The Gifts of Promise

by APC on December 11, 2014

It is important for Christians to learn about the gifts that we have in our life as part of the New Testament church. God is pouring out many promises in our lives, and we should be excited about those promises!

Seasons of Promise

Our Christian walk is full of promises of salvation. John 10:7–10 states:

Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly (KJV).

The human life is comprised of days, which turn into months, which turn into seasons. But, our “seasons” aren’t just dictated by the time of year, or the weather, but can be impacted by circumstances that occur in day-to-day life.

In John 10:10, Jesus explains that the “thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy…” (KJV). He is referencing none other but our sworn enemy—the devil. He will come to steal any victory that we have in our day-to-day life. He will try to magnify the hard “reality” of our circumstances to crush our faith. The devil comes to steal our peace, our blessings, our joy, etc. A preacher once asked, “Will we be a prisoner of reality, or will we be free in the promises of God?”

Remember, the devil can only take the unpleasant parts of our lives and emphasize them. He can’t create anything “new”—he’s been using the same tactics to attack the children of God that he’s always used. He’s not the originator—God is the originator!  Instead of focusing on what the devil is trying to magnify in our life, we should focus on the promises of God!

God Always Gives Us a Way Out

Because God knows the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10)—because He created everything—He knows something we don’t know. He knows the way to escape. I Corinthians 10:13 tells us:

There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it (KJV).

God will never temp us beyond what we are able to bear, and He will provide a way for us to escape our trials and tribulations. Scripture reminds us that others who have gone before us, and even those who are fighting the good fight of faith with us now, have been tempted in the same way that we are (Hebrews 12:1). But, they too have been able to escape and overcome through Jesus Christ.

If the devil’s main goal is to get our focus off God, we need to make an effort to focus on God. We need to listen as God provides direction to us to overcome the trials in our lives. A way of escape is a promise that God has for us today, but believing in that promise takes faith.

God Gave Us His Word

Every man has been given a measure of faith (Romans 12:3). But, how do we increase that measure of faith the Lord has given us? Romans 10:17 says, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (KJV).

When we hear the Word of God, and read the Word of God, we will start to learn about the blessings and promises of God. When we see how God of the Old Testament gave and fulfilled promises—that increases our faith. When we see how God of the New Testament gave and fulfilled promises—that increases our faith. When we see how God today gives us a promise in our lives, and He fulfills it—that too increases our faith!

We need to get enough faith—through hearing and reading the Word of God—and take a step toward the promise that God has in store for each and every one of us. When the blessing comes, our confidence increases in God and His Word.

Hebrews 11 is known as the “faith” chapter in the Bible. We can see verse after verse of Scripture that all begin with “by faith…” It takes faith to obtain the promises of God, and we are given countless examples of people in the Bible that were obedient to God, stepped out in faith, and received their promise.

Our promise comes through the Word of God in itself. We can hide His Word continually in our hearts and apply it to our lives daily. We know the Bible is the infallible Word of God—and since God cannot lie (Titus 1:2)—the Word and His promises are true.

God Gave Us the Spirit of Promise—the Holy Ghost

Luke 24:46–49 notes:

And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high (KJV).

Jesus told His followers to tarry at Jerusalem until they were “endued with power from on high.” This power was to be His Spirit—the Holy Ghost—that would come down from Heaven and fill them with His presence. This was a promise to the New Testament believers, and is a promise for us today! We are the continuation of the New Testament church; we continue to experience un-ending “acts” (miracles, signs, and wonders) of the Lord that were first documented in the Book of Acts. If we wait on God, and tarry in His presence, He will fill us with the precious gift of the Holy Ghost.

Ephesians 1:11–14 says:

In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ. In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory (KJV).

The Holy Ghost is the “holy Spirit of promise” referenced in this verse, and is the “earnest of our inheritance.” The word “earnest” in the Greek is the word arrabón, which means earnest-money, or the large part of the payment given in advance as a security that the whole will be paid afterward. We are just experiencing a small part of our full promise (inheritance)! We will receive the rest of that promise—the whole part—once we make it to heaven!

Jesus promised that if we were obedient to His Word—repent and are baptized in Jesus’ name, as dictated in Acts 2:38—we shall receive the promise (the gift) of the Holy Ghost. Through the infilling of the Holy Ghost, we will experience additional promises:

  • Power—Jesus has given us power through the Holy Ghost to “tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy” (Luke 10:19). We will overcome in any adversity.
  • Comfort & Knowledge—The promise (the Holy Ghost) is also called our Comforter (John 14:26). The Comforter will send peace to us in every situation, and will give us knowledge beyond what we can learn on our own!
  • Rest—The Holy Ghost will give us rest and will refresh us (Isaiah 28:12). No matter the trial or the circumstance, we can always find rest in the Holy Ghost!

Without this promise of the Holy Ghost working in our lives—shaping us in holiness and righteousness—Scripture tells us in Hebrews 12:14 that without it “no man shall see the Lord” (KJV). If we don’t latch onto the promises of God in this life, we lose out on the ability to partake in His everlasting promises one day around His throne in heaven.

The Promise is for Everyone

God has given us so many promises in life; we could never thank Him for all of them! These key promises are relevant to living a blessed life. We need to remember that God gave these promises to all—especially the Spirit of Promise—which Acts 2:39 tells us “is to you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call” (KJV). Don’t miss out on the promises and blessings of God. Take a step out in faith and see what promises you receive.

Adapted from Wednesday Night Bible Study on December 10, 2014