People have varying definitions of “covenant.” Knowledge of its true meaning manifests in a deep and personal walk with the Lord. It is a contract, a binding agreement between two parties. The covenant with God is a blood covenant; intimate and sacred. We have been grafted into Israel’s branch and have become His bride.
When two parties decide to cut the covenant, it sets into motion nine steps. We can be instantly changed when understanding the significance. Each step represents an oath of giving oneself to another.
9 steps of a blood covenant and how it applies to us today…
- Exchange of coats or robes. In biblical times, robes symbolized identity. This was an exchange of identity with another. Christ gave us His robe of righteousness, and He took our robe of self-righteousness, paying the price of sin.
- What the belt holds. In Ephesians 6, the belt is described as holding the truth. It carries weapons that guard and protect. The weapons of the other party are at your disposal, and the battles ensued are dealt with jointly.
- Cutting of a covenant. An animal is split down the middle. Each party enters from the sides and walks through the pieces making a figure eight. There is an unpleasant aroma, but also a sacrifice. This symbolizes dying to self because the desire for the covenant relationship is greater.
- Raised right hand; mixed with blood. An incision is made on the right palm and each raise their hands, mingling the blood together. Blood represents life. Doing this says, “Your life is in mine and mine in you. We are one.” When Christ shed His blood on the cross, this is what He did for us. We are now in Him and He is in us.
- Exchanged names. When the blood is mixed, names are exchanged. Just as in a marriage ceremony, the bridegroom offers his name to the bride. Likewise, you and I have a new name because we are part of the family of God. Christ took our identity as a sinner and gave us the name “Anointed One.”
- Marked with a scar. The blood was rubbed together to make a scar. This permanent mark was a testimony and reminder of covenant partnership. Just as Jesus’ body still had the nail marks after the resurrection, it was a testimony of the covenant and who He was.
- Giving of covenant terms. Here, the terms, conditions and benefits were given. In the covenant partnership God gave us Himself, all that He is and has. He understands that all we have to offer is sin and sorrow, yet He still engages in the covenant. He will make us complete.
- Eating a memorial meal. This remembrance meal signifies relationship and fellowship. Just as Jesus said at the fellowship meal with His disciples, “…do this in remembrance of Me.” It’s a call to remember the covenant relationship, who it’s with and the power it holds.
- Planting a tree. A tree is planted to remember the faithful promises. The cross is a reminder of the blood that was shed upon Calvary’s tree and the covenant God made with us.
These nine covenant steps may seem odd, but God wants you to understand their significance and to have a growing knowledge of the covenant we have with Him. Our hope is that every Believer walks in the knowledge of this powerful covenant and that “…the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7).