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BIBLE STUDY - MAN'S PROMISES OR GOD'S PROMISES

 

 
 

 

Man's Promises or God's Promises

 

Moses came and called for the elders of the people, and laid before them all these words which the LORD commanded him. Then all the people answered together and said, "All that the LORD has spoken we will do." (Exo_19:7-8)

 

The promises of the old covenant of law depend upon the performance of man. "You shall therefore keep My statutes and My judgments, which if a man does, he shall live by them" (Lev_18:5). The better promises of the new covenant of grace depend upon the performance of God. "I will make a new covenant . . . I will put My law in their minds" (Jer_31:31, Jer_31:33).

 

When man attempts to live under the law (thereby needing to perform up to God's standards by human resources), he typically tries to live by his promises to God. Israel was a vivid example of this futile tendency. "All that the LORD has spoken we will do." This well-intended promise to God was consistently broken. Moses' words are a stinging indictment of the vanity of basing life with God on our promises to Him. "You have been rebellious against the LORD from the day that I knew you" (Deu_9:24).

 

The desire to obey God appropriately resides within the hearts of His children, but a better way to obedience must be found than relying upon our promises to God. That better way is the path of grace, which offers a life based upon God's promises to man. "I will give you a new heart and [I will] put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and [I will] give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and [I will] cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them" (Eze_36:26-27).

 

We are to live by the promises of God to us (instead of by our promises to Him). Living by God's promises produces a growing confidence in the Lord, a confidence that results from His unique character. "God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do it? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good? " (Num_23:19). Man may make promises to God, but, eventually, he will fail. God is not like man. God is true to His word. He will not lie, nor will He change His mind. Whatever He says, He will do! We can fully rely upon the promises of God that we find in His word.

Lord God of truth, forgive my multiplied attempts to develop a Christian walk by my promises to You. Lord, You know how often I have failed. What a joyous option this is to live by Your promises to me! Please teach me how to think and live this way, in Jesus name, Amen.

Copyright 2012 Newborn Ministry