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CAT | The Promises of God

Jun/12

18

The Promises of God Pt 7

2 Cor 1:20

Whatever God has promised gets stamped with the Yes of Jesus. In him, this is what we preach and pray, the great Amen, God’s Yes and our Yes together, gloriously evident.  (The Message)

We’ve looked at some false beliefs regarding our trust in God and how to eliminate those things from our lives. Today we will look at how to live out God’s promises.

Example: 2 Cor 8:9. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich. (NKJV)

When we put this promise back into context, it’s clear that 2 Cor Ch 9 is speaking about money, riches and wealth, and that at the cross, Jesus exchanged His riches for our poverty.

Point No 1: Because we are in Christ, we can claim this promise that Jesus will supply all our needs and wants (Ps 23:1, Phil 4:19).

We must first tell God specifically what we want and receive it. “Father I need a new car, a 7 seater and a diesel engine. According to your promise to provide for me, I receive that car by faith and trust it to You to decide when and how to provide it.”

Once we’ve asked God and received our new car by faith, our role is to leave it with Him (Phil 4:6). Subsequently, whenever we pray about it, we don’t keep asking for God to supply it. That is unbelief. NO! We turn our prayer time into a time of praise. “Thank you God that you have supplied me with a new car. Praise You Jehovah Jireh my provider” etc.

Point No 2: We must now wait with faith and patience until such time as God provides the car (Heb 6:12-15).

To wait with faith and patience is to wait in ‘REST’. We must be at rest in Christ for God to work on our behalf. If we take back our prayer and in our minds start worrying, fearing and getting all angst!, we’ve come out of rest and prevent God from working. As we labour (work hard) to enter His rest, we will see a demonstration of His provision. And it is rest that develops the fruit of God’s patience in us.

Point 3: During the waiting time, we must hold to a confession of faith whenever we speak about the car of our prayers. In Mt 6:31 Jesus says,“Therefore do not worry, saying, What shall we eat? or What shall we drink? or What shall we wear? (NKJV)

The key word there is ‘saying’. Don’t say or confess the negative – “When will God provide my car, where will it come from, if it doesn’t come soon, I’m going to the bank to get a loan.”

As soon as we confess the negative, we destroy any faith we’ve built up through a positive confession. Therefore we hinder God from working in our lives.

Heb 10:23 Let us hold fast the profession (confession)  of our faith without wavering; (for He is faithful that promised.)

We must hold fast to the confession of our faith. That is we must confess the validity of God’s promises.If we capitulate under pressure and confess the negative, we again short circuit God’s answer to our prayers. But if we steadfastly hold to the confession of His promise, we will see a demonstration of God’s provision.

Meditation Point: Father, help me to stand strong in You, confessing Your promises until they are fulfilled. Lead me into a greater dynamic of Your faith.

Rom 4:20 He (Abraham) staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God.  (KJV)

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Jun/12

4

The Promises of God Pt 6

Jn 3:16. For God so loved the world He gave His only begotten Son.

We have been looking at some ‘false beliefs’ that destroy our trust in God and prevent us from receiving God’s promises. The last one we’ll look at is that of LOVE. If we don’t believe God loves us, it makes it difficult to receive His promises.

There has been much teaching in the Church that presents God as  judgemental, angry, condemning and punishing. This ‘image’ of God breeds fear and a withdrawing from His presence.

Whereas a grace perspective builds an image of a loving, accepting and forgiving God who expresses His love to us through His Son, Jesus Christ.

Jn 3:16. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (NKJV)

The wonderful thing about God’s love is that we don’t have to earn it, neither do we have to prove our love to Him. NO! In the New Covenant, it’s God who earnestly desires to show His love to us. Our role is to simply receive it.

1 Jn 4:10. This is love: it is not that we loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son as the sacrifice that deals with our sins. (CEB)

I Love You This Much!


Not only does He love us, but He has perfected His love in us, and perfect love is unconditional love. God loves us whether we live in victory or defeat. Therefore we can be struggling with problems and have besetting sins, but know that God loves us; and if we know He loves us unconditionally, we can come to Him to receive His love and claim His promises.
1 Jn 4:17. Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. (NKJV

God’s promises are not given on the basis that we have to earn them by our behaviour. NO! They are given to us because we are in His Son, Jesus Christ. It’s Christ who is accepted by His Father, and because we are in Christ, we are accepted!

1 Jn 4:17. As He is so are we in this world. (NKJV)

Knowing we are loved unconditionally, gives us the confidence and boldness to claim and receive God’s promises.

In our next Blog we will look at how to release His promises into our lives.

Meditation Point: Thank You Lord that you love me unconditionally whether I live in victory or defeat,  and I am always accepted by You.

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May/12

7

The Promises of God Pt 5

MISSED THE MARK

Rom 3:23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

We continue looking at the ‘false beliefs’ that prevent us from fully trusting God. Today we’ll look at:

FAILURE: When Adam disobeyed God (sinned) and partook of the forbidden fruit, immediately, the garment of the glory of God that covered his whole being, broke off of him (Ps 104:2) leaving him naked and ashamed.

