The Promise Unchanged

Galatians 3:15-18

Brethren, I speak in the manner of men: Though it is only a man’s covenant, yet if it is confirmed, no one annuls or adds to it. Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. He does not say, “And to seeds,” as of many, but as of one, “And to your Seed,” who is Christ. And this I say, that the law, which was four hundred and thirty years later, cannot annul the covenant that was confirmed before by God in Christ, that it should make the promise of no effect. For if the inheritance is of the law, it is no longer of promise; but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

THE FIRST COVENANT

Genesis 12:1-3 – Now the LORD had said to Abram:  ‘Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you.  I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing.  I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.’   

  • Abraham trusted by Faith

Genesis 12:4 – So Abram departed as the Lord had spoken to him, and Lot went with him.  And Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran.

Hebrews 11:8 – By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance.  And he went out, not knowing where he was going. 

  • Covenant was to Abraham and His Seed

Genesis 12:7–Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, ‘To your descendants I will give this land.’

Galatians 3:16 – Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promised made.   He does not say, ‘And to seeds,’ as of many, but as of one, ‘And to your Seed,’ who is Christ.

  • The Covenant cannot be annulled.

Galatians 3:15 – Brethren, I speak in the manner of men:  Though it is only a man’s covenant, yet if it is confirmed, no one annuls or adds to it. 

Galatians 3:17 – And this I say, that the law, which was four hundred and thirty years later, cannot annul the covenant that was confirmed before by God in Christ, that it should make the promise to no effect.

Galatians 3:15-17 – Once a person’s will has been ratified, no one else can annul it or add to it.  Now, the promises were made to Abraham and to his descendant.  You will observe that Scripture, in the careful language of a legal document, does not say “to descendants,” referring to everybody in general, but “to your descendant: (the noun, note, is singular), referring to Christ.  This is the way I interpret this:  A will, earlier ratified by God, is not annulled by an addendum attached 430 years later, thereby negating the promise of the will.  No, this addendum, with its instructions and regulations, has nothing to do with the inheritance in the will.  The Message Bible

THE SECOND/LAST COVENANT

Galatians 3:19 –What purpose then does the law serve?  It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was appointed through angels by the hand of a mediator. 

  • Christ Jesus –  Promise of Faith

Galatians 3:22 – But the Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.

  • Covenant was Fulfilled to Abraham and His Seed

Galatians 4:4 – But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law…

  • The Covenant was fulfilled in Christ.

Hebrews 6:15-20 – And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute. Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath, that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us.  This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil, where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.

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