God’s Faithful Promise

You can listen to this sermon here.

In anticipation of the Christmas season, last week we reviewed the biblical account for why Jesus had to come as a man to save us. We are by nature in desperate need of a savior, having no hope and without God in the world (Eph 2:12); Christ Jesus is the only One Who can save us, reconcile helpless sinners to God – He is our peace!

Today, we review the biblical account of God’s faithful promise to provide this savior.

Several decades back, a Christian para-church organization took the nation by storm. Promise Keepers filled football stadiums with hundreds of thousands of men, listening to preaching and singing hymns. Many of those who went wanted to be better men, men who would keep their promises to lead their families rightly and walk in obedience to God. And for several years, many men were redeemed, revived, and reconciled. But the leaders of this ministry were found to be much less than their public facades portrayed. The founder confessed that he was a miserable failure and his right hand man drifted into gross theological error. And many critics and men who benefited from this ministry turned aside and followed them no more.

We read in the Scriptures that God is not like man, that He should lie (Numbers 23:19); so a promise made by God is something more sure than any promise man can make. God warns man that it’s better for us not to make a promise or vow than to make one and not keep it (Eccl 5:5 & 6). The gap between the two – creature and Creator – in keeping promises is as great as the gap between us in character. Our confidence must therefore be in God and Christ Jesus (He is the faithful witness – Rev 1:5), for they are faithful and rock-solid, while we are weak and fickle. With this reminder, let us see the awesome power of the One Who can make a promise and is certain to keep it.

The birth of Jesus and His work of redemption was not a reaction to the creature’s faithlessness. We see this in 1 Peter 1:20 & 21 – He was chosen before the foundation of the world but was revealed at the end of the times for you who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God. The Fall was not unplanned; the redemption found in Christ was not a reaction. Since man’s fall was inevitable, due to our weak frame, God determined before the world was created that the Son would redeem sinners and bring many sons to glory (Heb 2:10). The main reason creation exists is to glorify the Creator. Again we turn to Peter – If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 4:11) The first phrase shows us how the man who preaches must not speak as a mere man with an opinion, but as a man who stands in fear of God to proclaim and preach the Word of God. Next we see that all who serve in any capacity are to do so recognizing it is God who gives such gifts. Lastly we see the reason – that in all things, preaching and serving, God will be glorified. And this glory is possible because we are in Christ Jesus. The oracles of God tell us Jesus is the focus of Scripture (Luke 24:27), promised to us before the world began (Titus 1:2).

What if…?

What if life really evolved over millions and billions of years? If it did, then the Word of God is not actually infallible and inerrant. If it did, then God Himself is proclaimed to be a liar, and further, a god who is a liar would be a non-existent entity.

What if humans are merely another species of animal that has evolved? If we are, again, God’s Word could no longer be trusted. If we are, then we should have no reason to fear death and “the great circle of life.” If we are, then Charles Darwin should be feted with great honor and even worshipped for revealing the truth of who we are to a poor world who for millennium had the audacity to believe God’s Word was true.

What if the Great Flood was actually only something copied from the myths and fables already found in other ancient cultures? If it was, then again, God’s Word is with error for it could not have come from the Holy Spirit. If it was, then mankind need have no fear of the judgment of a God who cannot keep His promise to destroy the wicked. If it was, then the rainbow is merely a quirk of nature, not something given by God as a promise.

What if the children of Israel really are not a people sovereignly protected by the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob? If they are not, they have to be some of the luckiest people in the world. If they are not, their should not be any real outcry if a more highly evolved society determines that a lower society in the chain should be exterminated. After all, isn’t the reality of life that is should be based on the survival of the fittest? If they are not, then the promises and covenants established by an everlasting God hold no value, and if they hold no value, then NO promise and NO covenant is to be held in reverence.

What if the Ten Commandments are merely suggestions dreamed up as society has evolved? If they are, the Ten Commandments would have no true value because they define a morality that did not come from a just and holy God. Killing, stealing, and adultery merely become defined by what each society considers them to be for their people. If they are, then there are no absolutes to control the world in which we live.

What if the Word of God really is just a book compiled by men through the ages instead of a book divinely inspired by a holy and righteous God? If it is, then centuries have been wasted studying a book that should hold no more value than the works of Plato, Homer, or Shakespeare. If it is, then it is full of lies that drive men to worship what they cannot see, to believe what they can never truly know, and to trust in a God that is untrustable.

What if Jesus Christ was merely a good man as taught by many religions?

What if Jesus Christ was merely a good teacher and prophet as taught by the Muslims?

What if Jesus Christ did not provide full atonement on the Cross as taught by the Mormons?

What if Jesus Christ was not the Saviour of mankind?

What if Jesus Christ is not coming again one day in the clouds of glory?

What if Jesus Christ is not the eternal, only begotten Son of God as taught by the JW’s?

What if Jesus Christ must be sacrificed over and over again as taught by the Catholics?

What if Jesus Christ is not the ONLY Way, the ONLY Truth, and the ONLY Life?

What if Jesus Christ never really died and rose again on the third day?

If He did not do these things, if He was not all these things, if He will not perform what the Word of God promises He will, if He is not the ONLY Way to heaven, if He really did not die and rise again the third day, if we truly can have no hope in Christ….

Then…

“WE ARE OF ALL MEN MOST MISERABLE!” – 1 Cor. 15:19


1 Cor. 1:18, “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.”