WHEN GOD MAKES A PROMISE
Has anyone made a promise to you and didn’t keep it? Most of us have been a recipient of a broken promise. The Bible tells us that broken promises are worse than clouds that do not bring rain. A best example of this is when parents make promises to their children and they fail to keep their word. When promises are broken and forgotten, man’s usual reaction is to sulk. And Moses was not an exemption to this.
It was the time after Moses spoke to Pharaoh about letting the Israelites go. Instead of doing so, Pharaoh made the Israelites work harder by holding back the supply of straw. The Israelites had to complete their work as if there was straw. Moses was discouraged. After all, he did obey God. But it seems it only resulted to more suffering for the Israelites. Don’t we feel the same way when things don’t go the way we expect them to? Or at least the way God had promised them to? We sulk at God when we are discouraged and disheartened by things that didn’t go as planned. We try to do things in our own way when we lose hope in the promises of God.
But God spoke to Moses and said to him, “I am the Lord.” “I am who I am,” says the Lord. Moses had no idea who the Lord was and what He could do. There was no Bible during his time thus he had no idea that the Lord can do what seems to be impossible. God had to reveal to Moses that He is an all-powerful and an all-knowing God. The Lord heard the groaning of His people and He remembered His covenant (Exodus 6:5).
God did not forget.
In Exodus 6:6-8, the Lord said seven things that he would do to save his people. First, “I will remove the burden of the Egyptians from you,” said the Lord. Many of us are burdened, tired, and at the verge of giving up. Jesus’ invitation is to come to Him all who are weary and are heavy laden, and He will give them rest (Matt. 11:28). Second, “I will remove the bondage of the Egyptians,” said the Lord. We are all once enslaved by sin; living in the passion of our flesh. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of his great love for us, made us alive together with Christ—by grace we are saved (Eph. 2:3-5).
Then the Lord said to Moses, “I will redeem my people.” Jesus paid for our freedom. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace (Eph. 1:7). “I will take you for my possession,” the Lord said. Having been bought by the price Jesus paid, we now belong to God. Our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit within us. Therefore, we have to glorify God in our body (1 Cor. 6:19-20).
Lastly, the Lord said to Moses, “I will bring you to the promise land, and I will give it to you for a possession.” The promise land was a land flowing with milk and honey. Jesus came that we may have life and have it abundantly (John 10:10). If we consider and reflect on our life, are we in the Promised Land? What about our home – is it a picture of heaven on earth?
After hearing what the Lord said, Moses spoke to the people of Israel but they did not listen to him because of their broken spirit as a result of the harsh conditions of slavery (Exodus 6:9). Can can identify with the disbelief of the Israelites? Often times, we forget the promises of God—because we are discouraged and disappointed because of our past experiences when things turned from bad to worse. We tend to focus on the problem, rather than running to God. Man refuses to believe because of impatience.
We want things to happen in our time and in our own way. God’s promises are only fulfilled according to His way, His will, and His purpose.
Again, the Lord commanded Moses to go and tell Pharoah to let the people of Israel go out of Egypt. But Moses said to the Lord, “Behold, the people of Israel have not listened to me. How then shall the Pharaoh listen to me, for I am not a good speaker” (Exodus 6:10-12). God gave Moses the ability to speak. In the same way, His Divine power has been granted to us to accomplish His will (2 Peter 1:3). As Christians, we have been given the right to become children of God – to all who received and believed in the name of Jesus Christ. Therefore, we should think, speak, and act with authority as children of the King of kings and Lord of lords.
Later on, God hardened the heart of Pharoah and brought the Israelites out of Egypts by great acts of judgement (Exodus 7:3-4). God wanted to prove to the Egyptians that He is the Lord and that He alone is God. Moses and Aaron did just as the Lord commanded simply because God promised to deliver His people. (v.6)
When God makes a promise, believe.
No matter how long we have to wait, believe. No matter how impossible they might seem, believe. Because in God there are no broken promises, ever.
Writer’s Bio: Ish Cocjin is a writer and a teacher by passion and by heart. Her life has always been about a princess’ faith and a King’s faithfulness.