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Sunday, April 05, 2009

The Faithfulness of God

I've been thinking of Sarah, wife of Abraham, a lot this week. For those of you who don't know the story, God promised Abraham that he would have a son, and that his seed would be like the stars of heaven (Genesis 15: 5). "And he believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness" (v 6). However, there was one small problem. Sarah was a ninety-year-old woman who had been barren all her life, and Abraham was even older. When she heard what God said she laughed. "After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?" (18:13).

However, God's promise was fulfilled in their lives. Sarah gave birth to a son, whom she called Isaac, and the rest as they say is history. But one thing that strikes me is that Sarah didn't really believe. She wanted a son as badly as Abraham did, so she took matters into her own hands and sent him to sleep with her maid so she could have the promised heir. However, when the child was born, Sarah became angry and made Abraham throw the child and his mother out!

Does God bless us even when we don't believe? Let's examine what the Bible says. "Know therefore that the Lord thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations" Deuteronomy 7:9).

And again, "My mercy will I keep for him for evermore, and my covenant shall stand fast with him. His seed also will I make to endure for ever, and his throne as the days of heaven. If his children forsake my law, and walk not in my judgments; if they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments; Then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. Nevertheless my lovingkindness will I not utterly take from him, nor suffer my faithfulness to fail. My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips" (Psalms 89:28-34).

Isn't it exciting and comforting to know that God is a covenant-keeping God who doesn't change His mind or renege on His promises because we don't believe or because we fall into sin? He will punish us, that's for sure, but He will always be faithful. Sarah endured some punishment after she gave her maid to Abraham, but God didn't take back His promise because of what she did. He remained faithful then and He remains faithful now. Halleluiah!
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