Ark of the Covenant
by Shem Derick
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Ark of the Covenant
"seeing who is unseen"
I would love to draw something from the heading above but right before I head down that road, let's look at what this ark means and what this covenant means and represents as well.
The Ark of the Covenant (Hebrew: אָרוֹן הַבְּרִית ʾĀrôn Habbərît, modern pron. Aron Habrit), also known as the Ark of the Testimony, is a chest described in the Book of Exodus as containing the Tablets of Stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed. According to some traditional interpretations of the Book of Exodus, Book of Numbers, and the Letter to the Hebrewsthe Ark also contained Aaron's rod, a jar of manna and the first Torah scroll as written by Moses; however, the first of the Books of Kings says that at the time of King Solomon, the Ark contained only the two Tablets of the Law. According to the Book of Exodus, the Ark was built at the command of God, in accordance with the instructions given to Moses on Mount Sinai. God was said to have communicated with Moses "from between the two cherubim" on the Ark's cover. (Extracted from Wikipedia.)
Basing on the above definition, to me, ark would mean something of much greater worth and protection. In the old testament it was some sort of box that keep sacred items of great significance. Having said that, lets now look at what this covenant was and represented.
The Greek word διαθηκη (diatheke), usually translated "covenant" in English versions of the Bible, is a legal term denoting a formal and legally binding declaration of benefits to be given by one party to another, with or without conditions attached. In secular contexts it was most often used of a "last will and testament." In the Greek version of the Old Testament διαθηκη was used as the ordinary rendering for the Hebrew word ברית.
ברית (berith) is also translated "covenant" in English versions, but, like διαθηκη, it also refers to legal dispositions or pledges which may or may not have the character of an "agreement." Sometimes a ברית is more in the nature of a one-sided promise or grant. "I apologies for the use of unreadable characters, they are simply Greek words"
The Old Testament does mention a number of covenants like;
God's Covenant with Noah
Centuries before the time of Abraham, God made a covenant with Noah, assuring Noah that He would never again destroy the world by flood (Gen. 9).
Noah lived at a time when the whole earth was filled with violence and corruption -- yet Noah did not allow the evil standards of his day to rob him of fellowship with God. He stood out as the only one who "walked with God" (Gen. 6:9), as was also true of his great-grandfather Enoch (Gen. 5:22). "Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations" (Gen. 6:9). The Lord singled out Noah from among all his contemporaries and chose him as the man to accomplish a great work.
When God saw the wickedness that prevailed in the world (Gen. 6:5), He told Noah of His intention to destroy the ancient world by a universal flood. God instructed Noah to build an ark (a large barge) in which he and his family would survive the universal deluge. Noah believed God and "according to all that God commanded him, so he did" (Gen. 6:22).
God's Covenant With Abraham
In making a covenant with Abraham, God promised to bless his descendants and make them His own special people -- in return, Abraham was to remain faithful to God and to serve as a channel through which God's blessings could flow to the rest of the world (Gen. 12:1-3).
Abraham's story begins with his passage with the rest of his family from Ur of the Chaldeans in ancient southern Babylonia (Gen. 11:31). He and his family moved north along the trade routes of the ancient world and settled in the prosperous trade center of Haran, several hundred miles to the northwest.
The Mosaic Covenant
The Israelites moved to Egypt during the time of Joseph. A new Pharaoh came upon the scene and turned the Israelites into common slaves. The people cried out to the God of their forefathers. "So God heard their groaning , and God remembered His covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob" (Exo. 2:24). After a series of ten plagues upon the land of Egypt, God brought the Israelites out "of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand" (Exo. 32:11).
Three months after leaving the land of Egypt, the children of Israel camped at the base of Mount Sinai (Exo. 19:1). God promised to make a covenant with the Israelites (Exo. 19:3-6). Before they even knew the conditions of the contract, the people agreed to abide by whatever God said (Exo. 19:8).
