JOHN - Chapter 14 - THE BLOOD COVENANT AND INHERITANCE Print E-mail

JOHN – Chapter 14 - The Blood Covenant and Inheritance 

Tuesday Morning Bible Study – 7/18/17, the Year of Our Lord

Pastor Carolyn Sissom

 

Last week Chapter 13 was so rich in gospel glory that I delayed addressing 13:38 until this week. 

 

13:38:  Peter said…I will lay down my life for your sake.  Jesus answered him.  Will you lay down your life for My sake?  Verily, verily, I say to you, the cock will not crow, until you have denied me three times.

 

God sometimes abandons us in order to correct our weakness.  In great passion, Peter declared his loyalty and devotion to Jesus.  Yet, when his heart was tested in the midst of persecution and the prospect of actually losing his life, Peter fell, not once, but three times.  When we fail, and we all have failed and will fail again, let us correct our weakness, that we may overcome.

 

14:1: Let not your heart be troubled, you believe in God, believe also in Me. 

 

This chapter is rich with the Middle Eastern principle of the Blood Covenant.

 

The disciples would understand that the Lord’s Supper and the covenant of this chapter is referring to a family covenant when He says, 14:10-11:  Do you believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me?  The words that I speak unto you, I do not speak of Myself; but the Father who dwells in Me, He does the works.  Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me; or else believe Me for the very works’ sake.

 

In Genesis 15, the LORD (Yehovah) initiated a covenant with Abraham. The LORD began the conversation with Abram by saying, Fear not, Abram; I am your shield, and your exceeding great reward.  Abram said, well then what will you give me?  The LORD then promised him an heir.  His seed would be more than all the stars of heaven.  15:6: Abram believed in the LORD; and He counted it to him for righteousness.

 

Then the LORD GOD (Adonai Yehovah) initiated the blood covenant of a 3 year old heifer; 3 year old she goat; three year old ram, a turtledove and a young pigeon.  He told him to divide them in half and lay each piece one against another.

 

The offering made for God was a type and shadow of Jesus Christ.  The three animals were tame and willing.  Heifer – freshness of Jesus’ vigor; Goat – aspect of the sin-offering; Ram – animal of consecration and substitution.  The Birds speak of the Holy Spirit.  The three years speak of his three years of public ministry.  While Abram slept, the Father (Smoking Furnace) and the Son (Burning Lamp) walk through the halves to consummate the covenant with Abraham.  Hence, the covenant is known by the blood among the two family heads, saying, As these have lost their lives because of this covenant, so I am willing to lose my life and shed the blood of myself and family in defense of your family.  Such a precious spilling of blood was symbolic of a great pact between families.

 

If one party breaks covenant, it does not release the other from the duties of the initial covenant.  Only a future covenant added to the old one can supersede the original.  The Lord’s covenant with Abraham is under the Old Covenant but all those who walk by Faith are the seed of Abraham and receive the inheritance of the Testament.  The seed of Abraham is Jesus Christ.  The New Covenant reveals One Covenant people of the ages who walk by Faith and receive the New Testament through Jesus Christ.

 

Gal. 3:16: To Abraham and his seed were the promises made.  He said not, and to seeds, as many, but as of one, and to your seed, which is Christ.  

 

Gal. 3:29: If you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s Seed, and heirs according to the promise.

 

This covenant made to Abraham went from generation to generation and became a Testament.  The New Testament is the better blood of the death of the Testator, Jesus Christ.  The Testator bestowed upon us the fullness of the Old Testament plus the New Testament.

 

The Lord is in covenant with His people, and the promises of the Bible reveal the strength and tenacity of our binding relationship with Him through His Testament.    He cannot fail.  His resources are for the asking.  His fidelity can be depended upon.  He defends against all enemies, and gave his own Son as satisfaction for this covenant---not the blood of bulls and goats, but his own blood.  He has given each participant HIS NAME.

 

He shares the family secrets with us, and calls us sons and daughters.  When Jesus said, “Take eat, this is my body broken for you.  This is my blood which is shed for you.”  The disciples would have understood clearly what Jesus was telling them.   This is the blood of the New Covenant.  His brethren put Him on as a garment; we have His Sword of the Spirit, and our enemies are His enemies. 

 

In the East, exchange of coats symbolized the character and honor of the person wearing it.  The exchange of swords or weaponry was to pledge that the one possessing it would protect the rightful owner’s family in the same manner and reliability as his own.  There was an exchange of wealth, i.e. the Lord promises Abraham all the land from the river of Egypt to the river of the Euphrates.  (The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof.) 

