We all know what it is like to be on the receiving end of broken promises. When it happens enough, it can leave us jaded, cynical, or skeptical. People, in spite of their best intentions, will fail us.
The Bible has a lot to say about the promises of God. Contrary to other people, He never breaks His promise to us. As we start a new series, I want you to:
Discover God’s Promises
In 2 Peter 1:4, Peter refers to God’s promises as “precious.” He says that through them we may share in the divine nature. Too many Christians are controlled NOT by the heavenly nature but the earthly nature. We are more natural than supernatural. Do you look more like the culture or Christ? Your life, your choices, and your desires are either becoming more godly or evil. God’s promises enable us to escape the corruption that is in this world. People break their vows, but God cannot break His word (Heb. 6:17-19). His word is eternal and unchanging, just like His promises. You need to grab hold of God’s promises with both hands. Discover them. Look for them. Know them. David said in 1 Chronicles 17:19 that God has made known His great promises. The Bible is God’s promise book to you. Start reading your Bible every day looking for them.
Discern God’s Promises
Not only should we discover God’s promises, but we should discern what they mean. God started making promises in the beginning. He made a promise to Adam and Eve in Genesis 3 that the seed of the woman would crush the Serpent’s head. That is why Jesus was born of a virgin, the seed of a woman. God made a promise to Abraham in Genesis 12 to bless him and that through him all the nations would be blessed. You may think, what do these promises have to do with me? Paul said, “The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. Scripture does not say ‘and to seeds,’ meaning many people, but ‘and to your seed,’ meaning one person, who is Christ” (Gal. 3:16). The promises made to Adam and to Abraham all come to us through Christ. Think about God’s promise to David in 2 Samuel 7 that He would establish his throne forever. Acts 13:23 clarifies saying, “From this man’s descendants God has brought to Israel the Savior Jesus, as he promised.” Every one of God’s promises is “yes” in Christ (2 Cor. 1:20). Whatever the Father did for Jesus on earth He is able to do for us today. Whatever Jesus did for Paul He can do for us today.
Promises are unconditional on God’s part. He keeps His word. But promises are conditional on our part. We have to trust and obey. For example, Ephesians 6:2 tells us that the command to “Honor your father and mother” was the first command with promise. What does that mean? The promise is conditional on our obedience. If we honor our father and mother, the promise is that “days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you” (Ex. 20:12). The promises of God require obedience and they require faith. Hebrew 11:6 says, “Now without faith it is impossible to please God, since the one who draws near to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” We are going to start the new year seeking and believing God.
Do God’s Promises
You have to look for God’s promises, learn God’s promises, and live God’s promises. David testified, “Your promises have been thoroughly tested, and your servant loves them” (Ps. 119:140). From the Old Testament to the New Testament, God promises “I will….” Salvation is one of His promises to all who believe. It is God who does the saving, God who does the sanctifying, we have to believe on the Lord Jesus. God has a purpose for your life and He will fulfill it. Whatever you need today, God has a promise for it. Find one you can cling to. I’m confident at the end of our lives, we’ll be able to say like Joshua, “Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to Israel failed; every one was fulfilled” (Josh. 21:45).