Have you ever been reading the Bible or listening to Holy Scripture and hear things over and over and ever wonder what they are? Just recently I was reading and meditating on the Liturgy of the Hours in which covenants were mentioned. Now, have we ever wondered just exactly what a covenant is and how many there are? First, a covenant is a solemn agreement between God and all his human creation regarding mutual commitments and guarantees. Second, there are seven covenants. They are:
Adamic Covenant: God’s command not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, pronounced a curse for sin, and spoke of a future provision for man’s redemption (Genesis 3:15).
Noahic Covenant: Made between God and Noah, his family, and the animals in the ark. Genesis 9:11 states, “I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” This covenant included a sign of God’s faithfulness to keep it—the rainbow.
Abrahamic Covenant: First made to Abraham in Genesis 12:1-3, promised God’s blessing upon Abraham, to make his name great and to make his offspring’s into a great nation. God vowed to bless the entire world through Abraham’s descendants. Circumcision was the sign that Abraham believed the covenant (Romans 4:11). The fulfillment of this covenant is seen in the creation of the nation of Israel. The worldwide blessing came through Jesus Christ, who was of Abraham’s family line.
Palestinian Covenant: God’s promise to scatter Israel if they disobeyed God, and then restore them at a later time to their land (Deuteronomy 30:1-10). This covenant was fulfilled twice, with the Babylonian Captivity and subsequent rebuilding of Jerusalem under Cyrus the Great; the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70, followed by the reinstatement of the nation of Israel in 1948.
Mosaic Covenant: Promised the Israelites a blessing for obedience and a curse for disobedience (Deuteronomy 11). Much of the Old Testament re-counts the fulfillment of this judgment cycle for sin and later blessing upon atonement and returning to God.
Davidic Covenant: Promised to bless David’s family line and assure an everlasting kingdom (2 Samuel 7:8-16). Jesus is from the family line of David and, as the Son of David, is the fulfillment of this covenant (Luke 1:32-33; Mark 10:47).
New Covenant: This covenant promised that God would forgive sin and have a close and constant relationship with His people (Jeremiah 31:31-34). The promise was first made to Israel and then extended to everyone who has faith in Jesus Christ (Matthew 26:28; Hebrews 9:15).
Clearly, God made firm promises through His covenants. While some are limited to Israel, altogether, God’s covenants establish his worldly plan for us. God’s New Covenant offers salvation by grace through faith. A covenant that is sealed with Jesus Christ’s own blood.
Blessings – Dcn Jim