GOD IS COVENANT
“GOD PURSUES INTENTIONAL RELATIONSHIP”
The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear him, and he makes known to them his covenant.
Failed Commitment Efforts:
Pinky Promise – Cute – tradition if promise is broken, aggrieved breaks the finger of the offender. Not So Cute
Blood Brothers – right idea about cutting (Covenant) but only blood of Jesus makes us brothers.
Swears and Promises – Our head and hearts make promises we cannot keep. We turn to inward self-reliance instead of focusing upward to God dependence.
But I tell you, do not swear an oath at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throne; or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.
Matthew 5:34-37 (NIV)
“The heart is deceitful above all things And it is extremely sick; Who can understand it fully and know its secret motives? “I, the Lord, search and examine the mind, I test the heart, To give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds.
Jeremiah 17:9-10 (Amplified Bible)
SUCCESSFUL COMMITMENT EFFORT: Covenant
What is Covenant?
- Covenant shows the character of God (Trinity) – intentional and intimate
- Tangible partnerships between God and People. Marriage
- Binding promises to work together for common goal – Redeem humanity.
- Signified by oaths, signs, and ceremonies. Police and Military take Oath – Accept Jesus – Public Profession of Faith – Why keep secret?
- Different from Contract – relational versus professional.
NOTE: WE MUST BE INTENTIONAL ABOUT CONNECTION. God never enters into the relationship casually or informally. SPIRITUAL REBAR
NOTE: WHO ARE YOU IN COVENANT WITH?
Intentional God Covenants We Should Enter Into:
1. Relationship with God
2. Relationship with Spouse
3. Relationship with Kids
4. Relationship with Believers – Discipleship – Paul & Timothy - Intentional
What’s A Contract?
Professional or Business relationship.
- Usually 50 / 50 benefit
- Exit clause
- Benefit at expense of another
- Expiration date
- Performance based success metric
- Failure is penalized
- I seek to impose my will
NOTE: Would you say most of your relationships are Covenant or Contractual?
God’s 5 major covenants:
- Marriage covenant – (ADAM & EVE) This includes your relationship with God as you become the body of Christ who will be reclaimed as the Bride of Christ.
- Grace covenant (NOAH) – God extends you salvation through grace. You can’t earn it and don’t deserve it, but through covenant, you receive it as a free gift.
- Multiplication covenant (ABRAM)– You are commissioned to multiply the kingdom. God also calls you to multiply in provisions – FIVE TALENTS (Matthew 25:14-30).
- Deliverance covenant (MOSES) – God offers freedom from bondage of sin and the blessings of a Promised Land in heaven if you’ll covenant with Him.
- Kingship covenant (DAVID) – You are a joint heir of Christ and He made you kings and priests (Revelation 1:5-6) if you’ll covenant to be washed of sins.
- Redemption covenant (US) – Jesus died for you to covenant eternally with you –For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
ALSO, Jesus kept His covenant agreement by sending the Holy Spirit to live within you if you’ll covenant by repenting, being baptized and you’ll receive the gift (Acts 2:38)
38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
1. Noah’s Covenant
Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of mankind was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of their hearts was only evil continually. So the Lord was sorry that He had made mankind on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. Then the Lord said, “I will wipe out mankind whom I have created from the face of the land; mankind, and animals as well, and crawling things, and the birds of the sky. For I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. These are the records of the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.
Genesis 6:5-9 (NASB)
NOTE: Covenant with Noah allowed sinners to live and increase on the earth.
- God judged a wicked world.
- God offers a covenant of grace, beginning with Noah.
2. Abraham’s Covenant
The Lord’s Covenant With Abram
After this, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision:
“Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.”
Genesis 15:1 (NIV)
NOTE: - Covenant with Abraham allowed descendants to became a nation.
God promised to make Abram the father of a great nation from which Jesus would arise.
“And I will put enmity (open hostility) Between you and the woman, And between your seed (offspring) and her Seed; He shall [fatally] crush your head, And you shall [only] bruise His heel.”
Genesis 3:15 (Amplified Bible)
God makes good on His covenant promise as Jesus, who is the seed of Abraham is indeed bruised by evil but crushes death through resurrection.
3. Moses Covenant
The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. So, I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey
NOTE: - Covenant with Moses frees the nation and settles them in the Promised Land.
Deliverance out of Egypt shows a living God who is present with them like a Father.
4. David’s Covenant
… And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me. Your throne shall be established forever.
2 Samuel 7:8-16
NOTE: - Covenant with David creates Kingship over Israel – Jesus comes from royal line.
5. The New Covenant
Jesus Christ is the New Covenant – New Testament literarily means New Covenant.
- Fulfills all prior covenants between God and His people.
Jeremiah 31:31-34 promised the new covenant:
Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah…
- Rather than taking life as He did when He flooded the earth or requiring sacrifices for sin in the Mosaic covenant, He offered Himself as the sacrificial substitute for sinners on the cross where He shed His blood in their place.
- God speaks of covenant as that of marriage.
- God is like a groom.
- God’s people are like a bride
- God wants you to be faithful.
- Marriage and family are covenant relationships.
- God reminds us of this in Malachi 2:10,13-14:
“Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us? Why then are we faithless to one another, profaning the covenant of our fathers?... And this second thing you do. You cover the Lord’s altar with tears, with weeping and groaning because he no longer regards the offering or accepts it with favor from your hand. But you say, ‘Why does he not?’ Because the Lord was witness between you and the wife of your youth, to whom you have been faithless, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant.”
- Families always suffer when heads like Adam do not engage in covenant relationship with their family.
- Many social problems we face are because of the failure of people, starting with men, to understand the difference between contractual and covenantal relationships.
- There are consequences for breaking a covenant relationship.
A covenant relationship with God fills your 4 greatest needs: Only God can complete you!