Tag: God’s promises

The wonderful laughter of faith!

January 9th Scripture Reading:  Genesis 21-24

In 1992 while attending a pastor’s conference in California, a man gifted in prophetic ministry gave my wife and I a word from the Lord.  He told us we would have children in our later years and that they would be a blessing.  Several months later at our home church, a visiting evangelist picked us out of 700 people and gave us the same word.  At this time, we already had three children and had no plans for more.  We chuckled a bit, but mostly wondered at these interesting words.  Seven years later, in August of 1999, we traveled to Russia and adopted two daughters!  As we prepared to do this, we had forgotten the prophecy.  Our son reminded us and I found in my file one of these words that had been typed out for me, confirming God does know the end from the beginning!  (Isaiah 42:9)

God promised a son to Abraham and Sarah in their later years.  They waited 25 years and the promise finally came to pass.  God waited until it was impossible for them to have a child and then did the impossible!  Sarah had laughed at the angel’s announcement a year earlier.  Abraham named the child “Isaac” which literally means “laughter”.  In their old age they experienced the sound of laughter–the laughter of faith. 

Have you ever had to laugh at the amazing fulfilment of God’s promises? Have you ever received a word from God that has come to pass? Or is still awaiting fulfilment?

Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.”  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 in unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had the power to do what he had promised.” Romans 4:18-21

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Thankful for God’s Promises!

Scripture reading for March 7th:  Joshua 23-24, Judges 1-3

Key Scriptures:  Joshua 23:11,14-15  “So be very careful to love the Lord your God.  . . . 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.  But just as every good promise of the Lord your God has come true, so the Lord will bring on you all the evil He has threatened, until He has destroyed you from this good land He has given you.”  

Joshua was soon to depart from God’s people on earth.  He called them again into a love relationship with God.  This love was demonstrated by faith in God’s unchanging Word.  All the promises of God are true–‘good’ ones and ‘bad’ ones!  The choice would be up to them!

Rejoicing in God’s Promises:  Through Christ Jesus, all God’s good promises are ours.  Through loving God and obeying our Lord we escape the judgment promised His adversaries!  “For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached  among you by me  and Silas and Timothy, was not “Yes” and “No,” but in Him it has always been “Yes.” For no matter how many promises God has made, the are “Yes” in Christ.”  2nd Corinthians 1:19-20

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Not one word has failed!

Scripture reading for March 7th: Joshua 18-21

“So the Lord gave Israel all the land He had sworn to give their forefathers, and they took possession of it and settled there.  The Lord gave them rest on every side, just as He had sworn to their forefathers.  Not one of their enemies withstood them, the Lord handed all their enemies over to them.  Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to the house of Israel failed; every one was fulfilled.” (Joshua 21:43-45)

God is faithful to His people!  I have lived nearly 65 years and found this to be true.  Our family has been through a number of trials during our journey here on earth.  When we farmed, we experienced a severe drought in 1974 and harvested very little.  We had been farming only a few years and really could not stand a crop failure.  But God brought us through!  We had a fire in 1975 that destroyed a large hog building and a large number of animals.  It was the only building that was not listed on the insurance policy!  God brought us through again!  In 1976 we had a tornado strike our farm.  It destroyed barns, cattle sheds, machine sheds and trees on both sides of our house.  We all survived and God took us through!  In 1981 a severe economic crisis hit agriculture as a result of government policies and high interest rates.  Many farmers lost their farms and we were deeply in debt but God helped us!  In 2001, we were 2 miles from the center of a 6.9 earthquake that shook our house, church and city in Olympia, Washington. God was faithful!

In today’s reading, Joshua is dividing the land because the war in Canaan to possess the land is essentially over. (Joshua 18:2)  It took seven years of fighting and following God’s instructions.  Not one enemy could stand up against them when they were obedient!  Not one promise made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob ever failed!  God’s Word is a proven commodity.  When everything else in the world is shaking and the worst appears to have happened, God is faithful and His Word is true!

“Praise be to the Lord, who has given rest to his people Israel just as He has promised.  Not one word has failed of all the good promises He gave through his servant Moses.” 1st Kings 8:56

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away.” Matthew 24:35

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Promises of God!

Scripture reading for February 21st: Numbers 34-36

God told Moses in today’s reading about the boundaries of the land He was giving them and how to divide it when they took possession of it.  (Numbers 34:2) They had yet to own any of it.  These instructions were words to inspire faith in God’s people.  They were to cast lots for their portion in the land.  (Numbers 34:13)

As the Israelites entered the land and took possession of it, God had Moses appoint a leader from each tribe to oversee the assignment of the inheritance.  One name that stands out in this list is Caleb.  He and Joshua are the only ones left from the generation 20 years old and older who had not perished in the wilderness on the way to the promised land. These two are examples of  the veracity of God’s promises.  “God is not a man that he should lie.” (Numbers 23:19)

In these last chapters of Numbers, we find provision for cities of refuge.  God knew that his people would need mercy.  Emotions get out of control and things happen.  Revenge instincts are strong and sometimes violence  that causes death erupts.  The cities of refuge were scattered throughout the land and provided a place where someone who had killed another could flee from the avenger of blood.  (Numbers 35:6)  These cities were Levite cities.  The Levites had no inheritance but were given cities and pastureland throughout the promised land to use and to minister to the people.  Six of these forty eight towns were cities of refuge. They were to mediate these serious situations when someone came for refuge.

What lessons can we get from these final chapters of Numbers?  First, our God does know everything and has good plans for us. (Jeremiah 29:11)  He wants us to know those plans and walk by faith and claim our inheritance!  He has provided a refuge for any who sin.  We can flee to Jesus Christ, our rock and redeemer and find grace and help in time of need!  (Hebrews 4:14-16)  He mediates all our sins and provides refuge and mercy to those who repent!

“What, then, shall we say in response to this?  If God is for us, who can be against us?  He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all–how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:31-32

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Sunday rest and reflection:God’s promises!

Dear friends,

Greetings in the Wonderful Name of Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd of His sheep!  I am sure glad that I am one of His sheep! I want for nothing today because of His bountiful provisions in the green pastures and beside the still waters.  I am comforted by his rod and staff protecting and guiding me.  He is leading me and I fear no evil because of His watchful care.  I can rest and enjoy safe pasture!  This is what the day of rest is all about and we can enjoy it today and each day of the coming week in Jesus!

As I think back on this week’s reading in Ezekiel, I think about a passage that I wanted to write about but didn’t.  Ezekiel 34 was a message to the shepherds of Israel who have been mistreating the flocks.  In this passage, God stated that He would remove these shepherds.  Then, in a series of “I Will” promises, He stated how He would shepherd the flock that belonged to Him!  God would search for His lost sheep!  He would rescue them and bring them out of the nations.  He would pasture them on the choice mountain fields of Israel.  He, Himself, would tend to their wounds and bind them up.  He was going to place over them ‘one shepherd’, from the house of David, who would truly care for them and He would live among them forever!

Wow!  What a vision and word from the Lord!  All His promises are “Yes!” and “Amen!”.  He has already fulfilled this promise to those who have received Jesus Christ as their Good Shepherd.  He’s now about His business of rounding up the lost sheep and bringing them into the fold.  He is binding up their wounds and leading them to the green pastures and still waters!  Take time on this day of rest to thank your Good Shepherd for His wonderful care.  Sit under one of His undershepherds and spend time with His people in worship and adoration, preparing for the glorious fulfilment of these wonderful promises!  Jesus is coming soon!    In Eager Anticipation,  Pastor John

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