“Know therefore that the LORD your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant…” (Deut. 7:9 ESV)
Today in the second part of our series on God’s faithfulness, we focus more on the word “covenant” (“berith” in Hebrew). A closer look at the above captioned Scripture portion (at the beginning of this message) would reveal that the words “faithful” and “covenant” are spoken of in the same breath. In fact, where God’s faithfulness is, the word covenant, which is based on God’s faithfulness, cannot be far off.
Before taking one proverbial step forward at this point, I would like to dwell more on the significance of the word “covenant” while comparing it with the word “contract” in order to better to understand the nuances of the former. The two notable differences between these two almost similar words are as such: While a contract is always between two Parties of equal stature (eg: a Land owner and a building Contractor), a covenant is always between a higher party and a lower party. Two examples of this are as follows:
2) The will of an experienced father being handed over to his not-so-experienced progeny (SeeJob 42:15)
3) The Prince Jonathan entering into a covenantal pact of friendship with the shepherd boy David (See1 Sam 18:1-4).
We also need to remember that while a contract stands broken if either of the two contracting parties violate the terms of agreement, a covenant remains intact at all times from the higher party’s perspective, in that he always fulfills the terms of the agreement, even if the lower party violates them. One need not go beyond a faithful husband Hosea and his faithful demeanor towards his faithless wife Gomer to better comprehend the meaning of the word Covenant (SeeHosea 3:1-3).
To substantiate the above points, I want to bring before my readership the following examples which underscore our Heavenly Father’s faithfulness….
Faithful Father of Man…
Yes, Adam, whose Father is God (SeeLuke 3:38) transgressed the covenant he had with his Father by dealing faithlessly with Him (“But like Adam they transgressed the covenant…” Hosea 6:7 ESV); but his Divine benefactor would not go back in the matter of helping him and his wife in various ways, beginning with:
a) Provision of clothes (SeeGen. 3:21);
b) Protection from wild animals (Daniel in the lion’s den story would get dwarfed in comparison, for after the fall all the “wild” animal–tigers, bears, elephants, let alone the lions–would all become hostile to our “first parents”); and later on
In the next part of our series titled “The Faithful God”, we shall focus on the sub-heading “Faithful Father of the Nation”.
Prayer: Father, we are being sustained by Your faithfulness alone, despite our many limitations. Enable us to lean on Thee at all times. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Yours in His Service,
J and SM Ministries
(To access the entire “The Faithful One” mini-series, please click here.)