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Lenten Devotional: Thursday, February 22
"Already and Not Yet" - Andover Newton's Lenten Devotional Series

"Already and Not Yet" is the 2018 Lenten Daily Devotional written by members of the Andover Newton community, which is also being shared at Facebook and on Twitter. Future posts here will include links to all the previous entries for easy browsing to any you might have missed or might want to revisit.

Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018
“New Covenant Expectations” – Mikel Satcher

“This is the covenant ... declares the LORD: I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” -- Jeremiah 31:33

Those who are familiar with the Old Testament (OT) might say, “Another covenant. Don’t we have enough already?” Certainly, the comment is in reference to the Mosaic covenant of the OT which was based on external laws and promises given to the people of Israel through a particular person with many flaws. However, the Fall of Jerusalem and the Babylonian exile led the people to lose hope in covenants and essentially believe their God had abandoned them.

Therefore, the intersection of secularism and theology during the mid-20th Century, which popularized the false notion that “God is dead,” was really nothing new under the sun. For many Israelite exiles in Babylonian captivity had essentially the same notion until God sent them prophetic hopes, to remind them that their God “is still on the throne,” that their God will not abandon them as they abandoned God with their sin, i.e., God is still present but not fully — not yet. But who or what could repair the breach?

The rupture that separates sinful humanity from a Holy God could only be repaired by divine action — messianic expectations that continued to evolve from prophetic times to New Testament times — thus, the promise of a new covenant which must be embraced in our hearts.

Mikel Satcher is Dean of Students at Andover Newton Theological School.


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