Memory Text: For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance-now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant (Hebrews 9:15, NIV).
God’s eternal decision to save humanity has been revealed to us through the ages in the covenants. Though the Bible speaks of covenants in the plural (Rom. 9:4, Gal. 4:24, Eph. 2:12), there is really only the covenant of grace, in which salvation is given to sinners, not on the basis of their merits but on the merits of Jesus that are offered to all who claim those merits by faith. The plural, covenants, simply means that God has advanced His saving purposes by restating the covenant in various ways in order to meet the needs of His people in different times and settings. It is always, though, one covenant-the eternal covenant of God’s saving grace.
The heart of this covenant is our Lord’s steadfast, faithful love, a love that the Bible at times even equates with the covenants themselves (see Deut. 7:9, 1 Kings 8:23, Dan. 9:4). As part of that covenant, God calls His people to obey His law, not as a means of salvation but as the fruit of it. Law and grace together have always been central to God’s eternal covenant.
*Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, June 7.