Always ‘REMEMBER’ our COVENANT with GOD!
April 27 Bible Reading: 1 Chronicles Chapters 16-18
He is the Lord our God; His judgments are in all the earth. Remember His covenant forever, the word which He commanded, for a thousand generations, the covenant which He made with Abraham, and His oath to Isaac, and confirmed it to Jacob for a statute, to Israel for an everlasting covenant, saying, "To you I will give the land of Canaan as the allotment of your inheritance," when you were few in number, indeed very few, and strangers in it. (1 Chron. 16:14-19)
The above passage is part of a lengthy psalm and a composite of Psalms 105:1–15; 96:1–13; 106:1, 47, 48. This psalm titled as ‘David’s Song of Thanksgiving’ was delivered by King David to Asaph and his brethren on the occasion of installing the Ark of God in the midst of the Tabernacle constructed by David in Jerusalem for this purpose. This psalm has two main parts: verses 8–22 are addressed to Israel, verses 23–34 are addressed to all the nations and the concluding verses 35 and 36 close this psalm.
Having just become king over all Israel, David was very much aware of God’s faithfulness in granting the Israelites the land over which he had dominion. In this psalm, David exhorts the Israelites to sing the greatness of God and seek His face (vv. 8–11). The Israelites should remember the deeds of God and the marvelous works which He has done in the past (vv. 12–14). The Israelites should above all remember God’s unfailing covenant - the unconditional promises that God had made to their fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (vv. 15–22).
A covenant can be understood as an instrument that had bound God and Israel together legally and formally. This was an arrangement between two parties—in this case, a superior party (God) and an inferior party (Israel)—by which the two made solemn pledges of mutual loyalty and commitment. God’s promises in the covenant were based on His faithful character. To Abraham, God promised land (Gen. 12:7) and innumerable descendants (Gen. 15:5; 17:5–8). God designated Abraham’s descendants as the people through whom He would bless all nations (Gen. 12:2, 3).
In this psalm David was reflecting on the reliability of God’s promise to Abraham—a promise renewed to Isaac and confirmed to Jacob. When Jacob went to Egypt, his extended family amounted to only seventy persons (Gen. 46:27), and that is why God remarked that they were ‘indeed very few’ in number when He made His unilateral covenant with Israel. God’s covenant brings life (2 Cor. 3:6) and can always be trusted (Genesis 9:17).
Let us understand that a covenant is sacred (Jos 9:18-21; Gal 3:15) and binding upon both parties, not only on those who make them but on those who are represented (Deut. 29:14, 15). Our Lord Jesus Christ has established a new covenant with us today (Luke 22:20), and He is not only the substance of this new covenant (Isaiah 42:6; 49:8) but also the Mediator (Heb 8:6; 12:24) and the Messenger of this covenant as well (Mal 3:1). This new covenant is superior to the old covenant (Hebrews 8:6) as the old covenant was just foreshadowing the new covenant (Hebrews 10:1). Let us always remember our covenant with God and live our lives in such a way that we will faithfully fulfill our part of this covenant!