"For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee.  And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise." (Hebrews 6:13-15).

Devotion 7 of  16


Abraham did not earn the promise. He obtained, or received, it! It is written, "And so, after he had patiently endured, he OBTAINED the promise" (v 15). To hear the promise of God is one thing. To obtain it is quite another matter. In the heavenly Kingdom, time stands between the promise and its realization the test of time. Abraham stood that test. When conditions appeared to contradict the promise, Abraham chose to cleave to the promise with all of his heart. That required unspeakable effort. It was a fight of faith a battle to cling to the promise while Satan tried to wrest it from the patriarch.

And how God was glorified by the outcome! Hear the comforting testimony of the "father of us all," (as it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before Him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were. Who against hope BELIEVED IN HOPE, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be. And BEING NOT WEAK IN FAITH, he CONSIDERED NOT his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb: he STAGGERED NOT at the promise of God through unbelief; but was STRONG IN FAITH, giving glory to God; and being FULLY PERSUADED that, what He had promised, He was able also to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness." (Rom 4:15-22).

The endurance here mentioned is persistence in believing God. Time, like a gigantic tidal wave smashed against the trust of the patriarch, attempting to push him away from Divine refuge.  Abraham, however, took hold of the Word of God, and refused to let it go. How gloriously faith worked in the trusting one. "Without becoming weak in faith," he refused to ponder the fleshly inability of himself and Sarah. Without a written Word from God, and with few explanations or elaboration, Abraham was "fully assured that what" God "had promised, He was able also to perform."

Candidly, Abraham puts the average churchman to shame. We live in a time when people glibly speak about being "angry with God," wondering whether He has forgotten them, and why difficult things happen to them. These are all expressions of unbelief. Such individuals are not "strong in faith," and consequently do not bring "glory to God." 

In my opinion, there is altogether too much sympathy with fleshly responses in professed believers. It is an intolerable situation. God is not honored by those who are weak in the faith particularly when they have been given advantages in Christ that Abraham did not possess. These days, there is a lot of talk in some circles about praising God and bringing glory to Him. Such cultures, I fear, are not generally noted for the kind of faith Abraham possessed, which faith is the standard for the Kingdom, not the exception.

Where the promises of God are not believed, they emphatically will not be obtained. Where individuals do not persevere in that faith, the promises of God will be forfeited. I know of no exceptions to these things. In Christ Jesus, there simply is no place for unbelief or a failure to continue in the faith. However, for those who want to believe, and to continue in the faith, there is abundant grace that will enable them to do so.

PRAYER POINT: Father, in the name of Jesus, I thank You for your exceeding great and precious promises. Grant me grace to not come short of embracing them and holding on to them by faith.

-- Tomorrow: AN END OF ALL STRIFE --