The word, ‘SIN’ in Scripture, has the thought of an archer shooting his arrow at a bulls eye target and falling short into the ground before the target. In Rom 3:23 (above), the words ‘fallen short’, mean: To fail, to be late, to be inferior, to fall short, be deficient, be destitute, be the worse, to lack, suffer need.

For the first time, Adam, because of his sin, experienced failure. He had ‘fallen short’ of the glory of God. This failure brought consequences. He was judged guilty by God and condemned to death. His death was 3 fold: Physical, Spiritual and eternal.

At birth, we all inherited Adam’s sin nature, a nature of failure of falling short. Thus, whenever we sin, fail, make mistakes or miss the mark, because it is sin, we are judged guilty and condemned to death, physically, spiritually and eternally. Hence we carry a burden of condemnation, guilt, failure, shame and hopelessness.

SUCCESS

But as Christians, we must remind ourselves, that all of the above is the Old Covenant (O.C.). Jesus has introduced a New Covenant (N.C.), a better covenant (Rom 8:6) of deliverance from sin.

HITS THE MARK

When Jesus died on the cross, He:

1) Took the punishment for ALL our sin PAST, PRESENT & FUTURE. So whenever we sin, fall short or fail, the blood of Christ immediately takes away (not covers) our sin. We are now judged NOT GUILTY!, therefore we are not condemned to death and God as Judge now proclaims us, ‘free to go’ without any stain on our character.

Rom 8:1-2 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

2) Became glorified! He had the glory restored to Him that Adam lost, and because we are now In Christ, we have become new creations (2 Cor 5:17) and have been glorified (Rom 8:30)

So…….. Whenever we sin, fail or make mistakes, we no longer have to listen to the voices in our head that tell us we are a failure or guilty and condemned or should be ashamed and feel hopeless. NO! Our confession should be, “I am a new creation, made perfect in Christ. I am no longer guilty or condemned but have been set free by the cleansing blood of Christ. I am now glorified and seated at God’s right hand, ruling and reigning as a King/Priest.”

Knowing these truths as revelation means that whenever we fail, we can get back up again and move on in our Christian life. Also it  means we have come to TRUST our heavenly Father as someone who keeps His Word, is faithful, reliable and dependable.

Meditation Point: Thank you Father that I believe and can trust your promises that tell me I am forgiven, cleansed of ALL sin, made righteous and perfect and have been glorified, restored to divine favour in my relationship with You.

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Apr/12

30

The Promises of God Pt 4

Jer 6:30

Reprobate silver shall men call them, because the Lord hath rejected them. (KJV)

We are continuing to look at areas of false belief about God that prevent us from fully trusting Him. False belief No 1 was anger. Let’s continue today with:

False Belief No 2Rejection

Under the O.C. if God’s people rebelled, sinned or made mistakes, there would come a point where God would reject His people, refuse to answer their prayers (go silent) or withdraw His presence from them. Ex: King Saul . On numerous occasions he failed to obey God’s directives. There came a point where God told him He would lift his anointing for Kingship off him and put it upon someone who would obey him, namely David (1 Sam 16:13,14).

Unfortunately many teachers and preachers still apply this O.C. principle to the Gospel of the N.C. They teach that there are times God will withdraw from us to teach us a lesson, that if we have unconfessed sin He won’t listen to our prayers, that we must sometimes go through a wilderness experience of dryness to make us call out to God until He restores the sense of His presence to our lives because it develops our intimacy with Him.

Question: In all honesty, does that sound like the Gospel of good news.

I would say it’s the Gospel of bad news. It’s the Gospel of law, not the Gospel of grace! This Gospel of law, destroys people’s lives. It burdens them down with judgement, condemnation and guilt. They feel rejected by God, kept at arms length and given the silent treatment.

This kind of behaviour is the way a dysfunctional Father would treat His children, and most of us have had a dose of such mistreatment!

NO – The Gospel of grace teaches the total, and I mean, total acceptance of God, irrespective of our behaviour. The Gospel of grace isn’t what we have to do for God, it’s what God has done for us.

Let’s look at some verses that teach this:

Heb 13:5 For He [God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]  AMP


John 14:16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Standby), that He may remain with you forever —  AMP

Eph 1:6 To the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.  NKJV

Rom 8:35-39 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?  “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (NIV)

I implore you to meditate on the above Scriptures. Soak yourself in them and ask God to give you a revelation of His total acceptance.

When we came to Christ, God made us righteous (2 Cor 5:21) He forgave all our sin, past, present and future (1 Jn 2:2). It’s like standing beneath a fountain of His blood which is forever flowing. Whenever we sin, immediately, the blood cleanses, (not covers) cleanses it away, leaving us righteous, perfect and acceptable in His sight.

This is the Gospel of grace that sets us free. To listen to some people, we must be a good boy or girl and completely obedient to God’s Word in order to qualify for His grace.

