I realize in a world where cultural ideology rules the land, it's hard to win friends and influence people. Yet Christianity has what it takes to challenge the culture in the core underpinnings of values. For example, the culture values the individual … starting with choices and nothing is off-limits morally. Why? Because morals have restrictions which makes some uncomfortable. Christianity says that morals are the boundaries where the promises of God are found. If you live within God’s boundaries you have the right to claim the promises of God. For example, those promises will protect you against harmful ideas and immoral practices.
Everett R. Storm a schoolteacher in Canada made a detailed study of the promises of God several years ago. He came up with 8,810 promises, 7,487 were directly made to mankind.
So many promises, and of course, they were directed toward His creation. So, when we think of the promises of God, we know by Scripture that when God makes a promise that He will keep it. Why? God cannot lie.
Hebrews 6:18 So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us.
God cannot lie. That is the bottom line to a promise, isn’t it? Promises can be broken of course, but it depends on who is making the promise. Is it a promise from God, who cannot lie, or a human, whose second nature is to lie? We are so used to being lied to that we have a hard time accepting promises in good faith.
According to Jerry Jellison, a psychologist at the University of California, we can be lied to anywhere from 10 to 200 times a day. With statistics like this, no wonder life can seem like one big lie. I have read that we all tell at least 1 to 2 lies per day. (I would imagine with some people this could skyrocket.)
I think with some people a lie seems no different than the truth, there is no difference between the two.
That is why when we come to faith in Jesus Christ and His promises, especially the promise of eternal life … we know it is true because God cannot lie.
Some people have said that the most broken promise is the marriage promise to cherish until death do us part, in sickness and health, in good times and in bad times. The vows we make at the marriage altar are probably the most common of broken promises. A broken promise, however it comes, is an act of betrayal. We want to believe that people, especially those we marry, can be trusted to keep their promises. We have become so accustomed to promises being broken we have gone to signing contracts to enforce the conditions of any promise of performance.
Yet God’s promises are always backed up by Him. Let’s look at Israel as an example. Israel was re-established as a country in 1948 in response to the promises God made to them that they would be scattered and then brought back to the land.
Jeremiah 23 “Then I Myself will gather the remnant of My flock out of all the countries where I have driven them and bring them back to their pasture, and they will be fruitful and multiply. 4I will also raise up shepherds over them and they will tend them; and they will not be afraid any longer, nor be terrified, nor will any be missing,” declares the Lord. 5“Behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord, “When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch; And He will reign as king and act wisely. 6And do justice and righteousness in the land.”
Isaiah 66:8 Who has ever seen anything as strange as this? Who ever heard of such a thing? Has a nation ever been born in a single day? Has a country ever come forth in a mere moment? But by the time Jerusalem’s birth pains begin, her children will be born.
Once they were brought back, they would no longer be scattered, so God has promised they would be scattered, brought back, and never again displaced from the land.
Amos 9:15 “I will firmly plant them there in their own land. They will never again be uprooted from the land I have given them,” says the Lord your God.
Israel has always been God’s reminder to us that He never reneges on His promises. He has remained faithful to His promises to Israel making His promises through Christ equally as assuring that He will remain faithful to them.
The promises of God are powerful reminders that God did not leave us without hope or a future in eternity. God made a promise through Jesus Christ that anyone who believed in Him would have everlasting life. That is the greatest promise known to mankind; there isn’t a greater promise than what God gave to all of us:
John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
That promise is the basis for the mission of the church. The job of the church is to promote this promise to everyone, everywhere.
There is so much information coming our way every day. Most of it is negative and disheartening. So why not counter all of it by memorizing and reading a promise of God every day. You can start with John 3:16 and then Google all the promises of God … you will be amazed at all the promises God has given to build up hope within us.
Take the promises of God into your heart … you will have an everlasting perspective.
Challenging the Culture with Truth … Larry Kutzler