The first of the four great foundational covenants employed by God Himself with the nation Israel was the Abrahamic covenant, which is considered by most scholars as the basis of the entire covenant program. To say that the Scriptures abound in references to God’s Abrahamic covenant and its application, is an understatement. Soteriology and this covenant are inseparable. Paul, in his letter to the Galatians, shows that any believer enters into the blessings promised to Abraham. (Galatians 3.14, 29; 4.22-31)
Paul used the same argument in his writings to the Romans, which stood upon the same covenant promise God made to Abraham. (Romans 4.1-25) Starting with the fall of man God revealed His plan to provide salvation to sinners. As God revealed this program gradually to mankind, the eternal, unconditional covenant made to Abraham represents an advanced step in that revelation. Dr. Peters said it this way:
In Him the Divine Purpose becomes more specific, detailed, contracted, definite, and certain. Specific, in distinguishing and separating him from others of the race; detailed, in indicating more of the particulars connected with the purpose of salvation; contracted, in making the Messiah be directly in his line, to be his “seed”; definite, in entering into covenant relation with him, as his God; and certain, in confirming his covenant relationship by an oath. (Peters 293)
If we have the promises of Abraham that includes an eternal covenant from God, then the Abrahamic covenant has a direct effect on the doctrine of the resurrection. Please read Matthew 22.23-32 carefully the resurrection covenant is the basis that Jesus Christ refutation of the unbelief of the Sadducees. As today, the Sadducees then denied the possibility of resurrection. Jesus Christ affirmed that the resurrection was not only possible but necessary. Listen carefully, since God revealed Himself as the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Exodus 3.15), with whom He had entered into eternal covenant relationships, and we know that these men had passed without receiving the fulfillment of the promises. (Hebrews 11.13) It stands to reason that God, in his integrity, would keep His Word and raise the men of promise from the dead at the appropriate time.
Remember Paul, later in his life, had to go before Agrippa in Acts 26.6-8, where he unites “the promise to the fathers” with the resurrection of the dead as his defense of the doctrine. Dr. Peters and his graduate student Smith make an interesting point,
The fact of the physical resurrection is proved by the Lord and Paul from the necessity laid upon God to fulfill His covenant, even thought it entails physical resurrection to do so. Consequently the fact of the believer’s resurrection is united to the question of the kind of covenant God swore Himself to with Abraham. (Peters and Smith 297)
The doctrine of resurrection is denied more today and is more widespread than it was in the days of Jesus denying the unbelief of the Sadducees. In a 2013 study, only 64 per cent of Christians believe that Jesus Christ rose from the dead physically. (Rasmussen ‘Resurrection’)
The Abrahamic covenant has a important bearing on the doctrines of Eschatology. The eternal aspects of the covenant, which provides Israel a permanent national existence. For almost 1,900 years this was not possible. But on May 14, 1948, Israel began a climb to the most important nation in the world. They have a perpetual title to the land of promise, and guarantee Gentile nations share in these blessings through Christ, and determines the entire eschatological program of the Word of God.
I’m finishing a thesis as the requirement to graduate with a Master’s degree in Biblical Studies as I write this. The more I learn about the apostasy in the United States and the world, the more I am convinced that our only hope is the return of the Lord Jesus Christ to set up God’s kingdom on the earth as it is in heaven. In a post-Christian America it is incombant to every Christian to do his best to be ready for Jesus Christ return. Stay in the Word of God. It is life for the soul. If you need suggestions on how to study the Word of God, drop me an email.
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