I remember telling my grandfather about a job that I had been offered. It would have been my first real job. It was on commission, with bonuses. The more I told him about it, the more excited I got.
While I went on and on about it, he sat there quietly with a wry grin. And when I finally ran out of stuff to tell him, he said "Did you get it in writing?"
Sunday's first reading (Genesis) is full of symbolism. Goats, turtledoves, birds of prey, flaming torches. It's all supposed to mean something, but what?
It's a covenant. And the symbolic stuff? It's how you showed that you meant what you said back in the day.
So for all of God's promises to Abraham, this is God putting it in writing.
More on this tomorrow. Readings for Sunday