“You flood the LORD’s altar with tears. You weep and wail because he no longer looks with favor on your offerings or accepts them with pleasure from your hands. You ask, “Why?” It is because the LORD is the witness between you and the wife of your youth. You have been unfaithful to her, though she is your partner, the wife of your marriage covenant. Has not the one God made you? You belong to him in body and spirit. And what does the one God seek? Godly offspring. So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful to the wife of your youth. “The man who hates and divorces his wife,” says the LORD, the God of Israel, “does violence to the one he should protect,” says the LORD Almighty. So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful.” Malachi 2:13-16 NIV
Covenant — a solemn agreement between two parties for the purposes of creating and maintaining a successful relationship.
“In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.” Luke 22:20 NIV
✓ Covenant is based on mutual commitment.
✓ Contract is based on mutual distrust.
“Since we are all one body in Christ, we belong to each other, and each of us needs all the others.” Romans 12:5 NLT
✓ Covenant surrenders rights and assumes responsibility.
✓ Contract protects rights and shirks responsibility.
“Love... keeps no record of wrongs.” 1 Corinthians 13:5 NIV
✓ Covenant has the interest of the other in mind.
✓ Contract has personal convenience in mind.
“Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Philippians 2:4 NIV
“We love because he first loved us.” 1 John 4:19 NIV
Build covenant relationships with God and people.
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.” Romans 12:1 NIV
“Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor.”
Romans 12:10 NASB1995
1. Commit appropriately.
2. Surrender your heart.
3. Serve Godly interests.