The Promises of God

God has given many promises. A promise speaks of things that still have to become a reality. A promise is an explicit undertaking to do something. When God speaks it often is in the form of promises. These are things that He says He will do. These promises are meant to give us a hope and a future. Perhaps you have promises or words that God has given you. Hold on to them!

WHAT ARE THE PROMISES OF GOD

1. They are commitments made by God in line with His own will.

Firstly they are commitments. They are indications of God’s intention and plan. God makes promises to us.

2. They are links between what He says and what He does.

Promises act as links. Often times there is a time frame between what God says and what He does. We don’t always understand this. But in this time space we have His word/promise.

3. They have the characteristics of God Himself.

They are true. They are unchangeable. They are powerful and they are eternal. Just like God.

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IV.             They are constant.

·         The amount of time that has passed does not change them.

·         They are His promises.

·         They remain as constant as when they were first spoken.

 

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The Appointed Time

TAKING POSSESSION

When the time is right and things come together in God’s way then we need to change gears. We need to possess what God has given us.

Deuteronomy 10:11 But he said to me, ‘Arise and lead the people to the land I promised their fathers. It is time to go in and possess it.’

The issue was that what God had promised the people of Israel did not just fall into their laps. They had to go in and possess it for themselves when the time was right. I sometimes see people for whom God has opened the door they have been waiting for and yet they don’t step into in. When God begins to turn things around in your life, be ready to work hard and take possession of what God has in store for you.

THE APPOINTED TIME

God has appointed times for each of us. We must anticipate and be expectant that things are about to change.

Psalm 102:13 You will arise and have compassion on Zion, for it is time to show favor to her; the appointed time has come.

God’s timing makes things beautiful.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 He has made everything beautiful in its time.

The greatest example of God’s timing was when He sent Jesus to make a way for us.

Galatians 4:4 But when the right time came, the time God decided on, he sent his Son.

God has a ‘right’ time and an appointed time for you. Don’t get discouraged!

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Now is The Time

A TIME FOR EVERYTHING

God has created time frames for everything.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 There is a right time for everything: A time to be born; A time to die; A time to plant; A time to harvest; A time to kill; A time to heal; A time to destroy; A time to rebuild; A time to cry; A time to laugh; A time to grieve; A time to dance; A time for scattering stones; A time for gathering stones; A time to hug; A time not to hug; A time to find; A time to lose; time for keeping; time for throwing away; A time to tear; A time to repair; A time to be quiet; A time to speak up; A time for loving; A time for hating; A time for war; A time for peace.

Notice that it says there is a right time for everything. When things happen in the ‘right’ times they will have the intended results and be the blessing they were intended to be. There is a right time for everything that you are trusting God for.

NOW IS THE TIME

There is one aspect for which it is always the right time. That is the aspect of seeking God.

Hosea 10:12 Plant the good seeds of righteousness, and you will reap a crop of my love; plow the hard ground of your hearts, for now is the time to seek the Lord, that he may come and shower salvation upon you.

Perhaps because things did not happen as you had hoped, you have become discouraged and withdrawn from God in the process. This happens to all of us. But we must not allow this to happen. We must keep on seeking God and make Him our priority even if we feel like we are out of sync with God’s timing.

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We Must Not Get Impatient

WHEN THE TIME IS RIGHT THINGS MOVE FAST

When the time of God is right, it is as if things begin to accelerate.

I know someone who has faced difficulty over a long period of time, especially financially. It was a difficult and long season that seemed to go from bad to worse. In the midst of all this, God had given promises of provision and supply. It seemed unlikely and each day as this individual waited he got older and the promises seemed even more remote. But in a moment God began to turn it all around. At an unlikely age and after a great deal of time things began to change dramatically and the promises began to be fulfilled. Within three years God provided what most people will not acquire or achieve in a lifetime.

Why am I telling you this? Because I want to encourage you and remind you that when God begins to move, things move fast.

 Isaiah 60:22 The least of you will become a thousand, the smallest a mighty nation. I am the LORD; in its time I will do this swiftly. (NIV)

WE MUST NOT GET IMPATIENT

Often times as we are facing the issues that we are trusting God to resolve, we tend to get impatient. We can get to the point where we think that this is the time that God should act and move in our circumstances. The writer of the Psalms felt the same way and he wrote:

Psalm 119:126 Lord, it is time for you to act.

