The promises of the Lord are firm. When He gives us His Word concerning a matter, it will have no other meaning except that which He places in us through His Spirit. We may assume a hundred different outcomes to it due to any reasoning of the mind; we may even begin to lessen our faith in it through waiting on it, but it does not change its course toward us. He gave it to us, because He found us worthy by righteousness. It is nonetheless superfluous to speak of His ability to fulfill His promises after having received them. But it is indispensable to speak of the importance of holding on to them. God’s promises are meant for our joy and for His purpose that brings Him glory. He makes them to lead us under His wings. The principal reason His promises are firm is He knows that which He wishes to do. Once He makes them, they will come to pass come what may; He does not change His mind concerning them. “Then behold, the word of the LORD came to him, saying, ‘This man will not be your heir; but one who will come forth from your own body, he shall be your heir’” (Gen. 15:4).
The Lord will reaffirm His promises to us, if necessary. When our longing for their fulfillment has weakened our spirit or when circumstances compel us to think otherwise, He again gives His Word and strengthens us. We too must be with a mind to be strengthened by Him. The flesh will beckon us to lose His Word. At such a time we must approach Him. We must hold on to the circumstances that led to believe Him the first time so that if we become weak in spirit, we seek strength from Him. Abraham did it. Though the Lord had earlier promised to make him a great nation, he again received assurance concerning it. The outcome was he remained steadfast in faith. He was able to consider God’s promises as true and firm. He received a son just as the Lord said. No matter what anyone may say regarding God’s promises, they are there for us and they will come to pass, if we have received them. So, let us consider few things that we hold on firmly to all He promised and even reassuringly.
1. Practice righteousness. The keener we are for it, the more stable we remain in faith and the power of God dwells in us leading us to trust in His Word. And if we become weak in spirit, the weight of righteousness beckons us for faith so that we do not lose focus on God’s promises, but obtain reassurance for them from Him. This is righteousness – “He did what was right in the sight of the LORD; he did according to all that his father Uzziah had done” (2 Kings 15:34). It is not of flesh or works, but is of God and is by living for God just as He desired through the purpose He availed us.
2. Master the world. Lean on God and we can understand the intricacies of the world. The preacher says, “That which has been is that which will be, and that which has been done is that which will be done. So there is nothing new under the sun” (Eccl. 1:9). If the world can no longer sway us with its contents, works and laws, we can look forward to the fulfillment of God’s promises regardless of time. The only things new in our life will be the effects God causes by His Word. The desire to lean on Him can be developed profusely from practicing righteousness.
3. Do not make the Lord’s Spirit impatient. In other words, do not test Him. God’s promises are true and the meaning the Spirit puts in us is also true. When we deny His understanding even after being reassured, we run the risk of practicing unrighteousness. Again, we should draw a line between approaching God for strength and seeking Him with false motives. The latter is done with a view to rush the fulfillment of His Word, i.e. to do things our way in order to claim the fulfillment of His promise. Doing these things is giving Satan the opportunity to take control of us. Then, we begin to walk in sin and against God’s will. We do not lose His promises, but would waste a great amount of time owing to the consequences of our unrighteousness. See what the Lord says, “Is it being said, O house of Jacob: ‘Is the Spirit of the LORD impatient? Are these His doings?’ Do not My words do good to the one walking uprightly?” (Mic. 2:7).
4. Carrying out His purpose to us. At no point should we deviate from His purpose. It is the life line to our survivability in this world as believers, preachers, teachers or parents. As long as we are doing it, we find reason to practice righteousness, master the world and concur with the Spirit. Then, we keep the Lord’s way straight for us, because we do not bring impediments on to it. And any impediments we carry, we remove them through keeping His purpose. These words should always reverberate in us: “He said, ‘I am A VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS, ‘MAKE STRAIGHT THE WAY OF THE LORD,’ as Isaiah the prophet said’” (John 1:23).
5. God produces effects. “There are varieties of effects, but the same God who works all things in all persons” (1 Cor. 12:6). God is one, but He gives promises to each one according to His measure; for He has many promises. Hence, Paul too in the Spirit at one place said that as many as are His promises they are yes in Christ. He has chosen each one of us for a specific reason. He brings it out from us by effecting the promises He made to us. The varieties of effects which He brings forth through His Spirit is because of the varieties of promises He is able to make. So, while His promises may differ to each one of us, they all work together for the common good.
6. Finally, be aware of our basic duty. “But as for you, speak the things which are fitting for sound doctrine” (Tit. 2:1). We no doubt know the power of the tongue. James says it can set aflame a great forest. It can defile fellowships, relationships and finally, intimacy with God. If we are controlling our tongue, we are indeed controlling many thoughts for the purpose of honoring God. Whether we are pastors or simply believers with different professions, everything we say must confine to sound doctrine. We can have an overflowing life even while saying the things that fit sound doctrine. For God will not stop making and fulfilling His promises now and in the days to come.