Covenants or God to the Rescue

Posted: November 14, 2008 in Uncategorized

Wayne Grudem defines covenant as follows: “A covenant is an unchangeable, divinely imposed legal agreement between God and man that stipulates the conditions of their relationship.”  Grudem chose the word “imposed” to remind us that God never negotiates these agreements.

We see a number of covenants in Scripture.  The first was a covenant of works established between God and Adam (See Gen. 2-3. cf. Hosea 6:7).  The word covenant does not appear but “the essential parts of the covenant are all there–a clear definition of the parties involved, a legally binding set of provisions that stipulate the conditions of their relationship, the promise of blessings for obedience, and the condition for obtaining those blessings.”

Most Christians don’t like to hear about a “covenant of works” because deep within us we know that sinful beings like ourselves cannot fulfill such a convenant.  Yet, mercifully, “Christ perfectly obeyed the covenant of works for us since he committed no sin (1 Peter 2:22) but completely obeyed God on our behalf (Rom. 5:18-19). ”  Praise God!

Theologians also speak of the “covenant of redemption.”  This is a covenant not so much between God and man as between the members of the Trinity.  The Father agrees to give His son to a people “whom he would redeem for his own possession (John 17:2, 6) to send the Son to be their representative (John 3:16; Rom. 5:18-19), to prepare a body for the Son to dwell in as a man (Col. 2:9; Heb. 10:5), to accept him as representative of his people who he had redeemed (Heb. 9:24), and to give him all authority in heaven and on earth (Matt. 28:18), including the authority to pour out the Holy Spirit in power to apply redemption to his people (Acts 1:4; 2:33).” The Son agreed to come into the world and live fully as a human under the Mosaic law (Gal. 4:4; Heb. 2:14-18) and be perfectly obedient to the Father’s will (Heb. 10:7-9) even unto death on a cross (Phil. 2:8).  “The Son also agreed that he would gather for himself a people in order that none whom the Father had given him would be lost (John 17:12).” Finally, the Holy Spirit “agreed to do the will of the Father and fill and empower Christ to carry out his ministry on earth (Matt. 3:16; Luke 4:1, 14, 18, John 3:34) and to apply the benefits of Christ’s redemptive work to his people after Christ returned to heaven (John 14:16-17, 26; Acts 1:8; 2:17-18, 33).”

This weekend–The Covenant of Grace.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s