This Sunday's message: The Song of Zechariah

January 30

Today's reading: Genesis 15:1-21

There is a lot here that might not make sense unless we understand the ancient method of establishing a covenant. The Hebrew word for “covenant” is  “berîyth” which is derived from a root that means “to cut.”   Ancient covenants were established by the cutting and dividing of animals into two parts. The contracting parties would then pass between the animal parts.  This was to signify their promise to keep the covenant and that their desire was not to be killed/cut apart by failing to do so.

God instructed Abram to kill a heifer, a goat, and a ram and cut the animals in two.  The birds were not to be divided.  But instead of both God and Abram passing between the animals, God put Abram into a deep sleep (Gen 15:12) so God alone passed between the animals.  This established the Abrahamic Covenant as an unconditional covenant, one that was unable to be broken because God alone made the covenant.

This is a picture of how our own salvation is all God's work and therefore cannot be lost or taken away. Take some time today to thank God for loving you unconditionally like that.
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