‘Do This in Remembrance of Me’ (Part Six)

Complimentary Story
   Where does the New Covenant come into play, since both were given to the children of Israel, and both being forever covenants?  The old in Genesis 9:9-17 with Noah and Genesis 17:7-8 to Abraham and their seed after them would include all of mankind since there is no doubt that we are all of the seed of Adam, and all of the seed of Noah.  Since Abraham, the Old Covenant has included different promises to different people to meet their needs of different purposes and callings in an ever-changing world. The second, or New Covenant, is first mentioned in Jeremiah 31:31-35, made with the house of Israel and the house of Judah.  “Behold the days come… I will make a new covenant… Not according to the (old) covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was  husband unto them, saith the Lord.”

   Throughout history, God has kept His same covenant, “I will be your God” with mankind as a Husband and wife relationship.  Isaiah 54:5 also states, “Thy maker is thine husband; the Lord of hosts is His name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; the God of the whole earth shall He be called.”   Also in Isaiah 61:8-11 which states, “For I the Lord love judgment (4941-hearing a case, and rendering a proper verdict, discernment), I hate robbery for burnt offering: and I will direct their work in truth (the working of the Holy spirit even in the Old Testament), and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.  And their seed shall be known among the Gentiles, and their offspring among the people: all that see them shall acknowledge them, that they are the seed which the Lord hath blessed,” as a light to the Gentiles.  Isaiah then makes this comment, “I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for He hath clothed me with the garment of salvation, He hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.  For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to bring forth; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all nations.”  As the apostle Paul states in Philippians 2:13, “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do his good pleasure,” but we all have to choose to obey!

   In Ezekiel 16:15-21, God as a husband said, “But thou didst trust in thine own beauty, and playest the harlot because of thy (reputation) and pourest out thy fornications on every one that passed by; his it was…  Moreover thou hast  taken thy sons and thy daughters, whom thou hast borne unto me, and these hast thou sacrificed unto them to be devoured, is this of thy whoredoms a small matter, that thou hast slain my children, and delivered them to cause them to pass through the fire for them?”  (Read II Kings 17:13-41).

   They chose to prefer other gods and worshiped them, for what they imagined to be a benefit to them.  Continuing in Ezekiel 16:26-41, “Thou hast also committed fornication with the Egyptians thy neighbors, great of flesh; and hast increased thy whoredoms, to provoke Me to anger… Thou hast played the whore also with the Assyrian (even though He warned them not to in Isaiah 8), because thou wast (unsatisfied); yea, thou hast played the harlot with them, and yet couldest not be satisfied.  Thou hast moreover multiplied thy fornication in the land of Canaan unto Chaldea; and yet thou wast not satisfied herewith.  How weak is thine heart, saith the Lord God (as a husband to you), seeing thou doest all these things, the work of an imperious whorish woman (behaving like someone who is a supreme ruler, or a god)… But as a wife that committeth adultery, which taketh strangers instead of her husband… Wherefore, O harlot, hear the words of the Lord… Because thy filthiness was poured out, and thy nakedness discovered through thy whoredoms with thy lovers, and with all the idols of thy abominations, and by the blood of thy children, which thou didst give unto them; Behold, therefore I will gather all thy lovers with whom thou hast taken pleasure, and all them that thou hast loved, with all them that thou hast hated; I will even gather them round about against thee, and will discover thy nakedness unto them, that they may see all thy nakedness.”  “And I will judge thee, as women that break wedlock and shed blood are judged; and I will give thee blood in fury and jealousy.  And I will give thee into their hand, and they shall throw down thine eminent place, and shall break down thy high places (those high places of worship): they shall strip thee also of thy cloths, and shall take thy fair jewels, and leave thee naked and bare.  They shall also bring up a company against thee, and they shall stone thee with stones, and thrust thee through with their swords.  And they shall burn thine houses with fire, and execute judgments upon thee in the sight of many women: and I will cause thee to cease from playing the harlot, and thou also shall give no hire any more.”

   The prophet Hosea pleads with Israel as a divided kingdom during Jeroboam the second’s reign, to repent, to “return, and seek the Lord their God,” the God of covenant.  God tells Hosea (Hosea 2:1-5) “Say ye unto your brethren, Ammi (5971- which means My people); and to your sister Rw-hamah (7355- which means showing compassion and mercy, these two being the basis for our salvation, which was to be their light to the Gentiles.)  Plead with your mother, plead: for she is not my wife, neither am I her husband: let her therefore put away her whoredoms out of her sight, and her adulteries from between her breasts; lest I strip her naked, and set her as in the day that she was born, and make her as a wilderness, and set her like a dry land, and slay her with thirst.  And I will not have mercy upon her children for they be the children of whoredoms.  For this mother hath played the harlot: she that hath conceived them hath done shamefully:  for she said, I will go after my lovers, that give me my bread and my water, my water, my wool and my flax, mine oil and my drink.”

   After all God has promised to meet man’s every need by the oath of a binding covenant, man seems to always drift toward self sufficiency, as if we did not need God, to pursue the gods of this world that seem to satisfy better than the God of creation.  The love of money that gives me my bread and water, my wool, oil, and drink, all the pleasures I desire!  We are no different today being like the children of Israel, as Isaiah 43:24-28 states. “Thou hast made me to serve with thy sins, thou hast wearied me with thine iniquities.  I, even I, am he that blotted out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins, Put me in remembrance: let us plead together: declare thou, that thou mayest be justified.  Thy first father (Adam) hath sinned, and thy teachers (3887- scoffing teachers) have transgressed against me.  Therefore I have profaned the princes of the sanctuary and have given Jacob to the curse, and Israel to reproaches.”

