September 1st, 2019
Christians celebrate Sunday as our sabbath day. Not all Christians know that Sunday wasn’t always the Sabbath, and the day set dedicated to our relationship with God, was actually yesterday, Saturday.
There are many explanations as to why the Christian Church predominately chose to make this day our designated day of the week to specifically recognize our relationship to the Creator. The one which makes most sense to me, would be that because of the Jewish Holy day being Saturday, the crucifixion of Jesus, had to be completed before the start of their sabbath.
As a result, Jesus rose from the dead Sunday morning. With His resurrection, He completed the establishment of a New Covenant with humanity. The entire volume of scripture from “In the beginning” till Jesus stepped out of that tomb, played a significant part in the establishment of the New Covenant.
We often think of God’s covenant with humanity as Old – vs – New, but the fact is that God established numerous covenants over time, both before and yes, even after the establishment of what we lovingly refer to as the New Covenant.
In the early references to covenants in scripture it was a very formal pact that was agreed to between parties, but the term has undergone a metamorphosis of sorts over the centuries. When you read in Matthew about the New Covenant, it’s been broadened.
“For this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”
Matthew 26:28 (CSB)
The use of covenant here underscores the pact aspect of the term, but also folds in a commitment, as well as a testament to that commitment. It’s the equivalent of possibly making a promise to someone; an agreement to perform under certain guidelines, and then posting it on a billboard for everyone to see.
The billboard Jesus uses is His Word.
Some of the covenants which came after the New Covenant include, the endowing of the Holy Spirit in believers, His constant abiding with us, and His promise to returned to take us home with Him.
The covenants established by God for us are many. If we take but a little time to consider every promise made, every proposition set forth establishing a performance commitment between us and God, we begin to understand the Glory and Power of our marvelous Lord!
The heavens declare the glory of God, and the expanse proclaims the work of his hands.
Psalms 19:1 (CSB)
This statement written by David in the Psalms only brushes the surface as to the majesty and glory that is possessed by God.
We are to channel glory back to God constantly. While I wouldn’t consider this our primary purpose, it is a function of that purpose. We were created to have an intimate relationship with God. A function of that relationship is the love we have for God and the love He pours out onto us. There are many functions that flow out of this relationship and one key function is the glory we reflect back to Him.
Give glory to the Lord your God before he brings darkness, before your feet stumble on the mountains at dusk. You wait for light, but he brings darkest gloom and makes total darkness.
Jeremiah 13:16 (CSB)
When Jesus replied to the elders who were trying to trap Him with a question to, “render to Caesar, that which is Caesar’s and to God that which belongs to God”; he was saying we are to turn any glory we might acquire to God.
Jeremiah says do it when you have the opportunity to do it; “Give glory to the Lord your God before he brings darkness”. Jesus sets an expectation that we do it constantly.
Let the word of Christ dwell richly among you, in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another through psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Colossians 3:16-17 (CSB)
“And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Our thanksgiving, praise, and very worship reflect this glory back to God.
This is to be an integral part of our lives and our testimony to those around us. If people don’t know you are a believer in Jesus it is because you haven’t told them either “in word or in deed”. There isn’t a telltale sign that we are disciples of Jesus, just because we have been covered by His blood. We must seek to demonstrate that both in our behavior and the words we speak.
By doing so, we glorify the one who created us, who sacrificed so very much for us, the one who died in our place so that we might live forever with Him!
I know I reference this passage, as well as the Great Commission, more than any other passages in scripture, but they both are action passages that underscore the importance of this demonstration of our love for Him; reflecting glory back to Him.
Rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in everything; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (CSB)
Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Matthew 28:19-20 (CSB)
These are not the only references to our obligation to the covenants established between us and God, but if we can wrap ourselves around these two, we will have come a long way in fulfilling the rest and giving Him the glory, the glory He deserves.
It’s time to “Give It Up!” Give it up for Jesus; give Him the glory and consequently as we see in Colossians 3:16-17, giving glory to Jesus does so to the Father as well.
In His Grace!