Hebrews and Exodus focus a lot on the PROMISES OF GOD. Exodus focuses on the promises He gave to the people of Israel thousands of years ago, while Hebrews focuses on a renewed promise for us all.
In order to understand this, we need to understand what exactly a promise is. Merriam–Webster defines the word PROMISE as: “a declaration that one will do or refrain from doing something specified; reason to expect something, especially: ground for expectation of success, improvement, or excellence.”
Basically, a promise requires verbal affirmation (an assurance spoken by the person making the declaration) as well as expectancy (a belief held by the person reaping the benefit that something better will come).
Every election year we hear politicians make promises that they often do not keep. In 1940 Franklin Roosevelt promised to keep the US out of World War II, while 48 years later George H.W. Bush famously said “read my lips, no new taxes!” Each time after hearing an assurance the American people waited expectantly, but these promises were broken and simultaneously the trust of the American people was also damaged.
Unlike our earthly leaders, once our Heavenly Father makes a promise he can NEVER break it. This, in turn, builds our trust in him. 2 Peter 3:9 states, “The Lord is not slack (negligent or careless) concerning His promise.” And like Hannah discussed on Saturday, it is impossible for God to lie so when He tells you that He is going to do something you can count it as done!
THE OLD PROMISE: The covenant or promise God made with the people of Israel was that he would give them many descendants and that they would live peacefully in the Promised Land. God said to Moses, “And I reaffirmed my covenant with them. Under its terms, I promised to give them the land of Canaan, where they were living as foreigners. You can be sure that I have heard the groans of the people of Israel, who are now slaves to the Egyptians. And I am well aware of my covenant with them” (Exodus 6:4-6)
THE NEW PROMISE: Because Jesus died for our sins, we now have what is referred to in Hebrews as “a far better covenant with God, based on better promises” (Hebrews 8:6). This covenant is described in Hebrews 8:10-12. Although we each have our own individual promises from God, he promised us all that we would be his people, we would have redemption from sin, and ultimately that if we follow his commandments we will achieve eternal life. WHAT A PROMISE!
So if you are feeling down today, angry with God or unhappy with the way things are working out in your life right now, please remember the bigger picture—the renewed promise that God has given us all. I know it’s easier said than done, but if you listen to God and do things His way you WILL see the promise fulfilled!
Merciful Mondays: Jael
“For the Lord your God is a merciful God; he will not abandon you or destroy you or forget the solemn covenant he made with your ancestors.” Deuteronomy 4:31