CQ Plus June 16-22 2012

How to Appreciate the Covenant Relationship

Preface: It is a mistake to become involved in God’s great task of evangelism without effective evaluation.

As a bridegroom takes the hand of his bride, gives a promise of love and seals his pledge with a kiss, so does God accept the heart of each believer, present a love token of grace, and confirm it with His oath. Our God of the covenant draws us into a covenant relationship with Him through Jesus. He declares, “ ‘I will offer My everlasting covenant’ “ (Jer. 31:31, Clear Word); “ ‘I will make a new contract with the people’ ” (TLB). God wants to reveal Himself to humanity and chooses to do so by His favor and cup of overflowing blessings. Can you witness to that?

A covenant relationship is not just a pact between two individuals with Jehovah as a solemn witness. Rather, it is a pledge between God and His people. There is no termination date. This is an enduring contract as everlasting as the day and night.

It is important to evaluate your relationship with God before you take on the task of evangelizing the world. It starts with your own heart. Here are some steps on how to develop a closer covenant relationship:

Begin your covenant relationship by learning from God. Give Him your commitment and availability. Jeremiah 7:23 states, “Obey my voice and I will be your God and you will be my people” (Clear Word).
           
Renew your covenant relationship. The God of a second chance is willing to go back and meet you where you first met Him. He offers to ignore your missteps and to cover your failures so you can begin again.
           
Nurture your covenant relationship. The God of promise desires you to nurture the relationship and specifies how to do this. This is your job description: “ ‘Humble [yourself], and pray and seek [God’s] face, and turn from [your] wicked ways’ “ (2 Chron. 7:14, NKJV). This is God’s job description: “ ‘I will hear from heaven, and . . . forgive [your] sin and heal [your] land’ ” (verse 14, NKJV).
           
Glorify your promise-keeping God. Do your part and God will bestow on you His blessings in a wonderful display of His love. “Fear not that He will fail of fulfilling His promise. He is eternal truth. Never will He change the covenant He has made with those who love Him.”* Any promise God has made to His people remains in force. Better still. His eternal plan of redemption and covenant of grace will be the glorious reward to His covenant-keeping people. When you’ve put this covenant first in your life, you can’t help but tell others. Evaluate yourself first. The results will follow.
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* Ellen G. White, Prophets and Kings, p. 165.