These notes accompany the sermon found at https://www.sermonaudio.com/solo/whitesrun/sermons/103201530207723/

An Unconditional Covenant

  • Evidence:  The emphasis in Genesis 12, 15, 17, 22, is on God saying, “I will.”  Genesis 15:1-21 shows a one-sided covenant ceremony. Genesis 12:10-20, Genesis 16, and Genesis 20 are episodes in which Abraham’s lack of faith shows itself in sinful episodes.  Note that these sins did not nullify the covenant. Other mistakes may include bringing Lot and his Father from Ur, and the delay at Haran, Genesis 11:27-12:4.  See also Galatians 3:1-4:31; Romans 4; Hebrews 11:8-22.
  • “Obedience is always expected in a covenant relationship with God.  It is through obedience that God’s people are blessed and His plans move forward,  but disobedience never nullifies a promise of God.”   

An Literal Covenant

Although Abraham never realized the full extent of the promises, he was greatly blessed during his life by walking with the Lord and believing the promises.  The Land was literally entered into by the nation Israel (Joshua 1-4), and all the people of God will literally enjoy a New Heaven and a New Earth and a New Jerusalem for all eternity (Revelation 20-22).

An Everlasting Covenant

Like God’s covenant with all mankind, Genesis 9:16, His covenant with Abraham is an everlasting covenant with no end point.  Genesis 17, 48:4.  It is through this covenant, that all the faithful enter into the New Covenant in Christ’s blood to become children of God for all eternity.

Lessons

Bible Interpretation: 

  • We can learn from the lives of the Patriarchs how to live in covenant faithfulness with God. 
  • Jesus indeed comes to fulfill the law of Moses, but He is also – perhaps more importantly – the fulfillment of the promises of the Abrahamic covenant. 
  • From this point forward in the Old Testament, the focus narrows to Abraham and his offspring (eventually the nation Israel).  Look for the blessings and the curses upon other nations concerning Israel.  Look for  continued emphases on the land, faith, and obedience.

Christian Living:

  • Realize that we further the blessings of this covenant in our great commission to “make disciples of all nations” bringing them into the New Covenant in Jesus Christ.
  • Look to the example of Abraham in trusting God to fulfill his promises. 
  • Ponder the great grace and mercy of God to patiently work his salvation plan through regular people like ourselves.  

Suggested Hymns:

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