Overcoming Threats to the Covenant

God overcomes every threat to his covenant promise. This is one of the major themes that link the Bibles’ stories into one great narrative. God brings life from the barren womb of Sarah and provides a substitute for the sacrifice of Isaac. He rescues the family of Jacob from starvation through the vice regency of Joseph and delivers Israel from pharaoh’s slave masters through Moses. He provides for his people in the desert. He empowers  judges and anoints kings to save Israel and Judah from the armies of their predatory neighbors. Threat after threat arises, putting the fulfillment of God’s covenant promise at risk. The greatest threat to the covenant is Israel’s own stubbornness and hard-heartedness. Even that he overcomes, always preserving and restoring a remnant for the glory of his name.

The story comes to its natural climax in the story of Jesus, whose crucifixion threatened the ultimate fulfillment of God’s plans for his people. As he did so many times before, God overcame the threat, this time by raising Jesus from the dead, defeating the power of sin and death and opening the way for the gift of the Holy Spirit. Even then, the danger continued as the church was threatened from within and without.

Throughout history, God turned every threat into an opportunity for the advancement of his kingdom’s cause, and we can be confident that he will continue to do so. “The church is of God, and will be preserved to the end of time.”

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