This covenant was between God and the people of Israel -- you and I are not a party in this contract (and never have been). The Ten Commandments are the foundation of the covenant, but they are not the entirety of it.
God's Covenant with David
Another covenant was between God and King David, in which David and his descendants were established as the royal heirs to the throne of the nation of Israel (2 Sam. 7:12-13).
This covenant agreement reached its fulfillment when Jesus, a descendant of the line of David, was born in Bethlehem. The gospel of Matthew starts off by showing Christ was "the Son of David" (Matt. 1:1), and thus He had the right to rule over God's people. Peter preached that Jesus Christ was a fulfillment of God's promise to David (Acts 2:29-36).
I could list more but that's not my point. Am up to reviling something real to our hearts not to speak facts.
Well above all this ark of the covenant as mentioned earlier, contained one significant thing. I say significant cause to me, it stands out to be the red line in all that am saying. Paul mentions a couple of things about the law for example;
In Romans 8:1-2, Paul announces that there is now no condemnation for those in Christ, because "through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set [us] free from the law of sin and death
Being set free from the Law of sin and death by the Law of the Spirit of life is another way of saying that "we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code."24 Sin is no longer our master, because we are now not under law, but under grace (Rom 6:14).
In Galatians 3:1-9 and Romans 3:21-4:8, Paul makes it abundantly clear that salvation
Can only be gained through faith and not through observing the Law. Indeed, as Paul
States in Galatians 2:21 "if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died
While the Law is an unattainable standard, it also reflects the will of God as well as His
holiness and righteousness. While the Law is a curse which leads to sin and death, it is
also good, holy, righteous and spiritual. While the Law, as a code, has been abolished,
many of its individual commands are still applicable.
But the most important truth about the Law presented in Galatians and Romans, is that
we are not required to obey it in order to gain salvation. Because the Law results in
slavery, Christ has released us from its bondage. The work of Christ signals the end of
Law as a means of justification. Salvation can only be gained through faith and not by
observance of the Law.
Having said that, am pretty sure your confused at this point. My desire from the beginning of this article is to reveal Christ and not to give a bunch of true things and facts related to him but to rather see him. "SO THIS ARK OF THE COVENANT REPRESENTS THE RELATIONSHIP AND UNDERSTANDING THAT GOD HAD WITH US IN A NATURAL REALM AND ALL THESE PROMISES, HIS WILL WERE ALL CONTAINED IN THIS ARK AS SEEN IN THE OLD TESTAMENT AND HOW TO ATTAIN THEM, WE WERE TO WALK BY THE LAW AND LIVE BY IT. HOWEVER DUE TO CHRIST'S REIGN, EVERYTHING THAT IS OF GOD IS NOW HIDDEN WITHIN CHRIST HIMSELF. HE IS THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND LIFE." "THE ACCESS TO THE FATHER ENTIRELY DEPENDS ON SEEING, KNOWING AND DWELLING IN HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS"
Let me conclude by mentioning a few more things about the new covenant;
The New Testament makes a clear distinction between the covenants of the Mosaic Law and the covenant of Promise. The apostle Paul spoke of these "two covenants," one originating "from Mount Sinai," the other from "the Jerusalem above" (Gal. 4:24-26). Paul also argued that the covenant established at Mount Sinai was a "ministry of death" and "condemnation" (2 Cor. 3:7, 9).
The death of Christ ushered in the new covenant under which we are justified by God's grace and mercy -- it is now possible to have the true forgiveness of sins. Jesus Himself is the Mediator of this better covenant between God and man (Heb. 9:15). Jesus' sacrificial death served as the oath, or pledge, which God made to us to seal this new covenant.
The "new covenant" is the new agreement God has made with mankind, based on the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The concept of a new covenant originated with the promise of Jeremiah that God would accomplish for His people what the old covenant had failed to do (Jer. 31:31-34; Heb. 11:7-13). Under this new covenant, God would write His Law on human hearts.
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