cannot win the war. We must remind ourselves of the picture painted in Job 1 & 2, where Satan comes to God for permission to test His blameless servant Job. Who is in charge? God!
God’s thoughts are not like our thoughts. They are motivated by His purity. His ways are not like our ways….they are purposeful for the ultimate good of others. (Isaiah 55:8-9) Even in the midst of His disappointment and pain, God looks beyond our fault and sees our need.
Dotty Rambo wrote a beautiful song about His outlook on each individual. It is for this reason God sent His Son to save the world from sin…in that while we were yet sinners, Christ dies for us (Romans 5:8). True to His promise God’s covenant blessing of atonement has come to us in the twenty-first century, through Jesus Christ our LORD. (Ezekiel 16:63).
Let us examine our reactionary style of living. What is our response when we have been hurt or disappointed?
Are we emulating God’s mercy and grace when we are angry or sad with others who let us down?
What do we learn from our covenant-keeping God?