What are the different
Bible Covenants?

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QUESTION: What are the different covenants in the Bible?

ANSWER: Covenants, by definition, is an "agreement between two parties that contains their promises each to the other" according to Webster's Dictionary. There are many of them in the Bible. Some are between people and others are between nations. There are also those that are not designated as such in the scripture where the agreement is reached, i.e., God's agreement with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden concerning what fruit they could eat and what fruit they could not eat.

Below is a list of some of the Bible covenants made by God.

God made an agreement with Noah to save him and his family (Genesis 6:18). He also promised him and his descendants that he would never again destroy the world by a flood (Genesis 9:9 - 17).

An agreement was made with Abram (Abraham) to give him and his descendants the land we call Israel and to destroy its then current inhabitants because of their great sins (Genesis 15:18 - 21).

God made an unconditional compact with Abram, whereby he changed his name to Abraham and designating him the father of many nations and millions of descendants. Abraham's and his descendants' part of the agreement was to have all their males circumcised (Genesis 17).

A conditional agreement was made with the children of Israel, requiring their keeping God's law and circumcision, in return for physical blessings. (Exodus 19 - 24). Further terms (conditions) of this covenant were expounded later. (Leviticus chapters 25 - 27, Deuteronomy chapters 29 - 31)

An agreement was made with the Israelites regarding the Sabbath (Exodus 31:14 - 18), the commandments and God's Feast days (Exodus 34:10 - 35).

An unconditional covenant was made with King David of Israel and with Jacob's descendants. (Jeremiah 33:19 - 36).

What did Noah's ark look like?
Picture of ancient Israel's wilderness camp
Who were the Kings of Israel after King David?
How many animals did the ark carry?

The most important covenant, the one that we call "new," was established by Jesus upon His death (Jeremiah 31:31 - 34, Matthew 26:28, Mark 14:24, Luke 22:20, 2Corinthians 3:6, Hebrews 7 - 10). Paul described the only new ritual we need to perform to enter into this most holy agreement when he stated the following.

23. For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread; 24. And after giving thanks, He broke it and said, "Take, eat; this is My body, which is being broken for you. This do in the remembrance of Me." 25. In like manner, He also took the cup after He had supped, saying, "This is the cup of the New Covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in the remembrance of Me" (1Corinthians 11:23 - 25, HBFV)

The word "testament" is interchangeable with the word "covenants." The King James Version Bible translates the Greek word diatheke as both of these two words. Many other translations use one of the words exclusively. We could just as easily refer to the two common divisions of scripture as the "Old Agreement" (since it contains descriptions, prophecies and books of wisdom from people living under it) and the "New Agreement" (containing the story of Jesus and people who lived during the transition from the old to the new one).

Additional Study Materials
Did God make promises he DID NOT keep?
Are the ten commandments still relevant?
Why did Abraham try to save Sodom and Gomorrah?
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