 

In Middle Eastern culture, the final witness was the bread and the wine.  The two parties before the assembled witnesses partook of a symbolic meal.  Each broke bread and gave to the other as a token he was willing to break his body in defense of the other.  Wine was shared as token that their blood would be willingly shed for each other.  (The Lord’s Supper is a powerful meal.  When we take it with Jesus, we consummate the covenant and receive His Testament.)

 

John 14: 2-6:  In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you.  I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you unto Myself; that where I am there you may be also.  Where I go, you know and you will know the way.  Thomas said unto Him, Lord we do not know where you go; how can we know the way?  Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man comes unto the Father, but by Me.

 

Jesus is the Way of Life.  The ascended life is His life, “that where I am there you may be also.” 

 

1 Co. 6:17:  He that is joined unto the Lord is one Spirit.

 

We do not have to strain or strive for this.  The savor of Christ is totally unlike the sweat of Adam.  Like Peter and Thomas, you can make a mistake and still have this.  You can mess up this week and not lose this.

 

Thomas at this time doesn’t have the unflagging passion of Peter to follow the Master into the unknown.  There are many who will follow Jesus to the water, but not to the Cross.

 

Christian beware, we could follow a path of active virtue and still miss God.  Christ is the way.  We must know Him, sit down with him and talk with him.  We must listen to the sound of God’s council.  Do you fear and reverence the Lord?  Only those who fear Him will sit down and talk with Him.

 

Many practice virtue to impress men (so they have received their reward in this life); or they become conceited about their knowledge of doctrines and stray from the right path.  To the way, and the truth, the Lord adds life.  Let us ignore the deadly praise or criticism of men.  Let us follow the path and adhere to His words which lead us to eternal life.

 

John 14:7-9:  If you had known Me, you should have known My Father also; and from henceforth you know Him, and have seen Him.  Because of Jesus’ shed blood, we can sit down at the Father’s table in His House and talk with Him face to face.

 

Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus. By a new and living way, which He has consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, His flesh; and having a high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart and full assurance of faith

 

My Father’s house is the house of God.

 

John 14: 8-9:  Philip said, Lord, show us the Father, and it will suffice us.  Jesus replied, have I been so long with you, and yet you do not know me, Phillip?  He who has seen me has seen the Father; so how can you say, Show us the Father?

 

Now we can add Philip to Peter and Thomas – 3 of His disciples are wobbling. Judas Iscariot has already jumped ship.

 

Jesus is uniquely in the image of God. Col. 1:15: Jesus Christ…Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature; for by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers; all things were created by him, and for him.  He is before all things, and by him all things consist.  He is the head of the body, the church; who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.  For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell; having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.

 

John 14: 10-14: Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the father in Me?  The words that I speak to you, I do not speak of Myself; but the Father who dwells in Me.  He does the works.  Believe Me that I am in the Father, the Father in Me; or else believe Me for the very works sake.  Verily, verily, I say to you.  He that believes in Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto My Father.  Whatsoever you shall ask in my name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.  If you shall ask anything in my Name.

 

We tend to be very hard on the church of the 21st Century because of the lack of power to do the greater works.  However, if we consider that the knowledge of the glory of the Gospel of the Kingdom literally covers the whole earth through the internet, that is a great work.  The internet is a supernatural empowerment of the Spirit.  

 

Hab. 2:14: For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.

 

This realization has left me stunned!  It is very clear.  Why did I not see it before?

 

Again, Jesus is giving to us the authority of HIS NAME.

 

John 14: 15-17:  If you love Me, keep My commandments.  I will ask the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it sees Him not, neither knows Him; but you know Him; for He dwells with you, and shall be in you.

 

Jesus now tells the disciples there is a condition to Him giving them whatever they ask.  They must love Him and keep His commandments. 

 

He is also introducing them to the Parakeltos, the Holy Ghost.  He is here identified as the Comforter and the Spirit of Truth.  He is our Advocate, Intercessor and Consoler, who has been called alongside us to help.

 

Parakeltos is a word borrowed from legal usage.  This denotes an advocate or defending counsel, although this appears to be secondary except in 16: 8-11, where He is the prosecuting counsel. 

 

Parakeleo denotes a divine utterance of edification, exhortation, direction or encouragement.

 

It is a combination of these two functions of the Holy Spirit behind these statements.  The Holy Spirit speaks of things to come, while conviction also strengthens the believers. 

 

Paraklete – Ro. 8: = the work of the Holy Spirit as intercessor. The Holy Spirit of Truth is used in conjunction with the Paraklete.

 

In these Paraklete sayings, Jesus is presenting a doctrine of the Holy Spirit in advance of any references to Him elsewhere in the Gospels.

