In our current series we’ve been going through an old list of questions and answers contained in the Westminster Larger Catechism published in 1648. In previous weeks we’ve seen that God made a ‘covenant of works’ with humans which they broke by sinning. Then we saw that God made a ‘covenant of grace’ with humans. This week I want to begin unpacking how God’s grace is shown in the ‘covenant of grace’.
Firstly the Bible teaches us that God’s grace is shown in his ‘covenant of grace’ by freely providing and offering to sinners a mediator. As sinful creatures we simply cannot approach God ourselves. Remember, God is holy. When Isaiah in his sinful state sees God, Isaiah recognises that he shouldn’t be seeing what he is seeing: ‘I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him were seraphs, each with six wings…And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke. “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.” (Isaiah 6:1-5).
Job also longs for such a mediator to come and intercede between him and God: ‘If only there were someone to arbitrate between us, to lay his hand upon us both, someone to remove God’s rod from me, so that his terror would frighten me no more. Then I would speak up without fear of him, but as it now stands with me, I cannot’ (Job 9:33-35).
Thankfully God shows his grace by giving that mediator. The mediator is first spoken of in Genesis right after Adam breaks the covenant of works. God promises Satan: ‘And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel’ (Genesis 3:15). A mediator would come and crush Satan’s head for us.
And Jesus Christ is revealed as that mediator: ‘For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men–the testimony given in its proper time’ (1 Timothy 2:5-6). Jesus has come between us and God and that is pure grace.
Have you recognised God’s grace and trusted in Jesus as your mediator? Or do you have no one to speak on your behalf before God?