Saturday, May 09, 2015

Covenant (2) Adam

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. When he had created humans, he established a covenant that gave them authority over everything that lived on the earth. The first part of this covenant was recorded in Genesis 1.

I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food (Gen 1:29-30).
God gave humans authority over everything living on the earth. This gift of the earth was unconditional and without recourse. The covenant was pure grace. No conditions were included. Adam and Eve did not have to earn authority on earth.

The covenant with Adam was a covenant of grace not a covenant of works. Adam and Eve were given the blessing of the earth, before God made the covenant. They had done nothing to earn it, and they could do nothing in the future to earn it. The covenant did not contain any guidelines about the nature of righteousness. God did not give a set of rules that humans must comply with. The only requirement he placed on humans was that they keep close to him. That was essential, because he was the source of the blessing of the covenant, but it did not earn them anything.

The covenant did not specify a standard of righteousness that humans should be tested against. Instead, he gave a relationship with the Holy Spirit. They did not have to keep a set of rules to maintain that relationship. As with any relationship, all they had to do was avoid grieving the other person. This was a covenant of mutual love, not a covenant of works.

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