The Book of Covenants is a fresh perspective on the story of redemption as found within the covers of the Christian Bible. God did not choose religion to accomplish His goals, but instead, He carried out His masterful plan of salvation through a series of covenants. Biblical covenants offer great insight into the nature, character, and faithfulness of Yahweh, the covenant-keeping God.
These relational covenants give us assurance of God's blessings and promises while establishing a clear path to eternal life in Jesus Christ. Knowing the terms of these covenants will help the believer live a life pleasing to God with peace and confidence through understanding their expectations of being in a covenant relationship with God.
I grew up in a denominational church that often taught from the Old Covenant about the blessings of obeying God's commandments. These were classic messages that received many an Amen!
Deuteronomy 28:1-6 | NKJV – "Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the Lord your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God: Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the country. Blessed shall be the fruit of your body, the produce of your ground and the increase of your herds, the increase of your cattle and the offspring of your flocks. Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out."
That's great preaching and all, but, I often wondered why no one ever taught from the second half of this chapter?
Deuteronomy 28:15-20 | NKJV – "But it shall come to pass, if you do not obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments and His statutes which I command you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you: Cursed shall you be in the city, and cursed shall you be in the country. Cursed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. Cursed shall be the fruit of your body and the produce of your land, the increase of your cattle and the offspring of your flocks. Cursed shall you be when you come in, and cursed shall you be when you go out."
Did you catch that? You have to obey "all" of the commandments to be blessed. If you do a word study on the Hebrew word translated as all, you will find that it actually means "all" as in every one! Not some, not most, not almost all, not ‘I try my best', but every commandment given by Moses to the Children of Israel. If you don't obey "all" of the commandments found in the Mosaic Covenant, then you will be cursed!
Well, of course, the preacher never taught us the 613 commandments that we were required to keep to qualify for that blessing he was preaching about, nor did he mention that if we didn't live in Israel, it was impossible to keep over half of those commandments. The preaching sounded really good, but through the clearly defined legal terms of that covenant, we were unable to receive the promised blessings of God.
Here's one of my favorite verses on this matter:
Galatians 4:21 | NKJV – "Tell me, you who desire to be under the Law, do you not hear the Law?"
And, James tells us that if we break one commandment of the Law, we are guilty of them all. Yet, some religious folk today are claiming that they keep the Old Covenant Law. That's a fairly arrogant claim considering how devout Jews, living in Israel today, freely admit they keep less than half of the commandments in their Torah Law.
Why would you desire to live under the authority of the Old Covenant Law when there is only one possible outcome: death? And, in order for that old system to function, there must be a Temple in Jerusalem, a King, a High Priest, Judges, the Sanhedrin, a Levitical priesthood, and lots and lots of sheep! There are not enough bulls and goats on the planet today to atone for the sins of Israel, much less the entire world. This is just one of many reasons why, when God extended His blessings to the Gentiles, He gave us an entirely new system in the form of a new and completely different covenant.
Brent Adkisson has been a follower of Christ for over four decades. Raised in the mountains of Northern Idaho, in a Christ centered home, Brent discovered his passion for the outdoors and the Word of God at an early age. After serving overseas in the military, he returned home and dedicated the next fifteen years of his life to full time youth and college ministry. As a public speaker, he is known to teach with grace and truth as he brings forth valuable insights from the Word of God. He speaks with authority on various topics, such as: Identity in Christ, Covenant theology, and Salvation by grace through faith. He enjoys living the Christian life and is passionate about helping others do the same. Now a husband and father of four, he dedicates much of his time to his children and making great memories with his family. Brent is a very capable and savvy outdoors-man who is living his dream in the remote mountainous regions of Washington State.