“Now, if you will obey me and keep my covenant, you will be my own people”.
Ex 19:5 GNB
We sometimes receive what look like interesting commercial deals. Holidays, time share opportunities, property developments and so forth feature in these enticing looking advertisements. The pictures look fantastic. The highlighted offers are enlarged. Then, somewhere near the bottom, and usually in tiny print, are the words, “Terms and conditions apply”. And sometimes that is abbreviated to “T’s and C’s”.
God began his offer of his special covenant for the Israelites with his own version of “T’s & C’s”. Whilst they were to be his special people, he wasn’t going to be a “walkover”. Their part of the agreement was going to be the requirement that they acknowledge his Lordship over them and that they obey the laws he was about to impose on them. He made it very clear that he was the one laying down the terms and conditions. He wasn’t offering them to the Israelites for their consideration. It was very simple and straightforward. He demanded that they obey him. They either accepted or rejected his terms and conditions. Only rejection wasn’t one of the options he offered them. The terms of his covenant were such that he was very much the one in charge. The other side was that they were obliged to live by the moral standards that he imposed. Their faith had to be worked out in relationships, as well as respect for other people and their property.
Jesus brought his new covenant, which he inaugurated at the last supper. This was based on his sacrificial love for his disciples and their responding loyal love for him. That’s still the basis today.
Lord, thank you for what this covenant means to me.