Fore Street Topsham, Exeter

Minister : Reverend Paul Collings BTh (Hons) : email : : Telephone : 01392 206229 : Mobile : 07941 880768

About Us

St Nicholas Methodist Church has existed on the present site for over 150 years since it opened in 1867.

We are a friendly community of believers where all are welcomed. We help each other to worship God, and strive to live more like Christ in service beyond the walls of our church building.

Part of the
Exeter Coast and Country Circuit of the Methodist Church.

Monday, 23 August 2021

A Covenant People

Living as a Covenant Community calls our attention to two Hebrew words with covenant meanings: berîth and hesed. Maharat Neiss points out, “The Hebrew word berîth traditionally referred to covenant that signified an agreement between two parties. But the word hesed, which is used less frequently, gives us the deeper meaning of covenant as the kindness or graciousness of God toward humanity in establishing a relationship.” 

Berîth is the word that we often use when we are talking about covenants. In the Torah, we talk about Abraham, we talk about berîth—the covenant between parties. Hesed we really understand meaning kindness . . . (covenant). Yes, this is a kindness of God. This is God’s hesed, God’s loving kindness.

The Hebrew word for mercies is “Hesed” and it denotes the limitless nature of divine mercies.” There is a piece of wall that reads, “Grace is when God gives us what we don’t deserve. Mercy is when God doesn’t give us what we do deserve.” Even though Ruth did not deserve to be married to Boaz so that she could carry on the family name of her previous husband, Boaz chose to give hesed.

In a covenant, two parties include one that is more powerful known as the suzerain, and one less powerful that is being protected in this covenant known as the vassal. God demonstrates this covenant faithfulness and loving-kindness in so many ways to His people as the more powerful one. He always keeps his Word to them, seeks after their welfare, and loves them like a groom loves his bride. One writer suggests “God’s covenant relationship with His people results in His loyal love and faithfulness [hesed], even when His people are unfaithful to Him. 

Always at the heart of hesed lies God’s generous sense of compassion, grace, and mercy.” I think of Hosea when Gomer the prostitute he was called to marry continued to abandon him, yet his love extended beyond her failures and rejections. Or even as simple as Adam and Eve hiding in the garden and God the Father walking and gently calling for them. The Lord pursues us. He always has been, and He will pursue us every day of our lives.

Almighty God,
You have loved us first
with an everlasting love,
showing us what love truly is.
You have shown us great mercy,
preeminently in the gift of Your Son, Jesus Christ,
who lived among us, died on the Cross, rose again,
and now eternally intercedes on our behalf at Your right hand.
You have invited us into loving relationship with You,
both in our daily lives now
and unto eternity as Your bride.
Because of Your hesed –
Your steadfast love, mercy, and faithfulness –
make us people of hesed,
living in love and loving others,
receiving Your mercy and showing mercy,
held in Your faithfulness and living faithfully,
until the day we see You face to face.

All this we pray, through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord
to whom, with You and the Holy Spirit
be honor and glory, now and forever.

No comments:

Community Groups Regularly Usiing the Church

Regrettably, due to the current restrictions, there are no community activities at the church premises.

Watch this space for news of when activities will restart.