Text: Deuteronomy 7: 7-12
The mercy that the children of Israel enjoyed and which we do also enjoy in these times is not as a result of our number but because of the oath which He swore to our fathers (Deuteronomy 7:7). The fathers of Israel; Abraham, Isaac and Jacob had to be the fathers of Israel because they allowed God to have His way throughout their generation.
Abraham’s journeying with God was not just a physical journey but a journey of transformation. As he journeyed, he changed. These changes were not as a result of the food which he ate but the commandments that God gave him which he kept. One of the commandments that God gave Abraham which he kept was to wait patiently. The journey of the fathers of Israel was not a rosy one but one that brought about a change to their persons. At the time Abraham was upon the mountain, he was no longer the man that left Mesopotamia because he had changed.
Isaac was also a man that allowed God. Isaac being a young man could have fought his way free from his father on the mountain when he was to be slain but he chose to lose his life. That very day he accepted to die. I perceive that Isaac knew he was to die and accepted it because he had watched his father’s communion with God, knew how sacrifices were offered and suspected that he (Isaac) was to be the lamb of sacrifice. The reason the journey had to be three days was to allow for them to make the decision to obey God because the journey was one of serious decision, confrontation, attention and warfare. Isaac's obedience caused him to become an heir of the covenant of mercy.
No one can come into the covenant of mercy having his life. This is why God told Moses “thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live” (Ex. 33:20). Mercy resides upon the mercy seat but it can be extended from that place to permit a man to come into the everlasting covenant. The everlasting covenant is so called because it is the covenant of God. It is a covenant that must be made before one can see God who is the end. James spoke of the patience of Job and the end of the Lord being very pitiful and of tender mercy (James. 5:11). This means that if Job did not endure, he would not have come to the end of the Lord. There is an end to our profession. The profession of faith, hope and charity has an end to it; this end is God.
When Job had an encounter with God, he said “I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee” (Job 42:5). The end of Job was that he saw God. When the book of Job is read, the extent of the knowledge of Job and his friends that were called miserable comforters surpassess that of many preachers today. God used Job as a typology for us. We must realise that there is an end to this matter because if we do, we would walk circumspectly and redeem the time. After Job encountered God he came into another dispensation and could see his children up to the fourth generation.
Jacob was another man called the father of Israel and was so called because he was led by God. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are called fathers of Israel because they are founders and examples in a shadow of how men can get to God. God did not swear to these men at the beginning of their journey but at the end. This is because it is only those who endure to the end that will see God. The journey to God-hood is not an easy one, there are things on the way that will require endurance. The natural disposition of man shrinks back and runs from God. This disposition is what caused Adam to hide himself.
The Hebrew church also wanted to shrink back from God after walking with God to a point (Heb. 3:12). In addition to the natural disposition of man that shrinks back from God, there is a being called Satan that does not want anyone to get to the end. Satan knew Job because of his walk and his report before God and hated him. Satan hates children of God especially those who are journeying to lay hold on eternal life. Satan waits for when the accounts of men are opened to spoil them. Satan waits for these accounts to be opened because it is the period or season of promotion.
When the account of Job was opened, Satan demanded to prove what Job was made up of. It is in this self same manner that Satan demanded for Peter. Satan’s demand for a man is to seek permission to afflict a man in order to prove what the man is made of. There are things that happen to us as a result of discussions in the heavens. Because of what is at stake, it is necessary to endure unto the coming of the Lord. The coming of the Lord is the opening of His face and it is those that endure to the end that will see the end of the Lord and be saved. Jesus endured the contradiction of sinners against Him to the end. (Matt. 24:13)
The oath that God swore to the father of Israel was what began to be performed in the children of Israel. This showed that the children of Israel needed to come into the lot which their fathers both purchased and obtained through their walk. God is called the God and the Father of our Lord Jesus because Jesus’ journey to the point for this to be so. Jesus had to follow as He was led in the days of His flesh. Jesus was tried in the days of His flesh until He came to the place where God could cut the covenant of mercy with Him. It is for this reason that Jesus is the father of all those who will come to God. Jesus is called Father because he shows us the pattern of how to come to God; this is why He said “I will put my trust in Him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me” (Heb. 2:13). God made a covenant of mercy with Abraham, this covenant also applied to the lives of his children.
Satan hates all children especially those exposed to the light of eternal life because of the conversation that is imported as a result of their walk. Faith is a conversation, hope is a higher conversation than faith but the highest of all conversations is charity. It is in the conversation of charity that Paul said “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me...” (Gal. 2:20) Satan hates this manner of conversation because it shows that it is possible for men to live in this manner. Because God wanted the conversation of the eternal Godhead to be made visible to all men, the word was made flesh. We will not only begin at the conversation of faith, hope and charity, we would also do that of God. The lifestyle of Jesus will be our daily conversation until flesh is completely hijacked from us.
Mercy is a covenant made by oath. It is the most holy covenant of God. God does not make this covenant anyhow, the son must have journeyed to lay hold on this covenant. When one lays hold on this covenant, such a one owns God. God will not be the possession of any man if other things that tie the man to another king (Satan) is still present. This is because God cannot share his abode with anyone else unlike the Holyghost who abides in us with all our infirmities in order to prepare us for the coming of the Father and the Son. God takes all. God swore an oath to our fathers and is in the season of its performance. Because of the performance of this oath, we would be delivered from the hands of our enemies--sin and death (Luke 1:74-75).
Death is not just the departing of the spirit from a man’s body, it is a mystery. Death is a dominion, a reign, a kingdom, a constitution. It is the way a man is constituted on the inside. It is what makes a man stray from God. It is what makes a man be in enmity with God. This constituition is a framework of satan which men love. The enemies that hate us are the constitutions within us, it is this constitution that will make one run away from God and choose what He does hate. The suffering that man experiences as light is shone on the soul is the removal of the wrong natures in man.
God performs the covenant by giving commandments, laws, statues. He said to the priest “because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you” (Hos. 4:6) God performs the covenant in us by giving man knowledge and understanding. When
understanding of God is given, mercy is brought to a man. Mercy is a divine property of God and is not committed to a man just by proclamation; rather, it is required that we journey to enter mercy. God does not commit divine things to irresponsible children. He gives them to those who are grave, who have respect for divine things and have value for order.
When knowledge is being given, covenant is being cut. We must place a premium on hearing because if our souls will live (Isa 55:3). The performance of this covenant brings us to the place where we can serve God without fear. In this season, God will perform this mercy. This is why He is speaking in this manner. God will raise sons that can be received by Jesus.