 

Through the daily ministry of the Holy Ghost and through the 9 Gifts and fruit of the Holy Spirit there are many ways He speaks to us.   God is renewing and restoring our minds. 

 

The world/kosmos cannot accept him.  Those who are of the world will not accept him.

 

Jesus Christ restored everything that we lost in Adam.  He restored the mind, the name, the inheritance, the blessing and the glory of the Kingdom.  Jesus’ once-for-all triumph over all enemies now enables Christians to live, minister, and experience life and be carriers of the river of life wherever we go.  We become restorers, rebuilders, and reconcilers.  The River of Life flows from us:

 

  Ez. 47:9-12: It shall come to pass, that everything that lives, which moves, wherever the rivers shall come shall live…But the miry places and the marshes (swamp) shall not be healed; they shall be given to salt…the river upon the bank, on this side and on that side shall grow all trees for meat, whose leaf shall not fade, neither shall the fruit be consumed. 

 

John 14: 18-20:  I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.  Yet a little while, and the world sees Me no more; but you see Me; because I live, you shall also live.  At that day, you shall know that I am in My Father, and you in Me.

 

The unearthly visitation of the resurrection appearance of Jesus will be a tangible demonstration of His divinity and incursion into their affairs.  The real basis of their union with Him will not be His appearances to them, but their love for Him. 

 

John 14: 21-22:  He that has My commandments and keeps them is he that loves Me.  He that loves Me shall be loved of My Father.  I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him.  Judas said unto Him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself unto us, and not unto the world?

 

Jesus assures Judas Thaddeus this will be no mere passing visitation.

 

Now we have four disciples wobbling: Peter, Thomas, Philip and Judas Thaddeus. 

 

John 14: 23-24:  Jesus answered, if a man love Me, he will keep My words; and My Father will love him, and We will come unto him and make Our abode with Him..  He who does not love me will not keep my sayings.  The word which you hear is not mine, but of the Father, who sent me.

 

This is an amazing statement in an amazing chapter.  The “We” includes the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.  This is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit by both the Father and the Son.  We will come unto him and make Our abode with Him.  Since we have the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit abiding in us, why would a Christian ever look upon, identify ourselves, or attach ourselves with that which is not Holy.  This is the tabernacle of God in his people---the true Shekinah.  The Shekinah is in us.  What then is the real dignity of man when the God of glory is able to dwell within him?  The basis for this privilege is heart obedience to the Word of God.

 

John 14: 25-26:  These things I have spoken to you, while I am present with you.  But the Comforter, who is the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My Name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

 

His life becomes our life.  This is why we will live with Him forever.  By virtue of His indwelling, the atonement is accomplished in us the moment we receive Him, whereas it was accomplished at Calvary.

 

And here is My legacy---peace. The peace I give you is My own and therefore, not at all like that which the world gives.  So don’t let your hearts be distressed or dismayed.  True you did  hear Me say, I am gong away, but you also heard Me say, I will come back to you.  Now if you really love Me, you will be glad that I am going to My Father, for My Father is greater than I.

 

Jesus is not just saying goodbye, He is leaving a Testament (inheritance) to those who will love Him and receive His blood covenant.  He passed to us His own peace.  Jesus not only leaves the peace-legacy as an estate, but returns to give it to His heirs.  He is the Executor of His own will. 

 

I have told you of My going before it happens, so that when it occurs, your faith will not be shaken.  I don’t have much time left to talk with you like this, for the ruler of this world approaches.  Even so, be assured there is nothing in me which allows him to exercise any dominion over Me.  But in order that the world may know that I love the Father and do exactly as He commands---let us now arise and be on our way.

 

John 12:31: Now is the judgment of this world/kosmos, now the ruler of this world will be cast out.

 

Jesus cast Satan into out of this world into the power of the air.  We, too, overcome the world/kosmos through the victory of faith. (1 Jn. 5:4). 

 

Satan’s power is limited to the evil content of a man.  If a person will not respond, to evil, Satan can’t touch him.  The Holiness of Christ gave the devil nothing to work with.  The Lord’s death was a voluntary sacrifice, not an attack of the devil.  He is going now to keep a sealed appointment with death---which he will defeat.

 

To be continued

 

Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries Church

www.eastgateministries.com

Scripture from K.J.V. – I entered into the labors of C. S. Lovett’s Lights on John; Most Blessed Theophylact; F. F. Bruce Bible Commentary; Sealed Unto His Coming by C. R. Oliver; Kelly Varner, Chosen for Greatness;  comments and conclusions are my own and not meant to reflect the views of those who I entered into their labors.

 
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