The strange thing is that God’s time and our time does not always coincide.

Isaiah 55:9 For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than yours, and my thoughts than yours.

·The issue is to trust God and not become impatient.

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The Timing of God

Timing is important to God. We are all trusting God in some area or another. When things take time we get discouraged. But when it is time God will honor His promises. We must not try to force or push things. It is as though God waits for everything to come into line before He steps in and creates those divine moments. As humans, time is such an issue to us, but for God time is different. Remember God has His appointed times for each of us.

THE PROMISE

There is a great promise in Isaiah that connects what God wants to do and the timing that God waits for.

Isaiah 60:22 I, the Lord, will bring it all to pass when it is time.

Notice a few things:

1. God will make things happen! Often times we may feel like we need to help God bring it to pass and so we create problems.

2. God wants to bring ALL of it to pass. God wants to fulfill every word, every promise, all He has spoken!

3. When it is time. Probably the most difficult aspect. God’s timing is the vital ingredient to the fulfillment of what God has said.

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Who is Your Hope?

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WHO IS YOUR HOPE?

The question we each have to ask ourselves is who is our hope? What have we placed our hope and expectation in? There are many things that people place their confidence in and many of those things are not guaranteed. They are here today and gone tomorrow. If we place our hope in something that is not sure, then we are sure to be disappointed. It may be your career, it may be your children, it may be some organization or business, it could be your money or your resources and it may even be your husband or your wife.

Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

The Bible tells us that God is a God of hope. He is the author of hope. We must look to Him as our source of hope.

EXPECTATION

As God begins to restore or give us hope, we can begin to live with expectation. This expectation and hope is what makes life worth living. This expectation of the fulfillment of what God has spoken or the success we believe in our hearts that God has for us, is what we need in our hearts. Expect God to move! Await His intervention and never doubt it. Hope finds its expression, especially during the endurance of a trial. Holding onto hope is never more applicable than when we are facing trials.

1 Thessalonians 1:3 We continually remember before our God and Father your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.

If you are facing some form of trial, challenge or difficulty, God is there for you. Take hope! Take hold of hope! Hope against hope! Never stop hoping! Anything can happen and with God in the equation anything can change.

Colossians 1:27 And this is the secret: Christ in your hearts is your only hope of glory.

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Hope and Courage

HOPE AND COURAGE

There is one thing that goes with hope and that is the aspect of courage. To hope takes courage. It may mean that you need to face situations and circumstances that look completely the opposite and still believe God in the situation. We have said that hope refers to the anticipation of the future. This does not mean that the present just disappears. We have said that hope refers to the expectation of fulfillment. This brings a great dynamic into play. The dynamic of waiting. Between the present and the future is hope. Hope however has to often walk side-by-side with waiting. For this reason we need to be courageous.

Psalm 27:13-14 I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!

HOPE – AN ANCHOR FOR THE SOUL

Hope is an anchor for the soul.

Hebrews 6:18-19 He has given us both His promise and His oath, two things we can completely count on, for it is impossible for God to tell a lie. Now all those who flee to Him to save them can take new courage when they hear such assurances from God; now they can know without doubt that He will give them the salvation He has promised them. This certain hope of being saved is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls, connecting us with God Himself behind the sacred curtains of heaven.

As you and I hope, we become connected to God. The reason for this is that He holds the future and no one, no institution, no past success or past failure has any guarantee for tomorrow. God is our only guarantee. We need to hold onto hope and never let it go. We need to allow our hope and trust in God to become an anchor for our souls. Without such an anchor we will be blown around hopelessly in the storms of life. But with that anchor we can stand and not be moved!

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We Need Fresh Hope

Large open Bible in a field at midnight.

We all need hope in our lives. Without hope we will not be able to face tomorrow. With hope in our lives we will be able to face whatever happens in our lives. Hope is an essential ingredient in life.

I can remember a time in my life when hope was strong in my heart. At that time nothing was too difficult or a challenge. During this time my heart and my mind would be full of new ideas and vision. I would lay down to sleep and I would not be able to get to sleep fast enough so that the morning could come and I could pursue more of the things that were alive within me. Then through circumstances I lost hope. Instead of excitement and anticipation there came a sense of discouragement, despair and even small things began to be a challenge. Life just became too difficult. I could not fall asleep because of the concerns and worries regarding what I may need to face the next day. It was only as God began to restore my hope that things began to change. I wish I could tell you that it happened overnight, but that was not the case. Over a period of time, God began to make new and fresh hope available to me. As hope returned so did my desire for more of what God had for me.

