Reading the Bible – part 6
This post looks at what it means for New Testament believers to be in covenant with God.
The New Covenant is between God and Jesus. This agreement can never be broken since Jesus perfectly fulfilled his part. God demonstrated his love and grace by rescuing us from sin through Jesus’ death and resurrection. We become Christians when we trust Christ’s finished work on the cross. Then God spiritually places us “in Jesus” and the covenant is maintained. We are then called: “A chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession” (1 Peter 2:9). I wonder, is this how we see ourselves?
We show we are God’s people, not by what we do or don’t do, but by our love “And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us” (1 John 3:23).
We are given two commands, to believe in God’s Son and to love one another. Loving one another is a major theme of the New Covenant and we find it throughout the New Testament.
“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. The commandments, ‘You shall not commit adultery,’ ‘You shall not murder,’ ‘You shall not steal,’ ‘You shall not covet,’ and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law” (Romans 13:8-10).
However, with so few rules and so much freedom we may overreact and feel we have the right to do anything, “‘I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial. ‘I have the right to do anything’—but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others” (1 Corinthians 10:23-24).
Yes, we are under grace but that doesn’t give us license to live as we please. We show we love God by seeking the good of others.