Give thanks for the covenant
Abiding in Jesus is a covenant God creates and keeps for us.
This means once saved by grace through faith, your worst day doesn’t affect your status with God. When you have thrown a fit, fallen apart, or doubted God's goodness, you are still chosen, forgiven, redeemed and dearly loved (I Peter 2:9). You are sealed by the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13). Nothing can snatch you from God’s hand (John 10:28). There is no condemnation for you (Romans 8:1). None. Nada. Zilch.
When we make mistakes, which is often, we are still called by God to enter into His work. He qualifies us as He calls us, even though we might desire Him to call us only after He's qualified us.
But the gospel tells it differently. We love because He first loved us (I John 4:19). We live by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). We walk in the works God created us for, not necessarily the ones we've planned for (Jeremiah 29:11, Ephesians 2:10).
As we abide in Jesus, He will use our mistakes and weaknesses as a way to minister to others and testify to His faithfulness and forgiveness (Matthew 28:19-20). We should give thanks for God's covenant, His compassion, His call on our lives, and His creativity in how He uses and redeems our stories.
Yet God keeping the covenant for us doesn’t release us from responsibility.
As He calls us and qualifies us, we are to respond in faith and obedience. As Paul said, we don’t keep on sinning so that grace may abound (Romans 6:1-4). God’s grace isn’t cheap, and we shouldn’t treat it as such. Jesus gave His life so that we can walk in newness of life by being spiritually born again through the power of the Holy Spirit.
As we seek to follow Jesus, albeit imperfectly, God will perfectly keep the covenant for us.
Obedience and gratitude to God should be our response to the covenant.
With David, the shepherd boy pulled from the pasture and crowned king of Israel, God continued the covenant first made with Abraham, to make him a father to the nations.
"Your house and kingdom will endure before me forever, and your throne will be established forever" (2 Samuel 7:16).
The gospel of Matthew begins with a genealogy that confirms the old covenant was kept until Jesus ushered in the new covenant through His body and blood shed on the cross:
"A record of the origin of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham ... there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Christ" (Matthew 1:1, 17).
David's story brims with battles, betrayal, and bereavement. David was not a perfect king, but he was a repentant king. He was a dependent king. He was a carnal man after God's own holy heart. And God forgive him and used him significantly.
David responded to God's forgiveness, personally and publicly, through the Psalms:
"I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving" (Psalm 69:30)
"For His merciful kindness is great toward us, and the truth of the Lord endures forever. Praise the Lord!" (Psalm 117:2)
"Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His faithful love endures forever" (Psalm 118:1).
God's truth endures forever. His love endures forever. His merciful kindness endures forever.
Let us join with David in praise for God's character, that the covenant doesn't depend on our performance but on God's perfection.
The new covenant is a divine contract penned by the Author and Perfecter of our faith and signed in the blood of Christ. God is our covenant-Creator and covenant-Keeper. Jesus is the King of kings, the true and better David. In His kingdom we will live forever as we abide in Him.
"Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!" (2 Corinthians 9:15).