Do you ever make promises that you either have a really hard time keeping or maybe aren’t able to keep? I know there are times I have made promises to my kids and something else important has come up and I have had to adjust the timeline or the details of the promise to make it work. I always feel bad when it happens, but sometimes there isn’t much that can be done to prevent it.
As I was reading in my devotional time last night I was struck really hard by the reality that when God makes a promise, He follows through. No matter what.
Here is the Lord’s promise to King David in 2 Samuel 7:
1 After the king was settled in his palace and the LORD had given him rest from all his enemies around him, 2he said to Nathan the prophet, “Here I am, living in a house of cedar, while the ark of God remains in a tent.”
3 Nathan replied to the king, “Whatever you have in mind, go ahead and do it, for the LORD is with you.”
4 But that night the word of the LORD came to Nathan, saying:
5 “Go and tell my servant David, ‘This is what the LORD says: Are you the one to build me a house to dwell in? 6 I have not dwelt in a house from the day I brought the Israelites up out of Egypt to this day. I have been moving from place to place with a tent as my dwelling. 7 Wherever I have moved with all the Israelites, did I ever say to any of their rulers whom I commanded to shepherd my people Israel, “Why have you not built me a house of cedar?”’
8 “Now then, tell my servant David, ‘This is what the LORD Almighty says: I took you from the pasture, from tending the flock, and appointed you ruler over my people Israel. 9 I have been with you wherever you have gone, and I have cut off all your enemies from before you. Now I will make your name great, like the names of the greatest men on earth. 10 And I will provide a place for my people Israel and will plant them so that they can have a home of their own and no longer be disturbed. Wicked people will not oppress them anymore, as they did at the beginning 11 and have done ever since the time I appointed leaders[a] over my people Israel. I will also give you rest from all your enemies.
“‘The LORD declares to you that the LORD himself will establish a house for you: 12 When your days are over and you rest with your ancestors, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, your own flesh and blood, and I will establish his kingdom. 13 He is the one who will build a house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. 14 I will be his father, and he will be my son. When he does wrong, I will punish him with a rod wielded by men, with floggings inflicted by human hands. 15 But my love will never be taken away from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. 16 Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me[b]; your throne will be established forever.’”
17 Nathan reported to David all the words of this entire revelation.
And here, hundreds of years later, after God’s people have continued to fail over and over, is the fulfillment of the promise in Luke 1.
26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”
34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”
35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called[b] the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.”
38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.
This isn’t something God decided to do at the last minute. This isn’t something that God thought would be a good idea, but then when His people kept messing up decided it wasn’t worth it. This was God’s plan. This was His promise. And he kept it.
When I think about that, and realize how hard it is sometimes for me to keep my promises, I am both in awe of our Lord, and humbled by my humanity.
Whatever is going on in your life today, remember this, “For no word from God will ever fail.” He is a God who keeps His promises.
He promises to never leave us or forsake us.
He promises to watch over us.
He promises to provide for us.
He promises to love us.
He promises to forgive us.
He promises to come for us.
And His promises aren’t hard for Him to keep.
What promises of God are you holding on to today?