God can do this for you as well. He can restore hope and give you fresh hope, no matter what the circumstances may be.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN HOPE IS LOST

When hope is lost many things can happen. However, I have discovered that there are two main things that begin to develop in our hearts when hope is lost.

1. Discouragement
This is the first one that usually appears. As hope is undermined or lost, discouragement sets in. It is like a wave of disillusionment. It is under these conditions that we open ourselves up for greater devastation. When discouragement is allowed to take root in our hearts it can ultimately lead to depression. Depression becomes a long-term condition that begins to touch every area of our lives.

2. Despair
When we begin to despair is when we get to that point of giving up or wanting to throw in the towel. Our self-worth becomes affected and we begin to have thoughts that can play a destructive role in our lives. It is here that we can begin to think that even God has deserted us. It is a point at which bitterness and anger takes root in our hearts.

THE IMPORTANCE OF HOPE

The question is why is hope so important?  It is a little thing that makes a great difference in our lives. The reason for this is that hope looks to the future. Hope speaks of what is still to come and the things that we anticipate or expect. Hope is fundamentally a desire. A desire within us that is accompanied by an expectation of greater or better things.

In the military they use the word morale to describe this phenomena. When troops have hope and expectation that they are winning or have the upper hand the morale is high. When troops know they are staring defeat in the face, they lose hope and morale drops. Once an army has lost hope (morale) the chances of defeat are increased. For this reason every effort is made to sustain the morale/hope.

Hope is concerned with the unseen and the future. In essence these are things that we do not always have control over. But God does! And because of this we can have hope.

Romans 8:24-25 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.

We can happily anticipate God’s goodness – that is hope.

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He Wants to Give Us New Hearts

HE WANTS US TO KNOW HIS STRENGTH

We all need strength.  The Bible tells us that even the youths can grow tired and weary.We need God’s strength in our lives as we face what life confronts us with. We need more and more of God’s strength within us. Don’t look elsewhere for strength, but look to God.

Ephesians 6:10 Last of all I want to remind you that your strength must come from the Lord’s mighty power within you.

Do you need more of God’s strength today? I believe that God wants to give us more strength. Ask Him to give you His strength!

HE WANTS TO GIVE US NEW HEARTS

What God wants to do within us will change us completely. Sometimes our hearts are so battle-scarred from life. In the process our hearts become hard and here again God wants to work within us. God wants to remove any hardness and replace it with His Spirit.

Ezekiel 36:26-27 And I will give you a new heart—I will give you new and right desires—and put a new spirit within you. I will take out your stony hearts of sin and give you new hearts of love. And I will put my Spirit within you so that you will obey my laws and do whatever I command.

GOD WANTS TO FINISH WHAT HE STARTED

God does not intend to leave us. He intends to work within us and to see the job through to completion. God is not finished with you and me. He wants to continue working in our lives, until He has accomplished what he wanted to accomplish.

Philippians 1:6 And I am sure that God who began the good work within you will keep right on helping you grow in his grace until his task within you is finally finished on that day when Jesus Christ returns.

Allow God to continue working within you. You will not be disappointed!

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He Wants Us to Know His Love

HE WANTS TO GIVE US HIS PRESENCE

This is for me, one of the special things that God wants to do for us. God wants His presence to be something that we know and enjoy in our lives. He wants His presence to be a living reality in our lives. Imagine, the presence of God as something we can sense and feel! This is what God has in store for us. If we know His presence in our lives, we will discover that it is the only thing that really matters.

2 Corinthians 13:5 Do you feel Christ’s presence and power more and more within you?

God’s presence within us should become more and more of a reality in our lives.

HE WANTS US TO KNOW HIS LOVE

God’s love for us is something so wonderful. Deep within each of us God wants to be at work so that we will be able to feel His love.

Ephesians 3:17-19 And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts, living within you as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love; 18-19 and may you be able to feel and understand, as all God’s children should, how long, how wide, how deep, and how high his love really is; and to experience this love for yourselves, though it is so great that you will never see the end of it or fully know or understand it. And so at last you will be filled up with God himself.

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