Many of us listen to what people preach and oftentimes we take what they say for the Gospel truth. But if we want to know the truth, we have to go to the source, which is the Bible or the “Word of God”.
A security guard in my office recently brought this to my attention. He said that there is a misconception whereby people thought that Noah used to preach to the citizens back in those days, telling them that God was going to destroy the earth and if they wanted to be saved, they needed to get into the ark with him and his family. This sounds reasonable. ‘A man who is aware that the world is going to end, we might think that it is his duty to warn the other people. At least the people that he comes into contact with’.
I wasn’t sure and I wanted to know for myself, so I checked the source “The Bible”. It stated that God was going to destroy the world and everything in it, except Noah and his immediate family.
I didn’t see it written anywhere that Noah told anyone besides his family about his project assigned by God to build an ark.
But the best part in reading about this incident with Noah, was the revelation the Holy Spirit gave at the end:
(Genesis 9:8-17) Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him: “I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you and with every living creature that was with you—the birds, the livestock and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with you—every living creature on earth. I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.”
And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.” So God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant I have established between me and all life on the earth.”
Isn’t it wonderful that God who is omniscient and knows everything infinitely would set up a sign to remind Himself and us, about His covenant with all life on the earth, i.e. never to destroy the earth again by a flood?
This clearly showed me that a covenant is a sacred thing not to be taken lightly.
A covenant is a pledge; an agreement; a promise; a treaty or a contract. In the Bible the same Greek word pronounced (dee-ath-ay-kay) is used for testament and covenant. We therefore have the Old Testament and the New Testament or the Old Covenant and the New Covenant. The LORD through the prophet Jeremiah stated that He was going to make a new covenant with His people.
(Jeremiah 31:31-34) “Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,” declares the Lord. “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares the Lord, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”
What was this new covenant that was spoken of by the prophet Jeremiah? Jesus Christ answered this question at His last Passover meal on the earth as a man, which is referred to as the ‘Last Supper’ or the ‘Lord’s Supper’. The Lord Jesus Christ, on the night He was betrayed, took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same way, after supper He took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”
So whenever we partake of this body and blood we are to remember what was achieved when Jesus Christ was brutally beaten, nailed to the cross and left to die, as a sacrifice for us.
Because we are mere humans, it is difficult for us to fathom what God has done for us.
We need to understand what was accomplished by His death and how to apply it to our lives. That is the whole problem. Jesus has already paid the price. The solution has already taken care of, but how to obtain the results is the setback that most of us have to deal with.
Long before the Last Supper, Jesus preached to His disciples that He is the Bread of Life. (John 6:53-58) Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your ancestors ate manna and died, but whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.” Notice, eats, drinks, remains and feeds, all these are in the present continuous tense. Therefore it should be done continually, over and over again.
God stated in (Leviticus 17:11) For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul. This is a powerful statement for all of us to dwell on. God is eternal and Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God in the flesh on the earth. We can put the above statement in another way:- 1) The life of man is in his blood; or 2) The life of the Son of God is in His Blood. Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour came to shed His blood for us.
Now, we can grasp that God’s blood was shed on the earth, so that we can have His eternal life.
Jesus died that we may have life, but not only that, He bore our pain and suffering on the cross and by His wounds we are healed. He was punished so that we may be forgiven, He bore our shame that we can share His glory, He was made sin that we may be made righteous, He was rejected that we may be accepted, He endured our poverty that we may share in His abundance and He was made a curse that we can be blessed.
All these great blessings are ours if only we can believe it. These are the things God wants us to remember when we partake of “His New Covenant” which we call “Communion”.
I would like to leave you with Psalm 103 which should help clarify things:
Bless the LORD, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with loving kindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. The LORD executes righteousness And justice for all who are oppressed. He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel.
The LORD is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. He will not always strive with us, Nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him; As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us. As a father pities his children, So the LORD pities those who fear Him.
For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. For the wind passes over it, and it is gone, And its place remembers it no more. But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting On those who fear Him, And His righteousness to children’s children, To such as keep His covenant, And to those who remember His commandments to do them.
The LORD has established His throne in heaven, And His kingdom rules over all. Bless the LORD, you His angels, Who excel in strength, who do His word, Heeding the voice of His word. Bless the LORD, all you His hosts, You ministers of His, who do His pleasure. Bless the LORD, all His works, In all places of His dominion. Bless the LORD, O my soul!
Lord Jesus, we thank you for your New Covenant and every time we eat the bread and drink the cup, we declare that it is Your body and Your blood that we are partaking of. We receive Your gift of eternal life in us and all the other blessings that come with it, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen. God bless.
Image Credit: shutterstock/jordache