Tag Archive: Believes



Galatians 3:16-17, “The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. The Scripture does not say, ‘and to seeds,’ meaning many people, but ‘and to your seed,’ meaning one person, who is Christ. 17What I mean is this: The law introduced 430 years later, does not set aside the covenant previously established by God and thus do away with the promise.”

image

In a previous entry I discussed the righteousness of Abraham, which he was granted by God because of His faith. This was not only due to his belief in God, but his faith that God’s promises were steadfast. In addition, I discussed the “offspring,” promised and made known to Abraham. This offspring was to be a singular person, and through Him the world would be offered the reconciliation unto God. Here, in Galatians, Paul presents the argument of the singular seed that was to come by and through Abraham’s bloodline. As profound as this is, Paul goes further, dipping a bit into history to reveal the true nature of the covenants.

image

Within the philosophical and theological boundaries of the Christian “religion,” we tend to separate the covenants of Moses and Jesus, and break the Bible down, in a general sense, into both the Old and New Testaments. Man loves to put things and ideas into categories or groups, that by their division, they may be easily sorted and understood. Concerning the division of the Old and New Testaments, as well as the old and new covenant, I conclude there is nothing specifically wrong with this. However, one stumbling block does arise that I have witnessed, but this is the fault of man. It usually concerns those new in the faith or exploring it. It doesn’t seem too uncommon for those whom Christ is calling to be curious about the differentiation between the God of the Old Testament and the New, rather than looking at it as a complete revelation from and of God.

image

We need to remind our brothers and sisters in Christ, and in fact everyone, that the Scriptures represent a singular narrative that explicitly shows God and reveals He is the same yesterday, today and forever. Why the wrath shown in the Old Testament? Paul gives us a clear answer:

“These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us . . .” -1 Corinthians 10:11

image

So am I saying its wrong to refer to old and new? Not at all! In fact, the Lord Himself declared prior to Christ that a new thing was being done, and a new covenant will be established with Israel. The Book of Jeremiah says in Chapter 31, Verse 31:

“‘The days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and with the people of Judah.'”

image

Yet, if it was shared with Abraham, what is it that makes it new? Simply, it is new in human, temporal terms. It is not as if man, who is subservient to God, caught God unaware and He had to hatch a new plan to save man. Rather, God’s plan was destined from the beginning. God, let it be known that it is a new covenant, because this is truly what it is in the context of time. Time has no bearing on God, for God controls time, and since time is under God’s belt, to God it is already finished. If anyone believes differently, then one cannot believe in the omniscience of God, for God would be subservient to time. Furthermore, if He is subservient to time, He could not be God, and our faith would be meaningless, for by and out of God came Christ. Yet, to God, it is time that has no meaning. The breadth of its meaninglessness is shown by eternity. We usually think of eternity as it corresponds to time, that time will stretch forever, but in actuality, eternity is a place where time doesn’t exist. The extent of the meaninglessness of time to God is made clear in 2 Peter 3:8:

“But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.”

image

Therefore, according to time, which we all are subservient, the law came before, and Christ after, and in temporal terms it is new, or more recent. Yet, that’s not all, by this new covenant it gave the law unto the hearts of man, and revealed God unto the world, so that no man or woman is without excuse. Yet, God did promise the new covenant unto Jeremiah and Abraham, and because He refers to it as “new” to Jeremiah, we see that though the promise was made known, and though the revelation of Christ to come preexisted some 430 years prior to the Law, it doesn’t negate the temporal relativity of the coming of Christ and the Spirit. In addition, as Paul says, the two don’t cancel each other out, but instead, they compliment each other to such perfection, they become united and fulfilled in Christ.

image

It is not necessarily disrespectful or wrong to conclude that the two covenants, outside time, represent one great covenant, where man can be saved through faith, as Abraham was. This, I would argue, when approaching this issue in human linguistics, that the covenants represent old and new revelations, through which God’s attributes and power were proclaimed to man. First, His nature, commandments, and wrath. Secondly, His grace, love, and peace.

image

The plan of God was singular, but we can differentiate between the covenants, because of what they revealed to man and by the manifestations of God. Under the old covenant, God spoke through the prophets, yet in the new, God came to earth, became man, taught to a multitude, was crucified, and rose again. By this, man does not need to turn to a prophet to know God, but now, His Son and Sprit dwell within our hearts, upon which the law is now written.

image

Advertisements

“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; 26and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” -John 11:25-26

image

In John 14:6, Christ declares, “I am the way and the truth and the life.” Christ, being the Son of God, is beyond definition and human comprehension. The only thing that can be known about Christ is what He said and what the Scriptures tell us. The full extent of His godly nature may not be known until the resurrection, which He assures us is Himself. Yet, by His words we know what He is and what He came to accomplish. In addition to John 14:6, Christ, again, declares that He is this, “resurrection.” One of the main themes of the Scripture concerns just that, not only Christ and His resurrection, but also the eventual resurrection of man.

image

In it’s appointed time, all man will rise, both those who have fallen asleep and otherwise. If we do indeed die before Christ’s return, we will arise in a form that transcends the body as we now know it. Thereby, we see that man is not just made up of a physical form, but also has a being that surpasses physicality, for it is physicality that we pass from in bodily death. Those who believe in Christ will continue on, freed from experiencing the eternal death. In Christ who was the firstfruit of this resurrection, we will share in a similar glory, raised up from death and into life, that we may live with Christ inside eternity.

image

In addition, Christ not only tells us we are to believe in Him, but also live in Him. Now it is true that we aren’t saved by works, but if we are living in Christ, works often times become manifest strictly due to the relationship we have with the Lord. Thus, the importance of works, and the grace offered, do not contradict, but rather edify each other within our lives. Christ is the necessary condition for these works to become evident.

image

This is an amazing truth, for if one lacks works that glorify God, than one can conclude there is a need to work on their relationship with the Lord, for the deeper the relationship, the more profound our works become. Thereby, if we find sin slipping out of our lives, which sometimes happens so casually one may not realize, and if we begin to produce good fruit, we can have full confidence that we are saved and sons or daughters of the Most High. Let us not boast in our works beyond what is sober judgment, but rather give thanks, for it is our relationship with the Lord that has brought us to the level of obedience we should and will then experience.

image

%d bloggers like this: