THE GRACE OF GOD-PART FIVE
BLOOD OF THE COVENANT
"Now the God of peace, who brought up from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep through the blood of the eternal covenant, even Jesus our Lord,  equip you in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen." Hebrews 13:20-21
"Jesus is our Head and Representative, our Shepherd and Sponsor. On our behalf, He made a covenant with the Father along these lines: since we 'were dead in [our] trespasses and sins' (Ephesians 2:1). Christ promised that He would make full recompense to injured justice, so that the law of God would be fully honored, and the Father stipulated that He would grant full pardon, acceptance, adoption, and eternal life to us. The covenant has been completely satisfied on our part by Christ. The verses above assure us that, because, in fulfillment of His promise, Jesus has shed His blood." p.110.
"The God of Peace"
"Under the covenant of works, He is the God of vengeance: 'For the Lord thy God is...a jealous God' (Deut 4:24), who will 'execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishments upon the people' (Psalm 149:7). To us, seeing that the covenant has been fulfilled on our side by the great Head and Representative, He is 'the God of peace'. As Christians, peace is between God and us. No previous grounds for quarreling remain, nor should we ever fear that a new one can arise. The everlasting covenant secures everlasting peace between us and God." p.110-111.
"Our Lord Jesus"
Jesus is our Savior. He is our Lord-in all the dignity of His nature. And He is OUR Lord-we have a special relationship with Him.
"That Great Shepherd of the Sheep"
"In the covenant, we are the sheep, and the Lord Jesus is the Shepherd. You cannot make a covenant with sheep; they do not have the ability to covenant. However, you can make a covenant with the Shepherd. Our Lord was the 'good' Shepherd in that He laid down his life for the sheep." P114.
THE SEAL OF THE COVENANT
The seal of the Covenant is the blood of Jesus.
The Binder of the Covenant
"Now, the blood ordained to seal the covenant was not 'the blood of bulls and goats' (Hebrews 10:4), but the blood of the Son of God Himself." "As soon as Christ's blood was shed to seal the covenant of grace, God was bound by His oath to bestow the covenant blessings upon the flock that the Great Shepherd represented." p.117.
The Sanctification of the Covenant Terms
"The stipulations of the covenant went like this: Christ must suffer for our sins and honor the divine law. He had kept the law in His life, but it was necessary, if He were to completely fulfill His part of the covenant, that He should also be 'obedient unto death even to the death of the cross' (Phillipians2:8). Therefore, the shedding of His blood was the carrying out of His promised obedience to its utmost." p.118.
The Blood of the New Testament
By the shedding of blood, the covenant was turned into a will and testament. "Since Christ ahs kept His part of the covenant, He wills to us what is due to Him from God. Further, He bequeaths to us by His death all that comes to Him as His reward, making us His heirs by a testament that is rendered valid by His death." p.119.
The Eternal Seal of the Covenant
The covenant now rests only upon God, who remains 'faithful: He cannot deny himself' (2 Tim 2:13). Since 'he swear by himself' (Hebrews 6:13), His word cannot fail." p.120.
THE FULFILLMENT OF THE COVENANT
Jesus fulfilled the covenant by living without sin and dying. God the Father fulfilled the covenant by raising Jesus from the grave. Jesus now rules with the Father. And we will conquer the grave and will rule and reign with Jesus.
THE GREAT BLESSINGS OF THE COVENANT
What is one of the greatest of the covenant blessings?
"Now the God of peace...equip you in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight..."Hebrews 13:20-21
"Notice that one of the principal blessings of the new covenant is the power and will to serve God. The old covenant said, there are the tablets of stone; make sure that you obey every word that is written on them. If you do, you will live, and if you do not, you will die. Man never did obey, and consequently no one ever entered heaven or found peace by the law."
"However, the new covenant is drawn up this way: 'I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; their sins and iniquities will I remember no more" (Hebrews 10:16-17), and, 'I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; their sins and iniquities will I remember no more' (Hebrews 10:16-17), and, 'I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me' (Jeremiah 32:40). It is not a covenant of "If you will, I will, but rather, I will do, and you shall me." p.125.
Fully Equipped For Service
"...equip you in every good thing to do His will..." Heb. 13:21
An Inward Work of Grace
"...working in us that which is pleasing in His sight..." Heb. 13:21. "We need to have our affections elevated, our wills subdued, our minds enlightened, and our entire beings deeply spiritualized by the presence of the Holy Spirit". p.128.
An Outward, visible Change
We need to be worked on outwardly as well as inwardly by God's Spirit. Apostle Paul said we will "be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work." 2 Tim. 2:21
The Completeness of the Blessing
"Just as Jesus has been fully restored to the place from which He came and has lost no dignity or power by having shed His blood, but rather has been exalted higher than ever, so God's design is to make us as pure and holy as Adam was initially."
THE DOXOLOGY OF THE COVENANT
"...to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen." Heb. 13:21. God says He will save us, keep us, and perfect us. It only makes sense that with the promises of the covenant, we would give God all the praise, honor, and glory.
Our God deserves exclusive glory alone. In the new covenant there is glory of man whatsoever. There is nothing that man does whatsoever, other than receive the promise of the Messiah.
When we realize what God has done for us through Jesus, we will give Him endless glory.
In the next nugget we will talk about "Pleading the Covenant of Grace".
Other than scripture verses, quotes are from "God's Grace To You" by Charles Spurgeon, Whitaker House, 1997. If you would like to purchase this book, go to http://www.creatingfutures.net/main.html and click on bookstore link.
Copyright Ó 2001 Richard D. Dover. All rights reserved.
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Unless otherwise noted, Scripture quotations used are from the New American Standard Version (NAS).