Received by Belief: An EVERLASTING Covenant to Israel
Just as our salvation is eternal, God’s promises to Israel are irrevocable and eternal.
The same unconditional and everlasting covenant God made with Israel carries on through the blood of Christ upon all who believe, and will continue when Christ returns to reign over the house of Jacob forever.
“And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end” (Luke 1:31-33).
As true Christians can add nothing more than wholehearted belief to receive eternal life, Abraham added nothing more than belief to receive the promises of God’s covenant with Israel.
“Then He brought him outside and said, ‘Look now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them.’ And He said to him, ‘So shall your descendants be.’ And he believed in the Lord, and He accounted it to him for righteousness (Genesis 15:5-6).
The believer prepares the place of their heart through believe to receive the promise of God’s Holy Spirit whereby they are sealed until the day of redemption (Ephesians 1:13). Just as we are eternally sealed with salvation, Abraham’s descendants cannot undo the promises God made to Abraham. God’s promises are based upon the faith and obedience of Abraham to God’s voice when He tested his faith by the prefiguration of the sacrifice of Isaac atop Mount Moriah:
“Then the Angel of the Lord called to Abraham a second time out of heaven, and said: ‘By Myself I have sworn, says the Lord, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son— blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies. In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice'” (Genesis 22:15-18).
Abraham’s actions were based upon his faith; they were not based upon an attempt at self-righteousness. How much more humble and heartbreaking can a work be than to offer your only living son, chosen by the Lord to inherit the promises, as a living sacrifice?
In the same way that God obviously did not have to prove His own righteousness by offering His only begotten Son as a sacrifice, Abraham did not offer up his only son Isaac as a sacrifice to prove himself righteous either. He did it because he was being faithful to God’s commandment.
Abraham’s precedent of justification by faith is repeated as a testimony to those of us who trust in Christ for our salvation (Romans 4:3, Galatians 3:6, and James 2:23).
After Abraham prepared the place that God would make the covenant with him, he was in a deep sleep when God performed the pledge of the covenant, ALONE.
“And he said, ‘Lord God, how shall I know that I will inherit it?’ So He said to him, ‘Bring Me a three-year-old heifer, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.’ Then he brought all these to Him and cut them in two, down the middle, and placed each piece opposite the other; but he did not cut the birds in two. Now when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and behold, horror and great darkness fell upon him. And it came to pass, when the sun went down and it was dark, that behold, there appeared a smoking oven and a burning torch that passed between those pieces. On the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying: ‘To your descendants I have given this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the River Euphrates (Genesis 15:8-10, 12, 17-18).
As opposed to God, when man attempts to perform the pledge of a covenant, he will ultimately transgress it:
“And I will give the men who have transgressed My covenant, who have not performed the words of the covenant which they made before Me, when they cut the calf in two and passed between the parts of it” (Jeremiah 34:18).
Many of those who adhere to the gospel of “live your best life here and now” and those who use God’s abundant grace as an excuse to hold hands with the world,
also adhere to the doctrine of Replacement Theology. They claim that God’s promises to Israel were not an EVERLASTING covenant, contrary to what the World of God says:
“And I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you in their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and your descendants after you” (Genesis 17:7).
These folks are the same ones who say that you can lose your salvation if you sin too much… oh, wait a minute. They don’t believe that, do they? Well, maybe they should because it makes about as much sense as believing that Israel has lost the everlasting promises God made to them based upon the sins of other generations.
Satan wants everyone to believe that God has rendered His own promises to Israel null and void, because it was through Israel that the world received its Messiah, who provides everlasting life to all. If God’s everlasting promise to Israel can be broken, then perhaps God’s promise of everlasting life to all who believe in Jesus (John 3:16) can be broken too.
However, there is an important concept that proves that God’s promises to both Israel and to all who believe in His salvation are irrevocable:
When God made the promise to bless the descendants of Israel forever (Genesis 17:7), God was the One who performed the work of the covenant, not Abraham (Genesis 15:17).
When God made the promise that eternal life would come through belief (John 3:16), God was the One who performed the work of that covenant too, not us (John 20:24-31).
God’s covenant to Israel is alive and well and it can be traced directly from Abraham to Israel.
God reconfirmed His covenant to Abraham through his son Isaac:
“Dwell in this land, and I will be with you and bless you; for to you and your descendants I give all these lands, and I will perform the oath which I swore to Abraham your father” (Genesis 26:3).
Then God reconfirmed the covenant with Isaac’s son Jacob, and God called his name Israel:
“And God said to him, ‘Your name is Jacob; your name shall not be called Jacob anymore, but Israel shall be your name.’ So He called his name Israel. Also God said to him: ‘I am God Almighty. Be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall proceed from you, and kings shall come from your body. The land which I gave Abraham and Isaac I give to you; and to your descendants after you I give this land'” (Genesis 35:10-12).
So there we have it, directly from God to Abraham–to Isaac–to Jacob; an everlasting covenant has been made with Israel.
The house of Israel does not yet dwell safely in its land and is still bearing the shame of the Gentiles until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in (Romans 11:25). The prophecy contained within the following verses, which has already begun, will soon see its ultimate completion:
“‘They shall be safe in their land; and they shall know that I am the Lord, when I have broken the bands of their yoke and delivered them from the hand of those who enslaved them. And they shall no longer be a prey for the nations, nor shall beasts of the land devour them; but they shall dwell safely, and no one shall make them afraid. I will raise up for them a garden of renown, and they shall no longer be consumed with hunger in the land, nor bear the shame of the Gentiles anymore. Thus they shall know that I, the Lord their God, am with them, and they, the house of Israel, are My people,’ says the Lord God” (Ezekiel 34:27b-30).
Shalom aleichem, Peace be upon you, Israel.