Covenant Oath Swearing

 

T prepare us for a discussion of prophet and covenant, we need to take a quick look at the covenant oath…

Back in the ancient Middle East, it was customary for the two sides entering into a covenant to gather together in front of witnesses and sweat an oath.  The oath would frequently involve a sacrifice of an animal, with both sides coming into the blood of the sacrifice and agreeing that if they should violate their covenant responsibilities, they should suffer the same fate as the animal that was sacrificed.

This is also true of certain Biblical covenants. Consider the oath swearing in Genesis 15 where God directed that Abraham bring several animals to be sacrificed.  They were split in two, and Abraham and his household marched through them, followed by God who consumed them, sealing their covenant.  Both sides came into contact with blood.

Recall also that when the Law of Moses became effective, it was with an oath swearing in which the people agreed to obey the Law, and then marched past while the Levites sprinkled them with the blood of the sacrifices mixed with water, and then the Lord consumed the sacrifices; both sides had sworn an oath before witnesses.

Finally, recall that the Lord provided the sacrifice for the New Covenant in the person of Jesus Christ, who shed His blood upon the cross, and that we join with Him in covenant when we are buried into His death in the waters of Baptism…

As we continue, we will see much more of the covenant oath swearing…

About Don Merritt

A long time teacher and writer, Don hopes to share his varied life's experiences in a different way with a Christian perspective.
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