Do you ever find yourself wondering if you can trust God? None other than Abraham did! The LORD promises him that He was going to make him a great nation, bless all the earth through him, giving him descendants too numerous to count. At age 80, there was still no heir! He questioned God, “You have given me no children, so one of my servants will have to be my heir.” (Genesis 15:3, NLT) “O Sovereign Lord, how can I be sure that you will give it to me?” (Genesis 15:8, NLT) His questions were formed around a heart that loved and trusted God, none the less. This is the amazing statement that we read about God’s response –“And Abram believed the Lord, and the Lord declared him righteous because of his faith.” (Genesis 15:6, NLT)
His performance was far from perfect. The very next chapter tells the story of his choice to father Ishmael with his wife’s servant, a kind of attempt at surrogacy to ‘help’ God fulfill the promise. He lied on several occasions when he was fearful, yet God saw his heart and said, “That’s my friend, a man I say is all right with Me!”
Christian, do you trust the LORD with your life, your soul, your destiny? Are you attempting to play ‘Let’s Make A Deal’ with God, hoping that by being good enough, praying enough, saying enough religious things – that you can find His acceptance and gain His favor? Take a lesson from Abe. You cannot buy God’s love. You cannot earn a place at His table. You trust Him, believing His Word, and He ‘credits’ your account. What freedom we find when that revelation gains traction in our spirit. No, it does not release us from responsibility to live a holy life. His grace does not exempt us from the harvest of acts of disobedience. That is why we continue to work out the implications of His salvation in daily life. But, at the foundation of our relationship with God is faith, not hard work!
A passage in Hebrews seems to be a garble of tenses, but the Spirit inspired it to remind us that our right relationship with God is a done deal. Of Jesus Christ, our High Priest before God, the Father, we read – “when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.” (Hebrews 10:12-15, NIV) He completed the work that assures us of God’s acceptance and now that declared status is being worked out in us every day. If we look at only ourselves, we likely will become fearful and doubtful like old Abraham. “Lord, is it going to happen? Can I trust You?” Why do we do that? Because we are works in progress, our experience on this side of Heaven very much incomplete. When we look to the Cross for our hope and trust fully, we see no debt outstanding for we are recipients of righteous credited to us by God, through Christ, our Lord.
Is this all just ‘theology,’ detached from real life, church stuff only? Not at all! The “real and eternal life, more and better life” (John 10:10, The Message) Jesus promises to us has no other foundation. We believe, God loves, and He becomes, as He promised Abraham, “your shield, your very great reward.” (Genesis 15:1, NIV)
Here is the word from the Word – “By entering through faith into what God has always wanted to do for us—set us right with him, make us fit for him—we have it all together with God because of our Master Jesus.
And that’s not all:
We throw open our doors to God and discover at the same moment that he has already thrown open his door to us. We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we might stand—out in the wide open spaces of God’s grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise. There’s more to come: We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary—we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit! “ (Romans 5:1-5, The Message)
Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine.
O what a foretaste of glory divine.
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood!
This is my story, this is my song;
Praising my Savior all the day long!
Fanny Jane Crosby | Phoebe Palmer Knapp
© Words: Public Domain