if we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself. [2 timothy 2:13]
there’s a story in genesis 15 that has always been amazing to me. God makes a covenant with abram (soon to be abraham) and unconditionally promises his offspring will inherit this land (canaan). the ritual through which this covenant is carried out would have gone something like this…
the two parties involved split the carcasses of some animals, like cows and goats, in half and lay the halves in two lines, with an aisle of sorts in between. then the two parties would walk down that aisle, between the carcasses. this was meant to symoblize the depth of the covenant. they were saying, “let me become like like these dead animals – split me in half – if i do not remain faithful to my vow!”
here’s what’s amazing about this story. after all the preparations have been made, God puts abram to sleep. then a smoking pot and flaming torch, representing the presence of God, pass through the carcasses, but abram does not. God is taking on the liability of both sides of the covenant. the fulfillment of this covenant will rest on his shoulders. it is not dependent on abram’s faithfulness but on the faithfulness of the Lord.
the body of Jesus has been broken for God’s people. the fulfillment of the covenant rests in his faithfulness, not ours. “what shall we say then? are we to continue in sin that grace may abound?” [romans 6:1] no! what this means is, when we are faithless, it does not break our covenant with God through Jesus Christ. it means that we can find rest and restoration at the foot of the cross. it means that in our faithlessness we can run to our heavenly father and trust his goodness to provide.
the question is, where is your faithlessness? where do you cling to something else besides God to provide? to protect? to fulfill? what do you trust more than him?
when our sin is revealed to us we do not have to run in fear. we can run to the father, who has taken the punishment for the broken covenant already and covered us in the blood of his son, Jesus, so that we may stand in his presence, holy and blameless and accepted. that is the truth we can walk in today as believers in Christ.
~ keith kozlowski