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Covenant And Promise Essay

1281 words - 5 pages

•     BERITH = Hebrew word for covenant
•     Berith is found in the earliest records in the Bible and is fundamental to Hebrew religion. In Latin it is Testamentum.
•     The Old Testament and the New Testaments means the old and the new covenants. A covenant is a promise.
•     Chesed = Hebrew word for the attitude of loyalty and faithfulness which both parties should observe towards one another in a covenant relationship.
•     The covenant ‘chesed’ of God is so strong that it can never pass away.
The Covenant with Abraham
•     The records of ancient Israel were not written down until the time of King David, who had a court and a scribe. This was the time when Israel possessed the land of Canaan.
•     The records were then redacted at later dates, significantly in the period of the exile (597BCE)
•     There are two covenants recorded in Genesis made with Abraham.
•     Genesis 15. Abraham is told to kill a selection of animals and is then put into a deep sleep. A flaming pot passes through. This is a ceremony to seal the covenant. The covenant was one sided, God made promises, Abraham received them.
The Covenant with Abraham
Covenant 2
•     Genesis 17 records the outward sign of the covenant, circumcision. This is still an important practise today.
•     17:9 God also said to Abraham: "On your part, you and your descendants after you must keep my covenant throughout the ages.This is my covenant with you and your descendants after you that you must keep: every male among you shall be circumcised. Circumcise the flesh of your foreskin, and that shall be the mark of the covenant between you and me.
•     17:12 Throughout the ages, every male among you, when he is eight days old, shall be circumcised… Thus my covenant shall be in your flesh as an everlasting pact.
•     Scholars believe this is a later covenant influenced by the experiences of the exile.
The Promises of the Covenant with Abraham
•     Abraham is promised that he will be the father of a great nation,through whom all nations will find blessing.
•     He will have many descendents.
•     His descendants will inhabit the land of Canaan. The extent of this kingdom is given as the kingdom of David.
•     Genesis 17. The same promises are made, but the covenant is sealed with the blood of circumcision. All the descendants of Abraham are to circumcise their boys on the eighth day.

The Mosaic Covenant
•     On Mt Sinai a two sided covenant is sealed. This is a unique moment and...

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