I remember my brother doing something in high school called “peer mediation.” At first, I thought it was so cool how he sometimes was able to skip class to meet with friends and principals, but I didn’t have a great grasp of what that group actually did. Watching the process, I gained a great respect for it! I learned that the goal was to creatively solve all sorts of interpersonal issues—they used various techniques to hear what students with conflicts had to say and to help find a clear resolution for reconciliation. This often led to better behavioral conclusions because a third party came in to make peace where there otherwise might not have been.
Another word for an agreement between two parties is covenant. The covenant between the Israelites and the Lord addressed the separation their sin created. They were commanded to pass down to each generation the truth of who the Lord is and the covenant God made with His people. And they were promised that a new, better covenant would be established, one mediated through the Messiah.
Why did there need to be a new promise when the old one existed? The story is a familiar one: Sin created a chasm between humanity and God. With this sacred bond broken by sin, God’s people were unable to meet the requirements of the old covenant. God promised that while the old covenant written on tablets of stone is breakable, the new covenant would be written on something which will last much longer: the tablets of our hearts.
Enter Jesus, our righteous Mediator. The Son of God became the Mediator who bridged the gap between us and God. Through His life, death, and resurrection, Jesus provided us with forgiveness for our sin, fulfilling the requirements of the first covenant. He reconciled the circumstance of our brokenness and God’s holiness, embedding God’s teachings within us, onto our hearts, making us God’s people once again. The term advent means “arrival,” and we couldn’t be more in need of Jesus to come.
Today let’s reflect on our personal walk with Christ. Are we allowing Him to mediate in our lives daily, bridging the gap—moment by moment—between our brokenness and God’s perfection? Are we letting His teachings permeate our hearts, leading us to live a life reflecting His love and righteousness? This Advent, let’s invite our righteous Mediator to come, fill us again, and hold us even tighter to His eternal covenant of love.