Praise the Lord, Grace & Peace great people of our “GREAT GOD”…JESUS
During this week I began to think about how God has promised all of us something that we urn for, but sometimes it seems like it will never come to fruition. While in the process of waiting our faith is truly tested! But God has to prove us, and refine us during the waiting process. For this Golden Nugget I would like to provoke thought concerning the promise God gave Abraham that there would be a seed from his own loins for his household through Sarah. My thought for this provocation shall be “Don’t let a Wrong Temporary Decisions due to a lack of Faith, become a Permanent Situation.” The following scriptures will be use to establish my premise for this gospel provocation:
Gen 15:1-4 After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward. And Abram said, Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus? And Abram said, Behold, to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house is mine heir. And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir.
Gen 16:1-3 Now Sarai Abram’s wife bare him no children: and she had an handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar. And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the LORD hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai. And Sarai Abram’s wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.
My brothers and sisters, here I find a dark shadow of unbelief cast over the spirit of Abraham again, which turned him aside for a season from the path of having a simple confidence in God. Notice what the scriptures says “And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold the Lord hath restrained me from bearing.” These words speak to the fact of how impatience we are when it comes to believing the promises of God. Abraham should have addressed her statement accordingly through his actions by waiting patiently on the Lord, to experience His gracious promise. The flesh naturally prefers everything else, except to accept the attitude of waiting on the Lord.
From my experience and observations, the flesh will turn to any alternate scheme and resource, rather than be kept in the posture to wait on the Lord. The word encourages us in Psa 27:13-14 I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.
It is one thing to believe a promise, when you first receive it from the Lord, but it is another thing to wait patiently for it to be fulfilled. We can see this distinction constantly exemplified in a child. If I promised my sons anything when they were very young, they had no reasons to doubt my word; but during the process of them waiting, I could detect restlessness and impatience concerning the duration of time for the promise to come to fruition. Likewise, we as being the Lords children also exemplify the same behavior as we wait like a child. Abraham exhibits faith, in Genesis chapter 15, but yet he fails in the process of patience in Genesis chapter 16. Hence this example gives credence to the apostle’s word, in Heb. 6:10-12 “For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end: That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”
My brothers and sisters, God makes a promise, faith believes it; hope anticipates it; patience waits intensively upon it. GOLD NUGGET!
There a thing in the commercial financial world, known as “the present worth” of a bill or promissory note, Please understand Saints if men are looking for a return on investment for their money, they must be paid for waiting. Now, in faith’s world, there is such a things as the present worth and the value of God’s promise; and the scale by which that worth is regulated. I believe it is ones experiential knowledge in God; for my experience in God can only be what I have experienced in His promise; Hence my experiences have proved that, if my spirit remains subdued and patient it will find a rich and full reward because I waited on what the Lord has promised! GOLD NUGGET!
So when I evaluate and paraphrase Sarah words to Abraham, I see an erroneous temporary decision in the making; I hear her saying that, “the Lord has failed me; it may be, my Egyptian maid will prove to be another resource for me.” Anything but what God has promise me! Wow! it is truly remarkable to observe how we give up on God and depend on ourselves, when we feel the Lord is not near. But it is proven and documented that His infallible faithfulness, and unfailing sufficiency cannot be negated. We seem to lose our calm and well-balanced stand in God which is so essential in maintaining our perpetual testimony that we are people of the NAME. So many have been chose to walk in faith; but many end up becoming just like other faithless people who walk in the habitual practices of the flesh!
My brothers and my sisters, it is a bitter thing to take ourselves out of the place of absolute dependency upon God. The consequences can be disastrous. Now notice if Sarai had said, “My flesh has failed me, but God is my resource, “how different it would have been! This would have given her proper ground; for flesh really had failed her. But, then, it was flesh in one form, and therefore she wished to try flesh in another. She had not learned to look away from the natural man. Please note that in the face of God, as it pertained to faith, Hagar flesh was no better than Sarai’s flesh.
Whether old or young, it’s all alike to God; and, therefore, it’s all alike to faith; but, wow, we only understand the power of this truth when we are experientially living in Christ Jesus! When we take our eyes off of Jesus, we are setting ourselves up for the meanest devices that support unbelief. It is only when we consciously lean on the only true, only wise, and living God, that we are enabled to take our dependency off the natural man. Unbelief looks only at the surrounding situation and instruments, and judges its success based on the sufficiency of others, and not by the sufficiency of the All Sufficient One Jesus.
