Sunday, December 9, 2012

On the Covenant of Creation

As you know I have been thinking over the notion of a covenant of works, or as I say now, a covenant of Sonship. I was also preparing for the next class I'm going to teach on Malachi 2 when I read this astonishing synthesis passage: (From v10) "Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us? Why do we deal treacherously with one another By profaning the covenant of the fathers?"
Now this isn't going to be any big revelation to anyone but me I suspect, but I realized today that the difference from Creator to Father is only a matter of what you have created, and why. Both are the act of giving life from nothing.
When I build things at work, I am their creator because they have come from my vision and imagination, but when I created my son, I acted not just as a creator, but as something so much more, as a father. (Yes, I know strictly speaking I didn't create him, God did, but you understand that insofar as it's possible, I created him.)

To Father is to create.
How did I miss this?
Fatherhood is to create with a particular emphasis on love and devotion, on relationship and intimacy. It's to uniquely pour yourself out and get yourself back. It's not just hammering and chiseling a block of wood with care, but it's to shape and tool the very heart of a future man.

Therefore to call God Father is not merely to call Him the one who takes care of us and loves us, and has a relationship with us, but it is to call Him the Mighty One, the Creator, the Maker and Upholder.
Israel was created to know and love God, to be the true son, just as Adam was, but they didn't want this, and neither did Adam. And because they gave up that intimacy God couldn't be a Father to them, though He wanted to be, because they refused to honor, love, and obey Him. They insisted on keeping Him at arms length, which meant simply creator. It's only when Jesus comes on the stage of human history that we see Him restoring the idea of Fatherhood to God. Essentially our understanding of God grows outward from mere creator to Father.
It's so much more glorious.

Which makes me think that man as the crowning achievement of creation must be understood as being fathered.
Adam wasn't created by God, he was Fathered by Him. Which means it wasn't a covenant of creation God made with Adam, it was a covenant of sonship.
Which makes me think that my model of "covenant of Sonship failed/ covenant of sonship restored" replacing the Covenant of Works/ Covenant of Grace is a pretty good guess.

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