Yesterday we saw that the old covenant God had made with Israel had a lot of “ifs” in it. The people would be blessed if they kept his laws. This made it a bilateral covenant. Bilateral just means both parties, in this case God and the people, promised to do something. Israel promised to be faithful and if they were, God promised to bless them.
Almost all covenants are bilateral.
But not the new covenant! It is unilateral! It has no “ifs”.
God doesn’t say he will bless us IF we keep his commands. He doesn’t say we have to do anything. He is the only one acting. That is why it is unilateral. And that is why it is so wonderful. As I now read it, notice the total absence of the word “if”.
It is found in Jeremiah 31:33-34. I would encourage you to highlight it in your Bibles, bookmark it, and regularly read it. It is such amazing good news. There we read:
“But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”Jeremiah 31:33-34
Did you see that there are no “ifs”? Instead, God lays out what he will do and what will result from his actions. He will be their God. They will know him—from the least to the greatest. And how about the last sentence?
“I will forgive them and remember their sins no more.”
Isn’t this amazing? Isn’t this tremendous news? Especially because nowhere does he say we first have to be worthy to receive forgiveness or do anything to earn it. No!
He will forgive us and, on top of that, remember our sins no more.
How can he do that? We will take a closer look at that tomorrow. See you then.
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