It reminds me of king Saul, who, when he looked at David, and then looked at the Philistine, said, “thou are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for thou art but a youth.” Yet the question in David’s heart was not as to whether he was able, but whether Jehovah was able, because his sufficiency was in Him.
The path of faith is a very simple and a very narrow one. It neither defies the means on the one hand, nor despises it on the other. It simply values it, because it evidently is God’s means! There is a vast difference between God’s using what he chooses to minister to you and I, and what we use to shut Him out. Please remember that God used the ravens to minister to Elijah, but Elijah did not use them to exclude God. If our hearts really trust in God, we will not trouble ourselves on How God will provide. We will wait on Him with sweet assurance knowing that whatsoever means He sends, He will bless, He will minister, He will provide.
Saints as we look into Genesis chapter 16, it is evident that Hagar was not God’s instrument for the fulfillment of His promise to Abraham. He had promised a son, no doubt, but He had not said that this son would be Hagar’s; and, in fact, we find from the narrative, that both Abraham and Sarah “multiplied their sorrow,” by having recourse to Hagar; Did not the word of God state in Pro 10:22 The blessing of the LORD, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.
For “when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes.” This was but the beginning of those multiplied sorrows, which flowed from hastening after the natural man through the lack of faith. Sarah’s dignity was trampled down by an Egyptian bond-woman, and she found herself in the place of weakness and contempt. The only true place of dignity and power is in this place is when we feel weak and dependent upon God. There is no one so entirely independent of all the things that surrounds us, than the man and woman who is really walking by faith, and waiting only upon God; but the moment a child of God makes himself a debtor to the natural things of this world, they lose their dignity, and will quickly be made to feel their loss. It is not easy to experience losses that are sustained by deviating from the path of faith, based on wrong temporary decisions!
My brothers and sisters notice Sarai statement “And Sarai said, My wrong be upon thee.” When we act wrong, we are often times prone to lay the blame on someone else. Sarah was only reaping the fruit of what she proposed, and yet she says to Abraham, “My wrong be upon thee;” and then, with Abraham’s permission, she seeks to get rid of the trial which her own impatience had brought upon her. “But Abram said unto Sarai, Behold thy maid is in thy hand; do to her as it pleaseth thee. And when Sarah dealt hardly with her, she fled from her face.” Of course this method could not work. “The bond-woman” cannot be got rid of by hard treatment. When we make mistakes, and find ourselves called upon to encounter the results thereof, we cannot counteract those results through harshness. We frequently try this method, but we are sure to make matters worse. If we have done wrong, we should humble ourselves and confess the wrong, and wait on God for deliverance. But there was nothing like this manifested in Sarah’s case. It was quite the reverse.
However, it will always be found that every effort which we make to rectify our errors previous to the full confession of it, will only cause our path to be more difficult. Hence Hagar had to return, and give birth to her son, which proved to be not the child of the promise at all, but a very great trial to Abraham because he did not walk in the word that was promised to him.
Saints it is a fact that things must take their course, for the word states that “Whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit, shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” This is an unalterable principle, meeting us, again and again, on the page of inspiration, and also on the page of our personal history. Grace forgives the sin and restores the soul, but that which is sown must be reaped. There are some things we have done to our own bodies in the past and are still doing that we are reaping for today. Abraham and Sarah had to endure the presence of the bond-woman and her son for a number of years, and, then, get rid of them in God’s way.
There is peculiar blessedness in leaving ourselves in God’s hands. Had Abraham and Sarah done so, in their situation, they would never have been troubled with the presence of the bond-woman and her son; but, having made themselves debtors to flesh and unbelief in the promise from God, they had to endure the consequences. That’s why if you are like me, I don’t want to walk in bondage in my spirit, nor my mind. Especially if you were freed, like a bullock that is unaccustomed to being yoked. This is why you and I should take joyous comfort when we strive to depend on Jesus like a child weaned by its mother.
What figures can I use that are more opposite than a stubborn bullock and a weaned child. The former represents a person senselessly struggling under the yoke of circumstances, situations, doubt, etc., and trying to get rid of their yoke by their own efforts; the latter represents the ones meekly bowing their hand to everything, and rendering their selves by striving to remain under the subjection to the Holy Spirit as they wait patiently for the promises that God has given them to be fulfilled, so that you “Don’t let Wrong Temporary Decisions due to a lack of Faith, become Permanent Situation”
I’ll close this Golden Nugget with one of my favorite scriptures, Heb 10:35-39 “Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man drawback, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul”…. I pray you all have a “JESUS DAY“