From Rich Novek's Blog
When Jesus said, “take not a thought for your life” He was in fact pointing to Covenant.
The two parties involved in making the Covenant would cut up an
animal (or animals) into several pieces and then walk between the pieces
in the form of a figure eight, symbolizing the eternal nature of their
Covenant. And all along they would recite the Covenant blessings,
curses, promises, etc.
By agreeing to participate in the Covenant ceremony, each partner was
saying, “let what has happened to this animal happen to me if I ever
break Covenant with you.”
In the following two passages in Psalms 50, God is talking about the seriousness of Covenant.
“Gather to me this consecrated people, who made a Covenant with me by sacrifice.” (Psalm 50:5)
“Consider this, you who forget God, or I will tear you to pieces, with none to rescue: (Psalm 50:22)
The reference having to do with being torn to pieces points to the
animal pieces they both walk through, and points to the overall
seriousness of the covenant.
This was the type of agreement that was made between David and
Jonathan, and also the reason David was obligated to search for
Jonathan’s descendants (Mephibosheth) after Jonathan was killed in
battle along with his father Saul.
So Jonathan made a Covenant with the house of David, saying, “May the
Lord call David’s enemies to account.” And Jonathan had David reaffirm
his oath out of love for him, because he loved him as he loved himself.
(I Samuel 20:16-17)
Thankfully, God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Abram (Abraham)
before he was able to walk through the broken animal pieces, and woke up
just on time to see something truly amazing!
And He said unto him, Take me a heifer of three years old, and a she
goat of three years old, and a ram of three years old, and a turtledove,
and a young pigeon. And he took unto him all these, and divided them
in the midst, and laid each piece one against another: but the birds
divided he not. And when the fowls came down upon the carcasses, Abram
drove them away. And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell
upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him. And He
said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a
land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict
them four hundred years; And also that nation, whom they shall serve,
will I judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance.
And thou shalt go to thy fathers in peace; thou shalt be buried in a
good old age. But in the fourth generation they shall come hither
again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full. And it came
to pass, that, WHEN THE SUN WENT DOWN AND IT WAS DARK, BEHOLD A SMOKING
FURNACE AND A BURNING LAMP THAT PASSED BETWEEN THOSE PIECES. In the
same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have
I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the
river Euphrates: (Genesis15:9-21)
So what was this SMOKING FURNACE AND BURNING LAMP that passed between the pieces in place of Abram (Abraham)?
His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and His voice was like the sound of rushing waters. (Revelation: 1:15)
Moses is writing these words in I Samuel to the Israelites who are
walking in the wilderness. They are being led through the wilderness by
the presence of God. In the daytime they see God’s Glory as a cloud
over the tabernacle and at night a pillar of fire. A smoking oven and
flaming torch is none other than the Eternal One, Christ, walking
through the pieces and fulfilling the terms of the Covenant with His own
For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent
(covenant) promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the
divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by
lust. (II Peter 1:4).
Since we could never keep the promises of any Covenant, especially a
Covenant with God Himself, Christ took our place and then included us IN
His Life…by Grace alone through Faith alone.
The one characteristic of Covenant that overshadows anything is the
mutual agreement that takes place between each partner, that it is no
longer I who live for myself, my purpose now is to live only for my
Covenant partner (s).
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ
lives IN me. The life I now live IN the body, I live by the Faith of
the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)
He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might
become the righteousness of God IN Him. (II Corinthians 5:21)
The very heart of Covenant: I no longer live for myself or take a
thought for my own life. I have in fact willingly died to everything
that concerns me, including my hopes, dreams, debts, and assets, not to
mention every one of my earthly relationships. I NOW count all of my
life as loss in comparison to knowing my Covenant partner as my new
Life! NOW my only concerns are His concerns, just as all of my
concerns are NOW His only concern.
So what does that mean to us as believers?
It means we receive all of our Covenant partner’s assets and
liabilities and that He in turn receives all of ours. BUT…because of the
sacrifice of Christ and the “it is finished” work of the Cross, God is
NOW our Covenant partner, and as the ALL who fills ALL, we also know He
doesn’t have any liabilities. And in the exact same way we NOW know
apart from Christ who has become our life, we don’t have any assets!
For you died, and your life is NOW hidden with Christ IN God. When
Christ, who is your (only) Life, appears, then you also will appear with
Him IN Glory. (Colossians 3:3-4)
So who is it that gets the better deal, and what are the similarities between the Glory of God and Covenant?
“I am the LORD; that is my name! I will not give my Glory to another or my praise to idols (Isaiah 42:8)
Not only is the Gory of God all about Him alone, but our only reason for being here is for the Glory of God.
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, DO IT ALL for the Glory of God. (I Corinthians 10:31)
But the reality is, we can DO nothing without the One who we NOW know as our Life doing it IN and through us.
For it is God (alone) which worketh IN you both to will and to do of His good pleasure. (Philippians 2:13)
Covenant is all about our Covenant partner, it is all about a life
that has as its only focus, “I no longer live for myself, but for my
Covenant partner” and in the same way my Covenant partner literally
lives His Life for me.
Christ IN us really is our only hope of Glory!. (Colossians 1:27)
God’s Glory is all about God, and as we give Him the Glory that He
alone deserves, we realize the Christ who lives IN us and as us is the
GLORY OF GOD! In other words, we NOW are able to see how we also
benefit in ways we never could have, had we never received the
revelation of His Covenant Glory!
With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make
you worthy of His calling, and that by His power (alone) He may bring to
fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by
Faith (by the Faith of the Son of God). We pray this SO THAT…the Name
of our Lord Jesus may be “glorified” IN you, and you IN Him, according
to the Grace (alone) of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ. (II