Part 6 in the series.
By: Tom Casey
We have been examining Biblical stewardship in light of the presence of the Kingdom of God. After Adam’s sin, the knowledge of God and His Kingdom faded from the earth. We saw that God established a relationship with a man named Abram in order to reveal His nature and character once again to mankind, and to set events in motion that would accomplish His plan to reestablish His Kingdom rule in the hearts of men, as well as the physical presence and rule of His Kingdom on the earth. We saw that God began to reveal His nature and character by establishing a blood covenant with Abram.
Approximately 25 years later God changed Abram’s name to Abraham and expanded His blood covenant with Abraham. God revealed His nature and character to Abram over these 25 years, through this covenant He made. Now, God wanted Abraham and his descendents to enter into this covenant. God promised to be their God if they promised to be His people. It was to be an everlasting covenant between them. Abraham and his descendents entered into this covenant with God through the shedding of their blood – through circumcision. God and Abraham entered into the most powerful and binding relationship known to mankind. As blood covenant partners, each makes himself available to the other when the need arises, and if one partner has a need, the other must do what is necessary to provide for that need, if it is in his power to do so. On the other hand, if one partner breaks the covenant, the other partner has the right to go as far as to kill him, should he choose to do so. Such is the bond between the covenant partners.
God used this prophetic relationship, this blood covenant relationship with Abraham and his descendants to further reveal His nature and character to them and to all humanity. As Abraham’s descendants, later known as the children of Israel, increased in number, God gave them a leader named Moses. Moses was a man who enjoyed a prophetic relationship with God and Moses communicated with God on behalf of the people and spoke prophetically to the people on behalf of God. The people of God did not know the nature and character of God, so God gave them a code of behavior to live by, which they called The Law. This included what we know as the The 10 Commandments.
The Law was given to them to reveal the nature and character of God. Even though the descendents of Abraham had committed themselves to being God’s people, they were still ruled in their hearts by the domain of darkness. As a result, God gave them The Law to introduce and establish moral and ethical behavior more in line with the Kingdom of God, even though their internal heart attitudes were still ruled by the sin nature and they were deeply influenced by the environment of sin that surrounded them.
When God’s people broke The Law, and therefore the blood covenant, God gave them grace in the form of a priesthood with animal sacrifices, in order to make forgiveness, hope, and faith available to them until He was able to provide a more permanent solution to their sin problem. We will continue to learn how the presence of the Kingdom of God affects our stewardship as Christians in my next post.