Deuteronomy 28 records this blessing:
Deuteronomy 28:6 “Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out.
Look at that the way this blessing is worded. Let’s compare that wording to the historical records in the Bible. I believe we will discover something rich and precious that applies to each one of us. We are going to look at two covenants today. The covenant of Moses and the covenant of Abraham. The common denominator in both these covenants is God. He is a covenant-keeping God who has bound Himself to the covenants.
Before we go further into this study, let’s look at what a Biblical covenant was. Covenant is how God first decided to deal with mankind. When two or more parties make a covenant in the Bible, they are joined together and identified with each other. At every covenant’s core, there is a change in relationship.
The blessings of Deuteronomy 28 were made based on the covenant of Moses which is more commonly referred to as the Law of Moses or just the Law. According to the Law, the Israelites were to live in certain holy ways. They were also to worship God in certain, set ways. If the Israelites obeyed the Law they were blessed with all the blessings of Deuteronomy 28. If they disobeyed the Law, they received all the curses of Deuteronomy 28. This is called a conditional covenant. It required human performance to keep the Law. And the blessings of God were conditional based on obedience to God’s Law. God was saying, “First, you obey the Law, then I will bless you.”
But 400 years before the Law was given by God to Moses, Abram was blessed by God. Study the Genesis 15 passage. God put Abram asleep and cut a covenant with Himself. In other words, He bound Himself to Abram that Abram should inherit all the land God gave him. That is why it was called the Promised land. God promised big; huge in fact! This is called an unconditional covenant. God did not require anything from Abraham. There was no human performance involved.
Hebrews 6:13-14 (NKJV) 13 For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself, 14 saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.”
And Abram believed what God told him:
Genesis 15:6 And he believed in the Lord, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.
As believers, we have a part in Abraham’s covenant:
Romans 4:23-24 Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed to him, 24 but also for us. It shall be imputed to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead,
And just as the covenant of Abraham was imputed to him because he believed in the Lord, we, too, have Abraham’s covenant imputed to us. And we also have a part in the blessings of Abraham as well:
Galatians 3:8-9 And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, “In you all the nations shall be blessed.” So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham.
That is an amazing verse we just read. God is omnipotent, meaning He is all knowing. So He knew He was going to justify Gentiles by faith. That was His reason for preaching to Abraham before the Law was ever given. So, by that we were blessed with believing Abraham.
Referring back to our title from Deuteronomy 28, “Blessed shall you be when you come in,” we are blessed with Abraham. From a historical perspective, we are blessed coming into the period of the Law.
Now we are to the point in history where God gave the Law to Moses on Mount Sinai. From then on, the Law was in effect. What was the purpose of the Law? Galatians 3:19 asks the same question.
Galatians 3:19-20 19 What purpose then does the law serve? It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was appointed through angels by the hand of a mediator. 20 Now a mediator does not mediate for one only, but God is one.
The Law, then, was given alongside the promise to show people their sins. The law was designed to last only until the coming of the child who was promised. The Law was given through a mediator, Moses. But God did not use a mediator when he gave his promise to Abraham. The Law came through Moses. The promise came from God.
John 1:17 For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
As we continue in Galatians 3, we are given more reasons for the Law:
Galatians 3:21-24 21 Is the law then against the promises of God? Certainly not! For if there had been a law given which could have given life, truly righteousness would have been by the law. 22 But the Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. 23 But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed. 24 Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
There is no conflict between the Law and the promises because the Law cannot give new life. Scripture tells us that we are all prisoners of sin, so God’s promise of freedom is received only by believing in Jesus Christ. We were kept under guard, like protective custody, until the way of faith was revealed. Summing it all up, then, the Law was our tutor, it protected us until we could be made right with God through faith.
But, now, Jesus has come. He tore open the veil in the holy of holies in the tabernacle that separated men from God. He made a way that we all can become the sons and daughters of God.
Galatians 3:25-29 But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. 26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
We no longer need the Law as our guardian. We have Jesus as our Savior! And look what He did for us:
Galatians 3:13-14 13 Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”), 14 that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
He redeemed us from the curse of the Law that held us as prisoner.
Romans 7:6 But now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter.
So there it is, we are blessed by the blessings of Abraham coming into the period of the Law. And we will look at next time, we are blessed through Jesus Christ by the new Covenant of grace going out of the period of the Law. Coming and going, we are completely blessed by God. Doubly blessed, fully at rest. All because of Jesus and His all-encompassing love for us.
If you would like to know this covenant-keeping God, pray this prayer with me.
Thank You Father for sending Your Son to die on the cross for my sins. I turn from my wicked ways and choose now to follow Jesus. Fill me with Your love and peace and joy. In Jesus Name I ask this, Amen.
Congratulations if you prayed that prayer with me! You are now a Christian. Contact us and let us know about your experience. We care about you.