Saturday, December 3, 2011

The promises of God -Yes, but ?

God’s promises are always YES and AMEN.  But we still have preachers reminding us every now and then that some of the promises of God are yes, but they are only positional and you have to work for them. It is akin in saying that God’s promises are wavering between YES and NO.
This is contradictory to what God declares. God has no shifting shadow in His promises, unlike  human promises which are at times not kept or laced with ulterior motives (shadows or conditions).

Consider these verses  on the promises of God : 

2 Corinthians 1:19-20 [NLT 2007]

19 For Jesus Christ, the Son of God, does not waver between “Yes” and “No.” He is the one whom Silas,[f] Timothy, and I preached to you, and as God’s ultimate “Yes,” he always does what he says. 20 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.

James 1:1 [NLT 2007]

Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.

There are three examples I want to highlight where Christians, including preachers  or some theologians have difficulty in saying 'yes' to the promises of God :

God forgives all your sins, that is, your past, present and future sins. 

Many Christians have difficulty in accepting this as YES; most will opt for YES and NO (which is another way of saying, it depends. It depends on what ? On how good or worthy you are???).  Consider the following verses :

Colossians 2:13-15  [NLT]

13 You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. 14 He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross. 15 In this way, he disarmed[d] the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross

I have found an article  that gives a very good treatise on this topic that all our sins are forgiven. Please click into this link : http://gracethrufaith.com/selah/are-all-our-sins-forgiven/.  I will also put this link up as a separate post so that no blog readers will miss it.

You are holy and blameless.
This is another promise that some christians find difficulty in saying 'YES'.
Colossians 1 :22 [NLT]

22 Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical b
ody. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault

Hebrews 10:10 [NLT]

For God’s will was for us to be made holy by the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ, once for all time. 

You are righteous

Can you say 'YES' to this promise? Consider the verses :

Romans 5:18-19 [NLT]

18 Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone. 19 Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other person obeyed God, many will be made righteous

The question most commonly asked by christians is :

What about if I still do sin and I don’t feel holy, blameless and righteous? Are the promises still YES and AMEN?

Our present state nor our feelings can ever negate God’s promises.  Paul has full confidence in God when he said :

Philippians 1:6 [NLT]

6 And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns

Our Christian duty is to cooperate and allow the Holy Spirit to work and will in us the promises of God.  We do not strive and work for the promises; we rest in His promises.  Our confidence is to be like of Paul.  It is basically to trust solely on Him.

God’s interaction with Abraham [as regards His promise to give the whole earth to Abraham and his descendents] is a very good example for us to believe the promises of God.  Abraham‘s faith did not weaken, even though circumstances spoke otherwise. 

 In the present moment, we may sin ocassionally  [we will sin less as we continue in our journey and allowing the Holy Spirit to work in us ; in fact if we look back in our life, we are a much better person than  before; I am confident Paul would say that to us if he were alive today] but that does not alter the promises of God or prompt us to waver in His promises.

Romans 4:13-14 [NLT]

13 Clearly, God’s promise to give the whole earth to Abraham and his descendants was based not on his obedience to God’s law, but on a right relationship with God that comes by faith. 14 If God’s promise is only for those who obey the law, then faith is not necessary and the promise is pointless.

In otherwords, if we can strive for the promises of God using our effort ,that is, if we can bring into being or fulfill those promises ourselves instead of having faith in His promises, then the promises of God are pointless.  Why are the promises pointless? In short, what it means is that we are telling God to stop giving us promises as we can get them ourselves. In short, it means that God, you are not God afterall as I can achieve the promises you gave without your help at all...and so why give us promises?

Continuing on with Abraham, please take your time reading the other verses and let the Holy Spirit enlighten you:

Romans 4:18-25 [NLT]

18 Even when there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping—believing that he would become the father of many nations. For God had said to him, “That’s how many descendants you will have!”[e] 19 And Abraham’s faith did not weaken, even though, at about 100 years of age, he figured his body was as good as dead—and so was Sarah’s womb.

 20 Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. 21 He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises. 22 And because of Abraham’s faith, God counted him as righteous. 23 And when God counted him as righteous, it wasn’t just for Abraham’s benefit. It was recorded 24 for our benefit, too, assuring us that God will also count us as righteous if we believe in him, the one who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. 25 He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God. 

Just a note : Here we see the last two verses indicating that we are righteous before Him.

Abraham never wavered in believing God's promise It is a YES for Abraham. It is a YES for me.

In ending, God’s promises are always YES and AMEN; anything otherwise, whether be preached or commented by theologians are to be taken with a pinch of salt. Our unbelief or the unbelief of preachers or theologians cannot affect the faithfulness of God to His promises.  I rather be considered a liar than to discredit the promises of God. What do you reckon?

Romans 3 :3-4

3 For what if some did not believe? Will their unbelief make the faithfulness of God without effect? 4 Certainly not! Indeed, let God be true but every man a liar. As it is written:
      “ That You may be justified in Your words,
      And may overcome when You are judged.”[a]

A good motto I always follow in my christian journey is "BE SIMPLE".  You do not have to be a theologian or intellectual to understand God’s word. Otherwise, there is no hope for the illiterate. Othewise, the gospel is only for the select few.  We need the Holy Spirit as our teacher for life.

The Holy Spirit who is already residing in us when we are born again is our great theologian and teacher.  Praise God.

As human beings, be they preachers and theologians or us, we can have imaginations running wild that exalteth against the knowledge of God.  That is why we have cult leaders like Hitler  and James Warren Jones [Peoples Temple] and so forth.

What do we do with these imaginations that are against God's promises ?

Cast those filthy imaginations down and bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. Cast the 'Yes, but' to the promises of God down.

2Corinthians 10:4-6[NLT]

4(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)

5Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

6And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

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