2010-04-10 - The Eternal Covenant
Originally Published 2008-09-27
Luke 2:49, And He said to them, 'Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father's house?'
The love between the Father and Son is a precious subject for consideration. The delight of Jesus was to do His Father's will. He did this His entire life. We see it all over, related in every possible way in the Gospels. Jesus did the will of His Father. We see it most in His giving up His life for the sins of those the Father had given to Him. He took all those who the Father had given Him, and He paid for their sin upon the cross. He did this voluntarily, of His own free will. He was not, nor could He be, guilty of sin. But He became liable for all the sins of those who come to Him in faith. How is this so? How could this be? We might consider the wonder of His willingness several ways, but today I would like to look at the link between His willingness before He became incarnate -- born of a virgin, and its link to His willingness to carry through the task in His life and death on the cross.
These two aspects of the willingness of Christ are usually called the Covenant of Redemption (before He was born), and the Covenant of Grace (The actual application of His Atonement for sin). It is understood that there was some agreement between the Father and the Son that the Son (Jesus) would come and pay the penalty for sin for those that the Father would give Him. This is called the Covenant of Redemption, and it was established before Christ was born of Mary. It is an amazing thought, that God became man, but He did so with a purpose: To save a people, for eternity, unto Himself. His doing this is the second part of this Covenant. We call it the Covenant of Grace. The first Covenant of Redemption was made between the Father and the Son. The second is made between the Father, Son, and those who are redeemed by Christ.
I would like to suggest today that these two Covenants are really one. It is implied in the agreement between the Father and the Son that the Son would fulfill and work out that which they had agreed upon. They agreed, in the mysteries of Heaven, that the Son would redeem a people to Himself - those that the Father gave Him to redeem. In that agreement, where ransomed souls are set free from sin, there is really one Covenant, an Eternal Covenant that is seamless and perfect in the plan of God.
It is a wonderful thought that the Son knew what He was doing when He died for my sin. He knew He was coming to restore fellowship with the Father through union with the Son, and He did this willingly. While He was on Earth, Jesus had to be about His Father's business, and He is still about it today. He is still active in the lives of His people through the Holy Spirit, and as our Intercessor between the Father and us. So great is our salvation in Christ, that the Father can, in looking upon Christ's sacrifice in our place, be pleased with us. Such thoughts will thaw out the hardest heart. So great is the love which the Father has for His children, that He gave up His only Son, that we might be restored into a right relationship with Him. This was all the Son's business while He was on earth.
Soli Deo Gloria,