© Jeff Stacey | Last updated: 23 October 2016
4A13. GOD’S NATURE TO BE EXPRESSED TO AND THROUGH PEOPLE:
God’s Covenant with Abraham and his chosen descendants,
and His Covenantal commission for them, in grace
4A13(title) God’s nature to be expressed to and through people
4A13 shows the application of God’s primary purpose. God intended to express His own nature by making Himself known TO Abraham and his chosen descendants, and THROUGH them TO all people.
4A13(sub-title) God’s Covenant with Abraham and his chosen descendants, and His Covenantal commission for them, in grace
In grace, God had established His “everlasting Covenant” with Abraham and his chosen descendants. It involved commitments by God to them that were much more specific than those made to Noah, although obviously building on them.
This Covenant involved unchanging, UNCONDITIONAL declarations and promises for Abraham and his chosen descendants. That placed them in an extraordinarily privileged position. They had God’s full provision to carry out His Covenantal commission, as well as His declarations and promises that they would actually do so!
4A13(a) God’s Covenantal requirements, commission and warnings
Their privileges also involved great responsibilities, accountability and consequences. God’s profound declarations and promises had the intended ultimate outcome of bringing His blessing TO all nations THROUGH His own God-honoring nation Israel. This was how God was going to accomplish His primary purpose.
But actual participation in this by Abraham or any of his chosen descendants was CONDITIONAL. The central issue was their free choice to believe God’s Covenantal declarations and promises and obey His Covenantal requirements. But that depended on them being wholeheartedly committed to God.
This made every situation open to tensions, testings, risks and failures. So God warned them of the dire consequences of NOT choosing to live in His ways and failing to carry out His Covenantal commission. Instead God would make Himself known TO and THROUGH them negatively.
4A13(b) This Covenant’s similarities to the Covenant with Noah and to God’s original relationship with Adam and Eve
There had been many striking similarities between the Covenant with Noah and God’s original relationship with Adam and Eve [3A13(c)]. God’s Covenant-establishment with Abraham was a further development of the “new start” that began after the FLOOD. It was in fact God’s same “my Covenant” [4A8(d)]. But it was now more focused on specific people and requirements. Yet its main features still followed a similar pattern. This is apparent in the almost identical layouts of Charts 1A, 2A, 3A and 4A.
4A13(c) An unchanged paradigm of authority, responsibility and accountability
In view of these similarities it is not surprising that the same basic paradigm of authority, responsibility and accountability was in force [1A13(sub-title), 2A13(sub-title) and 3A13(a)] as follows:-
In accord with God’s primary purpose, He had made a Covenantal commitment to Abraham and his chosen descendants. God had given His instructions for how they were to live in order to carry out His Covenantal commission.
The issue then was how it would actually work out. Chart 4B shows their responses and the resulting outcomes.