No, a thousand times NO. God gives His grace to naughty boys and girls, He gives it to those who have sinned, failed and fallen short. That’s why God says to us in Heb 4:16 Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it].  (AMP)

When we fail, we must run to God, not run away from God. This is the beauty and profundity (great depth) of God’s grace. This is what sets us free and keeps us free, that we may enjoy a life of righteousness, peace and joy.

Meditation Point: Lord Jesus – open the eyes of my spirit to see the truth of your word. That grace meets every need of man, covers all unforeseen failures and makes us forever acceptable before the Father. Oh! what a wonderful Saviour you are!

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Apr/12

23

The Promises of God Pt 3

Learning Trust

Prov 3:5 Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding.  (AMP)

In my last Blog I said we would be looking at how to live out the promises of God. As I’ve thought about it, I realised that we must first be absolutely sure that we can trust Him. We must remove as many obstacles as possible that stand in the way of this trust. Therefore I want to look at trust from the angle of God being our Father, and we, His sons.

Many of us struggle to trust God because our earthly fathers were less than perfect in  their love and training us in the right ways. We must not condemn or judge them for this. They acted out of the light they had received from their fathers. We are now ‘new creations’ (2 Cor 5:17) and  have broken the sinful generational line and started a new one. Our fathers may have failed us, but now we are in Christ we can make the necessary changes for ourselves, and our children.

When we became ‘born again’ we took the idenikit picture we had of our earthly father and superimposed it onto our heavenly Father. Subsequently, we relate to our heavenly Father in the same way we relate to our earthly father. Therefore, if our earthly father rejected us when we did wrong or made a mistake, we expect our heavenly Father to reject us and thus break the tie of trust.

Our heavenly Father is a ‘perfect’ father, so let’s stand back and compare him with our earthly father:

1) ANGER – If our father disciplined us out of anger and said or did wrong things, it will leave a wound that needs healing. Prov 22:8
tells us that, ‘the rod of his anger will fail.’  (NKJV). Hence, his dysfunctional anger came to nothing and left a broken trust.

Under the O.C. (Old Covenant) God as Father was ‘slow to anger’ when Israel failed or disobeyed Him. But if they persistently broke His laws, His anger would break out in great wrath and the death of many of His people would follow, or, He would eject them from the land to serve as slaves to a foreign nation (Num 14:36,37.  Jer 25:11)

But under the N.C. (New Covenant) we find a reversal of God’s behaviour. On the cross Jesus exhausted all of God’s anger and wrath against the sin of the whole world, past, present and future. Praise the Lord! No matter our weaknesses, sins or failures, God is no longer angry with us. In fact, He promised that under the N.C. of grace, He would no longer remember our sins (Heb 8:12) The word ‘no’ in the Greek is a double negative strengthening the declaration.

Instead, when we fall short, God’s new declaration to us, is, Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Heb 4:15,16. NKJV)

First, God’s mercy has forgiven our sin, and secondly, His grace gives us the help we need at such times. Boldness is the opposite of fear. We no longer need to fear an outbreak of God’s anger and can come boldly and confidently to Him for help.

This one fact alone will strengthen our trust in our heavenly Father.

Meditation Point: Thank you Father that you no longer become angry with me when I fall short. I love to come boldly to You at such times, knowing You will give me the help I need.

Ps 107:8 Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, And for His wonderful works to the children of men!  (NKJV)





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Apr/12

16

The Promises of God Pt 2

Molten Metal

Ps 12:6  The words of the Lord are pure words, like silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.  (NKJV)

The Scripture above says that God’s words have been tested like silver in a furnace of fire, 7 times. When a metal-smith was melting silver, the pressure produced by the fire would force the impurities to the surface, where they would be skimmed off. The No7 symbolises perfection. He would keep exposing the silver to the fire as many times as needed until all the impurities were skimmed off and it was perfectly pure.The metal-smith would know when it was pure when he could see the reflection of his face in the surface of the silver. Then and only then would he turn off the heat.

He now had pure silver. God’s word like silver, is pure through and through.

When we look at the words of people, we see they have elements in them of impurity:  lies, anger, control, duplicity, resentment, betrayal, judgement, condemnation, accusation, manipulation etc. These kind of words always break down under scrutiny.

On the contrary, God’s words,  have elements in them of purity:  truth, affirmation, redemption, hope,strength,  light, encouragement. These words always stand the test of scrutiny.

Conclusion: Man’s word cannot be fully trusted – God’s word can be fully trusted.

Scripture also shows us that silver was used as currency in the Hebrew culture, and that silver is symbolic of redemption or the price of a person. Joseph was sold into slavery for 20 pieces of silver (Gen 37:28) Jesus was betrayed for 30 pieces of silver (Mt 26:15).

The word’redeem’ (ransom) was a sum of money paid to release a prisoner from captivity. Jesus redeemed us from the slave-market of sin by His precious blood.

1 Peter 1:18-19 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish. (NIV)

God’s word is not only pure, it is redemptive. Therefore, God’s promises are pure, they can always be trusted and are always redemptive in our lives.

In my next Blog we will look at how to employ the promsies of God in our lives.

Meditation Point: God’s words are pure words and can be completely trusted.


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