A Hopeful Covenant (Deuteronomy 29:2–4, 9–18)
Covenant is a hinge word, a binding word, a word that will change your life forever.
Going to church has always been a part of my life. It is just what my family did, but just because we went to church didn’t mean that we knew why we were going or how to live once we left. Following Christ’s example of a holy life was the goal, or at least, I thought it was. I actually didn’t even know because church or God or Christ or the Spirit’s work wasn’t something that we talked much about.
Now I am not saying that I didn’t see the Spirit’s work or see God’s character in my family, because I did. I saw my father’s love of people and my mother’s hard work and strength in the times of difficulty. One sister had loyalty and the other had tenacity and care towards others. And my little brother is one of the best examples of a giver and a selfless person that I know. Yet there was something missing.
I have learned and grown at lot in the last several years as I moved out of my family’s house. A healthy relationship takes more than just coexistence and love; it takes hard work, commitment, and communication. And when I think about having a relationship with God, I think about my relationship with my wife. The word the God uses is covenant. Covenant is a word that goes much further than commitment and communication; it is a way of life. It is a hinge word, a binding word, a word that will change your life forever.
In Deuteronomy 29, we see Moses reminding the Israelites about this covenant that they have made with God. And it reminds us that our relationship with God does not start with ourselves, but has always begun with the creator who made us in the first place. He has constantly been pursuing us individually and us as a church. He is stretching out his hand into the muck and mire of our lives, hoping we grab on. His desire is to be in relationship with us so that he can save us from ourselves and the sin that we gravitate toward. On the flip side of this covenant, we find ourselves as a person. And much like the relationship and covenant I have with my wife, there is responsibility on my end to do what it takes to show my commitment. This doesn’t make me any more saved; my actions show my love for the savior, the covenant maker, the Creator, our GOD.
The Israelites knew what it was like before this covenant. They saw the torment that the world had them in. They knew that it wasn’t right. God had bigger and better plans for His people and He had a promise to fulfill. Now there were times when they thought that what they had in Egypt was better than what God had for them, but that was selfishness and a desire for comfort that blinded them. We do this too. There will be times when the pleasures of this world will seem enticing and more rewarding than what God has. But nothing will ever come close to the covenant relationship that God desires with us. Nothing will compare to the hope we find in Christ. Nothing will compare to the Kingdom of Heaven displaying itself here on earth. It will be hard, but worth every minute.