We live in a world today where promises are regularly broken. One only has to look to our politicians to recognise broken promises in South Africa and from politicians in other countries. We experience broken promises in the workplace and in our relationships. Even our commercial markets don’t keep their promise to delight us, create memories for us, give us the lowest prices and best service ever and provide us with the latest and greatest in technology. Socially it has become acceptable to break a promise of fidelity or the vows of marriage. Our lives are littered with the consequence of broken promises.
There is no guaranteed outcome since people and their promises are fickle, often depending on circumstances, their feelings or mood. Our society today has lost sight of what a promise means. People value a promise cheaply, and their commitments are poorly managed.
God is a Promise Keeper
“…in the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, and which now at his appointed season he has brought to light through the preaching entrusted to me by the command of God our Saviour,” (Titus 1:2-3 NIV)
“For Jesus Christ, the Son of God, does not waver between “Yes” and “No.” He is the one whom Silas, Timothy, and I preached to you, and as God’s ultimate “Yes,” he always does what he says. For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for his glory.” (2 Cor 1:19-20 NLT)
God has made promises to us
“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” (2 Peter 1:3-4 NIV)
Here are two things to remember about God’s Promises:
- God’s promise is bigger than God’s blessings. Look at Abraham’s story; Abraham wanted a son to carry on the family name, the blessing of a child. God wanted to bless Him by making him the father of a nation of children that would belong to God. So too, in our lives, what God has promised us is far greater than the blessings we have asked for or could imagine.
- God’s promise is greater than any problem. Abraham knew they were too old to have children. He knew Sarah was barren and that the situation was impossible. But he chose to trust God’s promise, not his understanding of the problem. So too, in our lives, our omnipotent God has great power, and nothing is impossible for God.
So Abraham, “Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead – since he was about a hundred years old – and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.” (Romans 4:19-21)
“God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind.
Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfil?” (Numbers 23:19)
When people make an oath, they usually call on a higher authority to bring validity to their commitment, like “I swear on my mother’s life” or “on my child’s life,” which would help one trust the person making the promise. In law, “So help me God” is a phrase used to give an oath, whereby we swear by the authority of God over us, calling on God to help us keep our promise,
“When God made his promise to Abraham, since there was no one greater for him to swear by, he swore by himself, saying, ‘I will surely bless you and give you many descendants. And so, after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised. People swear by someone greater than themselves, and the oath confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument. Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath.” (Hebrew 1:13-17 NIV)
God does not make promises He cannot deliver and always delivers more than He promised.
In the last days, Paul warns Timothy (2 Tim 3:3) that people will not be lovers of good but instead will be treacherous (quick to betray), rash (making quick promises), conceited (full of themselves), lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.
But not so with God, He keeps His promises even when all the world does not.
Thank you, Lord, that in You, all Your promises are yes and amen (2 Cor 1:19-20). Thank you that I can trust You with my needs, my dreams, my problems and my life because You always do what You said. Every promise I read in scripture will be fulfilled in Christ. I can count on Your Word. Thank you for all your great and precious promises to us, which enable us to partake in the divine nature and remind us that our home is with You and not in this world. Thank you that those same promises hold divine power to give us everything we need for a godly life today through our knowledge of You.