GOD’S Covenant Structure, A Reality We Need
“Behold, I am making all things new.” God Himself is speaking here! These words from Revelation 21:5 pronounce a grand conclusion to God’s great work of RE-CREATION. God is telling us that He will complete His redemptive work on earth by restoring His fallen creation to its original glory and raising it to full perfection by “making all things new”.
This has not happened yet but Christian believers live in anticipation of this glorious conclusion to human history. We know it will happen because it is written in the Bible, the book that we have learned to trust completely because it has been true in all that it has told us. We can be confident that the “shape” of this New Creation will be beautiful because it will be COVENANTAL.
The COVENANTAL note found in the context of this promise of RE-CREATION assures us of this important fact. That COVENANTAL note is clearly found in verse 5 where God says, “He (GOD) will dwell with them and they will be His people.” This is an unmistakable reference to the COVENANT as God gave it to Abraham and his descendants in Genesis 17. In that chapter where the word COVENANT is repeated 14 times, God is promising over and over again to be with His people to bless their lives with salvation.
Like the chorus of a great hymn, this COVENANTAL PROMISE occurs over and over again throughout the entire Bible, reaching a great climactic conclusion in the last chapters of the Bible, Revelation 21 and 22.
This COVENANTAL PROMISE gives COVENANTAL STRUCTURE and COVENANTAL BEAUTY to the lives of redeemed sinners throughout all of history, lifting all of us into the full glory of eternal communion with God while we reign eternally with our Risen Lord. This is our Joy filled destiny in Christ.
But right now we are still living in a world where most people have little or no appreciation for the COVENANT, and little appreciation for the God of the COVENANT. Sad! So Sad!
I reminded you of this sad reality in the book I quoted in my last blog, THE FIRST MODERNS, by William Everdell. Like other Humanists, Everdell discounts the idea that God even exists and certainly does not believe that He is saving us through His COVENANT. While the book deserves our attention because of its historic value, its failure to see the God of the Bible at work in History leads to a dreadful kind of “shapelessness” in all of life and culture. On page 356 Everdell sees modern intellectuals leading all of us into “fragmentation” and “loss of integrity” and even concludes that “In the ‘postmodern era,’ in fact, fragmentation of lives has been not only touted as inevitable, but even hailed as a new sort of virtue.”
So widespread divorce and break up of families, homosexual life-styles and every kind of deviant behavior becomes “virtue”. Everdell is by no means alone in this kind of opinion. This kind of thinking and moral direction is so common that a noted Judge like Robert Bork could write another book, entitled SLOUCHING TOWARD GOMORRAH, stating quite clearly that our whole Western culture is moving toward moral chaos, spiritual anarchy, or what I am calling “shapelessness”.
How we need GOD’S COVENANT! The Covenant is GOD at work in us, loving us, providing a Redeemer for us, putting His Holy Spirit in our hearts – giving meaning and “shape” to all of life. Let’s re-discover GOD’S COVENANT and tell the world of it’s gracious effect on our lives.