Have you ever wondered what is God's everlasting covenant? Have you ever stopped and given serious thought to this? The word everlasting shows that, that agreement would last forever!
Covenant: a formal and serious agreement or promise.
Law: a formal written agreement between two or more people, businesses, countries, etc.
1 : a usually formal, solemn, and binding agreement : compact
2 a : a written agreement or promise usually under seal between two or more parties especially for the performance of some action
b : the common-law action to recover damages for breach of such a contract.
A covenant is a serious, formal, written, solemn, binding agreement or compact made under seal between two or more persons. It is also the action taken to recover damages for any breach or violation to such a contract. A covenant is not only binding but it also has conditions, conditions which dictate what action/s should be taken if that covenant is broken!
Being that the covenant is made under seal, what is a seal?
Seal: something that confirms, ratifies, or makes secure : guarantee, assurance
b (1) : a device with a cut or raised emblem, symbol, or word used especially to certify a signature or authenticate a document (2) : a medallion or ring face bearing such a device incised so that it can be impressed on wax or moist clay; also : a piece of wax or a wafer bearing such an impression
to confirm or make secure by or as if by a seal <seal the deal>
b : to solemnize for eternity (as a marriage)
2 a : to set or affix an authenticating seal to; also : authenticate, ratify
A seal is something used to confirm, authenticate, ratify, or make a document secure. It can also be an item affixed to a document as proof that the document is real. So a document under seal has a seal affixed to it.
Was God's covenant with Abraham similar to our covenant today? How was a covenant made in ancient time?And he said unto him, I am the Lord that brought thee out of Ur of the Chaldeans, to give thee this land to inherit it. And he said, Lord God, whereby shall I know that I shall inherit it? And he said unto him, Take me an heifer of three years old, and a she goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove, and a young pigeon. And he took unto him all these, and divided them in the midst, and laid each piece one against another: but the birds divided he not. And it came to pass, that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp that passed between those pieces. In the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates: The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites, And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims, And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites. Gen 15:7-19
In these verses we see Abraham asking God for a seal of His promise, we see God entering into covenant with Abram (Abraham). What are the steps that were taken?
A. Abraham is commanded to get some animals and kills them
B. He then divides them in the middle, except for the birds.
C. A smoking furnace and burning lamp passes between the pieces
A number of other steps are taken as well, we shall look at them later as we go further in this study. Notice also the layout of the animals create seven pieces
Seal AffixedRemember for this covenant to be real, authentic a seal has to be affixed. How did God do this?
Here something interesting takes place, God sealed covenant by taking an oath, by swearing! How so? In biblical times an oath was taken by sevening ones self, or by declaring something seven times, seven being a symbol of completion, Paul says it ended all strife. Here are the scripture references:
“And I will bring you in unto the land, concerning the which I did swear to give it to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob; and I will give it you for an heritage: I am the Lord.” (Exo 6:8)
“For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee....... For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation is to them an end of all strife. Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us:" (Heb.7:13-14, 17, 18)
" Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth:
for I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by myself,
the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return,
That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear" Isa 45:22, 23
How amazing is this? The great God of the universe sevening himself! Declaring seven times that His promise to Abraham will stand.
Forming Of A Blood Covenant FormedWe have seen how this covenant with Abraham was sealed now let us turn our attention to how it was formed. The aforementioned covenant was known as a blood covenant. How was this done anciently?
► both parties exchanged their robes (symbolizing the giving of themselves to each other) Rom.5:25, 26, 1 John 4:10, 11
► they exchanged belts ( offering to have each others back, to protect each other) Gen.12:3, Eph.6:14
► the covenant was cut (animals killed and cut in pieces, there were seven pieces, each party walked between those pieces saying; "may God do so to me and more if I should brake this covenant, it is a blood covenant and cannot be broke")
(Jer. 34:18, Gen.15)
► each cut themselves allowing their blood to flow, then they mingled their blood by clasping hands with each other. (uniting their lives, as the life of the flesh is in the blood) Matt.27:32, Rom. 12:1, 2
► names were exchanged (Son of man, Christians) Matt 1:21, Ti.1:12
► something was added to the wound created causing it to have a permanent scar (circumcision of the heart) Zec.13:6, Rom.2:29
► terms of the covenant were exchanged (I will give Canaan’s land: keep my commandments) Lev.14:4, 5, Ex.6:8
► a memorial meal was eaten consisting of bread and wine (symbolic of eating each others flesh and blood, both becoming one, as we are what we eat) John 6: 54-58, Heb.10:5
► they planted a memorial tree (the cross) 1Cor.1:17,
As was shown this covenant cannot be broken and the terms of it are:
God would give Abraham the land and Abraham and his seed were to keep His commandments, which were also called the Testament.
What is a testament?
Testament: proof or evidence that something exists or is true
law: the legal instructions in which you say who should receive your property, possessions, etc., after you die
1 a archaic : a covenant between God and the human race
b capitalized : either of two main divisions of the Bible
2 a : a tangible proof or tribute
b : an expression of conviction : creed
3 a : an act by which a person determines the disposition of his or her property after death
b : will
A testament is a Will, remembering that a covenant is a sealed document, that is a document with a seal affixed to it showing its authenticity. Therefore the covenant that God and Abraham entered also signified that both parties would die, for God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself and we are called upon daily to die.
What are the components of a seal: a seal has to have the name of the giver, his authority and his territory. Can we find this affixed to this Abrahamic covenant? answer YES. Where do we find this? In the forth command. Ex 20:8-12 declaring the Sabbath as God's seal. But is the Sabbath the only aspect of the seal there?
Hebrews 9:16, 17 identifies Christ as the testator of the testament/covenant; in order for a testament to be binding the testator has to die, Dan.9:27 tells us that Christ confirmed/ sealed the covenant with many for one week, this makes Christ the seal as well! For Christ sealed the covenant in Himself, what wondrous love!
So far three aspects of the seal that God used with Abraham are identified, what are they?
1. Seven Times (2520)
2. The Sabbath
In this the time of the sealing we must all three to have the approval of God. Each being significant in its own right.
① The seven times shows us God pledging himself as mans surety swearing by Himself. A symbol of God's immutable, word (God giving man His belt, His Word)
② The Sabbath shows God's name, authority and His territory (depicting His character)
③ Christ identifies Himself as man's only hope of entering into the land (the heavenly Canaan)
The message of the third angel carries all three- - God's word (2520 shows truthfulness and surety), His mark (the Sabbath), His name (Christ). In comparison this message warns against receiving the number of the beast (666 showing falsehood and deception, spiritualism). It warns against receiving the name of the beast (Rome in all her forms), and lastly the mark of the beast (Sunday worship). Can we do away with any part of God's seal and be free from impunity? Can we break His covenant without paying the penalty? Let us avail ourselves with the seal and covering of God, His everlasting covenant. May God help us to see the importance of all contract, His seal and bond and may we accept it before it is eternally too late.