THE PROMISES OF GOD
- Great promises of life eternal were made to righteous men of old. It began with Abraham. Abraham was living in Ur of the Chaldees, a city in what would be modern day Iraq. God called him from Ur to go north to Haran in Central Iraq and then made the first of several promises to him. God promised Abraham:
- GEN 12:1-3 Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.
- After Abraham removed to Israel, God made further promises to him.
- GEN 13:14-17 And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered. Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee.
- It is notable that God did not tell Abraham to look "up", that the inheritance of these promises was in heaven. Nor did he tell him to look "down", fearing a fiery grave. The promises were the land that he could see, the land of Israel. These promises were repeated to Abraham's son and grandson Isaac and Jacob. Then, a further promise was made to David, the second King of Israel, and a man after God's own heart.
- 2SA 7:12-13 And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever.
- Typical of God's intent to establish these promises is this passage of hope in the Psalms:
- PSA 89:34-37 My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips. Once have I sworn by my holiness that I will not lie unto David. His seed shall endure for ever, and his throne as the sun before me. It shall be established for ever as the moon, and as a faithful witness in heaven. Selah.
- These promises all focused on Jesus Christ. He was the seed in the promise to Abraham. He was the King who should reign on David's throne for ever. Paul wrote:
- GAL 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
- And Isaiah wrote:
- ISA 9:6-7 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.
Therefore Christadelphians teach:
VII.--That He inaugurated this plan by making promises to Adam, Abraham, and David, and afterwards elaborated it in greater detail through the prophets.