Sunday, August 12, 2012
A SMALL PRICE TO PAY FOR SUCH RICHES.
As I watched Dr. Charles Stanley teach on the topic of God's Precious Promises this morning (http://www.intouch.org/you/sermon-outlines/content?topic=god_s_precious_promises_sermon_outline) I noticed how different his approach was compared to many popular mainstream pastors and teachers. While the message was certainly positive, it was not the typical "just believe and you'll receive" message that is so popular and sought after today.
First, he made clear that the promises were made only to Believers in Romans 5:6-11. Then he went on to explain where the promises were made in 2 Peter 1:3-4 which reads "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness. Through these He has given us very great and precious promises...". He then proceeded to describe all the richness of the things God has promised us, to wit: daily cleansing (1 John 1:9), answered prayers (1 John 5:14-15), peace (Phil 4:6-7) and healing (Psalms 103:1-3) to name just a few. But with those promises come some conditions: "...you must believe and not doubt..." (James 1:6), "...no good thing will He withheld from them that walk uprightly" (Psalm 84:11).
Just to be clear we aren't guaranteed the benefits without the commitments. There are too many teachers who would leave their students believing they can receive what they ask for pretty much on their own terms. That is, they can live to a standard that they find acceptable and simply because they ask in the name Jesus Christ it will be answered. That's not what an all powerful and benevolent God is required to accept.
You cannot lose the promises as clearly stated in John 10:27-30 "And I will give them (my sheep, my children) eternal life; and they shall never perish,...". But our sin can separate us from the promises as stated in Psalm 84:11 if we are not earnest and diligent in our obedience. Obedience to God's commandments (which are always good for us anyway) in return for the possibility of unlimited blessings that only the Creator of all things could promise - A SMALL PRICE TO PAY FOR SUCH RICHES.