   Continuing in Hosea 2:6-10, “Therefore, behold, I will hedge up thy way with thorns, and make a wall, that she shall not find her paths.”  The loss of one’s freedoms appears to have come on so gradually that we, like them, seem to be oblivious to it, because we, like them, are so focused on the pursuit of our own happiness we forget where all things came from! “And she shall follow after her lovers, but she shall not overtake them; and she shall seek them, but shall not find them: then shall she say, I will go and return to my first husband; for then was it better with me than now.  For she did not know that I gave her corn, and wine, and oil, and multiplied her silver and gold.”

   All belongs to God, for “all things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made” (John 1:3).  They, just as we continue to do the same to “prepare for Baal” and any other gods we deem beneficial! “Therefore will I return, and take away my corn in the time thereof, and my wine in the season thereof, and will recover my wool and my flax given to cover her nakedness.  And now will I discover her lewdness in the sight of her lovers, and none shall deliver her out of mine hand.”  

   Yes, God is the one who has given us everything, and He can take it all away.  To show the world, the ones who we thought were our friends and allies, our hypocrisy of taking the Lord’s name in vain while pursuing the many gods before Him with our misplaced faith.  Therefore “having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof” (II Timothy 3:5).  Are we any different today than the children of Israel in their dialogue between them, Moses, and God in Deuteronomy 5:27-29?  “Go thou near, and hear all that the Lord our God shall say: and speak thou unto us all that the Lord our God shall speak unto thee; and we will hear it, and do it.” Many do the same today each time we go to church expecting to hear the words of our God!  “And the Lord heard the voice of your words, when ye spake unto me; and the Lord said unto me, I have heard the voice of the word of this people, which they have spoken.  O that there were such and heart in them, that they would fear (fear of offending) Me, and keep all My commandments always, that it might to well with them, and with their children forever.”

   Does this attitude ever end?  For as we read in Ezekiel 33:28-31, “For I will lay the land desolate, and the pomp of her strength shall cease, and the mountains of Israel shall be desolate, that none shall pass through.  Then shall they know that I am the Lord, when I have laid the land desolate because of all their abominations which they have (willingly committed)… And they come unto thee as the people cometh, and they sit before thee (pastors and teachers) as My people, and they hear thy words, but they will not do them (these words must be for others, real sinners!): for with their mouth they shew much love, but their heart goeth after their covetousness,” to pursue worldly pleasures, the gods of this world!  “And Lo, thou (the Lord God) art unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on instrument: for they hear thy words, but they do them not.”  

   Man has always loved to hear the promises of blessings, for they are pleasing music to our ears.  But the words of warning, the promises of the cursings if we obey not “to observe to do all His commandments and His statutes which I command thee… that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee” as described in Deuteronomy chapter twenty eight.  “And when this cometh to pass (lo, it will come!) then shall they know that a prophet hath been among them.” This discipline of judgment wasn’t something yet to come, but had already started with the warnings of the prophet Joel during the reign of Jeroboam II around 800 B.C.  Two hundred years before the new covenant was announced, even though Moses, in Deuteronomy 30:6-20, said much of the same things.  “And the Lord thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and all thy soul, that thou mayest live…  But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth (to share with others), and in thy heart (yes in their heart to direct their path) that thou mayest do it…  That thou mayest love the Lord thy God, and that thou mayest obey His voice, and that thou mayest cleave to Him (as also stated in Matthew 6:24 “to hold to the one, and despise the other”): for He is thy life, and the length of thy days: that thou mayest dwell in the land which the Lord sware into thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.”

   Joel begins in (Joel 1:2-12) “Hear this ye old men, and give ear, all ye inhabitants.  Hath this been in your days, or even in the days of your fathers?  Tell your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation.”  What the palmerworm did not destroy, the locust did.  What the locust did not destroy, the canker worm did. What the canker worm did not destroy, the caterpillar did.  All done so gradual, but yet so devastating to even our faith in all the wrong places.  “Awake ye drunkards, and weep, and howl, all ye drunkards of wine, because of the new wine; for it is cut off from your mouth… He hath laid my vine waste, and barked my fig tree:  He hath made it clean bare, and cast it away; the branches thereof are made white… The vine is dried up, and the fig tree languisheth, the pomegranate, the palm tree also, and the apple tree, even all the trees of the field.”

   Why did they not notice this for years?  Are we any different today?  We acknowledge God with our lips, but with our heart we follow the gods of this world!  Trying to force evolution into our world view, blaming all this devastation on things we think we can fix, without returning to believing, trusting, and obeying every word out of the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4).  If we truly believe He created everything, He certainly can also fix everything to meet our every need as He has covenanted!  He just wants man to love Him with all our heart, soul, and mind, with all our strength, because He alone is worthy! 

   The day of the Lord’s judgments will come to those who refuse to hear and remember what God has said and has done in the past.  In Joel 2:1, and 12-13, “The day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand… Therefore also now, saith the Lord, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: And rend your hearts, and not your garments, and turn (repent) unto the Lord your God: for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth Him of the evil” which He promised to bring upon us if we continue to go after these other gods!  

   The Old Covenant is the foundation of our salvation, without it the New Covenant cannot work, being both are forever covenants. (Revelation 21:3-7).

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