Covenant tends not to be spoken of in most Christian circles today, yet the Bible is broken down into the Old Covenant and the New Covenant. Every believer should come to understand the depth of what covenant is from Gods perspective. Covenant is often mistaken in the church by many because there is a tendency to think that covenant and contract are the same, when in fact covenant is much more far reaching than contract. Covenant can be defined as a mutual consent or agreement of two or more persons, to do or to forbear some act or thing; To enter into a formal legal agreement; to stipulate; to bind ones self.
Now this may seem the same as a contract in many respects but there are
some large differences between the two. For instance, covenant has
unlimited liabilities whereas contract has limited liabilities. Covenant
does not define terms in the way a contract does, but is commitment to
the success of what has been stated in the body of the covenant, whereas
a contract, the parties are only responsible to fulfill the terms of
what has been stated in the body of the contract. Some Components of a
Covenant as things such as...
- Agreement: The union of opinions or sentiments resulting in harmony and conformity...
- Commitment: The act of engaging; to pledge; or to pledge by implication...
- Stipulation: An agreement or covenant made by one person with another for the performance or forbearance of some act...
- Conditions: To make terms; to precisely stipulate terms...
- Duration: In regards to the continuance of time...
- Exchange: To give and receive reciprocally...
- Bind: To tie together; To confirm or ratify...
- Death to independent living: Life shared between the covenant partners becomes the priority...
The word covenant appears 185 times in the Old Testament and 20 times in
the New Testament. Maybe this is the reason why so many believers fail
when it comes to upholding covenant. Could the thinking be "Well the New
Testament does not mention much about covenant, so it is more and Old
Testament topic or principle." This is so far from the truth. Look at
what the writer of Hebrews says when he contrasts the Old and New
Covenants, "But now Jesus has obtained a more excellent ministry,
inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was
established on better promises. For if that first covenant had been
faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second. Because
finding fault with them, He says: "Behold, the days are coming, says the
LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with
the house of Judah not according to the covenant that I made with their
fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the
land of Egypt; because they did not continue in My covenant, and I
disregarded them, says the LORD. For this is the covenant that I will
make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will
put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be
their God, and they shall be My people. None of them shall teach his
neighbor, and none his brother, saying, 'Know the LORD,' for all shall
know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them. For I will be
merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawless
deeds I will remember no more." In that He says, "A new covenant," He
has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing
old is ready to vanish away." (Hebrews 8:6-13)
The Father was not establishing this New Covenant through His Son with one person or a specific group of people, but with all humanity. However, those who benefit directly from the covenant are only those who, "Confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved." (Romans 10:9) We must also keep in mind that, "For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ." (1 Corinthians 12:12) PTL...
It takes courage and faith to walk out covenant. I believe that as we draw closer to the end of the ages, believers are going to need each other like never before. This means that we will have to accept one another in love and see our diversities as a good thing. Our hearts must be focused on Christ and the purpose of His Body on earth and most important, we must at all cost stop speaking words that offend. We must also let go of all offenses that some tend to hold on to. Finally, let us apply what the Holy Spirit spoke through the apostle Paul, "Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you." (Ephesians 4:29-32) We are in covenant with all believers. So let us activate our faith, look to Jesus and be led by the Holy Spirit in this wonderful New Covenant provided for all...