“We’ll hang out soon, I promise…” my friend says trying to convince me that after a long time, we will in fact catch up over coffee. Walking away, I know deep down that it’s not going to happen. He’s too busy, he has too much on his plate, our friendship isn’t important enough to him to actually make getting together important. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has friends like this, you probably do as well. I’m sure that people do not intend to be unreliable or break their promises. In fact, I’m sure I’ve made some of those kinds of reassuring promises and then failed to follow through. I’ve probably even done it numerous times to the same person.
It is so comforting to me to know that our God is not like that. When He makes a promise, He holds to it. When He says that something will happen, buckle your seat belt, because it’s happening. He is reliable. He is faithful. He is true to His word. He never breaks His promise. He is never late. He always delivers. He is on time. He is perfect and never makes a mistake.
“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. Men 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. God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf…” (Hebrews 6:13-20)
When God makes a promise, you can depend on it.
Think about that, our God who never changes, who is perfect, who never forgets, who keeps His promises, wants Abraham to know that He was going to keep His promise that He was willing to make an oath. He wanted to communicate that He was going to keep His promise. The writer of Hebrews points out just how God wanted to make this unchanging nature of His promise to be crystal clear to His people. So what sorts of promises has He made that you and I can take hold of?
God’s presence: “I will never leave you…” (Heb 13:5)
God’s protection: “I am your shield…” (Gen. 15:1)
God’s power: “I will strengthen you…” (Isa. 41:10)
God’s provision: “I will help you…” (Isa. 41:10)
God’s leading: “I will guide him…” (Isa. 57:18)
God’s rest: “Come to me all who are weary and I will give you rest…” (Matt 11:28)
God’s forgiveness: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins…” (1 Jn. 1:9)
God’s goodness: “No good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.” (Ps. 84:11)
God’s faithfulness: “The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.” (1 Thess. 5:24)
God’s wise plan: “In all things God works for the good of those who love him…” (Rom. 8:28)
This should be of great encouragement to you. Our hope in God is secure. When He says He’ll do something, He’ll do it. He cannot lie. The God of the universe has never once thought something that was proved not to be, He has never said something that was false and He has never promised to do something and not followed through. God has a consistent track record. He is faithful. This fills me with hope. When God makes a promise, I can depend on it. You can depend on it.
“Now I am about to go the way of all the earth. You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed.” (Joshua 23:14)