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Consequence of Breaking Covenant

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The procedure by which they entered into the covenant is significant and  goes far beyond this particular moment in the history of Israel.

Matthew Henry Commentary Volume I

"those that think to put a cheat upon God by a partial temporary reformation, will put the greatest cheat upon their own souls.  Since they had not given liberty to their servants to go where they pleased, God would give all his judgments liberty to take their course.  Because they did not proclaim liberty for their servants, God will proclaim liberty for them.  He says, 


I will discharge you from my service, and put you out of my protection, which those forfeit that withdraw from their allegiance.  You shall have liberty to choose which of these judgments you will be cut off by;  sword,  famine, or pestilence. 

Since they had brought their servants back into confinement in their houses, God would make them to be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth, where they should live in servitude.  

'I will make the men which have transgressed my covenant as the calf which they cut in twain;  I will divide them asunder as they divided asunder.' 

They had all dealt treacherously with God, and therefore shall all be involved in the common ruin without exception.  Since they had emboldened themselves in returning to their sin, contrary to their covenant, by the retreat of the Chaldean army from them, God would therefore bring it upon them again."


This gives us insight into the making of the covenant and the seriousness of this act.  Not merely did making a covenant require a sacrifice, but the sacrifice had to be dealt with in a special way.  The animal that was killed as the sacrifice was cut into two parts, and the two parts were placed opposite one another with a space in between.  Then the people who were making the covenant passed between the two parts of the sacrifice.  This was the act by which they entered into the covenant. This gives some insight into why Christ chose to be crucified between a lost man and a saved man at Calvary.

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