In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” – 1 Co 11:25.
The influence of worldly and material mindsets in culture is directly opposed to the church’s understanding of the true heart behind covenants. Legalism and religious thinking, even in the church, re-enforce our failure to understand the seriousness of covenant relationships. In many ways, we have confused the idea of a contract with that of a covenant. Sadly the high divorce rate in some countries is a clear reflection of this.
A contract is an agreement between two parties for mutual exchange and performance of works with consequences around performance. It has very little to do with the parties involved, other than their legal obligations to each other. The mindset of a contractual relationship is “What can I get out of this relationship?”
Covenant is typically a commitment or engagement by a stronger party with the intention of a relationship. It upholds the principles of love, faithfulness and loyalty and asks the question, “What can I do for you?” Unlike a contract, the intention of a covenant is for a lifetime relationship.
Throughout Biblical history, God Himself entered into several covenants with His people, in the hope of them coming to know Him as a good and faithful God. Mankind under the power of sin was unable to uphold the covenant commitment to God. God’s intention has always been to redeem mankind from slavery to sin, and to come to a full knowledge of Him. It is only through the holy blood of Jesus, His beloved Son, laying down His life for His friends, that mankind could be redeemed. It is this same blood that became the perfect sprinkling and sacrifice for the everlasting covenant God made through Jesus. The words of Jesus “It is finished”, while dying on the cross express the significance of God’s everlasting covenant promise to mankind. No greater price could ever be paid by God to redeem mankind and no other way exists, but through the everlasting covenant with Christ. His covenant offers eternal relationship and intimate knowledge of God so that we can now say “Abba Father.”
Looking at the new covenant promise can only be properly received by grace through faith in Jesus, His death and resurrection. The promise and hope are sealed by the holiest blood there is. It is in the sacred union (intimacy) with Christ, that His bride is redeemed in Him and through Him. God’s everlasting covenant was an act on His behalf of unconditional love, grace and mercy towards mankind, through His beloved Son.