And he remembered for them his covenant, and repented according to the multitude of his mercies.
I. THEN THE COVENANT EXISTS.
1. The covenant is in its own nature everlasting. By everything that is permanent in the universe, and by everything that is permanent in the Godhead, we are made to know that the covenant of grace is a fixed and settled thing, and abides to-day as it ever has done; for there is no variableness nor turning with Him from whom every good gift comes down. The promises in Christ Jesus are Yea and Amen, to the glory of God by us. Heaven and earth shall pass away; but not one jot or tittle of the law shall fail, much less shall the covenant of Divine grace be disannulled.
2. Well may the covenant of grace be everlasting, for it was made with deliberation and foresight. God made it, knowing all that would happen in time or eternity.
3. The covenant was sealed and ratified in the most solemn manner. Jesus has gone into heaven bearing with Him the blood of sprinkling. Can God deny His promise to His bleeding Son?
4. The Divine glory is wrapped up in it. The Lord cannot break His word, nor forego His designs, nor forget His promises. Think not so. The crown jewels of God are staked and pawned upon the carrying out of the covenant of grace.
5. Furthermore, it is not possible for God to break a covenant. When you and I stand and tremble before a Divine promise for fear it should not be fulfilled, we cast a slur upon the truth, faithfulness, and immutability of God. Has He ever changed? Has He ever been false?
II. THIS COVENANT IS TOO OFTEN FORGOTTEN BY US.
1. Are not God's people at this day chargeable with forgetting the covenant by their unspiritual carelessness?
2. Sometimes, too — and in the case of Israel it was so — we get away from that covenant by wanton sin, or by negligent omission of most delightful duty. This ought to yield in our hearts a harvest of repentance. It should bind us to God with intense affection that should tend towards perpetual sanctification from this day and onward.
3. These people had forgotten their God for another reason, namely, in the depth of their sorrow. A great sorrow stuns men, and makes them forget the best sources of consolation. A little blow will cause great pain; but I have frequently heard in reports of assaults that far more serious blows have occasioned no pain whatever, because they have destroyed consciousness. So do extreme distresses rob men of their wits, and cause them to forget the means of relief. Under the chastening rod, the smart is remembered, and the healing promise is forgotten.
III. Though we forget the covenant, yet GOD REMEMBERS HIS COVENANT: "He remembered for them His covenant." Even though these people had so grievously provoked Him, He remembers His covenant so as to find in it a reason for pardoning their sin, and dealing with them in a way of mercy. He meets the flood of their sins with the flood of His faithfulness. O friend, God must remember His covenant; fur He can never forget what the making of that covenant has cost Him. It cost Him His Only-begotten: the eternal Son, the Well-beloved, must die the death of the cross that the covenant may be established.
IV. If God remembers for us His covenant, LET US REMEMBER IT. What is the covenant? Here is one form of it: "I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be thou perfect." The Lord God Almighty gives Himself up to be our portion, and we are to yield ourselves to Him, to walk before Him in perfect obedience. This also is the covenant: "I will be their God, and they shall be My people." Say not, "I am poor." Not so, for God is yours, and so all things are yours. Say not, "I am weak." Not so, God Almighty is yours: when you are weak, then you are strong. "But I have no wisdom." Is not the Lord Jesus made of God unto us wisdom, righteousness, and sanctification? He that hath God hath everything. Wilt thou belittle thy God and limit the Holy One of Israel? Come, find thine all in God. This is thy part of the covenant, to accept God as being to thee what He says He is.
( C. H. Spurgeon.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And he remembered for them his covenant, and repented according to the multitude of his mercies.