Summary of the Sermon by Senior Pastor Djohan Handojo, at Bethany International Service, on Sunday, 9 April 2017.
Many people hunger and thirst for love. Love is something special that everyone needs. God is love and God’s love is expressed through Jesus Christ. The Bible tells us in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His Only Begotten Son so that whoever who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. Jesus gave His life so that we can have eternal life through Him.”
The Messianic Covenant is a new testament in Jesus Christ.
A messiah is someone who will save and redeem the nation. Many times, the Israelites were unfaithful and the Lord allowed the enemies to oppress them. Isaiah 53 describes the Messiah. By the stripes of Jesus, we are healed. The Israelites could not accept Jesus as their Messiah and because they rejected the Gospel, the Messianic Covenant was open to others. Jesus fulfilled the prophecy mentioned in Isaiah 53:4-7.
We love, because He first loved us. (1 John 4:19)
In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. (1 John 4:10)
We need to receive the love of Jesus before we can love others. A covenant is a solemn agreement between two persons carrying mutual relationship based on promises. A contract is different from covenant. When you break a contract, you need to face the consequences.
Marriage is a covenant, not a contract. That is why during a wedding, both the bridegroom and the bride make a special vow before God. One thing we need to remember is that God keeps His Covenant and He will do what He has said.
God made a covenant with Noah, and until today, we are still experiencing it – the different seasons of a year. God made a covenant to bless us. The descendants of Abraham are a blessing to the world. God never cancels His covenant. God made a covenant with Moses and He gave him the 10 commandments. God made the proposal to His people, like a husband making a proposal to his wife. The Church is like the bride and Jesus is the Bridegroom.
When we look at the creation of God, we can see the wonders and beauty of the world. God wants His people to be faithful and keep their part of the covenant.
The meaning of covenant is testament. The Israelites needed to live holy before God and it was difficult to fulfil all the 613 laws specified in the Old Testament. Thank God, Jesus is the fulfilment of the Law. He taught us to love God with all our heart, our soul, our mind and our strength, and to love others as we love ourselves. The laws are helping the people to have a holy life, happy life, and a healthy life. Jesus came to give us freedom and life abundantly.
For this reason, He is the mediator of a new covenant, so that, since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance. For where a covenant is, there must of necessity be the death of the one who made it. For a covenant is valid only when men are dead, for it is never in force while the one who made it lives. (Hebrews 9:15-17)
And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment, so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him. (Hebrews 9:27-28)
There was a testimony of a small-sized lady. She was not well educated. She helped out with simple household chores and in some simple administrative stuff. She was faithful and worked many years for her boss. One day, her boss passed away and she was called to the lawyer’s office. To her surprise, her boss had willed to her a small house with three rooms and that fortune helped her in her retirement. The will is enforced when the person who made the will dies. When Jesus died on the Cross, we received the blessings from God through Jesus.
Jesus gave us, not just eternal life, but divine blessings and divine healing.
By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. (1 John 4:9)
God's unconditional love for us will never fail.